Birthright Canterbury Governance Team / Directors
Jane Lancaster - President
Jane joined the board of Birthright Christchurch Inc in 2012, and became chair of Birthright Canterbury Trust in 2016. She is also a trustee for Birthright New Zealand Trust. Jane is a director of Food Standards Australia New Zealand, Catalyst® Ltd and High Value Nutrition National Science Challenge and is a chartered member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors. In her working life she is a consultant to companies in food and agribusiness, providing advice about business development and export of products. She was made a Member of the NZ Order of Merit (MNZM) in 2006.
Jane volunteered for Birthright because of the long history of effectiveness of Birthright in supporting children in families led by 1 person. She had a friend at school who was a “Birthright Child” and always remembered the positive impact Birthright had.
She and husband Bill have four adult children and four grandchildren. Jane enjoys gardening and walking and is active in her community church.
Chris White - Treasurer
Chris is a member of the Institute of Directors and Company Secretary at Cookie Time Limited. He comes to Birthright Christchurch with more than a decade's experience in senior financial and IT roles, the most recent as Business Partner - Manufacturing at Synlait Milk Limited. Chris is married and has one pre-school son and another due in July.
Gavin Holley - Director
Gavin is an experienced General Manager with an accounting and finance background, and brings to the Board his professional and business experience. He joined the board following a desire to contribute to the charitable sector and support those making a positive difference in the lives of others. Gavin is married and has two adult sons.
Sue McGuire - Director
Sue brings 18 years of governance experience to Birthright Canterbury having been involved at executive level with Birthright Ashburton for many years – six of those as Treasurer. Sue was President of the Birthright New Zealand National Executive from 2009-2012. She has been a Board Member of Birthright Christchurch and was part of the governance team to restructure Birthright Christchurch in 2010. Sue is also a partner in two family farming businesses, with financial reporting and HR responsibilities. Sue has three adult children and four grandchildren.
Sue Prowse - Director
Sue holds a Master of Management and has worked in senior management roles in both the private and public sectors for more than 25 years. She currently resides in Ashburton where she is involved with a number of community organisations. She is committed to giving back to the community.
I am a fully qualified Chartered Accountant, running my own Public Practice in the Selwyn area. My accounting background gives me the ability to help not for profit organisations understand their financial statements and I believe I bring a required skill set which is vital to the longevity of a not for profit organisation.
I have been involved in Birthright for a number of years, started off as a casual bookkeeper, followed by accountant and now board member. I believe that every child should grow up to know that they are special and loved, show them that the wider community cares for them and want to make a difference in individual lives. Birthright is that support network for many single parent families.
In my spare time I love spending time with my family and enjoying the outdoors. I also volunteer for on the board of a few other not for profits such as Upstream NZ and Organ Donation Saves Lives Trust. It is vital that we share our knowledge and experience to help enrich the community we live in.
As a social worker, I have been privileged to work in a number of different community agencies around Christchurch. For the past fifteen years, I have worked at Christchurch Women Prison, both as a Case Manager and as a social worker. I now find myself thinking about retirement and looking at ways to continue to have links to the social work community. When I heard that Birthright was seeking a Board member, it evoked wonderful memories for me. As a solo parent raising my sons, we were supported by Birthright, we all have fond memories of joining other families on a holiday camp. Later I became a volunteer home visitor, my experience with Birthright proved to be a significant influence in my later decision to train as a social worker.
These days, my greatest joy is spending time with my three grandchildren and watching my sons being fully involved loving fathers. I look forward to again being involved with Birthright Canterbury.
Alison was a board member of Birthright Ashburton from 2010 including spending 6 years as its Treasurer. She is a teacher who now tutors private students as well as being a voluntary tutor at the local secondary school. Alison is a mother and grandmother who believes all children should be given the opportunity to realise their full potential. She sees Birthright as an important link in the community providing such opportunities.
Charles is a solicitor at Argyle Welsh Finnigan. He has recently joined the Board and is looking forward to sharing his legal knowledge with the other trustees. Charles is keen to contribute towards enriching the lives of young people in Ashburton. Outside of work Charles is a keen footballer and cricket fanatic. Charles has one young son.
Zivanah Keen – Minute Secretary
Zivanah has been volunteering at Birthright since April 2016; initially helping out at fundraising events, she has recently become the minute secretary to the Board. Raised by a single parent, Zivanah is passionate about the work that Birthright does and is grateful that her administration experience is coming in handy outside of the office. In her spare time, Zivanah can be found with her nose in a book, planning her next adventure abroad."