Annah Stretton (Founder and CEO)
Annah is the founder of the Annah Stretton fashion label, a successful New Zealand entrepreneur, author of five books and speaker. With a strong online platform and 11 retail stores, her philanthropic efforts provide substantial support to a very wide range of charitable groups and organisations across New Zealand.
In 2013 she set up the Stretton Foundation and from this came her first initiative – RAW (Reclaim Another Woman.) RAW was launched in the Waikato in February 2014, working with incarcerated recidivist offenders, the strength of this work is such that, in September 2015 she was awarded the EY / ASB Social Entrepreneur of the Year.
In 2016 Annah created Kia Puāwai which supports charitable organisations delivering social services within the community with wellness programmes. Kia Puàwai wants to protect the wellness of the people out there doing good. In 2018 the latest initiative The Good Collective is working to connect charities and not-for-profit organisations in the Waikato with professional service providers who are prepared to deliver high-quality work at discounted rates for its members.
For both her business and philanthropic work Annah was selected as one of the ten semi-finalists for 2018 New Zealander of the Year. Annah is currently on the chair of the Waikato women’s refuge and a board member of UNICEF NZ.
Vivien Maidaborn (Board Chair)
Human Rights has been the enduring theme of my career. I am struck by how much of the services, projects and protest we engaged in and thought would make things better over the last 30 years has failed. Now my focus is on systemic change. How do we disrupt big systems, resource people for a rapidly changing world, and most of all hold in our hearts, and minds the value of every single person. Working at UNICEF means I am part of an international and global effort on behalf of every child, my time at Loomio taught me about using technology and the internet for social change, and now at RAW I am interested in new social change models that draw from the best of entrepreneurial business and the best of values and person centred community responses. It is such an important inquiry – if our social services fail to support people to succeed then we must keep shifting and changing the supports we offer.
Deanne (Dee) McManus-Emery (Waikato-Tainui, Ngati Whatua descent) is the Regional Manager, South Auckland for Oranga Tamariki. Dee has extensive experience working within the social sector and has held a number of leadership roles across the public sector, including Housing NZ, Ministry for Social Development and more recently Hamilton City Council. She is passionate and a strong advocate for social inequality and will leverage her key strategic stakeholder partnerships to successfully bring about change to achieve collective outcomes for Maori and the wider community.
Dee’s experience working within large complex bureaucracy’s, gives her a competitive edge, and her leadership and experience brings new innovative thinking to the decision-making table.
Diane brings over 20 years of human resource, change management, employment relations, industrial relations and commercial experience, gained in a number of sectors, to the Board table.
As a business owner and director she understands the value of the Board to enable the leadership team to achieve the strategic direction of the organisation. With a career pathway including consultancy, management and senior executive roles, she is a Chartered Member of HRINZ and a member of the Institute of Directors. She is currently a Board member for Waikato Rugby Union and was previously the Deputy Chair of an organisation in the mental health sector.
With a passion for collaborating, connecting and community, Diane loves developing people to be the best version of themselves through support, coaching, mentoring and opportunity.
Born and bred on the East Coast in Gisborne, Nicola has had a long affinity with the land, ocean and the thriving communities that depend on it. Raised in a strong, positive and loving family network, acutely aware that many did not share this privilege, she has been compelled to make an impact professionally and personally from a young age.
After being a foster parent through Oranga Tamariki since the age of 21, her day job shifted to focus on the systemic issues in our communities that prevent us from better caring for our people. Recognising we cannot be successful on our own; and that environmental, economic, social and cultural issues are inherently bound, her focus has been on forging and strengthening partnerships that achieve shared outcomes and creating communities of lifelong learners and sustainable thinkers.
Nicola works as a senior leader at Waikato Regional Council, and has received many national awards for her work in connecting communities, including the SOLGM Emerging Leader of the Year award in 2017 and most recently 2019 ALGIM Supreme Winner Innovation in Organisation and People Development.
New to the RAW board, she is excited to work with some of New Zealand’s most inspiring and talented social innovators for a cause so critically important.
Pru is a director of an advocacy business that works with NGOs, businesses and Government agencies developing strategy and sustainable partnerships. Pru is known for her advocacy work improving survival outcomes and quality of life for cancer patients. She also works internationally with a global non-profit organisation capacity-building for healthcare NGOs on advocacy, fundraising, sustainability and reporting. As CEO of Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand (LBC) she grew the organisation into a prominent NGO with national patient services, advocacy platforms, a research unit at University of Auckland and sustainable income streams. She currently chairs the Auckland Regional Tissue Bank (bio-bank) and is a trustee for Grandparents raising Grandchildren. She was honoured in the 2016 Queen’s Birthday Honours as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) for the national and international impact of her work in the health and NGO sectors.
Professor Robyn Longhurst is Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic at the University of Waikato. In this role she provides leadership in teaching, learning and academic programmes across the institution. Robyn’s area of disciplinary expertise is human geography with a particular focus on gender, place and culture. Research projects have addressed mothering, sexual violence, body image, and use of information communication technologies such as Skype. From 2008-2012 she was Chair of the International Geoographical Union’s Commission on Gender and Geography. She also served as Editor-in-Chief of an international journal Gender, Place and Culture, and Editor of New Zealand Geographer. Robyn has been appointed to several research review panels both in Australia and New Zealand to assess the quality of her peers’ research. She was awarded the University of Waikato Postgraduate Supervision Excellence Award in 2013, the University of Waikato Teaching Excellence Award in 2010, and the Distinguished New Zealand Geographer Medal in 2010. Due to her role in the senior leadership team Robyn is not currently teaching but she continues to supervise a number of PhD students.
