New Zealand, D9930

Paul Harris Fellows

The Rotary movement was founded in February 1905, by Paul Harris, a lawyer from Chicago, who recognized the potential of an association of like-minded professional and business people who could meet and share common interests on a regular basis.

In 1957, the Rotary Foundation launched the Paul Harris Fellowship in memory of the founder as an expression of appreciation for those who have contributed to the Foundation's humanitarian and educational programs.

A contribution of US $1,000.00 is made to the Rotary Foundation in the name of each individual to be honoured. The recipients receive a pin, medallion and certificates that identify them as advocates of the Foundation's goals of world peace and understanding.

After more than forty years, recognition as a Paul Harris Fellow remains a respected and prestigious honour for Rotarians and non-Rotarians alike.

The following are members of the Rotary Club of Taradale who have been awarded the honour either by this club or a previous one of which they were a member. The Club has also recognised the work of other members of the Taradale community who are not members of the Club.

TRC Awards

1981 Tom McDonald

1984 Arthur Stafford

1985 Ron Schofield

1986 Win Geenty

1987 Ben Edginton

1988 Gil Atkins

1988 Doug Rees

1988 Bob Twaddle

1990 Sloan Millar

1990 Harold Howard

1991 Ron Ward

1994 David Nichol

1994 John Lister

1995 Jock Morris

1995 Clive Adams

1996 Mark Read

1996 Gil Cooper

1998 Peter Sugden

1999 Bill Beaton

1999 Jim Dine

TRC Awards

2000 Bruce McLeod

2001 lan Kepka

2002 Selwyn Dyet

2004 Bob McCaw

2005 Kevyn Moore (Sapphire)

2006 Graham Duncan

2006 Derek Ricketts

2007 Alan Watton

2007 Ron Ebbett

2007 Jim Lum

2008 Brian Neilson

2008 Robin Arnold

2009 Bob McCaw (Sapphire)

2009 Gil Cooper (Sapphire)

2009 Kelvin Tremain (Posthumous)

2009 Bob Knappstein

2009 Des Stephens

2009 John Aikman

TRC Awards

2010 Frank Crotty

2011 Rob Pattullo

2012 Ross Pinkham

2013 Gordon Buckley

2013 Richard Howell

2014 John Reid (Foundation)

2015 Max Plested

2015 Trevor Kilpatrick

2016 Warren Cooper

2016 Bill Hawkins

2016 Mark Oldershaw

2017 Doug McGechan

2017 Doug Syme

2018 Merv Kite (Sapphire)

2019 John Reid (Sapphire)

2019 Robert Kyle

Foundation Awards and Other Club Awards

1984 Kevyn Moore (Eastwood, Glasgow)

1996 Ian Atkins (Lower Hutt)

1997 Merv Kite (Masterton South)

1997 Bob Wallis (Wanganui-Sapphire)

2003 Neil Kittow (Waipukurau)

2011 Bob Wallis (District-Sapphire)

2016 Ross Pinkham (District-Sapphire)

2017 Peter Ball (Foundation)

2017 Ross Pinkham (Foundation)

Community,  Awards

1991 Hazel Dawson

1997 Ray Neill

2008 Gillian Davies

2009 Caroline Meyer & Georgina Earl (Evers-Swindell)

2009 Jane Sheldrake  

2014 David and Gary Conroy

2017 Diane Howell

2018 Selwyn Dyet (Sapphire)

2019 Roger Alexander






Go to the End of Table

Awarded by Taradale Rotary

Tom McDonald OBE*

Charter President, Tom was born in 1907 and educated in Taradale. As a 15-year-old he started work with a winemaker, Bart Steinmetz, and at 21 took over the business and changed the winery's name to McDonalds. He was production director of McWilliams Wines until he retired in 1975. He spent his entire life in Taradale but was widely known in national and international viticulture circles. He was well known for his gold medal winning wines cabernet sauvignon and pinot chardonnay.

In 1922 he established McDonald's Wines, which amalgamated with McWilliams Wines in 1962.

