Women’s Business Morning

The popular Women’s Coffee Mornings are a great way to network with like-minded women in the community from all areas of business.

You’ll also hear from some inspirational and thought provoking speakers. Remember this invite can be extended to all female members of your business and is a great networking and social opportunity.

Please RVSP for catering purposes to naomi@wanakachamber.co.nz 

Events held 10-11am. $5 Members and $10 Non-members payable cash on the day.


Dr Ella Lawton

Weds 18 July 2018, 10-11am
Wanaka Hotel

As a scientist and educator, Ella was curious whether entering local politics would be the best way to use her knowledge and skills to help create a sustainable future.

Ella will share key parts of her research projects, and how the knowledge and experience created through this works helps to inform the challenges of local government.
“People may be sceptical of what I say; as a scientist or as a politician communication is key. Along with honesty, being clear about the purpose and having a strategic plan are the best ways to take people with you. It doesn’t always work, but hopefully it makes people think. And you don’t give up, there is always next time.”

Ella is a scientist, tertiary educator and local politician. She describes herself as a ‘generalist specialist’ having a broad academic and practical career. Ella’s previous career highlights include lecturing a paper entitled ‘Leading Sustainable Enterprise’ with the Otago University MBA programme, and 7 years as the Research Manager of Otago Polytechnic’s Centre for Sustainable Practice.

As Research Manager, Ella identified new and innovative economic and social opportunities for Otago’s agricultural and horticultural communities through the Otago Food Economy Project. Prior to that, Ella completed her PhD in resource accounting.

This work required hundreds of hours talking to individuals in their communities and with their local Councils, about how they consumed goods and services. The results became analysis of the positive and negative impacts this could have on the economy, society and the natural environment. Part of this work became the ‘Localisation as a solutions multiplier’ talk for TEDxQueenstown.

Ella is perhaps most well known for her role as a district Councillor for the Queenstown Lakes District Council, and now her new role on the Otago Regional Council. Ella has been involved in a range of community projects; from the Upper Clutha Water Group, to the Upper Clutha Tracks Trust, Albert Town Community Association and Kahu Youth to name a few.

Along with her Kelpie side-kick Frida, Ella lives in her newly completed tiny house in Wanaka. She is an active skier, spear fisher, and can often be spotted rock climbing and mountain biking through Otago’s magnificent wilderness.

Join us to hear more from Ella, the personal and professional journey she took to get into local Government and the challenges and experiences she’s had along the way.

Weds 18 July 2018
Wanaka Hotel
$5 Members. Includes tea, coffee and scones.

Non-members very welcome – $10. Cash payable on the day.

Please RVSP for catering purposes to naomi@wanakachamber.co.nz

Mandy Bell – Criffel Station

Weds 15 August 2018, 10-11am
Wanaka Hotel

Mandy’s focus is One Health – health for water, environment, animals and people. Mandy’s whakapapa includes a number of New Zealand’s farming and agribusiness pioneers, she grew up on sheep and beef farms in Otago and Canterbury and holidayed with family and grandparents for many years in Wanaka. Criffel Station is base for Mandy, husband Jerry and their three children Penelope, Henry and Jemima. Criffel is also home to a large number of deer and hosts visitors from around NZ and the globe.

Over the years she has strengthened her farming, veterinary and business skills with research, practice in veterinary science and, most recently, business studies at Melbourne Business School. Her business interests range from an integrated supply chain of veterinary products to a biotech company with a diagnostic test for Crohn’s Disease.  Today Mandy integrates her One Health principles into a continuum of health across farming, business start-ups, agri-tourism and community projects.

With the increasing global challenges facing agriculture and our communities, Mandy believes that the way we work together requires a paradigm shift if we are going to create sustainable, profitable and healthy businesses and products going forwards.  Future thinking, courageous leadership and collaboration will create the space for open conversations to increase awareness and the development of solutions.

At this stage of life we each have many learnings, experiences and networks that we can bring to the table to add value to the future that our grandchildren will inherit. Challenges and opportunities!