Board Members

Industry leaders passionate about vocational education

The Skills Board is made up of a group of industry leaders passionate about vocational education. From managing directors to a barrister and a scientist, this group of highly qualified individuals helps guide Skills’ ongoing growth and strategic direction.

BRIAN NOWELL
Chairman of the Board
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Brian has extensive experience in driving the growth and development of corporations across several industries. He specialises in facilitating the skills on offer within a group to develop its collective wisdom and to apply this to the organisation’s benefit.
CASSANDRA CROWLEY
Independent Advisor & Director
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A Barrister & Solicitor and Chartered Accountant, Cassandra’s corporate and governance career has seen her work across a number of sectors including tourism, financial services, agriculture, retail, government, IT, horticulture, education, membership organisations, private equity, iwi and international trade. Cassandra chairs the Skills group Audit & Risk Committee.
BRIDGET O’SHANNESSEY
Human Resources Consultant & Mediator, Bhuman Limited
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Bridget is a highly experienced Human Resource practitioner both nationally and internationally. She’s worked with many leaders, leadership teams, company boards and remuneration committees in both the public and private sectors spanning a diverse range of industries, including manufacturing, finance and technology.
SHENAGH GLEISNER
Independent Consultant
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Shenagh has a diverse background that has covered roles such as being a KPMG Director, a senior manager in a Crown Entity, CEO for the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, acting CEO for Child Youth and Family Services, and many more. Her expertise lies primarily in change leadership, governance, government relationships, public sector management, review and evaluation, and strategic planning.
IAN BUTTURINI
Deputy Chair
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Ian possesses a real passion for industry training. His career has seen him not only start a successful company but also train more than 100 apprentices over 25 years. As a Chartered Director with the IOD, Ian has the proven and experience to continue to support the Skills Board in its ongoing growth and performance across all industry sectors.
ROD DE SPONG
Chief Operating Officer, Douglas Pharmaceuticals Limited
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Rod is the Chief Operating Officer of Douglas Pharmaceuticals Limited. Starting out as a plumber and gasfitter, Rod retrained after gaining his Craftsman Licenses. He has gone on to hold a number of varied roles including VP for Corporate Development for Raffles Holdings Ltd and Finance Director for both ARC and Ernst & Young. Rod is a member of the Finance and Audit Committee, a member of both the SIL and Shift Boards and a past Deputy Chair of the Skills Organisation.
PAULA SCHOLES
Senior Scientist, The Institute of Environmental Science & Research Limited
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Paula has served on the Skills Board since 2014, after being nominated by the NZ Public Service Association (PSA) and Council Trade Unions (CTU). Prior to this she was the President of the PSA from 2008-2012 (which is New Zealand’s largest union and during the period she was President, had an annual turnover of $20 million). Paula is also currently a senior scientist and laboratory manager with The Institute of Environmental Science & Research Ltd (ESR).