A past president of the Wine Institute of New Zealand, he was one of only four fellows of the institute. He served as president of the Hawke's Bay Winemakers' Association for 40 years. He also served as chairman on the Hawke's Bay Education Board and as a member of the Hawke's Bay Harbour Board.
The McDonald family established McDonald Transport Company, McDonald's Supermarket (now New World) and Waiohiki Sand and Shingle Company (now Napier- Taradale Shingle Company).

In Rotary Tom will forever be remembered as the Clubs Foundation President.

In his 25th year in Rotary, Tom received Rotary International's highest award, a Paul Harris Fellowship, and in his 80's he was persuaded him to attend his first stress seminar in Taupo, where he caught his full bag.



Arthur Stafford*

Arthur had a remarkable record of service to the community dating back to the 1950’s and his time on the Taradale Town Board and subsequently, for a time, on the Taradale Borough Council.

After relinquishing his role as an elected representative of that body he was instrumental in forming the Taradale Advancement Society.

In 1968 he became the Club’s 10th President. He also served as secretary for 3 years, and was organising secretary for the formation of the Greenmeadows Rotary Club.  He served on the committee of Camp Kaitawa for 30 years.

Arthur passed away in 2002.



Ron Schofield*

Ron led the team which co-ordinated the building programme which created the Atawhai flats. This was a magnificent achievement and Ron's efforts were recognised with the presentation of a Paul Harris medal at the official opening of the flats.

He represented Hawkes Bay on the National Kidney Foundation and has devoted many hours to help raise funds for the organisation. He was also a member of the Marineland Trust Board, an indication of his love of things aquatic.

As a Rotarian he has served as Director, and later led the development team which upgraded the Town Hall, the Club's most expensive and successful project.



Wyn Geenty*

Win was born 12th in a family of 14. Daily milking gave way to being apprenticed in cabinet-making in 1929. At the outbreak of WW2 Win, fought in Libya, Greece and Crete before being captured and spending the rest of the war in POW camps in Poland and Bavaria. After the war he tried to get a farm but discovered his health was not up to it, so returned to 33 years pf cabinet-making and outstanding service to the community and the Club as a President who constantly looked for local projects to assist the less fortunate and in need of help, particularly the elderly and widowed.



Ben Edginton*

Ben was a builder who drew universal admiration for his work. Soon after joining Rotary, he organised a BBQ tables building project, where he cut the parts and then had members descend on his home on Saturday mornings to assemble them, before they were sold off to generate funds for the Club.

His greatest effort for the Club was the building of the Atawhai Homes where not only did he give his time freely, but also co-ordinated the work effort of 77 other members. He was awarded the Paul Harris for his contribution to the Club and Community.

Later, in 1992,he worked with Clive Adams on the renovation of the Town hall. Sadly Ben died in 1997, after a lengthy battle with ill health.



Gil Atkins*

Gilbert, the community's milkman for half a century. He was the last of the old school who delivered milk from horse and cart. As such he is a real identity within the community for which he has worked tirelessly during his very productive life. A passionate love of draught horses has given him a national identity, and he has featured TV.

His work in Rotary has revolved around the Auction. This fundraiser became totally identified with Gil. He served as Convener with Doug Rees and worked on its committee for over 30 years.


Doug Rees*

Doug spent a lifetime with the Daily Telegraph, learning all levels of the trade. He initiated the first Auction with a Paddy's Market in 1968, and repeat the exercise two years later, devising a blueprint which would be followed for the next 30 years.

For many years was a tireless worker for it. He was also instrumental in the formation of the Greenmeadows Rotary Club.

Within the Club, Doug was famous for his "swindle" raffles on rugby matches, but for a long-lasting contribution, nothing can beat the wonderful "Buzzers" he put out for several years in the late 60's. His impish sense of humour and love of language shines through these volumes.


 Bob Twaddle QSM*

Bob was born in Gisborne and educated at Wellington College and Palmerston North. He was appointed foundation principal of the new Taradale High School in 1969.

For six months he juggled being principal of Paeroa College, Thames, being part of the Ministry of Education's inspectorate and trying to get Taradale High School up and running. During his teaching career Bob was also involved in scouting and sports coaching.

