Minister accepts Eisenhower Fellowship

  • Paula Bennett
Social Development and Employment

Social Development Minister Paula Bennett announces she has accepted an Eisenhower Fellowship for the Women's Leadership Programme 2010.

The prestigious six week Fellowship was awarded to only 20 women around the world who were identified as outstanding leaders.

Ms Bennett has chosen to study successful US examples of the social corporate responsibility model while in America.

An individually tailored programme will grant exceptional access to leading business people, high level politicians and successful community leaders.

"I believe New Zealand has much to learn from the way the US harnesses the innovations and entrepreneurship of corporate leaders to work with communities and Government to create real gains for the social sector.

"I want to identify what works and bring those ideas home," says Ms Bennett.

Prime Minister John Key fully supported Ms Bennett's fellowship nomination and is pleased with her successful placement.

Former Eisenhower Fellow and chair of the New Zealand nominating committee, Susan Baragwanath won a placement in 1994, returning to open a special school in Wellington.

"The Fellowship experience was instrumental in the formation of He Huarahi Tamariki and other teen parent units. It is simply a once in a lifetime opportunity," says Mrs Baragwanath.

Selection criteria includes the candidates leadership achievements to date, potential for future impact and plans for real, tangible outcomes from the trip.

The programme commences in October.

Note: Since its inception in 1953 only 16 New Zealanders have become Fellows. Paula Bennett will be the 17th to gain a place.