One current and eight former lawyers have been shortlisted as 2019 finalists for the Women of Influence Awards.
First held in 2013 and initially sponsored by Westpac, the awards span across 10 categories. Global firm DLA Piper is an award partner, along with the Ministry for Women.
Denise Arnold is nominated in the Community Hero category. She is the Founder of the Cambodia Charitable Trust and Partner at Lyon O’Neale Arnold Lawyers, a commercial and property firm in Tauranga. The not-for-profit Trust aims to develop the provision of education for vulnerable children in rural Cambodia.
Abbie Reynolds is nominated in the Board and Management category. Currently the Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Council and formerly Head of Sustainability at Vodafone, her early career involved a position at Bell Gully as a Solicitor, specialising in Environment and planning law.
Three former lawyers are nominated in the Business Enterprise category.
Anna Bordignon is currently Director of Social Enterprise for ethical consumables and homewares company, Munch Cupboard. She was previously a lawyer in government, trans-national, and multinational firms in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
Leeanne Crozier is Director of Operations and Delivery of Executive Human Resources and Recruitment solutions firm, Decipher group. Graduating from the University of Canterbury with a Bachelor of Laws with Honours in 1995, Leanne held Solicitor roles across public and private industries including property and agribusiness.
Florence Van Dyke is nominated alongside her sister Chloe as co-founders of their company, Chia Sisters. Florence was a corporate and commercial solicitor for Bell Gully until 2016, before making the move to producing and selling sports drink CHIA from her home town, Nelson. She has also appeared in the Forbes ‘30 under 30 Asia 2019’ list in the Arts category.
Victoria Carroll is nominated in the Community Hero category as Director of Papakāinga Solutions Limited, a Māori asset development Consultancy. Victoria graduated from Auckland University with a Bachelor of Laws with Honours in 1996, specialising in resource management and trust law.
Gill Gatfield is nominated in the Diversity category. Her self-titled studio has been running since 1998 where she presents award-winning work which reflects on her earlier career in policy and law reform. Gill practised as a Barrister Sole, a Senior Law Reform Advisor for the New Zealand Law Society and authored the book ‘Without Prejudice: Women in Law- Same Issue/New Cover 1896-2016’.
Khylee Quince is nominated in the Public Policy category. Currently Associate Professor, Director of Māori and Pacific Advancement in Auckland University of Technology’s faculty of Law, Khylee’s research focus is on Māori and criminal justice. She graduated from the University of Auckland with a Masters of Law in 1995, before becoming a Solicitor at Thinn and Co. Barristers and Solicitors between 1995 and 1997.
Reina Vaai is also nominated in the Public Policy category. A journalist and Reporter/Director for Tagata Pasifika, Reina also writes her own blog, ‘Truths She Wrote’. A former lawyer for the Public Defence Service, she graduated from the University of Auckland with a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts in 2014.
The awards ceremony will be held at Sky City Convention Centre on Thursday 24 October. A speaker series was held across 5 New Zealand cities throughout August in the lead-up to the announcement of the finalists.