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Board Principles

Our Board comprises the trustees of Ignite.  In effect, they operate as the guardians of the kaupapa of Ignite Consultants - its purposes, its organisational culture and its core focus.  This means that: 

  • the Board commits to understanding and continuing to explore Ignite’s kaupapa and how it is put into practice;

  • It seeks to trust, empower and, where appropriate, guide the Executive in its embodiment and implementation of Ignite’s kaupapa;

  • It actively monitors and seeks to mitigate risks to the organisation.


Our Board’s operating principles are:

  1. We bear the ultimate responsibility and risk for the ongoing management and operations of the Trust.
    This means;  we take a prudent long term view for managing the Trust’s assets to ensure they are used as effectively as possible to achieve the purposes; we actively monitor and seek to mitigate risks to the organisation.


  2. We are the guardians of the kaupapa of the organisation (purposes, culture, focus, role).
    This means; we commit to understanding what the kaupapa is, and continue to explore our kaupapa; we trust, empower and where appropriate, guide  the Executive in its understanding and delivery of the kaupapa; we continue to share knowledge and guidance drawing on the experiences of those currently and previously involved with Ignite.


  3. We demonstrate care for all of those involved in Ignite.
    This means; we will seek to ensure students, mentors, communities and organisations to all feel welcomed and comfortable in the Ignite space; we will seek to protect and where possible, improve the well-being of the Ignite community and it’s individuals; we actively monitor and seek to mitigate risks to the organisation.


  4. We are a learning organisation.
    This means: we accept that not everything in our organisation will always be perfect; we are committed to continuous quality improvement of our service and our organisation; we encourage innovation and creativity in our projects and how our organisation is run.


  5. We practice what we preach.
    This means; we are committed to building and maintaining relationships with the communities that we serve; we will continue to think innovatively about the challenges facing Ignite as an organisation and the not for profit sector more generally and how we might address those challenges. 


Our Board

Wellington/Current Projects
Meet the Board


Rachel joined our Board in 2016 following stints as a both a consultant and member of the Ignite executive during her time at the University of Otago.  She currently works as a lawyer, based in Christchurch. She previously served as the treasurer.


Sophie is the current Chair of the Board. While completing her pharmacy degree at Otago, she joined Ignite to work with the Dunedin Curtain Bank project and subsequently became CEO in 2016. Sophie is the co-founder of a social enterprise and a not for profit organisation, both with fellow Ignite alumni. She currently works for Francis Health, using human-centred design to create transformative change in the health sector.


Blaire joined the Board in 2018 after mentoring a project team in Wellington. She currently works at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade leading on capability initiatives in the Pacific and Development Group. Blaire has previously worked in management consulting and local government in the UK and New Zealand. She currently serves as treasurer.



Ben joined the Board as Secretary in 2022. Originally from Dunedin, he was an Ignite Consultant in 2012 while studying a BA (Hons) in Politics and Spanish at Otago University. Ben focuses his career on helping address the climate crisis and currently works as a Senior Analyst at the Climate Change Commission. He also received a Master's and Ph.D. from Oxford University, and has worked on climate change policy and projects in the USA, Europe, Latin America, and Asia.

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Rhys joined the board in 2021 as treasurer and is new to Ignite Consultants. He currently works at Victoria University of Wellington as a Management Accountant. Rhys has previously worked for Deloitte in its Dunedin, Dublin & Wellington offices.

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Claire joined the board in 2021. Her involvement with Ignite goes back to the very beginning, when it was founded by Aga Nazaruk. As Director Administration in the University of Otago Business School, she supported the fledgling group with space and other needs.  She is active in Rotary and has been a member of several not for profit boards, including PACT, The Friends of Otago Museum, Sinclair Wetlands and Family Planning. Claire now manages the Otago Youth Wellness Trust, a not for profit working with rangatahi in Dunedin.

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Jeff Foote

Jeff works at the Otago Business School where he teaches operational excellence, social responsibility and governance. He is passionate about external engagement and applied research and has worked with not-for-profits, hapū, central government agencies and local authorities. Jeff is new to Ignite and joined in the Board in 2021.

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Mitchell joined the Board as Chair in 2021. While attempting a commerce degree at Otago, he joined Ignite to work with the Cancer Society project and helped form the Cancer Core. Mitchell is the co-founder of two technology companies focused on improving social equity and the environment and has experience in digital marketing, product management and fundraising. You can find him at his day job in the healthcare industry trying to solve issues related to improved community health outcomes.

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Fiona joined the Board in 2021 and is the current Secretary of the Board. Fiona has been involved with Ignite since 2016 when she was a consultant in Dunedin, working with Dunedin Street Art. She then joined the Dunedin Executive team as the Project Coordinator (2017) and COO  (2018). Fiona studied law, French and Spanish at the University of Otago and is now based in Pōneke, working as a lawyer specialising in public law and human rights litigation.

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