Speakers for the 2018 event included:


Andrew Bolland

Co-Portfolio Manager & Investment Analyst
Salt Funds Management

Andrew has 8 years experience in the finance sector. He is the Co-Portfolio Manager on the Enhanced Property Fund and an Investment Analyst for Salt. Andrew's responsibilities include portfolio management, investment research, portfolio analytics and reporting, as well as maintenance of the Salt Scoring System model and currency hedging.

Alison Howard

Head of Sustainability
Meridian Energy

Alison is Head of Sustainability at Meridian Energy and has a wide range of knowledge and experience in how business can create value from sustainability. After four years at Deloitte advising a range of businesses on strategy, reporting, climate change and more, she has returned to Meridian, where she started out as an engineer designing wind farms.

Alison’s passion for sustainability has only grown since becoming a mother of small children, and she hopes businesses are inspired by Meridian to lead the change New Zealand needs for a sustainable, net zero carbon future.

Owen Hackston

Investor Relations Manager
Meridian Energy

Owen Hackston joined Meridian in February 2010. Owen has over 20 year’s commercial experience in senior finance and management roles including nearly a decade at Telecom New Zealand (Spark New Zealand). Prior to Owen’s appointment as Meridian’s Investor Relations Manager in May 2013, Owen was involved in Meridian’ strategy, business performance and external reporting functions, as well as the company’s initial public offering in 2013.

Kaapua Smith

Head of Sustainability
Contact Energy

Kaapua Smith (Tribal affiliations: Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Apa, Ngāti Awa) is Head of Sustainability at Contact Energy, and oversees the environment, communities, sustainability and property & land functions of the business. Her background is in sustainability, research, policy and communications.

Justin Lester

Wellington City Council

Justin Lester was elected Mayor in 2016. He joined Wellington City Council as a Northern Ward Councillor in 2010 and then served as Deputy Mayor from 2013 until 2016.

Justin’s priorities as Mayor include kick-starting the economy, making housing affordable, improving Wellington’s transport, replacing outdated bylaws and prioritising arts funding. He also wants to establish the country’s first wet house, provide a rates rebate for first-home builders and create the world’s first predator-free capital.

Adele Rose

Chief Executive
3R Group

Adele is the Chief Executive of 3R Group, with over 12 years' management experience and 9 years' directly related to the development of waste solutions for environmental and economic benefit across a range of industries. At 3R Adele has been directly involved in managing product stewardships schemes for container glass, agricultural chemicals and containers, and paint and packaging, as well as projects looking at solutions for end of life tyres and lubricant containers. She is passionate about mainstreaming of environmental and sustainability policy, particularly relating to monitoring, measuring and improvement. She is also experienced in project managing the development and implementation of quality and environmental management systems.

Emily Spears

Environmental Products Originator

Emily Spears currently works at BP Singapore as the Emissions Strategy Lead.

Emily studied at Monash University for her Bachelor of Economics.


Dawn Baggaley

Head of Sustainability
New Zealand Post Group

Dawn is Head of Sustainability at NZ Post where she has led a sustainability programme which has seen NZ Post take a leadership role in several areas, including integrated reporting, social procurement and carbon reduction. Dawn has over 12 years’ experience working as a sustainability professional in New Zealand and Denmark, 8 years' as Head of Procurement at Westpac and 10 years' in social housing in the UK. She was editor and initiator of the Change the World for $15 (50 actions to change the world and make you feel good) book in New Zealand. Dawn has a Master of Science in Responsibility and Business Practice from Bath University in the UK, and is an alumni of the Cambridge Institute of Sustainable Leadership Executive Programme. She is a board member for the Sustainable Business Network.

Andrew Caseley

Chief Executive
Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA)

Andrew Caseley has held executive leadership roles in both the public and private sectors. Previously he worked for MWH, a global engineering and environmental consultancy. For most of this time he was the Managing Director of the New Zealand business; but he was also the Operations Director for Australia and New Zealand while filling various roles in Indonesia and Fiji.

Prior to this he was Chief Executive Officer of the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council for 13 years.

Kirsten Patterson

Chief Executive
Institute of Directors

Kirsten is a qualified lawyer, Chartered Fellow of the Human Resources Institute of New Zealand, and has extensive governance and leadership experience. She is a strong advocate on diversity issues. Kirsten (known as KP) is Chair of the Community Facilities Trust (a Lower Hutt Council Controlled Organisation), Chair of the Wellington Homeless Women’s Trust, a Trustee and Director of the NZ Rugby Foundation, and a member of the Audit and Risk Committee for Te Tumu Paeroa.

