Biotech pioneer, tech futurist, and indigenous language translation trailblazer inducted into the New Zealand Hall of Fame for women entrepreneurs.
Instigated in 2012 by leading women's business support organisation, Co.OfWomen, the eleventh annual ceremony sees Maxine Simmons CNZM, Frances Valintine CNZM and Rhonda Kite MNZM inducted into the New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneur and founder of Co.OfWomen, Tara Lorigan, says, "the Hall of Fame is a unique endeavour to champion women's power by celebrating the significant business achievements and generosity of the country's most successful entrepreneurs and creates explicit, diverse examples encouraging women working on owning their successes."
"Commercial drive matched with innovation and a compelling desire to make a difference features strongly in women's success. And this year's inductees are prominent examples. Our country and economy are all the better for their extensive mahi and kaupapa," said Tara.
The women inducted were selected in an open nomination process launched by Co.OfWomen, which commenced in Women's Power Week in October 2021.
Chosen for induction by a panel of their peers Chaired by Dr Lee Mathias ONZM and including Co.OfWomen founder Tara Lorigan MNZM, Sharon Hunter, Ranjna Patel ONZM, and Kiri Nathan MNZM. These women were selected for their significant achievements in business, industry impact, support for other women, and their philanthropic activities.
Women-owned businesses make up more than 35% of New Zealand businesses, according to Statistics New Zealand, and the number of women opting for business ownership over employment continues to grow.
Co.OfWomen believes that the number of women-owned businesses continues to grow due to attrition from the corporate world, where many women find the limitations of employment inhibit the necessary flexibility to be supportive of family life.