2015 Guest Speakers

Bruce Hayward

December 2015  Main Speaker:   Bruce Hayward "Waitakere Volcanos"
Bruce Hayward is a geologist and marine ecologist based in Auckland. He is a former member of the Auckland Conservation Board and New Zealand Conservation Authority, and former President of the Geological Society of New Zealand. His wide interests in natural and human history have resulted in sixteen previous books on topics as diverse as archaeology, the kauri timber and gum industries, the history of Auckland cinemas, New Zealand fossils, volcanoes, building stones and conservation; and, as joint author, the popular A Field Guide to Auckland.

 Christopher Marks

November 2015  Main Speaker:    Christopher Marks "Up before the Beak” - Giving Expert Evidence in Court"         
Chris Marks is a Professional Engineer, a Naval Architect and a Forensic Scientist specialising in forensic motor vehicle crash analysis. He holds Bachelor and Master of Engineering Degrees (Mechanical) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Forensic Science, all from the University of Auckland. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand, a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects, a Chartered Engineer of the United Kingdom and a Life Member of the Society of Automotive Engineers. Chris has frequently appeared in Court as an expert witness in both Civil and Criminal Jurisdictions, giving expert evidence called by either the Prosecution, the Plaintiff or the Defence, and at Inquests and at other Tribunals, mainly in New Zealand and Singapore but also in the Cook Islands and Brunei Darussalam. He has been appointed as a Court Expert in the New Zealand District Court and the Coronial Court of Singapore and as an Assessor in the Auckland Coroner’s Court. Chris has authored and presented peer-reviewed technical papers at international conferences in New Zealand, Australia and England. He is now almost fully retired. Chris will present a talk titled “Up Before the Beak – Giving Expert Evidence in Court”. He will discuss the Court processes, the purpose of expert evidence, the rules that apply, the admissibility tests and the Code of Conduct for expert witnesses. He will supplement this with examples illustrating the varied cases in which he has been involved over the past 45 years.

 Patrick Holmes

October 2015  Main Speaker:     Patrick Holmes "New Zealand Coastguard"         
Patrick Holmes has been Chief Executive Officer of Coastguard New Zealand since March 2012. He moved to New Zealand from the UK eight years ago to take up the position of Divisional Manager for the New Zealand Foundation of the Blind, before becoming CEO at Amnesty International Aotearoa, a position he held for four and a half years. Prior to his roles in NZ, Patrick worked in the UK banking and finance industry for 17 years before transitioning into the not-for-profit sector and enjoying 18 years working in the NFP sector in a variety of roles including Director of Fundraising, Marketing Director and Deputy Chief Executive.

Nicola Dalbeth

September 2015  Main Speaker:    Nicola Dalbeth  "Arthritis in New Zealand"         

Arthritis is the single greatest cause of disability in New Zealand. Professor Nicola Dalbeth is a specialist rheumatologist who leads an arthritis research programme at the University of Auckland. In this talk she will describe the impact and treatment of arthritis, focusing on the most common forms of arthritis; osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and gout. 

Ros Giffney

August 2015  Main Speaker:    Ros Giffney "Sistema Aotearoa – An Orchestra for Social Change"         
Ros is a highly experienced paediatric developmental therapist, having worked in health and education sectors in the UK and New Zealand. She is now responsible for the overall management and administration of the Sistema Aotearoa programme, ensuring effective programme execution, assuring sustainability and growth and realizing the vision and goals of Sistema Aotearoa. Within Sistema Aotearoa, Ros has developed a unique model of engagement that is underpinned by values and principles such as respect, responsibility, co-operation and aspiration. This model aims to influence a broad range of social goals in transformative ways, for example, personal, within families and the community, and societal. A key part of her work in the programme is integrating and enhancing the behavioural and social development of the students within the musical framework and evaluating the longer term outcomes in those areas. This holistic approach is a critical factor in effectively engaging the children and impacting on their well-being, in addition to their whanau and the wider community. The strength and success of this approach has seen Sistema Aotearoa become a leader among El Sistema programmes worldwide. Last year Ros co-presented at the International Society of Music Educators El Sistema special interest conference in Brazil and has subsequently been invited to participate as a specialist contributor in Global Sistema Research team. In 2014 she was appointed to the Music Education NZ honours board for her services to music education. 

Barbara Wesley

July 2015  Main Speaker:    Barbara Wesley  "Public works of art on the North Shore"         
Born in Cambridge, and brought up in Hamilton, Barbara trained as a Primary School teacher at Ardmore Teachers College from 1958-59. She later spent her early married years overseas with her husband, Laurie, bringing up their four children in Indonesia and London. Barbara earned her BA in English Literature and Art History from the University of Auckland in 1998 where she studied as a part-time, mature student. Her interest in North Shore sculpture began while researching material on Civic Sculpture on the North Shore. The detailed work garnered from this research became the basis for an article on the subject, as well as various tours for the Glenfield Historical Society. Barbara became intrigued with ‘commissioned’ sculpture while completing her MA in 2001 on the work of a Glenfield sculptor, Lyndon Smith – Professional Sculptor, the title of her thesis. Barbara has lived in Birkenhead for nearly 40 years and has been involved in part-time teaching, as well as being occupied with voluntary work for the Church, Scouts. Special Olympics, IHC and the Birkenhead U3A where she is convenor of the Art Appreciation group.

