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New Zealand loses outstanding science leaders

Media statement from the Association of Crown Research Institutes

8 August 2006

New Zealand loses outstanding science leaders

With the deaths last week of Dr Geoff Page and Dr Rod East, New Zealand has lost two outstanding scientists and science leaders, said Anthony Scott, executive director of the Association of Crown Research Institutes.

Dr Geoff Page, chief executive of Industrial Research from 1992 for ten years, died within days of resigning as chief executive of Manukau Institute of Technology.

Dr Rod East was deputy chief executive of NIWA when he retired in 2002. He continued his science work with conservation groups in New Zealand and abroad.

Both will be farewelled on Wednesday: Dr Page in Auckland and Dr East in Hamilton.

Both men were pioneers in helping create Crown Research Institutes from the DSIR and other government research groups.

Their only template was the CRI Act which told CRIs to do research for the benefit of New Zealand, pursue excellence and social responsibility, and ensure financial viability.

They undertook the task with vigour, intelligence, imagination and commitment to the concept that quality science underpins New Zealand’s economy, environment and social wealth. Both men were sought for advice long after they left their CRI.

“This sad news means a great loss of science system knowledge and insight, but more importantly, we have lost two fine men. ACRI extends its condolences to the families of Geoff Page and Rod East,” said Anthony Scott.

Notes to Editor
The Crown Research Institutes were formed under the CRI Act 1992. They are: AgResearch, Crop & Food Research, ESR, GNS Science, HortResearch, Industrial Research, Landcare Research, NIWA, Scion.

ENDS

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