We have four Trustees at The Tindall Foundation. They are made up of the Foundation’s two founders, Stephen and Margaret Tindall; their son Robbie; and our Trustee member, independent of the family, Jennifer Casey, who has a background in the corporate legal sector and a passion for families and communities.
I have a background in retail, beginning my career at George Court & Sons. In 1982 I started my own business, The Warehouse. It was a private company until late 1994 when it floated on the New Zealand Stock Exchange. I held the position of Managing Director until January 2001, then appointed a CEO and assumed the position of Founder, returning as Group CEO from May 2003 until October 2004.
My first venture into philanthropy began in 1982 when I founded the Alay Buhay Foundation in Manila, Philippines. Having seen the extreme poverty there on my many business trips, I wanted to provide a hand-up to help local families. Over the years we have helped children from the slums to attend school by providing uniforms, books and fees; and we’ve helped their families into micro-financed businesses. Alay Buhay has been helping up to 2,300 families a year and I remain an active Trustee.
In 1994, my wife Margaret and I established The Tindall Foundation. We were, and still are, passionate about helping New Zealanders to live healthy and happy lives and for our communities to be strong and prosperous. We began by supporting families and social services, and then extended our giving to include environmental initiatives and those that create employment and encourage enterprise, strengthen the community sector and promote generosity and giving.
As a proud Kiwi, I am an avid investor in New Zealand enterprise. Through K1W1 Ltd and other vehicles, I have invested over $150 million seed and venture capital into a large number of start-up and early-stage businesses in biotech, environmental technology, electronics, high tech, software and other high export potential businesses.
I have been a Council Member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. I am also a Founding Member of the New Zealand Institute – a think tank formed to contribute creative ideas and solutions to the policy debate aimed at positively transforming New Zealand in the years ahead. In 2000 I co-founded KEA, The Kiwi Expat Association, which now has 800,000 members globally who help to assist New Zealand from where they live offshore. My personal goal is to help New Zealanders realise their full potential for the overall benefit of New Zealand.
“We are committed to building an entrepreneurial and innovative culture in New Zealand in order to generate employment and social business. We want to help people overcome the barriers to unemployment, giving those out of work, especially young people, pathways into jobs.”
I was raised in Auckland, the second eldest of a large family. I have three sisters and six brothers. It was in my family that the seeds were sown for my concern for social justice.
I trained and registered as a General Nurse and went on to do post graduate training in midwifery. Stephen and I were married in 1973 and since the arrival of children, family has been the focus of my time. I have thoroughly enjoyed bringing up five children and I am loving being a grandmother to my five beautiful grandchildren.
I began volunteering in the playgroup at De Paul House when my youngest son was a preschooler and I am still there. De Paul House provides temporary housing and support for families in need. I have gained so much from the families I have met there over the years.
“As a founding Trustee of The Tindall Foundation, I am motivated by my love of New Zealand and a desire to share with others some of what we have been blessed to receive. Our staff and Trustees are outstanding and I am indebted to them for their tireless work for the Foundation. It is a joy to see three of our children involved in our work.”
I studied Arts and Science at Auckland University majoring in Economics and Geography. I began my post-university working career at The Warehouse, where I worked in the Merchandising Division as a Trainee Buyer, Assistant Buyer and eventually Buyer. I enjoyed the relationships I built up with suppliers from New Zealand, China, Vietnam, Malaysia and Australia and around the world.
After eight years with the business I took the opportunity to join Dad in the work he does investing in early-stage New Zealand companies. I love meeting innovative entrepreneurs and seeing creative technologies being developed. I am particularly interested in projects and organisations that contribute to youth development, and I am regularly impressed by the quality of the people working in the not-for-profit sector in New Zealand.
“I love being a Trustee of The Tindall Foundation because I get to see first-hand the amazing work that so many charitable organisations do around New Zealand. It’s great to be part of a family foundation that supports these talented and committed people.”
As a qualified lawyer, most of my career has been in the legal environment. I was the Information and Research Manager for a national law firm when I decided in 2005 on a change of focus. I had always been in the fortunate position of giving my family priority when considering career and earning options, so I decided when my children became independent that I should contribute more to the community.
I continue part-time as a legal researcher. As a trustee of The Tindall Foundation it is important for me to keep up to date with legal issues and identify those that may be relevant to the Foundation and the charitable sector in general. I have teaching and governance experience in education and was an elected parent representative on a school Board of Trustees, finishing as Chairperson. In recent years I have been a board member of The Hikurangi Foundation and Philanthropy New Zealand.
My skills are attention to detail and understanding the importance of measuring success as achieving social, rather than financial, outcomes.
I am happily married, with four adult children and six grandchildren with whom it is a delight for me to spend time!
“The results achieved by the targeted work this family organisation undertakes, underpinned by its hardworking and valued staff, have been particularly rewarding for me. The organisation’s approach is flexible, highly informed, and both reactive and strategically proactive as appropriate. It is humbling to observe the number of hard-working, selfless people who work hands-on to help so many of our community who are in need.”