Dr Sarah-Jane Tiakiwai is from Te Rarawa and Waikato-Tainui and a whāngai to Ngāti Awa and Ngāti Pikiao. She was appointed Deputy Vice-Chancellor Māori at the University of Waikato in April 2017. In her role, Sarah-Jane provides leadership on matters pertaining to Māori across the University, including iwi engagement and Māori student success. Prior to her appointment at the University, Sarah-Jane was the inaugural Academic Director of the Waikato-Tainui College for Research and Development a position she held for 7 years. Sarah-Jane’s areas of expertise are in Māori development and more specifically, iwi education and Māori student success. She has led and engaged in research across a diverse range of areas, including the environment, business, health and wellbeing, Māori language and culture as well as education. Sarah-Jane also has experience in and a passion for capacity and capability building of Māori students and iwi, tribal researchers and has extensive connections across the Māori research network.
Tony refers to himself as an Intraprenuer, who after 18 years of successful partnership with Annah Stretton, has deliberately blended his fascination of human behaviours and his extensive educational background with the realities of the business world.
While human relationships have dominated his work for nearly two decades it has been the evolution of the RAW model that has reignited his ‘knowledge practise’ passions – Just how do we transfer what needs to be known to those who need this knowledge most? Tony is also spending time investing in the pastoral care of the RAW whānau, gaining a greater understanding of their individual needs as they begin their truly remarkable journey to becoming positive, productive and passionate members of our communities.
Tony currently works as a consultant to groups wishing to achieve operational success though the celebration of team growth.
The Audit & Risk Committee is made up of directors Pru Etcheverry and Tony Hope plus independent advisor Victoria Ashplant. Meetings also include the Chief Executive and Business Manager.
Victoria is a Chartered Accountant and Director for PwC’s Audit and Assurance practice, and a member of PwC’s Ethics and Business Conduct Committee. She complements RAW’s Audit and Risk Committee with over 15 years of financial expertise and a breadth of experience advising ‘for-purpose’ Boards in the Waikato. She has other governance positions including as a Trustee for a Charitable Trust in Hamilton. Working in this sector is hugely rewarding and it is a real privilege to work with RAW and share in the journey of some truly remarkable women. She started her career in the UK and now resides in Raglan, a seaside haven for her two young boys.
She is a member of the Institute of Directors. Being independent, her fresh outlook challenges RAW and she brings her skills and experience to help us navigate through matters of risk management, financial reporting and best practice governance.
Tony currently works as a consultant to groups wishing to achieve operational success though the celebration of team growth.
Ruahine Albert (Board Māori Cultural Advisor)
Ruahine (Roni) Albert (Tuwharetoa, Maniapoto and Tainui descent) is one of the founding members of New Zealand’s first Māori Women’s Refuge in 1987. She is a passionate advocate for social justice and has worked at local, national and international levels to improve government and community services to survivors of violence.
Since 1987, Roni has worked tirelessly to raise public awareness on the issue of family violence and, establish a Waikato-based family violence response system that ensures the paramount safety of women and children. Roni is a Justice of Peace and received the Queen’s Service Medal in 2012. In 2015, Roni was a recipient of a Hamilton City Council Civic award.
Sumudu Thode (Board Legal Advisor)
Sumudu is the Board’s Legal Adviser and provides legal support to answer RAW women’s legal questions.
Sumudu is the Principal at Thode Utting & Co. lawyers who have offices in Albany Auckland, Puhoi and Whangarei. Sumudu graduated from the University of Auckland with conjoint degrees in Law and Commerce and has been practicing as a criminal defence lawyer for over 10 years, appearing in both the District and High Courts. Sumudu also attends Parole Board hearings and is on the Police Detention Legal Assistance (PDLA) phone list in both Auckland and Northland.
She is also the Director of Integral Reports Limited, who provide reports about people’s background, upbringing and culture to the Court, to assist with sentencing. Integral Reports Ltd also provides reports that assist with Parole Hearings.
Sumudu is a strong believer in having a voice and having being heard. Through her work with the Raw Board, she’s hoping she is able to contribute to the voice, strength and opportunities the Board provides for the RAW women.
RAW runs a 12 month emerging governance leaders programme to foster young and capable talent. Current participants in the programme are:
Kahurangi has whakapapa links to Te Rarawa, Te Waiariki, Ngati Te Ata Waiohua and grew up in the small town of Waiuku. She has a Bachelor of Science from Massey University and a Masters in Business Administration from Waikato University.
Kahurangi previously ran her own small business in nutrition consultancy and is the founder of the charitable trust, Te Ara Rangatahi. She has worked at Manurewa Marae and Tahuna Marae supporting youth engagement initiatives in South Auckland. She most recently worked as a business growth advisor for Te Waka, Waikato Economic Development Agency, and is very passionate about equity and Maori economic development.
Kahurangi’s current role is with He Waka Eke Noa in South Auckland. Her role is to support Maori and Pasifika business growth through connecting them with supply chain opportunities.
Manukaroa (Ngāti Rangiwewehi, Te Rarawa ki Hokianga, Ngāti Haua, Ngāti Kahungunu) is an award-winning documentarian, passionate about telling the stories of people’s real-world experiences. As a creative, she believes stories allow us to walk in another’s shoes, to build a sense of shared humanity, to give voice to the marginalised and the scorned, to strive to hold those in power to account. For these reasons she has held leadership positions across the screen sector and serves on a range of governance boards, predominantly within the arts and screen sector, broadening into Māori communities and values-based organisations.
She is passionate about youth education and achievement, professional development, and Māori entrepreneurship and success.
Born in Taumarunui, a King Country Girl at heart, Manukaroa is excited to be part of the emerging leaders’ programme for RAW directors and the opportunity to give back to the Waikato community that nurtured her.