Our People

Trustees Management team

Trustees

We have five Trustees: the Foundation’s two founders, Stephen and Margaret Tindall; their son Robbie; and two Trustee members, independent of the family, Jennifer Casey and Rukumoana Schaafhausen.

Sir Stephen Tindall 

Founder and Trustee

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.

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 $250 million seed and venture capital into a large number of start-up and early-stage businesses. I have been a Council Member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and am a Founding Member of the New Zealand Institute – a think tank formed to contribute creative ideas and solutions to policy debate. 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 our country.

“We are committed to building an entrepreneurial and innovative culture in New Zealand in order to generate employment and social business.”

Margaret Tindall

Founder and Trustee

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 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 pre-schooler 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.”

Robbie Tindall

Trustee

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 Kiwi 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 Aotearoa 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.”

Jennifer Casey

Trustee

As a qualified lawyer, most of my career has been in the legal environment, and I still work part-time as a legal researcher. 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.

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 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!

“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.”

Rukumoana Schaafhausen

Trustee

I was honoured to join The Tindall Foundation as their first Trustee of Māori descent in 2018. My iwi are Ngāti Haua and Waikato Tainui, and I was named after my marae in Morrinsville.

With a background as a lawyer, I am the current Te Arataura Chair and Kaahui Ariki Māori King’s Representative, as well as the longest-standing trustee of Waikato Tainui. In these roles I have always carried a message of kotahitanga (unity), manaakitanga (acknowledging the mana of others) and prosperity for the people of Waikato and Aotearoa New Zealand.

I am also a trustee of the Princes Trust NZ, have held public and private directorships in Genesis Energy, AgResearch and Miro Berries Limited, and have received a Sir Peter Blake Award for Leadership.

“My amazing family inspire me daily to do what is right for the well-being of all people and our environmental resources — it is about the long-term lens and what we must accomplish together.”

Management Team

We have a diverse and vibrant team of staff. There are six full-time and three part-time team members. We also have a part-time volunteer and work with consultants and advisors who support us on a project-by-project basis.

John McCarthy

Manager

I stepped into the role of Manager of the Foundation in March 2014, taking over from Trevor Gray. It’s a privilege to be in this role and I enjoy the varied nature of the work and meeting the many people across the country doing such great things in their communities.

I’ve been a social work practitioner and manager for over 25 years with experience across a wide range of fields. Before coming to the Foundation I was the General Manager of Lifewise, with responsibility for a diverse portfolio of social, health, education and community activities across Auckland. Prior to that I was the Regional Manager of Richmond NZ, and spent six years as Director of the SAFE Programme — an organisation that I helped set up to provide treatment to sexual abusers of children.

Over the years I’ve been fortunate to work alongside inspirational and dedicated people on a number of new and interesting projects and have loved opportunities to create impact through innovation and collaborative effort. I see this lining up well with the work and philosophy of The Tindall Foundation in supporting people to achieve long-term change in their communities.

“I very much enjoy leading the TTF team and feel it is a priviedge to work for an innovative and forward-thinking foundation focused on making real and long-term change.”

Kate Tindall Lum

Special Projects Manager

I manage a number of the Foundation’s strategic initiatives, including recovery in Christchurch following the 2010–11 earthquakes, and Next Gen, proactively funding organisations working with young people via creative arts projects and others. 

I’ve worked largely in grant making since 2006, including Trust for London, Vodafone NZ Foundation and various roles at The Tindall Foundation. I currently volunteer in governance roles for community organisations. I’m really enjoying being a board member of Aotearoa Development Cooperative (ADC), which gives microfinance loans to marginalised communities in Myanmar and Malawi and One Percent Collective, a bunch of people who give 1% of our income to Kiwi-based causes we care about; and being part of the steering committee for The Funding Network (TFN), which hosts live fundraising events for social change organisations.

“I love working alongside our Christchurch donation recipients, and I am excited to leading our work in gender equality, a new area for the Foundation.” 

Martina O’Driscoll

‘Funding and Relationships Manager [note: job title may change]

I have been with The Tindall Foundation since September 2008 and work as part of the donations team. I have the privilege and pleasure of looking after our Local Donation Manager partnerships and relationships around the country. We currently have 23 Local Donation Managers who support us in projects that benefit and strengthen whānau/families and communities in Aotearoa New Zealand.

I am originally from London, with good old Irish blood running through my veins. I worked in hospitality for a number of years and, after spending a couple of years travelling around Asia, Australia and New Zealand, I returned to London and worked in community services supporting disadvantaged children and families for over 12 years. Now, as part of the donations team here at The Tindall Foundation, I work with great organisations supporting families and communities.

“I love being part of the team that supports their passion to fund initiatives that have positive outcomes for New Zealand.”

