• Jenny Shipley
Women's Affairs

The Minister of Women's Affairs and State Owned Enterprises, Jenny Shipley, today launched a new project which is dear to her heart and which she says will see more skilled and experienced women being appointed to the boards of crown companies.

The two day seminar for potential board members has been organised jointly by the Ministry of Women's Affairs and the Crown Company Monitoring and Advisory Unit at the request of the Government and is being conducted by the Institute of Directors.

"Crown companies, like all other organisations, can only benefit from the input of people from all sectors of the community, provided they have the necessary skills. It is important for the Government to provide more training and support for potential directors.

"Today's seminar has 22 participants - 15 women, including five maori women, and seven men. Two are from Pacific Island backgrounds.

"The participants for this seminar were selected on the basis of their experience, skills and readiness to serve on Crown company boards. They come from a wide range of backgrounds in the private and public sectors and from throughout New Zealand. The seminar has generated enormous interest, so much so that places were filled within a couple of days of invitations going out.

"The seminar is a very practical, hands-on course. It will give the participants essential information on matters relating to boardroom practice and conventions, and legal and financial requirements, as well as giving them the opportunity to look at some real life case studies.

"I have also asked the Ministry of Womens' Affairs and the Crown Company Monitoring and Advisory Unit to look at mentoring and support opportunities for women directors and potential directors.

"The Government is committed to increasing the number of women it appoints and recognises it has a responsibility to see that those women are fully equipped to take on those roles," Mrs Shipley concluded.