Our 2024 NZPI Conference has ended on a high in Kirikiriroa Hamilton. Friday night’s Gala Dinner brought the glitz and glamour, with huge thanks to SLR who sponsored our premier annual event. Hundreds of planners joined our international guests for a night of celebration, setting a very special scene to award the Nancy Northcroft Award and to honour four new NZPI Fellows.

The night began with a mihi and an address from NZPI Chair Reg Proffit, to which he welcomed everyone to his party. This was soon followed by words from SLR’s Christina Walker, telling a laughing crowd that as SLR was the sponsor of the Gala Dinner, it was in fact her party. Next came the presentation of the Nancy Northcroft Award.

The Nancy Northcroft Award is awarded every year at NZPI conference and recognises creativity, innovation, quality and the extent to which best-practice planning process and practice, including sustainable management is promoted. It’s the Institutes supreme award for excellence in planning.

This year’s winner of the Nancy Northcroft Award is the Amberley Beach Coastal Adaptation Plan by Hurunui District Council and Jaccobs.

Monique Eade was delighted to collect this award on behalf of the team, explaining her journey from working on the project while at Hurunui District Council, through to realising the wonderful work being done at Jacobs that she agreed to take on a new role with the company. Monique told the audience that she was accepting the Nancy Northcroft award as part of a team and that it had been a team effort to complete this award-winning plan.

Monique Eade receives the award from NZPI Chair Reg Proffit and NZPI CEO David Curtis.

The project video for the Amberley Beach Adaptation Plan can be watched here

Celebrations continued with the award of four new NZPI Fellows. An NZPI Fellow is the highest professional membership grade offered by the Institute. A fellow is someone who has made a major personal contribution to the planning profession for the benefit of the public and has been a Full Member for at least a decade. To award four Fellows in one year demonstrates the depth of leadership and those willing to make a significant personal contribution in the planning profession of Aotearoa.

Our four new F.NZPI in the order announced at the Gala Dinner are:

Julie Bevan

Julie was unable to make it to the ceremony but was celebrated with applause.

See her citation HERE

Gary Rae

Gary Rae receives his fellow certificate from NZPI Chair Reg Proffit and NZPI CEO David Curtis

Surprised and delighted to be awarded a Fellow on Friday night, this was a well-kept secret.

See Gary’s citation HERE

Graeme McCarrison

Graeme McCarrison receives his fellow certificate from NZPI Chair Reg Proffit and NZPI CEO David Curtis

An emotional Graeme McCarrison reached the stage to receive his certificate, pledging later that he had absolutely no idea this was coming.

See Graeme’s citation HERE

Ken Gimblett

Ken Gimblett receives his fellow certificate from NZPI Chair Reg Proffit and NZPI CEO David Curtis

Ken was the last of our new Fellows to be awarded at our Gala Dinner. His surprise and humility is evident. 

See Ken’s citation HERE

The evening’s formalities ended with a significant ceremony. The Institute was gifted a treasure, a mauri at the 2001 NZPI Conference in Tauranga. Every year mana whenua associated with the outgoing conference venue and Papa Pounamu hand our mauri over to the care – kaitiaki to mana whenua of the next conference. Through this ceremony the membership is acknowledging the next mana whenua, inviting them to “get to know us”.

Our mauri is passed to mana whenua from Ngai Tahu, completing the invitation to Invercargill who will host the next NZPI conference in 2025.

The presentations ended with gentle words from outgoing chair Reg Proffit.

“Be brave, be courageous and always be kind hearted”.