When he retired as principal in 1984 he threw himself into Taradale community affairs. He was a foundation member and served several years as president of the Taradale and District Community Development Association, a committee member of the High School and School Foundation, was one of those instrumental in having the community's library relocated to the former Taradale Rugby Club building and drove a campaign to retain the community policing centre.

He was a member of the 1986 Taradale centenary committee, is a life member of the Probus Club and a Taradale Rotary Club Paul Harris Fellow. He was President of the Club in 1978-79. One of his more recent projects was his involvement with the Taradale RSA to have the Taradale's memorial clock tower lit.

He has served for  many years on the Kelvin Tremain Memorial Education Trust as well as annually producing the Club's handbook.

Bob joined Rotary while living in Paeroa. He joined the Paeroa Club in 1965 and transferred his Rotary membership to the Rotary Club of Taradale in early 1970. He gave 44 years of service to the Taradale Club resigning in 2014. Given his time with the Paeroa Rotary Club, he served Rotary for 50 years.

For his public service work he was awarded a Queens Service Medal (QSM) in 2005.

Bob passed away, aged 94 in 2018.



Sloan Millar*

Sloan spent much of his life as a Mason, and worked tirelessly for the establishment of the Masonic flats.

A man of vision even when he could not see. A forthright man with an incredible repartee and sense of humour, such a man was Sloan Millar

In Freemasonry he received the OSM (Order of Service to Masonry), a high honour of which there can be no more than 20 at any time.

For 21 years he was Secretary of the Napier District Masonic Trust of which he was a founder member and "father" of a capital contribution scheme for housing the elderly.

Sloan's last report to the Napier District Masonic Trust in October 1993 ended "May I conclude in well known words that I ended in "peace, love, and harmony". How true those words are in August 1994. - John Lister.

Sloan was awarded the Paul Harris Medal in recognition of his outstanding work to the community. He died on 2/8/1994.


Harold Howard

Educated at Christchurch Boys' High School, Harold has served the district of Taradale for over 40 years.

In 1989 he and his wife Jane left for 4 weeks in Hong Kong to work with Vietnamese "boat people", refugees from the political fallout after the Vietnam War. The programme he worked for was an RI 3H scheme to find volunteer dentists prepared to spend time working with refugees. While he worked in the camp clinics, Jane worked with the children of the camps.

On return, Harold encouraged the Club to sponsor a matching grant scheme to raise $US10,000 to upgrade dental equipment. The project was successful and the new equipment installed. Harold and Jane returned twice more in 1989 and 1991.

The Club awarded Harold the Paul Harris Medal in recognition of this outstanding contribution to humanity as well as a life time of service to the local community and the Club.



Ron Ward MBE*

Ron has been a major figure in education in Hawke's Bay since he and his wife, Estelle taught a the Kaitawa Hydro School in the late 1950's. After a brief spell in Wairoa, he moved to Napier to take up a position as Principal of Napier Intermediate. During this time he took a great interest in Outdoor Education, and with assistance from the Club, founded the Camp Kaitawa Outdoor Education Centre and for 38 years, he took a very active involvement in its development, serving as its chairman for many years.

During WW2 he served with the NZ Air Arm in the Solomon Islands, crewing with Sir Edmund Hillary, and began a life long love of the Catalina Flying boats.

Ron also took a keen interest helping schools in the South Pacific, and in 1986 travelled to Savai'i to set up a water tank for the school of Logoi'pulotu with goods donated by the Club.

In 1991 Ron's interest in the environment led him to encourage the Club to join the R.I. movement called Preserve Planet Earth, thus starting the Club's ongoing involvement in the Dobel reserve.

In the community he has been an active promoter of the Neighbourhood Watch scheme, and in 1988 he was awarded the MBE for services to the Community and education.




John Lister*

John was educated in Napier and was a student at the Napier Technical College at the time of the earthquake. When war broke out he joined the RNZAF and served in the Pacific theatre.

