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New DWN trustee to return the favour to the industry

For immediate release

Date: 2 October 2014

New DWN trustee to return the favour to the industry

Donna Smit credits dairy farming as having been good to her and her family, and says she wants to support and inspire other New Zealand women to succeed in the industry.

This was one of the main drivers for the Edgecumbe dairy farmer and company director to take on a role as Dairy Women’s Network’s newest trustee.

Smit is a director of Corona Farms Ltd, a family farming company owned by herself and husband Corrie that comprises five farms in Whakatane and Oamaru, milking 2300 cows.

A member of Dairy Women’s Network for several years, she said her ambitions as a trustee are to fully support the network in their vision of becoming world leaders for women in dairying.

“I hope I can bring my governance and commercial expertise and financial skills to the table to allow Dairy Women’s Network to deliver value to the dairy industry and to support and inspire New Zealand women to succeed in the business of dairying.

“Dairy Women’s Network is very important to the dairy industry and it is fantastic how it provides a forum to people to learn and grow.”

She said she is looking forward to working with new people, including Dairy Women’s Network chief executive Zelda De Villiers.

“Zelda has some stellar credentials and ideas for the future, so it will be fantastic to be part of the journey to deliver something of real value to New Zealand dairy women.”

Smit and her husband owned a kiwifruit packhouse and coolstore complex in Edgecumbe, which they sold in 1989.

Shortly after, she began in her role with EastPack (then known as Rangitaiki Fruitpackers) as the company’s accountant.

Smit remained at EastPack for more than 20 years; spending the last 13 years in a company administration role.

After leaving EastPack full-time in August 2013, she has just completed leading an Information Systems project for the company on a part-time basis.

Smit will assume per trustee position after the Dairy Women’s Network’s Annual General Meeting on 22 October.


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