Dr Lee Mathias onzm – founding chair, patron

Lee Mathias 1

“Being successful is the most exciting part but it can also be a slow, tough road and, at times, a truly lonely one”


I joined Co.OfWomen as I could see that this organisation was meeting a real and previously unmet need for women entrepreneurs, offering relevant support I would have been very grateful to have at different points in my own entrepreneurial journey.

Entrepreneurship is about being innovative, doing business in different ways to get and maintain the competitive advantage that will ensure sustainability, and all the benefits success brings with it. Women often have compelling ideas about doing things differently but can get stifled by the traditional framework of business as well as by our own distinctive Achilles heels.

I’m in the fortunate position now, where I can offer my experience to create a positive impact as my role, in chairing Co.OfWomen, focuses on setting the strategic direction, creating a clear and compelling vision for us and importantly, being the chief champion of success for our members.

I very much look forward to this journey and to meeting many of you along the way and encourage you to come join us.

Lee was the founder of Birthcare and is a significant innovator in the healthcare sector where she has had an enormous impact in her long career. She sits on the board of a number of private entrepreneurial businesses and public sector initiatives. In 2013 Lee was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her contributions to both the Healthcare and Business sectors.