Back in NZ he resumed a career in accounting and joined the Taradale RSA where he has served with distinction for 50 years, with two terms as President, as well as service to the National organisation. He is a Life Member of RSA.

As a Mason, he was a prime mover in promoting the Masonic Pensioner Housing scheme and helped in the development of the Masonic Retirement homes and villages in Taradale. He has been involved at all stages of the developments and had a major contribution in ensuring modern concepts of managing elderly was implemented. At the time of his retirement, he was the Chairman of the Trust, and maintained hands on control of daily affairs.

John was a past Director and President of the Club. During his time he worked with the Treasurers for many years to help audit Club accounts and produce annual reports.


David Nichol

Dave explained why he was awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship in a 3 Minute talk one night. He attributes his success to 27 years of running raffles, some successful others not. Once they tried to raffle car, but couldn't sell enough tickets and had to return the money for all tickets purchased, by envelop, one ticket at a time. They made more money from the racing tip from a drunk at one of the hotels where they were trying to sell tickets !!

Dave graduated from choirboy in his early days to start a very successful glass business with expertise in stained glass and lead-lighting. He gave generously of his time to the glazing of the Atawhai flats and the Atawhai Conservatory. He has replaced windows at Camp Kaitawa, and responsible for the feature lead-lighting in the new Town hall.

In Rotary Dave is a Past President, Director and ran many lively Sergeant sessions.

Dave continued to be a major supporter of all Club fundraisers such as the Auction, of which he was a convener, and the Charity Dinners.

However nothing can match his work inspiring, planning and bringing to a successful conclusion, the Taradale Charted Club which is now a popular community asset.



Jock Morris MBE

As principal of Taradale Intermediate for many years, Jock has been a towering figure in local education for many years. During these years he also served on the Hawke's Bay Education Board before its was disestablished as part of education reforms at the time.

For Rotary, Jock, along with Tom McDonald, is the old member who has served as President for more than one year, stepping in to complete the term of Brian McKinley, who had to retire after 6 months. He has also served as sergeant and is renowned for his acute sense of humour and wide range of jokes. He served as the Club's first Chairman of the Education Trust once it was renamed in memory of the late Kel Tremain.

Jock was awarded the MBE under the old honours system. He died in 2012.


Clive Adams

Clive was born in Waipukarau and became a master builder and moved with wife June and family to Napier where he joined Rotary in 1982.

The list of projects he has been involved in include the Town Hall renovations, the Rotary lounge entrance, the Atawhai conservatory, and constructing barbecue tables among many others. His work on the Town Hall where he not only served on the organising committee, but gave many of his own time to the reconstruction effort, lead to an Art Deco styled building which is now the pride of the community. For this effort, the Club was awarded  the prize for the Most Significant Project in District 9930 in 1992.

Clive had only been in Rotary 10 years when awarded the Paul Harris Medal



Mark Read

Brought up in Hawke's Bay, Mark and his wife Sue are long time identities of the Taradale Community.

In his active years Mark was a senior rugby referee, and remembers many a game where All Black Kel Tremain tried to run the game. Both became Club members and life long Friends.

Mark has served the Club in many avenues of service as President, Sergeant and a long supporter and worker for the Auction, for which he served two years as Convenor.

Mark has a wonderful sense of humour and his Sergeant sessions are legendary.

Mark resigned from Rotary onth30th June 2008.


 Gil Cooper

There is nothing in the club that Gil hasn't done. President 1977-78, several directorships. But most remarkable is Gil's 37 years of unbroken attendance. That's 1850 meetings on the trot (at the time of the award. Gil is now well past 2000)  Gil has made-up in Europe, USA, Asia, the Pacific, Australia and NZ. The most memorable perhaps being Kings Cross where on being introduced as having a classification of Fertilizer Distribution, the host President quipped he was the first four legged variety with that job to visit the club.

As well as holding President and Director positions, Gil has been a keen supporter of International Caravanning Fellowship of Rotarians and enjoyed great fellowship through this movement. He has been the Club's link with the J.R. McKenzie Trust and currently a Reporter for the Bulletin.