Deborah Battell

June 2015  Main Speaker:    Deborah Battell "Banking Obudsman"         
Deborah Battell was appointed New Zealand Banking Ombudsman in July 2009.
Her previous roles have included the positions of Director of Competition, and Director of Fair Trading, both with the New Zealand Commerce Commission, and Senior Consultant with KPMG.
Deborah has authored conference papers and published articles on strategic management topics, which have also been the subject of a feature series in New Zealand national business media.
She has a Bachelor of Arts and MBA from Victoria University. She is also a member of the Executive Committee for the Australia New Zealand Ombudsman Association, a Fellow of FINSIA, and a member of the Advisory Committee for the Victoria University MBA 

Iain MacKenzie

May 2015  Main Speaker:    Iain MacKenzie "The Passchendaele Society Inc"  
Iain MacKenzie was born and educated in Scotland. After graduate and post graduate degrees in Economics, Commerce and Management from the Universities of Strathclyde and London, he was invited to participate in a University of Manchester research project measuring management efficiency in large scale organisations and this led to a career in the electronic industry with Philips in the Netherlands.  In 1977 he came to New Zealand where he has held senior management and Chief Executive positions. He was General Manager of Philips and Pye Consumer Products and then subsequently Chief Executive of Sanyo New Zealand. After the electronics industry in New Zealand was deregulated, he purchased the executive recruitment company Farrow Jamieson and was Managing Director of this company until he retired. He was Honorary Consul for Belgium from 2000 until 2009 and in that year was responsible for organising the visit of the travelling exhibition “Passchendaele: The Belgians Have Not Forgotten” to Auckland. The commemoration activities built around the exhibition created a great deal of public recognition about Passchendaele and “the forgotten war” on the Western Front during the First World War and Iain was subsequently elected President of the Passchendaele Society on its formation in March 2011. In 2012 he was made a Knight in the Order of the Crown of the Kingdom of Belgium.
His family connection to the First World War is through his Uncle John MacKenzie who was killed on the 1st December 1916 at Montauban-de-Picardie in the Battle of the Somme and his father James MacKenzie who survived the Battle of Passchendaele in 1917. Iain was born twenty years later in 1937.     

Theresa Sjoquist

April 2015  Main Speaker:    Theresa Sjoquist  "Yvonne Rust : Maverick Spirit"         
Theresa Sjoquist is the author of Yvonne Rust: Maverick Spirit, a major biography on pioneering potter, passionate teacher, and prolific artist, Yvonne Rust QSM. Rust’s legacy, apart from huge bodies of work in pottery and painting, is in the artists across a wide range of disciplines who today continue to contribute to New Zealand’s culture and heritage. Amongst them: architects, potters, painters, jewellery designers, theatre directors, ballet dancers, arts educators, ceramic artists, and many more. Yvonne Rust: Maverick Spirit is the detailed biography of this eccentric and original thinker who had an enormous impact on New Zealand culture. Theresa is a freelance writer based in Helensville from where she contracts to a variety of clients. She is also an experienced ghost-writer, and a professional speaker. www.theresasjoquist.com 

Laurie Wesley

March 2015  Main Speaker:    Laurie Wesley  "Aceh - Ten years after the Tsunumi disaster"
Laurie Wesley is a civil engineer who first visited Aceh in 1960 while working for the Indonesian government in Bandung in West Java. Laurie visited Aceh again recently (in September, 2014), partly to give a lecture at the government university in Banda Aceh, the capital, and partly to see how the country has recovered from the terrible tragedy of Boxing Day 10 years ago. The talk will be illustrated with photos at the time of the tragedy, during the recovery, and today.  Laurie Wesley graduated with an ME degree from Auckland University and later did a PhD at Imperial College in London, He has had a career as a geotechnical engineer during which time he has worked for both the Indonesian and New Zealand governments, and the Auckland consulting firm of Tonkin and Taylor. He lectured at the University of Auckland from the age of 50 till his retirement. He still teaches part time at the University of Auckland and the University of Chile. His special field is geotechnical engineering in volcanic soils. While working in Indonesia he wrote a soil mechanics (the theoretical part of geotechnical engineering) text book in Indonesian, which was the first such book in the national language and made him well know there and is the reason he still visits Indonesia to give lectures or seminars.       

Cam Calkoen

February 2015  Main Speaker:    Cam Calkoen  "Living for Awsome"
Cam Calkoen. I dream of a world where everyone is presented with opportunity, and our bodies are not barriers to succeeding in our dreams and aspirations. It is dreams that have brought the world to what we see today. And our aspirations will propel it into the future.
No one can walk or talk at birth. But some people, like me, are presented with this likelihood for the rest of our lives. I chose to defy the odds, and now I have the opportunity to showcase what can be achieved when we see opportunity, clarify purpose, and enhance an inspired attitude.
I was born with Cerebral Palsy, but today the only labels I need are my name and occupation: Cam Calkoen, Inspirational Speaker. The inspiration is not because of my Cerebral Palsy, although that’s a part of me I choose to embrace. It comes from an aspiration to make life as awesome as it can be through the pursuit of excellence. I have gone from people doubting I would ever walk, to exceeding expectations.
Life is what we make it and the values needed to achieve awesomeness are simple – we need to believe, and in doing so, leave no stone unturned. My offerings help you identify these unturned stones – in other words, I inspire others to dream big and achieve more!