Dame Cindy is a distinguished researcher and held leadership roles at Massey University, Victoria University Wellington/Te Herenga Waka and the University of Auckland. Her public sector roles have included Children’s Commissioner (the first woman and first Māori to be appointed to the role) membership of the Ministerial Cross-Sector Forum for the Ministry of Education, and Chair of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group.
Dame Cindy has had extensive experience in the public health sector, including a role as General Manager Funding and Services Planning and Māori Health for the Auckland District Health Board. Prior to taking up her role as Governor-General, Dame Cindy was Chief Executive of the Royal Society Te Apārangi. Dame Cindy is the first Māori woman to be appointed as Governor-General and is a champion for social justice, equity and public health. Her guiding principles of kaitiakitanga, oranga and manaakitanga align closely with those of Community Foundations. We are honoured to have Dame Cindy as the first ever Patron of Community Foundations of New Zealand.
Neil founded Craig & Co. Ltd in 1984 and has grown the company to be one of New Zealand’s largest full-service investment advisory and investment banking firms, Craigs Investment Partners. He remains a Director on the Board today.
Neil has contributed to a number of organisations as a Director or in a philanthropic capacity. He helped establish the Acorn Foundation in Tauranga and has supported the establishment of Community Foundations of New Zealand, to grow and support the regional capability of other Community Foundations across the nation.
Neil’s current Directorships include a number of Private Equity entities providing investment into New Zealand Private Equity Managers and a number of privately held companies, predominantly in primary industry and horticulture. He is also on the Investment Committee for NZ Cricket and BOP Rugby.
In 2016 Neil was named an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business and philanthropy. He has been appointed as one of Community Foundations of New Zealand’s founding Ambassadors, acknowledging his immense contribution to the growth of CFNZ and Community Foundations across the country.
Bill helped to establish the Acorn Foundation in the Western Bay of Plenty in 2003 and was Chair of the Foundation for its first eight years. When Community Foundations of New Zealand was established in 2013 he was elected as founding Chair, and remained as a Board member for eight years, retiring in 2021.
Bill is a lawyer and consultant with Holland Beckett Law in Tauranga and has extensive experience with a wide range of community organisations and activities. He is currently the Chair of the Tauranga Energy Consumer Trust and has received a number of community leadership awards, including in 2012 being made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to the community.
Bill has always led from the front and encouraged New Zealanders to consider what they can personally do to affect the lasting change they want to see in the world. He has tirelessly supported the establishment of new Community Foundations and has been awarded a Life Membership for his immense contribution and services to Community Foundations across New Zealand. In 2021 Bill was appointed as CFNZ's first official Ambassador.
"Community Foundations potentially have a very important role to play in our communities. They not only encourage people to be generous but also provide the vehicle to maximise the impact of this generosity; so that both the donor and the community benefits."
Miriama is a journalist and presenter for current affairs programmes, Sunday and Marae, at TVNZ. She says, “people are at the heart of every story we tell”. Her mahi and passions are well aligned with Community Foundations, joining CFNZ’s three founding ambassadors to help to spread the message of philanthropy, which she says is important for the future of Aotearoa.
Passionate about the wellbeing of Māoridom, Miriama is a founding trustee of Kotahi Rau Pukapuka which aims to publish 100 books into te reo Māori. She is also a writer, having recently published Matariki Around the World with preeminent astronomer Professor Rangi Matamua. Her first children’s book ‘The Stolen Stars of Matariki’, was published in 2018, and she has another book due out in 2023.
In 2019, Miriama won the Best Reporter for Māori affairs ‘Te Tohu Kairangi’ at the Voyager Media Awards for her work on both the Marae and Sunday programmes. "Marae is a vital and inclusive platform for Māori issues, it’s a privilege to help tell the stories of my people,” she says.
Miriama says that Community Foundations are a brilliant concept. “It can be hard to know where your giving will make the biggest impact. The beauty of Community Foundations is that advice is available to help achieve impact across your interests – for me that’s te ao Māori, environment and education. I love that giving can be so specific to the things that matter to me, and can work for the future of Aotearoa.”
Sir Stephen is founder of The Warehouse Group and, along with his wife, Lady Margaret Tindall, is co-founder and trustee of The Tindall Foundation, which has been supporting the establishment and growth of Community Foundations, since 2003.
In 2013 The Tindall Foundation was a founding partner of Community Foundations of New Zealand. Both Stephen and Margaret are avid supporters of the invested funding model, which is designed so donations and endowments create `forever funds` to support communities across Aotearoa.
The Tindall Foundation also supports individual Community Foundations through local funding partnerships as Local Donation Managers. They have extended seed funding to help to establish many of the 17 Community Foundations across New Zealand.
In 2019 Sir Stephen was elevated to Knight Grand Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business, the community, and the environment.
Sir Stephen says he is proud to have been appointed as one of three founding Ambassadors for Community Foundations of New Zealand.
“I support the Community Foundation model, primarily because it has a really proud local focus and enables everyone to be a philanthropist, affecting lasting change in their community. As a not-for-profit model, it is authentically about community and the future local people want to create and aligns closely with one of The Tindall Foundation’s key goals of growing generosity across Aotearoa New Zealand. I’m really proud to be an ambassador for their mahi.”