He was a Paul Harris Sapphire Pin in 2009. Click Gil Cooper (Sapphire)




Peter Sugden

Peter has given to the community extensively both financially and in terms of time to many organisations including the Vincent de Paul Trust.

He joined Ron Munro in partnership of Munro's Pharmacy, eventually managing the business for many years as Sugden's Pharmacy.

He is famous for his ukulele entertainment at the Stress Seminar weekends and the wheel chair derbies he organises at the Masonic Resthome.

In Rotary he has served as a Director, one of his past projects being to ensure the completion of the waterwheel in Taradale Park. He was Club President 1981-82.

Peter resigned from the Club on the 10th April 2016.



Bill Beaton*

Bill first arrived in the district as a Bank officer, but was encouraged by Jack McDonald to join his fledgling General Store business. He wasted no time in marrying the girl in the Crockery Dept, Jack's daughter, Sheena, and so became forever part of one of the most successful and enduring businesses in the district, McDonald's Supermarket, now the New World in Taradale. When Jack died he became Managing Director, and under his guidance the company has prospered and expanded its interests to include one of the largest Apple pack houses in the country.

Bill is a foundation member of the Club and was surrogate Treasure for the club while Jack McDonald was Club Treasurer, doing most of the book work. He Was Club President in the Club's 25th. year ( 1983-84). He died aged 82 in 2011.


Jim Dine *

Except for his schooling years at Nelson College, Jim has spent nearly all his life in the Taradale district. During this time, he has devoted much of his time promoting his trade through his membership of the HB Electrical Apprenticeship committee, the HB Branch of the Electrical Contractors Association and as a member of the Electric Institute of NZ.

He was a foundation member of the Taradale Rotary Club and has been totally unselfish in his service to the Club. For the duration of t he Auction he spent many hours repairing and testing electrical goods, at one stage postponing a visit to Australia so that the job would be done.



Bruce McLeod*

Originally trained as a teacher, Bruce gave up the chalk face for Vocational Guidance and transferred to Napier where he has spent the rest of his life.

During his career he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to visit the USA.

 Once he retired he devoted his boundless energy to a range of community activities including Age Concern, Meals on Wheels, Probus etc.

He is a Mason and has been Knight Templar; is a member of the Civic Choir.

He joined the Club on the 8th April 1977 and held a number of positions on Directors. He and Anne hosted Rotary Exchange students.

 He resigned from Rotary 29th June 2011.



Ian Kepka*

Ian was born in 1934 in the province of Bialystokin, Eastern Poland.  In June 1943 Peter Fraser’s Government offered hospitality to 733 Polish children one of whom was Ian.

In 1966 he was registered as a Master Builder. In the building field he established a high reputation, winning many architectural awards (one for our new look Town Hall).

At the same time Ian contributed to the community. In the fifties he was active in athletics coaching, and in his time in Jaycees the Princess Alexandra Hospital was the best known of many Jaycee’s projects that Ian assisted with.

He was Captain of the Napier Golf Club for three years then President for three, overseeing course improvements, and rewarded with a life membership.  He was made a J.P. in 1985.

Ian was a supervisor in the construction of the Atawhai flats in 1984.

He is Past-President of the Club and a past convener of the Rotary Auction. Ian resigned from Rotary on 31st December 2011.



Selwyn Dyet

Selwyn, mainlander, joined Rotary in Dunedin South in 1975 where he was a Past President.

12 years later he joined Taradale and has served as Treasurer, serves on the Dolbel committee (Preserve Planet Earth) and is a trustee to the Kel Tremain Memorial Education Trust.

In 2010-11 he was president of the Club and resigned in 2012. He retains an active interest working for the Dolbel Reserve committee.

In 2018 Selwyn was awarded a Sapphire Paul Harris pin in recognition of his dedication to the on-going development of Dolbel Reserve. Click Selwyn Dyet (Sapphire)




Bob McCaw

Bob was awarded the honour in recognition of the number of international projects he initiated, including the Computers to Tonga project.

