Our Kupe Partners

We wish to extend our sincere gratitude to the very generous Sponsors who have made this exciting initiative possible, the members of our Advisory Group who offer support and direction to the Kupe Programme Team and the inspirational mentors who have agreed to volunteer their time and expertise to support our Kupe Leadership scholars. 

Founding Sponsor | McCall MacBain Foundation

John McCall MacBain2Canadian philanthropists John and Marcy McCall MacBain have gifted over $1 million to the University of Auckland to launch the Kupe Leadership Scholarships. This is the latest in the more than NZ$275 million worth of donations made by McCall MacBain's foundation since 2007, which included an unprecedented NZ$150 million gift to Oxford University's Rhodes Scholarships. As a recipient of a Rhodes scholarship himself, John has first-hand experience of how scholarships of this nature can change lives and is passionate about creating similar opportunities for others.  “These scholarships aim to create the next generation of explorers in innovation and discovery for a new future,” he says. “The McCall MacBain Foundation is proud to be a funder of the Kupe Scholarships.” The McCall MacBain Foundation has provided seed funding for the Kupe Leadership Scholarships, which are being supported by a number of generous philanthropic donors, as outlined below.


Sponsors of the 2021 Kupe Leadership Scholarship

McCall MacBain Foundation     Biggar Family Trust
Heartland Bank Hugh Fletcher
John Turnbull Estate Ralph & Eve Seelye Trust
September Giving Trust Stuart Feigin
William Chick Trust  Wright Family Foundation 

Mentors of the 2021 Kupe Leadership Scholars

Dr Audrey Aumua, CEO Fred Hollows Foundation, The Pacific Community's former Deputy Director General, WHO representative, former Ministry of Health Chief Advisor for the Pacific

Bruce Aitken, Former President and CEO of Methanex and former Chair at the University of British Columbia’s Centre for CEO Leadership

Deidre Vercoe, Department of Conservation, 2019 Blake Leader

Hoana Pearson, QSO, Te Pītau Mātauranga (National Coordinator) for Māori Achievement Collectives

Sir Kim Workman, Former Families Commissioner and National Director of Prison Fellowship, founder of JustSpeak and advocate for Criminal Justice reform

Louise Marra, Programme Director for Leadership NZ, Associate at Centre for Social Impact and founder of Unity House

Maanu Paul, ONZM, Former co-chairman of the NZ Māori Council, pioneer in regenerative agriculture and advisor to the Waitangi Tribunal

Dr Mark Sagar, Director of Soul Machines, CEO of Soul Machines, Director of Auckland Bioengeering Institute Lab Animate Technologies, Academy Award winner

Dr Michelle Dickinson, MNZM, Nanogirl Labs, nanotechnologist and science educator, bestselling author, television presenter

Nikki Kaye, Former Deputy Leader of the NZ National Party and MP, Advocate for Food Safety and Youth Justice

Sir Peter Gluckman, KNZM FRSNZ, Director of Koi Tū (Centre for Informed Futures) and inaugural Chief Science Advisor to the NZ Government

Pip Cheshire, Architect, writer and former President of the New Zealand Institute of Architects

Rod Oram, New Zealand journalist and commentator, Edmund Hillary fellow

Professor Stuart McNaughton, ONZM, Chief Education Scientific Advisory to the Government, Professor of Pedagogy

Troy Brockbank, Environmental Consultant and recipient of 2018 Young Water Professional Award

Tupe Solomon Tanoa'i, Chief Philanthropic Officer at the Suzanne and Michael Borrin foundation, former diplomat and writer


Kupe Advisory Group

Andrew Barnes Dr Bridget Kool
Professor Brigid Carroll     Charlotte Lockhart
David Downs (Executive Chair) Grant Biggar
Mattie Wall Maru Nihoniho
Dr Michelle Johannson Vanessa Stoddart