BEIA appoints new Independent Chair

The new appointment takes over from Tony Gardner, who will step down from his six-year tenure as Board Chair.

Business Events Industry Aotearoa (BEIA) has appointed Steve Armitage as its new Independent Chair.

Armitage will take over the role from Tony Gardner, who will step down from his six-year tenure as Board Chair after the association’s Annual General Meeting, to be held online 25 November.

BEIA chief executive, Lisa Hopkins said the work of BEIA has grown and developed under Gardner’s leadership and that the industry will be forever appreciative of his guidance and support.

“Tony has been instrumental in building an active and engaged Board and I know I speak on behalf of them and the BEIA team when I say how grateful we are for the work he has done,” Hopkins said.

Armitage most recently held the position of general manager – destination at Auckland Unlimited, a high-profile role which encompassed a broad range of sectors including business events.

“Like Tony, Steve understands the nuances of the sector very well and the need to be future-focused,” Hopkins said.

“A seasoned and well-respected leader with extensive experience working across all levels of the political landscape, Steve’s experience in public affairs, diplomacy, and the corporate sector supports BEIA’s own intentions for the future.”

Armitage says he is excited to be working alongside the Board, Lisa, and her team, and the wider membership base to help shape the future of the sector.

“I am firmly of the view that business events should be at the forefront of New Zealand’s economic re-opening to the world given the clear value they bring socially and economically,” Armitage said.

“The BEIA team has worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic representing the sector with mana and clear purpose, and I cannot wait to build on the momentum they have generated.”

Gardner said it had been an honour to contribute to BEIA, and the business events industry as a board member, then Chair, for the past eight years.

“The key areas of progress for BEIA since 2013 have been leadership, partnerships with Tourism New Zealand and Air New Zealand, and maintaining a strong focus on member interests,” he said.

“Getting the right leadership in place has been the key to the association’s success.”

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