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Recipients of First Steps in Governance Award

Canterbury IoD branch names two recipients of First Steps in Governance Award

Two members of the Canterbury branch of the Institute of Directors (IoD) are recipients of the 2021 First Steps in Governance Award, which provides opportunities for young professionals to gain governance experience in the not-for-profit sector.

Chartered Accountant and Syft Technologies CFO Nicole Robinson will commence a two-year internship on the board of NZ Flying Doctor Service; and Bunnings Area Manager Morgan Walker will join the Ronald McDonald House South Island board.

Both recipients will also receive one year’s complimentary membership of the IoD, a year’s complimentary attendance at all Canterbury branch members’ events, $850 towards an IoD director development course of their choice, and mentoring from an experienced director.

Nicole Robinson

Syft is the world leader in trace gas analysis, generating revenue of $31m and operating in six regions globally. Ms Robinson says her experience as CFO of an international, high-growth tech had taught her to “think outside the box and be adaptable to change”.

“These are all attributes I can bring to the NZ Flying Doctor Service board,” she says. “I am passionate about being able to give back and add value, as well as working with diverse groups of people. I’m highly motivated by being a key contributor to a team and enjoy connecting with people across all levels of an organisation.

“The internship role with the NZ Flying Doctor board provides a great opportunity to be able to do that.”

NZ Flying Doctor Trust chair David Bowie says, “It was inspiring to see so many excellent candidates. We received such strong applications from gifted and capable professionals. We will gain a development director who will bring their unique perspective to our trust and in return I hope that we can share our style of governance with them.”

Morgan Walker

Mr Walker is an experienced retail manager who also has previous experience in the construction industry. In his role as area manager, Mr Walker is responsible for 11 Bunnings branches, leading a team of more than 1,000 employees through 11 store managers. Mr Walker says building high performing teams and developing future talent into great leaders within Bunnings has been one of the highlights of his career.

Mr Walker says he’s delighted to receive the award. “I am very humbled and excited to be given the opportunity to undertake this internship with Ronald McDonald House South Island. I feel very privileged to work with and learn from such an experienced and high performing group of directors to help develop my governance skills.

I have long been a passionate supporter of charities such as Ronald McDonald House and Starship, so it is great to be able to help an organisation that delivers amazing support to children and families at their time of need.”

Ronald McDonald House South Island chair Jock Muir says the calibre of applicants for the First Steps in Governance award was extraordinarily high and Morgan was an outstanding candidate.

“Morgan has the skills, experience and passion which will be a great fit for the Ronald McDonald House South Island board. We feel his different mind-set and way of thinking will add immense value to our board,” Mr Muir says.

Morgan will be the ninth First Steps in Governance awardee to be mentored by the RMHSI Board.

About the Awards

The IoD awards 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. Several past recipients of the First Steps in Governance award, launched in 2014, have gone on to build successful governance careers.

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