Mike Sammons

Sustainability Manager

Mike Sammons was appointed to the role of National Sustainability Manager with Foodstuffs NZ in September 2012. With over 20 years’ experience, working in the environmental planning and sustainability area, he has previously held appointments in the UK, Australia and New Zealand in both the public and private sector.

Peter Simons

Managing Director
DB Breweries

Peter is the Managing Director of DB Breweries, one of New Zealand’s best known companies with a proud history of brewing iconic beers and ciders. Originally from the Netherlands, Peter has worked in a number of commercial and management roles within HEINEKEN, including management of joint venture businesses with SAB and Diageo, General Manager of Export for Central & Eastern Europe, and as Managing Director of HEINEKEN’s Hanoi-based Vietnamese operating company. While in Vietnam, Peter was instrumental in a variety of biomass and biogas projects which reduced the CO2 emissions of production by 50% between 2014 and 2016. Peter is committed to building on DB’s leadership role as a responsible alcohol producer and is passionate about embedding sustainability across the value chain.  

Paul Alexander

Programme Director - Low Emissions Transition Hub
Ministry for the Environment

Paul is an experienced director with a history of roles connecting across government and industry sectors. He is currently Programme Director of the low emissions transition hub at the Ministry for the Environment. This role involves leading a team and playing a co-ordination role across government and partnering to support a transition to a low emissions economy. It also involves developing a shared economic information base to support decisions and build a shared understanding of transition options.

David Meates

Chief Executive
Canterbury District Health Board

David is the Chief Executive of both the Canterbury and West Coast District Health Boards - responsible for the health services of over 550,000 New Zealanders, and the leadership of over 10,500 direct employees and thousands more NGO health sector workers contracted by the DHB. In 2011 he was awarded the highest standing award by the New Zealand Medical Association for exemplary work following the devastating earthquakes in Canterbury. In 2014 David was made a member of the New Zealand order of Merit for services to health. Originally from the Canterbury, David has worked in both the private and public sectors in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

Dr David Prentice

Interim Climate Change Committee

Dr David Prentice is Chair of the Interim Climate Change Committee. Most recently David was the CEO and Managing Director of Opus International Consultants. He is Chair of Business New Zealand’s Infrastructure sub-group, a member of the Institute of Directors, a Chartered Professional Engineer and a Fellow of Engineering New Zealand. 

Gerri Ward

Sustainability and Community Manager
Z Energy

Gerri Ward leads the Sustainability and Community programme at Z Energy. She’s passionate about transformational behaviour change that empowers and enables sustainable business, and better communities. Prior to joining Z, she led the across-government Biodiversity Offsetting research programme, at the Department of Conservation; and before that, was at the Ministry for the Environment for five years, working on business opportunities out of climate change, and leading the Carbon Neutral Public Service and voluntary corporate carbon neutrality programmes.

Mike Sang

Chief Executive
Ngāi Tahu Holdings

Mike Sang has been Chief Executive for Ngāi Tahu Holdings Group (NTH) since January 2013.

NTH is a diversified investment company with a focus on long-term growth and building businesses aligned with Ngāi Tahu values. The NTH portfolio has assets exceeding $1.8 billion made up of a diverse range of investments, with farming, property, seafood, and tourism at the heart of its operations.

Toby Stevenson

Consulting Director
Sapere Research Group

Toby is a Consulting Director with international economics consulting firm Sapere Research Group. His expert area is electricity trading and risk management and he established himself as an independent energy consultant in 2004. Toby was the General Manager Electricity Trading at Contact Energy from its inception in 1996 to 2003 and has held a number of industry governance positions.

Dr Ann Smith

Chief Executive Officer
Enviro-Mark Solutions

Ann is a recognised thought-leader and representative on a number of national and international sustainable business and carbon management forums. She leads the team at Enviro-Mark Solutions with expertise on latest developments in international best practice and standards on carbon inventories, foot-printing and reporting, carbon reduction and offsetting, and science-based targets. Ann is passionate about supporting businesses to improve their environmental performance and contribute to New Zealand’s transition to a sustainable low carbon economy.

Pauline Marshall

Establishment Director
Interim Climate Change Committee

Pauline Marshall is the Interim Climate Change Committee’s Establishment Director. Pauline has a wealth of experience in strategy, systems and governance, instituting new programmes and initiatives across the public, private and NGO sectors. Pauline has been integral in establishing the Interim Climate Change Committee and inaugurating the Secretariat function.