Young Executive of the Year Award Judge
Joan Withers spent over 25 years working in the media industry holding CEO positions at both Fairfax NZ Ltd and The Radio Network and she also has significant corporate governance experience.
Her current governance roles are as Chair of The Warehouse Group Ltd and she is a director of ANZ NZ and Sky Network TV Ltd. She has previously held Chair positions at Auckland International Airport, Mercury NZ Ltd and TVNZ. She has also held directorships on the boards of some of New Zealand’s largest companies including Meridian Energy Ltd and Tourism Holdings Ltd. Prior to her appointment as CEO of Fairfax NZ Ltd, Joan was a director on the Australian board of John Fairfax Holdings Ltd.
Joan is a Trustee of the Louise Perkins Foundation, and is Chair of a steering committee working to increase the percentage of South Auckland Maori and Pacific Island students taking up roles in the health sector. She is a shareholder and director of On Being Bold Ltd, along with eight other senior business women who are focused on assisting NZ women achieve their full career potential whilst still leading rewarding personal lives.
She holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration from The University of Auckland. She is also a University of Auckland Distinguished Alumni (2015). Joan is the author of "A Girl's Guide to Business" which was published by Penguin Books in 1998 and “A Woman’s Place – Life, leadership and lessons from the boardroom” which was published by Penguin Random House in 2017.
She won the CAANZ Media Excellence Award in 2009 and the New Zealand Shareholders’ Beacon Award in 2014.
In 2015 she was named Supreme Winner in the Women of Influence Awards and was named as Chairperson of the Year in the Deloitte Top 200 Management Awards. Joan was admitted to the Marketing Hall of Fame in 2017.
Joan lives in Karaka, Auckland on a 20 acre rural property and she and her husband enjoy horse riding, cooking and entertaining.