new zealand


Tuesday 5 June &
Wednesday 6 June 2018
Cordis Hotel 

Pre-Christmas rate

Single Delegate



$1,595 pp

Early Bird





3 or more

$995 pp

$1,495 pp

Table (8)

$895 pp

$1,395 pp

*Early Bird rate expires 28th April

the New Zealand

Women's Leadership Symposium


09:00 – 09:20     Welcome and Opening Comments

09:20 – 09:50     Keynote Address


Her Excellency the Right Hon dame Patsy Reddy

Governor-General of NZ

09:50 – 10:20     Keynote Address

Renee Graham

Chief Executive, Ministry of Women

Renee Graham is Chief Executive of the Ministry for Women. She was previously Policy Director at the Ministry of Education. Ms Graham has a strong background in leading complex strategic policy development in both the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Social Development. As well as her policy expertise, Ms Graham also has experience in operational roles in Work and Income, before moving into project and management positions after starting her career as a frontline case manager. Ms Graham is a skilled public service senior leader with a track record of successfully leading the development of solutions to complex policy issues. Ms Graham is of Ngāti Toa and Ngāti Raukawa descent.

10:20 – 10:50     Keynote Address




10:50 – 11:10     Morning Tea

11:10 – 12:40     Panel Discussion

Susan Freeman-Greene

Chief Executive, Engineering New Zealand

Susan became Chief Executive of Engineering New Zealand in February 2015. She has worked in senior leadership and management for the last 15 years, heavily influenced by earlier roles as a lawyer and a mediator. Before starting at Engineering New Zealand, she was Chief Executive of the Broadcasting Standards Authority. She has also worked at the Human Rights Commission, as Chief Mediator and Strategic Policy Manager, and for the former Department of Labour. She describes her current role at Engineering New Zealand, with its vision of 'engineering a better life for New Zealanders', as a privilege, a challenge and a fantastic opportunity.


Sandhya Pillay

Country Manager, Coca-Cola Oceania

Having begun her career at the Soft Drinks division of SAB Miller in South Africa, Sandhya has been an associate of the Coca-Cola system since 2004. Joining as a Marketing Graduate, she progressed through the Sales and Marketing Functions. In 2009, she joined The Coca-Cola Company to lead Shopper Marketing for the Modern Trade Retail environment, advanced to leading the Commercial Capability Function and then devoted three years in Customer Leadership.In July 2015 she was appointed as the General Manager for Coca-Cola Oceania and relocated to New Zealand with her husband, three young daughters and two dogs.Sandhya is a graduate from the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa.

Helen Mexted

Deputy Chief Executive Advocacy, Local Government NZ

Helen developed her early career in marketing for several of New Zealand’s largest corporates before moving into executive leadership roles in financial services and membership organisations where fast pace work and rapid change have become the norm. In her current role, Helen leads strategic policy direction, government relations and advocacy for New Zealand’s 78 councils, delivering on a vision of strong local democracy and vibrant and prosperous communities. Helen is passionate about women and leadership, and has built her career while raising two sons, completing an MBA and serving in governance roles in the community. Helen also holds a commerce degree and is a chartered member of the Institute of Directors.

Dr Mahsa Mohaghegh

Founder/Director, SheSharp; Lecturer in School of Engineering and Computer Science, Auckland University of Technology

Dr. Mahsa Mohaghegh is a computer engineer with a background in artificial intelligence and natural language processing. She obtained her PhD from Massey University with a thesis in statistical machine translation. After being awarded Google’s Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship in 2012, Mahsa became involved with Google’s Computer Science for High Schools initiative, and successfully applied for Google funding to run these workshops in Auckland for the last 4 years. Mahsa is also the founder and director of the women’s technology group She# -, a platform aimed at promoting STEM to the next generation, and creating networking opportunities for tertiary students and industry professionals in the digital sector. Her passion for promoting careers in technology to young women has been recognised by a number of organisations, and resulted in her being awarded at the Westpac Women of Influence Awards in 2013.

12:40 – 13:40     lunch break

13:40 – 14:40     Development Session

Be Brave, Adaptive and Experimental

As leaders we are constantly asked to consider the concept of the ‘authentic leader’, but in practice, authenticity can sometimes become a leadership trap that makes you feel like a fake or locks you into ‘an old self’ and an already strong comfort zone. At times, what is needed is an ability to identify a ‘new self’ and the capacity to be brave, adaptive, experimental and something of a chameleon. This high impact, interactive workshop will help you unlock a new sense of your identity by inviting you to ‘steal like an artist’, aim to learn, continually refine your style, and avoid sticking to one narrow story about what makes you effective and authentic.

14:40 – 15:10     Keynote Address

NZME Sponsor

Exclusive Symposium Media Partner New Zealand Media and Entertainment

15:30 – 16:20     Keynote Address

The Right Honourable Dame
Jenny Shipley 

Former New Zealand Prime Minister

Dame Jenny Shipley was New Zealand’s first woman PM having led reform in a number of Senior Ministerial responsibilities in the New Zealand Government in the 1990s. In 2002 she retired from NZ politics and returned to the business and community sector. Dame Jenny Shipley is now an Independent Director and Chairman of China Construction Bank NZ Ltd, the NZX and ASX listed Genesis Energy and a number of other companies and organizations in NZ and off shore.She is deeply committed to the dividends that a great diversity strategy can deliver and is a determined promoter of women in leadership roles nationally and globally.Her passion is working with leaders who have the courage and competence to help “shape the future” of their communities, their companies and their country.

