Ben Kepes and Tina Porou join the Board at Ākina Foundation
The Ākina Foundation is announcing changes in their governance team. The organisation is welcoming two new trustees to the board; Ben Kepes from Canterbury and Tina Porou from Ngati Porou and Ngati Tuwharetoa.
The pair bring a wealth of experience and connections in the entrepreneurial, technology and Māori sectors. Their support will help Ākina deliver a collective voice, representative expectations and a fit-for-purpose sector strategy for social enterprise in Aotearoa, as announced in May this year with the launch of The Impact Initiative.
Ben Kepes is a business leader, a technology evangelist, an entrepreneur, and a commentator. He is heavily involved in the technology and non-profit sectors, both at an operational level and governance basis. A recipient of a Sir Peter Blake leadership award in 2016, Ben is actively involved in mentoring companies and individuals and is passionate about the not-for-profit sector.
Tina Porou is of Ngati Porou and Ngati Tuwharetoa descent, and has worked in environmental services with private, public and Iwi organisations. Serving in roles like Head of Sustainability at Contact Energy and on the Boards of Lake Taupo Forest Trust and Toitu Ngati Porou, Tina brings a holistic approach based on the principles of kaitiakitanga.
Both are well known within the governance sector, and bring the Ākina Board to a total of six trustees, with Sophie Haslem Chairing, joined by the two new trustees as well as incumbents Gavin Fernandez, Malcolm Shaw, and Michelle Sharp.
“I am so very pleased and humbled to be able to invite Tina and Ben into the Ākina fold. They are both outstanding contributors to Aotearoa New Zealand and we look forward to enjoying their passion for positive change, their breadth of skills and their hard won wisdom around the board table,” says Haslem.
Ben and Tina will be replacing Penny Nelson, who has stepped down due to her growing commitments within Government, and Nick Gerritsen, a long-standing member of the board.
The Ākina Board recognises both Nelson and Gerritsen for their contributions and as being key parts in the organisation’s growth over the last ten years, from launching social enterprise support and growth initiatives around the country, to securing a partnership with the Department of Internal Affairs for a three-year sector development programme.
For more information about the Ākina Foundation, visit www.akina.org.nz