Meet the Judges

We welcome Toi-Ohomai Institute of Technology, Faculty of Business Management as our judging partners in 2019.

Leading the Toi-Ohomai team is Judge Convener and Head Judge, Jeni Fountain (LLM, LLB (hons), BEd, DipTchg), Faculty Leader: Faculty of Business Management and Legal Studies.

We are also privileged to welcome our panel of three experienced business leaders as judges; Greg Simmonds, Nick Lowe and Senga Allen; who will be conducting site visits of our finalists.

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Jeni Fountain

Jeni has over 20 years teaching and management experience across primary, intermediate, secondary and tertiary education in both state and private sectors. Her own tertiary teaching experience includes Legal Studies, Hospitality, and Sports and Recreation, and the project management of development and delivery of online vocational legal qualifications. The faculty Jeni leads delivers programmes in Business and Management (undergraduate and post-graduate); Legal Studies; Real Estate; Business Administration; and Level 2 Computing. Jeni previously owned and operated a restaurant, café and catering business in Tauranga, and holds a current practising certificate as a lawyer

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Greg Simmonds

Greg is Chief Operating Officer at Priority One, the economic development enabler for Tauranga and the Western Bay of Plenty. Greg drives implementation of Priority One’s strategy to create a sustainable and prosperous regional economy, as well as leading economic development initiatives on behalf of the wider Bay of Plenty through Bay of Connections. Previously, Greg worked in the professional services and export sectors holding roles with PricewaterhouseCoopers, Carter Holt Harvey, Sony and New Zealand Trade & Enterprise. He sees huge opportunity for businesses in Taupō that are able to adapt to the future of work, as talented people look to relocate to region’s offering superior work/life balance.

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Nick Lowe

Nick is an Independent Director and business owner with extensive prior experience in senior corporate roles. He is currently Chair of the Board of Beds R Us, a retail franchise group and a Director of Bay Venues Limited, a Tauranga Council CCO. He was until recently on the Board of Bay of Plenty Rugby Union. With an initial background in marketing, buying and operations he spent over 10 years in CEO roles with businesses including Farmers Trading Company and Noel Leeming Group. Nick is based In Mount Maunganui and is married with 3 adult children.

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Senga Allen

Senga is the Founder and Managing Director of Everest Group which was formed in 2006. She has worked in the people and culture industry for over 25 years. Having worked both in many private and public sector organisations in New Zealand she enjoys using her expertise to lift capability in businesses. Her career pathway has included training, consultancy, management and senior executive roles in human resources. She is a professional member of HRINZ, deputy Chair of the Waikato Chamber of Commerce, trustee of the Graeme Dingle Foundation, and a member of the Institute of Directors and RSCA. Senga holds qualifications in psychometric profiling, emotional intelligence and business.