World Class New Zealanders are high achieving New Zealanders who are making their mark on the world and defining NZ’s image internationally. Kea sat down with World Class New Zealander Sir Rob Fenwick for a Q&A about his life experiences, being an industry leader and what advice he has for New Zealanders going forward.
Over the course of his 30-year career, he has contributed more to the fields of environment sustainability and natural heritage, than most people can dream of; and his passion for preserving the country for current and future generations is nothing short of inspiring.
From the early 70’s to mid 80’s Sir Rob worked in journalism and public relations before shifting to business. He has placed an ongoing emphasis on the importance of making environmental responsibility a priority (and is recognised for encouraging others to do the same). He co-founded the investment company, Growthlink Holdings, the mineral water company NZ Natural Ltd and Living Earth Ltd, New Zealand’s largest organic waste composting business.
An active senior fellow of the Institute of Directors since 1995, Sir Rob has also been, at various times, the chairman of Landcare Research, Antarctica Heritage Trust,
the Fred Hollows Foundation, the Government’s Ministerial Waste Advisory Board, and the New Zealand Business Council for Sustainable Development.
By the turn of the millennium, Sir Rob had become a director at Te Matuku Oysters Ltd, a distributor to top seafood restaurants throughout New Zealand.
In 2004 he was appointed Deputy Chairman of TVNZ, and in 2006, the Chancellor/Chairman of the National Board of St John’s Ambulance, the top governance role for the Order of St John and its New Zealand activities, including the ambulance and communication service. The same year he was awarded Knight of Justice, Order of St John.
In 2016, he was inducted into the New Zealand Business Hall of Fame and Knighted for services to business and the environment.
He is currently the Chairman of Antarctica New Zealand, a Sustainability Advisory Group Panel Member at Air New Zealand, the Special Advisor to the Director General, an Advisory Board Member at Westpac New Zealand Limited and the Director of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.
Sir Rob Fenwick has done it all - the busiest man in New Zealand.