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IBM MD steps down from NZTech board

Rob Lee, managing director of IBM New Zealand, has stepped down from the NZTech board after six years’ service.

Lee chaired the governance committee and was responsible for leading the board on a journey of constant improvement including the development and actioning of an excellent diversity policy.

NZTech chief executive Graeme Muller says Lee gave great service to the national tech umbrella organisation. Diane Knowles, country manager for Hewlett Packard NZ enterprise services is also stepping down from the board.

New board directors to join the board are Oracle New Zealand account executive Eva Sherwood and Unitech general manager industry workforce development Tom Chignell.

NZTech, is the voice of more than 400 organisations with over 67,000 employees that care about the impact that technology can have on New Zealand, Muller says his organisation is putting a lot of energy into helping education evolve.

“Computational thinking is now as important as maths and English for children, to ensure they are prepared for future jobs. With work underway on the development of the Digital Technologies curricula and programmes to ensure equitable access of digital tools for students, as a country we are heading the right direction.

“Yet there is still so much more we should be doing, so it is great to have someone with Tom’s experience and calibre on the NZTech board to help drive our education focus.

“Preparing our children with critical skills for all future work will also improve the flow of local talent into New Zealand’s largest sector. NZTech is working hard to ensure that as the interest in the tech sector grows it is from a diverse cross section of our communities. Eva will join others on the board focusing on attracting and supporting women into the sector and broader strategies to ensure we develop not only New Zealand’s fastest growing sector, but also its most inclusive,” Muller says.

Sherwood is passionate about the ICT sector and has carried out management roles at New Zealand owned software development organisations, Fronde Systems Group and Provoke Solutions. She currently works for Oracle New Zealand leading the uptake of Oracle Cloud applications within New Zealand government agencies. She is the New Zealand community leader for Oracle’s women leadership programme.

Chignell says he wants to ensure the tertiary sector plays its part in supporting employers in the tech sector in terms of the skills graduates develop and the work experience they gain during their study.
“I am very supportive of evolving the curriculum to include the fundamentals of programming, as they have done in the UK I understand.”

NZTech We connect, promote and advance the New Zealand Technology ecosystem to help the tech sector and the economy grow.