Asia New Zealand Foundation welcomes new chairman and board members

11 December 2014

The Asia New Zealand Foundation welcomes the appointment of John Luxton as its new chairman. 

Mr Luxton is chair of DairyNZ, the organisation that represents dairy farmers, and has extensive farming interests. He has current directorships with Tatua and Wallace Corporation and a number of other businesses. He provided consultancy services in Asia, Africa and the Pacific before being elected to Parliament in 1987. He was a cabinet minister for nine years, holding numerous ministerial positions. He served as a member of the Foundation’s board of trustees in 2001 and 2002. 

He will take up his chairmanship of Asia New Zealand Foundation on 1 January, 2015. 

Mr Luxton replaces retiring chairman Philip Burdon, who has been a driving force behind the Foundation for much of the past two decades. As Trade Negotiations Minister in the 1990s, Mr Burdon worked with fellow government minister Don McKinnon to establish the Asia New Zealand Foundation, then known as Asia 2000. 

The Government has also appointed two new deputy chairmen to the board: 

  • Steve Maharey, Vice-Chancellor of Massey University and former cabinet minister
  • Simon Murdoch, former Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Other new board members are:

  • Rob Fyfe, chief executive of Icebreaker 
  • Traci Houpapa, chair of the Federation of Māori Authorities (FoMA)
  • Ian Kennedy, chairman of the New Zealand committee of the Japan New Zealand Business Council
  • Lyn Lim, co-founder and partner at law firm Forest Harrison; barrister and solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand
  • Mitchell Pham, Vietnam-New Zealand business and social entrepreneur;  co-founder, director and manager of Augen software group

Mr Burdon acknowledged the work of the retiring board members, particularly deputy chairmen Ken Douglas and Richard Nottage. “They really have been assiduous in deepening ties and understanding between New Zealand and Asia and have played leading roles in the Foundation.”

Other retiring board members are:

  • Vino Ramayah
  • Sir Ken Stevens
  • Bryan Williams 

The Asia New Zealand Foundation is a non-profit, non-partisan organisation dedicated to building New Zealand’s links with Asia through a range of programmes, including business, culture, education, media, research and a Leadership Network. The Foundation is celebrating its 20th Anniversary this year.

For more information, contact:

Rebecca Palmer
Asia New Zealand Foundation media adviser
027 226 8707