Our board

Theresa Gattung CNZM - Chair

Theresa is renowned for her strong business acumen having headed up Telecom (now known as Spark) at the age of 37. Her most recent business venture is as a co-founder and Director of the multimillion-dollar My Food Bag business. She is an investor, director and philanthropist.

“I’ve always been a strong advocate for women in business so Co.OfWomen is a natural fit. I see some of the biggest barriers for female entrepreneurs as getting the right support team around them and actually asking for help. Co.OfWomen does just that by surrounding them with relevant, trustworthy champions and programmes that build commercial confidence, minimise business risk and ensure momentum. I’m excited about my new role as Chair and I’m looking forward to helping strengthen our female entrepreneurs.”

Theresa is renowned for her strong business acumen having headed up Telecom (now known as Spark) at the age of 37. Her most recent business venture is as a co-founder and Director of the multimillion-dollar My Food Bag business. She is an investor, director and philanthropist.

“I’ve always been a strong advocate for women in business so Co.OfWomen is a natural fit. I see some of the biggest barriers for female entrepreneurs as getting the right support team around them and actually asking for help. Co.OfWomen does just that by surrounding them with relevant, trustworthy champions and programmes that build commercial confidence, minimise business risk and ensure momentum. I’m excited about my new role as Chair and I’m looking forward to helping strengthen our female entrepreneurs.”

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Ranjna Patel ONZM - board member

Ranjna is a founder and director of the East Tamaki Healthcare (ETHC) Group of Companies, a significant network of general medical clinics across Auckland, working with over 185,000 patients. Ranjna holds a range of leadership, advisory and governance roles and is heavily involved in community health promotions with the Ministry of Health and Counties Manukau DHB to enhance and promote health awareness among the local communities in South Auckland. Ranjna was awarded Best Businesswoman of the Year in the Indian Business Awards’ and a finalist in the Business Entrepreneur category of the Women of Influence Awards 2013. Ranjna was inducted into the New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs in 2014.
Ranjna is a founder and director of the East Tamaki Healthcare (ETHC) Group of Companies, a significant network of general medical clinics across Auckland, working with over 185,000 patients. Ranjna holds a range of leadership, advisory and governance roles and is heavily involved in community health promotions with the Ministry of Health and Counties Manukau DHB to enhance and promote health awareness among the local communities in South Auckland. Ranjna was awarded Best Businesswoman of the Year in the Indian Business Awards’ and a finalist in the Business Entrepreneur category of the Women of Influence Awards 2013. Ranjna was inducted into the New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs in 2014.
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Wynnis Armour deputy chair

After a diverse and successful management career in both the private and public sectors, Wynnis sold a highly profitable retail start-up and went blue water sailing. After she returned to NZ she co-founded and developed the Madison Group (one of New Zealand’s largest and most successful staffing solutions providers). In 2013, The Madison Group was the subject of a trade sale to a listed entity and Wynnis is now directly involved in two new start-ups and actively supports women in business.
“I am delighted to participate on the board as I’m a firm believer in the inherent entrepreneurial nature of many women in business and also aware of the challenges we face. The opportunity to be involved in something that makes a real difference in supporting entrepreneurial success is something I feel passionate about. Doing this alongside other experienced entrepreneurs is really inspiring.”
After a diverse and successful management career in both the private and public sectors, Wynnis sold a highly profitable retail start-up and went blue water sailing. After she returned to NZ she co-founded and developed the Madison Group (one of New Zealand’s largest and most successful staffing solutions providers). In 2013, The Madison Group was the subject of a trade sale to a listed entity and Wynnis is now directly involved in two new start-ups and actively supports women in business.
“I am delighted to participate on the board as I’m a firm believer in the inherent entrepreneurial nature of many women in business and also aware of the challenges we face. The opportunity to be involved in something that makes a real difference in supporting entrepreneurial success is something I feel passionate about. Doing this alongside other experienced entrepreneurs is really inspiring.”
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Sarah Paykel MNZM - board member

Sarah was made a member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Business in 2016.
Sarah is the Director and founder of PR & Communications company, Sarah Paykel Ltd. In the late 90’s she co-founded Lush Cosmetics Australasia, a retail and manufacturing business with 13 stores and 250 staff based in Sydney, which saw her win the Young Australian Entrepreneur Award in 1999. Her career also includes 3 years working at British Vogue Magazine in London in the early 90’s and Sales & Marketing Manager for Chanel fragrance & beauty in New Zealand the early 2000’s.
Sarah sits on the Board of the New Zealand Mental Health Foundation and is a trustee of Q Theatre in Auckland. Sarah is a member of the Friends of KidzFirst Hospital South Auckland and consults to a number of charitable trusts and non for profit organisations.

