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Canterbury woman Olivia Egerton wins First Steps in Governance award

Media release
By Institute of Directors
29 Jul 2020
Olivia Egerton profile picture

The Canterbury Branch of the Institute of Directors (IoD) has announced that emerging leader Olivia Egerton is their 2020 First Steps in Governance awardee.

The award is given each year by the professional body of directors and seeks individuals who are motivated to further their business experience, gain insight into good governance practice and learn about the dynamics of sitting on a board.

As part of the award, Olivia will sit on the board of the Ronald McDonald House South Island (RMHSI) for two years, receive professional development training with IoD, a year’s complimentary IoD membership and attendance to Canterbury Branch functions and one-on-one mentoring from an experienced director.

RMHSI chair Jock Muir said the calibre of applicants for the First Step in Governance award was extraordinarily high this year with the panel interviewing around nine candidates. Olivia was a strong winner.

“She had the passion, strong people skills, a good range of experience and skills and we thought she would be a great fit to challenge and add value to the Ronald McDonald House South Island Board,” Jock said.

Olivia will be the eighth First Steps in Governance awardee to be mentored by the RMHSI Board.

“Being part of this award has been enormously successful for RMHSI. Bringing young people to the table who come with a different mind-set, different experiences, and ways of thinking and looking at things adds immense value to our board,” Jock said.

RMHSI recently filled two vacancies on the board with a former and current First Steps in Governance awardees.

“We’ve really valued our relationship with the Institute of Directors and the opportunity being part of this award has given us.”

Canterbury IoD branch chair Geordie Hooft, a chartered accountant and partner at KPMG, said the annual First Steps in Governance award had once again attracted a high calibre of applications. Since first being awarded in 2014 the award has had a track record for launching successful governance careers for past winners.

Olivia is delighted, “I am honoured to receive this award and feel privileged to be able to undertake a two year internship on the Ronald McDonald House South Island board. This is an exceptional opportunity to learn from Ronald McDonald House South Island’s experienced directors and develop my governance skills with an organisation as it navigates supporting families in need in these globally challenging times”.

Leading the primary industry portfolio as Export Business Advisor at Katabolt, New Zealand’s leading independent export consultancy. Olivia is an experienced manager with a proven track record for professionally delivering numerous strategic projects, partnerships and events in multiple sectors - primary industry, master planned property development and arts, heritage and culture. She is well regarded for her role developing and managing the Te Hono Movement. A business led, government enabled initiative that has brought together New Zealand’s largest and most innovative primary sector companies to transform from volume to value.

Olivia has been a trustee of The Arts Centre of Christchurch Trust Board, formerly deputy chair and trustee of the Wakatipu Heritage Trust and trustee of the Wakatipu Community Maritime Preservation Society.

The First Steps in Governance award will be presented at an IoD function in Christchurch on 3 August 2020.

About Ronald McDonald House South Island

Ronald McDonald House South Island is an independent charitable trust that provides free accommodation and support to families who must travel to Christchurch and Invercargill for their child’s medical treatment.

Each year we provide a home-away-from-home for more than 1,200 families.  By removing the stressors of everyday life, families can focus on what matters most – their child.

See more information on the Ronald McDonald House website

Media contacts

Christine Field
IoD Senior Communications Advisor
027 326 9107 christine.field@iod.org.nz

Geraldine Tyas 
Communications Advisor
027 236 7003 geraldine@rmhsi.org.nz

Sharynn Johnson
Institute of Directors Canterbury Branch Manager