GOVIS 2019 Keynote and Plenary Speakers

Thursday June 6, 2019

Hon. Dr. Megan Woods

Hon Megan Woods is a Christchurch local, and has been the Member of Parliament for Wigram since 2011. Following the 2017 election, Megan was sworn in as a Minister of the Crown with portfolio responsibilities including the Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Energy and Resources, Research, Science and Innovation, and responsibility for the Earthquake Commission.

In her role as a local MP, Megan has worked alongside Cantabrians on important issues, in particular as many move on from the devastating earthquakes that struck the city in 2010 and 2011. With her ministerial focus on Christchurch, she wants closure for all Cantabrians.

In Opposition, Megan held various portfolios - including Climate Change and Canterbury Issues - helping her to gain an understanding of a wide range of issues and build important relationships, especially in Christchurch. Prior to becoming a Member of Parliament, Megan worked as a Business Manager at Plant & Food Research. She holds a PhD in New Zealand History from the University of Canterbury.

In between a busy schedule, Megan enjoys watching cricket, rugby and spending her free time with friends and family

Portfolios: Energy and Resources - Minister, Government Digital Services - Minister, Greater Christchurch Regeneration - Minister, Research, Science and Innovation - Minister, and Earthquake Commission - Minister Responsible

David Shanks, Chief Censor, Office of Film and Literature Classification

David Shanks is New Zealand’s Chief Censor. He was appointed to the role in May 2017 and leads the Office of Film and Literature Classification, which is an Independent Crown Entity.

David is a barrister and solicitor who has executive experience in both private and public sector senior roles, including being Chief Legal Adviser for the State Services Commission and the Ministry of Social Development. He also has a background in health and safety, at Director level. 

He’s now responsible for protecting New Zealanders from harm, especially harm to children and young people that can come from sex, crime, cruelty, horror and violence in media. This balances with upholding New Zealander's right to freedom of expression and recognising the diverse views of all Kiwis. 

David has a passion for the job and a determination to modernise the approach to the changing world of media content. 

Richard Foy, Chief Archivist and General Manager, Archives New Zealand Te Rua Mahara o te Kawanatanga

Richard Foy was appointed Chief Archivist and General Manager of Archives New Zealand in April 2018.

Prior to this, he worked for over two years as the Director, Digital Strategy, Information and Knowledge Services at the Department of Internal Affairs. He worked closely with New Zealand’s National Library and National Archives to imagine their digital future and define a compelling strategy for growing into it.

Richard has a background in information, software systems, technology architecture, and digital strategy.

For 12 years he consulted on technology to business, then joined the public service to lead enterprise architecture at the Ministry of Social Development, before joining the Department of Internal Affairs to spearhead Better Public Services, Result 10 and RealMe, the NZ government's official digital authentication, identity and privacy solution.

Richard is one of New Zealand government's digerati, a design-savvy futurist recognised for promoting an optimistic vision of digital technology as transformational for New Zealand. Outside of work, he's obsessed with his children, Star Trek and science fiction, sometimes in that order.


Te Aroha Grace, Innovation Officer, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei

Ngāti Whātua Ōrakei have had the mana and the privilege to host and be heard by, peoples in Tāmaki since the 1700's. The ancient role is to care for and serve the most Global City of New Zealand Aotearoa. Today we allow the public continued access to our lands and as long term investors of the land Ngāti Whātua Ōrakei aspire to grow with the local and global guardians who align with the ancient pedigree of care and a vision for shared mana and therefore exponential prosperity.

It is a privilege to serve as the Innovation Officer of the tribal development entity of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, mapping an ancestral framework of thrivability to a people and a globe that is craving its meaningful, contemporary and real world value. This role looks at a natural yet digital future for the tribal unit and seeks to implement a long term investment into developing the tribal innovative capability.

Friday June 7, 2019

Kaila Colbin is a co-founder of Boma Global and the CEO of Boma New Zealand. 

Kaila spearheaded the hugely successful SingularityU New Zealand and Australia Summits, introducing more than 2,500 people to exponential technologies and their impact on humanity.

She is also a co-founder of the non-profit Ministry of Awesome; the Curator and Licensee for TEDxChristchurch in New Zealand and TEDxScottBase in Antarctica; Deputy Chair of CORE Education; and Deputy Chair of ChristchurchNZ.

Her purpose in life is to be an uplifting presence.


Maria Robertson, Deputy Chief Executive, Service Delivery & Operations, Department of Internal Affairs Te Tari Taiwhenua

Maria Robertson was appointed Deputy Chief Executive, Service Delivery and Operations at the Department of Internal Affairs in 2013.

She leads a team of 900 largely customer-facing staff based in NZ, Sydney and London who provide products and services across a range of areas including passports, citizenship, births, deaths and marriages, community operations, registered charities and government service innovation programmes.

Maria is also the Senior Responsible Owner of a large transformation business unit within DIA called Te Ara Manaaki. With a vision of putting the customers and their whānau at the heart of everything they do, this wide-reaching programme is re-imagining and re-designing DIA’s Life Event and Identity services.  Encompassing a new target operating model, the programme will implement new systems and ways of delivering services for DIA’s people, digital options for customers, and a number of more flexible, broader Approved Information Sharing Agreements (AISA) with partners. 

In just 8 months after launch, 77% of all Birth, Death and Marriage Certificates are now ordered through DIA’s online service (January 2019). Similarly, 89% of customers applied for their marriage licence online in January 2019. 

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