16:20 – 16:30     closing comments

16:30 – 17:30     Networking drinks

15:10 – 15:30     afternoon tea

Day 1

Tuesday 5th June, 2018

09:00 – 09:20     Welcome and Opening Comments

09:20 – 09:50     Keynote Address


The Right Hon Dame Sian Elias GNZM PC QC 

Chief Justice of New Zealand

Day 2

Wednesday 6th June, 2018

09:50 – 10:20     Keynote Address

Superintendent Sandra Venables 

Assistant Commissioner: Road Policing, NZ Police

Sandra joined Police in 1994 and worked in a number of frontline policing roles in metropolitan and rural areas in Waikato and Northland districts, including Hamilton City, Hamilton East, Kaitaia and the Coromandel Peninsula.In 2014 she was promoted to Superintendent and moved to Eastern District as District Commander, just the second woman to be given a District Command role.In the same year she was deployed to Turkey as a Security Liaison officer for the Gallipoli commemorations, which she counts as a career highlight.In taking her current role in 2017, Sandra became the first female officer promoted to the rank of Assistant Commissioner.

10:20 – 10:50     Keynote Address

Ladi Tamati 

RnB Artist

Ladi Tamati is a multi-award winning Singer-Songwriter/Rapper. Her debut album “This Is Not Much” was released independently in New Zealand in November 2008 and went to #4 on the New Zealand Top 40 Albums chart on its debut release, spending 10 weeks in the Top 40 Albums chart. Tamati’s second album “The Liberation Of…” was released independently in New Zealand in November 2010 and went to #6 on the New Zealand Top 40 Albums chart, spending 36 weeks in the Top 40 and was certified gold in July 2011. The single “Like Water” went platinum in June 2011. Tamati’s touring and collaborations have established her as one of New Zealand’s most prominent female vocalists and Emcee (MC) with a significant following throughout New Zealand, Australia and Europe.

10:50 – 11:10     morning tea

11:10 – 12:40     Panel Discussion

Catherine Fox

Author and Journalist

Catherine is a leading commentator on women and the workforce. A journalist, author and presenter, she is regularly invited to address audiences ranging from the Defence Force to corporates and local government, and often appears in the media. During a long career with the Australian Financial Review she edited several sections of the publication, and wrote the Corporate Woman column and for Boss magazine before leaving to set up her own consulting business in 2012. Catherine helped establish the annual Westpac/Financial Review 100 Women of Influence Awards and is on several advisory boards, including the Australian Defence Force Gender Equality Advisory Board.

Leveraging growth opportunities
for female talent​

Bev Cassidy-Mackenzie

Chief Executive, Diversity Works NZ

Bev Cassidy-Mackenzie has been in the Chief Executive seat at Diversity Works New Zealand (formerly the Equal Employment Opportunities Trust) since 2012 following roles in marketing and relationship management across both private and public sector and a time running her own business. In the past five years she has witnessed a sea change in attitudes towards workplace diversity and inclusion and is committed to helping businesses across New Zealand to be better-by-diversity.Bev believes that to bring out the best in diverse individuals and teams we need to cultivate a workplace culture that values difference and makes the most of everyone's talents; an approach that values the transmission of valuable knowledge and experience from one generation to another, from one culture to another, and from one team to another.

Professor Spencer Beasley

Former Vice President, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons

Professor Spencer Beasley is a member of the Male Champions of Change STEM (Science, technology, engineering and mathematics) group which is focussed on improving gender equity and facilitating increased representation of women in leadership roles. Until recently, he was Vice-President of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, and responsible for the implementation of the Expert Advisory Group recommendations around Discrimination, Bullying and Sexual Harassment (DBSH). He has been on the faculty of the RACS Foundation Surgical Skills course as part of the Operating With Respect Action Plan, and developed the new RACS Leadership course. He has had a research interest in unconscious bias in surgical selection. Professionally, he is the Professor of Paediatric Surgery, University of Otago, Christchurch, and the Clinical Director of the Department of Paediatric Surgery, Christchurch Hospital, New Zealand. He is a former President of the Australian and New Zealand Association of Paediatric Surgeons, and former Chair of the RACS Board of Surgical Education and Training. Spencer has a vested interest in gender equality – he has 6 daughters!

Kim Jarrett

Partner – Tax, Lead for International Trade Services, KPMG

Kim holds Bachelor’s Degrees in both Commerce and Law, is a member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, and a Barrister and Solicitor of the New Zealand High Court. Kim is an international tax specialist and leads KPMG New Zealand’s Transfer Pricing and Customs team, with over 20 years’ experience advising multinationals on transfer pricing issues, advance pricing agreements, audits, documentation and dispute resolution.  She has an excellent reputation for her technical skills and her strong focus on service delivery.Kim is the Chair of KPMG NZ’s Inclusion and Diversity Council and also a member of the KPMG NZ Board.  

12:50 – 13:40     lunch break

13:40 – 14:20     Keynote Address

Lisa Tamati 

Ultramarathon runner

Lisa Tamati is a professional endurance athlete who has been competing in the world's toughest endurance events for the past 25 years. In that time she has run over 70,000km or the equivalent of three times around the equator. She is the author of two international bestselling books "Running Hot" and "Running to Extremes" and is the producer of a number of adventure films. She is also a serial entrepreneur and is the founder of five companies in areas as diverse as jewellery manufacture through to film production, event management and even a hyperbaric oxygen therapy clinic. Lisa's first love is understanding and harnessing the power of the mind to achieve the extraordinary. To this end she runs a mindset academy aimed at helping people develop mental toughness, resilience, leadership skills and a never quit mentality. 

14:20 – 15:00     Keynote Address


Rachel Hunter 

Model and actress and TV Host

15:00 – 15:10     closing comments

Day 1

Tuesday 5th June, 2018

09:00 – 09:20     Welcome and Opening Comments

10:50 – 11:10     Morning Tea

15:30 – 16:20     Keynote Address

Women and Leadership New Zealand