“I joined Co.OfWomen as I love that it offers a gateway for connecting fledgling and successful entrepreneurs to each other and ensures they have the tools and support they need to succeed. The opportunity to support the growth and development of an organisation focused on female entrepreneurial success is something I really enjoy participating in.”
Sarah was made a member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Business in 2016.
Sarah is the Director and founder of PR & Communications company, Sarah Paykel Ltd. In the late 90’s she co-founded Lush Cosmetics Australasia, a retail and manufacturing business with 13 stores and 250 staff based in Sydney, which saw her win the Young Australian Entrepreneur Award in 1999. Her career also includes 3 years working at British Vogue Magazine in London in the early 90’s and Sales & Marketing Manager for Chanel fragrance & beauty in New Zealand the early 2000’s.
Sarah sits on the Board of the New Zealand Mental Health Foundation and is a trustee of Q Theatre in Auckland. Sarah is a member of the Friends of KidzFirst Hospital South Auckland and consults to a number of charitable trusts and non for profit organisations.

“I joined Co.OfWomen as I love that it offers a gateway for connecting fledgling and successful entrepreneurs to each other and ensures they have the tools and support they need to succeed. The opportunity to support the growth and development of an organisation focused on female entrepreneurial success is something I really enjoy participating in.”
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Sharon Hunter board member

Sharon is the founder of the hugely successful business PC Direct which she built up from nothing to what became New Zealand’s largest and most successful personal computer company. Sharon has extensive entrepreneurial, business and governance experience. Together with Tenby Powell she is an owner and director of Hunter Powell Investment Partners, a private capital investment & SME/not-for-profit advisory firm. Sharon was inducted into the New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs in 2012.
“Co.OfWomen is a unique platform that’s resonated strongly with me for some time. The chance to participate through a board that is underpinned by a strong mandate to help women be successful is really exciting. I’m especially passionate about the support we can bring for our members who will require external funding to support growth”.
Sharon is the founder of the hugely successful business PC Direct which she built up from nothing to what became New Zealand’s largest and most successful personal computer company. Sharon has extensive entrepreneurial, business and governance experience. Together with Tenby Powell she is an owner and director of Hunter Powell Investment Partners, a private capital investment & SME/not-for-profit advisory firm. Sharon was inducted into the New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs in 2012.
“Co.OfWomen is a unique platform that’s resonated strongly with me for some time. The chance to participate through a board that is underpinned by a strong mandate to help women be successful is really exciting. I’m especially passionate about the support we can bring for our members who will require external funding to support growth”.
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Mimi Gilmour board member

In 2015 Mimi Gilmour was recognised by The New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs for her achievements and support of female success. She joined the board of Co.OfWomen to add that experience and passion and to have an even greater impact.

Founder of the Mexico Group, Mimi Gilmour opened her first restaurant at the age of 26. Now 31, she has five restaurants brands under her belt with the most recent development, fish fish, a spin-off brand from her rapidly growing Burger Burger restaurants.

"Co.OfWomen is a powerful voice in New Zealand business and one that I’m extremely grateful to have had by my side as I’ve grown my businesses. I feel incredibly humbled to have been appointed to the board and looking forward to what I can contribute and, to learning from this group of women. I can’t wait to work with these leaders to celebrate all that great businesswomen in New Zealand can and will contribute to this country and beyond.”
In 2015 Mimi Gilmour was recognised by The New Zealand Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs for her achievements and support of female success. She joined the board of Co.OfWomen to add that experience and passion and to have an even greater impact.

Founder of the Mexico Group, Mimi Gilmour opened her first restaurant at the age of 26. Now 31, she has five restaurants brands under her belt with the most recent development, fish fish, a spin-off brand from her rapidly growing Burger Burger restaurants.

"Co.OfWomen is a powerful voice in New Zealand business and one that I’m extremely grateful to have had by my side as I’ve grown my businesses. I feel incredibly humbled to have been appointed to the board and looking forward to what I can contribute and, to learning from this group of women. I can’t wait to work with these leaders to celebrate all that great businesswomen in New Zealand can and will contribute to this country and beyond.”
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