He spent 7 years working in the South Pacific, based in Fiji. While there he organised with his wife Glenys, books in to Fiji Primary schools, and later text books to Tonga for their new seventh form. While a member of the Suva North Rotary Club, he oversaw their Fish Pond project to provide a local boarding school with fresh fish.

On return to Taradale he continued with his work in the South Pacific, and twice organised eye glasses into Fiji, personally taking them with him when on working trips. 

Since 1998 he has been a trustee on the Kel Tremain Memorial Education Trust, serving as Chairman for the last 5 years.

He has been Bulletin Editor for 9 years. In 2009 he was awarded a Paul Harris Sapphire Pin. Click Bob McCaw (Sapphire).



Kevyn Moore  QSM (Sapphire PH)

Kevyn was awarded a Sapphire Pin to go with the Paul Harris he was awarded by the Eastwood Club in Scotland, for his efforts on behalf of the Club and community.

A past-President, Kevyn has been the driving force behind our Charity Dinners. While a lot of members have helped in many ways, Kevyn has been the supreme organiser, motivating and guiding the Club through the process of staging these events. Kevyn’s contacts and skills have made the Dinners highly successful. These are all highlighted elsewhere in the website, but the bottom line is that Kevyn's efforts have raised $225,000 for different charity trusts, the major benefactor being the Kel Tremain Memorial Education Trust.

Kevyn is a Past President and past-Chairman of the Kel Tremain Memorial Education Trust.




Graham Duncan

 Graham was born in Nelson and attended Waimea College in Richmond were he became Captain of the College First 15 Rugby Team and Pipe Major of the College Pipe Band.

He married in 1971 to Tricia and they have a son Anthony and a daughter Phillipa

His public service includes Past President & Pipe Major of the Richmond & Districts Pipe Band, Past President of the City of Napier Pipe Band, and Past Chairman Taradale  High School Foundation. He is also a Queen Scout. Currently he is a Trustee on the Board of Child Cancer Hawkes Bay representing the Rotary Clubs of the Hawkes Bay District

Graham joined the Rotary Club of Taradale in March 1992  and lead a GSE Team to Southern England, the Channel Islands and France during 1997.

During his Presidential year 1998 / 1999 he was the driving force behind the "Bugsy Malone" project which raised $60,000 for the Child Cancer Hawkes Bay Trust and earned the Club a Citation from the World President.

During 2005 he was the organiser & driving force behind the Munich Styled Beer Festival. He enjoys Rotary and commits himself heavily to Club Projects.

In 2013-14 he again joined forces with Gillian Davies to stage William Shakespeare's play "The Merry Wives of Windsor". This was staged outdoors in the Church Road Winery grounds and raised $15,000 of which $10,000 went to HB Child Cancer Support.

Graham resigned from the Club in 2015 to pursue other projects.


Derek Ricketts*

Derek was born at home on the family farm in Gloucestershire, England, the youngest of the family after two older sisters. The family farm was lost during the depression, so after leaving school at fourteen years old he worked in various jobs associated with farming until he met and married Audrey, a New Zealand girl and emigrated to New Zealand in 1956. 

After working briefly for JJ Niven, and then for four years at New Zealand Paint and Varnish  he had a few months at Williams & Kettle before he joined Bert Scott in the Paint Shop in Taradale. The business grew and joined the Mitre 10 chain in 1975. His sons, Graeme and Stephen, joined the business in the eighties and it has grown be an icon Hawkes Bay company.

He joined Taradale Rotary in February 1964 and was President in the 1976 / 1977 year. Derek is a behind the scenes worker for Rotary and is always found where work has to be done.

Derek resigned from the Club on 26th June 2014 with ill health and died in 2015.




Alan Watton*

Alan was born in Matawai in 1939. His family moved to Gisborne when he was a small boy and so schooling took place at Kaiti School & Gisborne Boys High School. In 1956 he left Gisborne Boys High School and entered into a cadetship with the Ministry of Works, as a civil engineering draughtsman.