Elizabeth Tindall Tetro

Communications Advisor

I work part-time for The Tindall Foundation managing internal and external communications, including our website, writing and producing our Annual Report and creating our e-newsletters. I also help some of the organisations we fund with publicity and PR for their projects. I also represent TTF as a committee member on the Working Together More Fund — a group of family foundations working together to fund collaborations.

I have a background in journalism and PR, having worked in television, magazines, PR agencies and, since 2002 in communications for a variety of charities and not-for-profits. Before starting with The Tindall Foundation, I was Corporate Affairs Manager for Surf Lifesaving NZ, following eight years in London working in the press offices of prominent charities. It is great to work hands on with my siblings as part of our Next Gen Fund and alongside my parents and brother Rob, who are Trustees.

“To be able to give is a privilege and a pleasure — not just in donations, but in advice, support and encouragement.”

Jennifer Reid

Office Manager

I joined the team in June 2012 and do everything from feed the worms through to investments. I have a background in accounting, derived from Massey University studies, as well as hands-on experience in the commercial sector, with my last role as manager of an online electrical store. A Shore girl since my family moved from the South Island to Auckland in the late seventies, I love working close to home and the strong family basis of The Tindall Foundation.

“I am continuously blown away by hearing of the projects that happen all around New Zealand, which most of us never even know about, which ultimately change the lives for the better of many underprivileged New Zealanders and future generations.”

Anne Tindall

Volunteer Donations Advisor

I volunteer for The Tindall Foundation. Having over 30 years’ experience as a primary school teacher and principal, I have always enjoyed working as part of a team. I am passionate about New Zealand, our environment and our people so it is a special privilege for me to contribute in a small way to the donations team.

“It’s a great source of pride to be able to see what a difference my wonderful brother and sister-in-law continue to do with their money and to work in close proximity with three of my fabulous and talented nieces and nephews.”

Kate Holgate

Donations Advisor

I started at The Tindall Foundation in August 2017. Prior to this I was a Grants Adviser at Foundation North and at The Health Foundation in London, where I started my career in the philanthropic sector in 2002.

The Tindall Foundation is a fantastic organisation with a flat structure, so everybody is an equal member of the team. I work part-time for TTF and for another not-for-profit, on the International Projects team at Habitat for Humanity. My role there includes applying for project funding, so I understand the other side of the coin and the realities of getting support for projects.

I’m an Aucklander who lives on the North Shore so there are plenty of great walks to take with my retired greyhound.

“There is something really special about this organisation: a unique approach to philanthropy, a focus on the importance of relationships, and valuing and respecting each other and the organisations we work with, permeates across Trustees, management, and staff.”

Ashlee McCormick

Donations Programme Manager

I joined the team in May 2018. While I spend most of my time advising on donations, I also ensure our wider donations programme is operating smoothly. It’s a varied role and a privilege to be working with people who are passionate about creating strong and prosperous communities and enhancing New Zealand’s natural environment. 

 

My career has primarily been in corporate sustainability and CSR. I started at Spark, where I was part of the team that set up Spark Foundation, before moving on to HSBC and managing their corporate sustainability programme. I spent time in London working at Business in the Community, an NGO founded by HRH The Prince of Wales to encourage responsible business, and also in advisory at Bureau Veritas verifying sustainability data and greenhouse gas emissions for international corporates. Upon returning to New Zealand in 2017, I spent almost a year at ANZ managing their community giving programme. 

“It’s exciting and inspiring to work alongside impressive and dedicated people who are contributing to a stronger and more sustainable New Zealand for all New Zealanders.”

Cyril Howard

Regional Development & Donations Manager

I started in my role at The Tindall Foundation in June 2018. I feel very humbled to be part of the whānau and to contribute to the work of The Tindall Foundation across Aotearoa New Zealand. I originate out of the heart of Hokianga and whakapapa to Ngāpuhi, Te Rarawa and Ngāti Hine iwi.

I have over 20 years’ experience in community development and funding. I worked for Internal Affairs for 13 years across various business units, and then joined Foundation North (formerly ASB Community Trust) for ten years, starting as the Recreation & Sport Advisor, progressing to a Senior Advisor and for the last four years as Māori Strategy Manager.

At present I sit on the Māori Advisory Committee for Philanthropy NZ and chair an Emergency Housing & Budgeting Service not-for-profit group located in Mount Roskill South. I am passionate about service to community and the natural world and hope that future generations will live in a clean, green Aotearoa, and the NZ Warriors will win the NRL in my life time. Mauri ora. 

“I am very humbled to contribute to a stronger Aotearoa New Zealand by seeking relationships and partnerships with people and organisations, to enable whānau, communities and our natural environment to thrive and sustainable for future generations.”

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