He  moved to Hawke’s Bay in 1967 to a position in the design office of the Ministry of Works. In 1991 this member became Engineering Administration Manager for the Hastings District Council, and Roading Manager in 1995.He became a Registered Professional Engineer in 1992. In 1993 he was awarded the Treasury Prize for Accounting in Management, and in 1996 he obtained his Diploma in Business Studies from Massey University. Career highlights include a National award for the design of the Kaiteratahi Bridge, State Highway 2, north of Ormond.

Community interests and hobbies include squash and he was a Past president of the New Zealand Squash Assn. He was also a Past President of the Hawke’s Bay Branch of the New Zealand Institute of Engineers. On the 1st August 1991 he joined the Rotary Club of Taradale and has been Vocational Director and Programme Convener.

In 2002 Alan was appointed as the Rotary Club of Taradale representative on the Napier Rotary Pathways Trust and was immediately elected secretary. Because of his engineering background he was an essential link for the Trust in discussions and funding negotiations with the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, Land Transport New Zealand and Transit New Zealand.

The project undertaken by the Napier Rotary Pathways Trust in the five years 2002 – 2007 is valued at over $ 2 million with 16 kms of pathway laid.

Alan died in service early 2008.


Ron Ebbett

Ron was born in Wairoa in 1934 and when he was four the family shifted back to Hawke’s Bay to begin farming. He attended Wellington College as a boarder.

When he left school he returned to the family farm, played rugby for Eskview, and did his compulsory military training. To gain further farming experience he spent some time overseas  -  in the South Island.

Nominated by Past President Ned Holt he became a Rotarian in 1974. His involvement in Rotary has been consistent, wide, and varied. He has been Sergeant at Arms on several occasions, International Student Exchange Convener, has served on every standing committee, and has been a Trustee of the Kelvin Tremain Memorial Education Trust.

Other involvement over many years includes, hosting Group Study Exchange members, hosting and participating in Rotary Friendship Exchange, and he has visited Japan on a Rotary Visit to our sister city club Tomokomai.

He was elected as Vice President in 1984 and President in 1985. Later he served as District Governor’s representative.

He has attended many conferences including fifteen in succession and recently attended the Rotary International Centennial Conference in Chicago.


Jim Lum

Jim was born in Waipukurau in 1930 to parents who had migrated from China early last century.

In 1956 the family moved to Napier where he spent six months at Napier Intermediate before going on to Napier Boys’ High School.

After leaving school he worked for Loo Kee. When he was 18 he had the opportunity to go to China for two years. He visited the family village, and studied at Ling Nam University which had a special middle section for overseas students. With the approach of Communist armies in 1949, he transferred to private tuition in Hong Kong for some months before returning to New Zealand. He has revisited China briefly three times since.

In 1951 he started his fruit shop in Marewa — then a bustling new shopping centre. After fifteen prosperous years there he joined his elder brother and a friend in market gardening at Bay View.

He married Mabel in 1956 and in 1958 they built a home in Taradale and moved in with their baby son Terry. Jim joined Rotary in 1958, as a member of the Napier Club, but in 1966 he transferred to the Taradale Club. He was Club President in 1973-74.

Jim had a strong interest in education, and served as Chairman of the Bledisloe School Committee. His was elected Chairman of the newly independent Board of Governors of Taradale High School in 1976 where he served three terms.

His daughter Kerryn  is a  the doctor and Terry and Murray both have degrees in Electrical Engineering, but sadly Mabel died some years ago.

Jim resigned from the Clun on 25th June 2016.




Brian Neilson*

Otago born in Port Chalmers and educated at Otago Boys’ High School, where he was Head Prefect in 1955.

When he left school, as a Rural Cadet, he worked on a variety of farms throughout New Zealand (Wairarapa, Southland, Bay of Plenty) while he continued studies at Lincoln College and Massey University. In 1960 he gained a Lincoln College Diploma in Valuation and Farm Management — and married Loretta.

He became a Farm Appraiser with the State Advances Corporation and worked as  District Appraiser in Timaru until 1981 when he moved his family to Hawke's Bay. The SAC had become the Rural Bank and then the ANZ, where he was Rural Manager for Hawke’s Bay and Poverty Bay. His farming associations led to many years’ involvement with such groups as Young Farmers, Farm Management Societies, and the A&P Society. He held numerous offices in these organizations, including a term as National President of the NZ Institute of Farm Management and Treasurer of the HB A&P Society for the past five years.

Another lifelong influence has been the Church, with active Bible Class and Boys’ Brigade membership in his teenage years. He has been a Presbyterian Church elder for over thirty years, latterly at St. Columba’s, Taradale.

Brian has been active in Rugby refereeing for forty-five years, as referee or referee coach.

He was Club President in 1968-69 when our club reached its thirtieth milestone. He was involved in negotiations with a reluctant City Council to lease the Town Hall, which they were running at a loss. This lease cleared the way for the renovation of the lower hall three years later.

Club innovations he has been involved with have been introducing home-hosting as a fund-raiser, helping John Lister set up the Taradale Men’s Probus Club, and proposing two EIT scholarships.

His other Rotary activities have included active membership of the Dolbel Reserve Team, and twenty-six years on the Camp Kaitawa Trust Committee, including some years as Chairman.

He and Loretta had 3 children but sadly Brian died in 2013.




Robin Arnold

 Robin was born and bred in a rural community not far north of Napier and has lived nearly all his life in Hawkes Bay, except for a short stint at boarding school at New Plymouth Boys’ High School.

He spent some years learning the ropes on a number of farming properties and then at a relatively young age and newly married, in 1958 he gained a manager’s position on a property in the excellent farming district of Omakere in Central Hawkes Bay.

By the mid 1960's he owned a farm the Argyll district and he and his wife Jeanette now had a family of 4 children; 2 boys and 2 girls. Some years later the family moved close to Taradale with a property in Omaranui Road growing kiwifruit and grapes.

Robin and his family joined the St Columbus Presbyterian Church through which he has made a significant contribution to the Taradale community and in 1988 he joined the Rotary Club of Taradale. He is an elder of St Columbus Church and chairman of its pastoral committee spending a lot of time identifying, caring for, and visiting those parishioners who are unwell both at home or in hospital.

Within Rotary Robin has been a dedicated worker and works regularly for Camp Kaitawa, the Dolbel Reserve, the annual citrus drive, and being the Club’s welfare office, keeping a check on members, wives and partners who are sick.

Sadly Jeanette died several years ago, but their growing family is a huge support to Robin who continues with his welfare work for both Rotary and the Church. He resigned from Rotary on 21st March 2013.



John Aikman

John born in Wellington in 1951,the eldest of 3 sons of a father who was a member of the regular armed forces.  

His family moved to Hawke’s Bay when he was 13 and he attended Lindisfarne College. He was Captain of the 1st Hockey Eleven and the first day pupil to become a Prefect at the school.

On leaving school he wanted to join the police force and turned up weekly to be measured, but even with padding in his socks he was ½ an inch too short! He took up an apprenticeship with NZED and was stationed at Kaitawa as an electrical fitter and station operator. It was then that his love of the area was established.


At age 20 he became the inaugural President of Clive Jaycees.  He finished his apprenticeship with Neil Marsden at Taradale Electrical. He is both an Electrical Fitter and a registered Electrician.

After marrying Carolyn - and instant family of Sally and Sam — he was quick to boost the tally to 3 with Susie who lives in Gundary NSW.

John went into business on his own account, purchasing Taradale Electrical in 1978. About this time he also studied and gained his Advanced Trade Qualification.

John was an executive member of the NZ Electrical Contractors Assn. for some years, representing them on the New Zealand Apprenticeship Board, which involved many flights to Wellington to write the Unit Standard guidelines for Trade Apprenticeships.

He made time though to be a Venturer Scout Leader in Taradale for 9 years and many tramps in to the Kawekas, Ruahines and camps at Waikaremoana, Te Waka, Esk Valley and Puketitiri were enjoyed by the 14 — 19 year old boys and girls of his troop. Annual snow skiing trips to Ruapehu and water skiing trips to Hatepe on Lake Taupo were also undertaken and enjoyed. He was Club Captain of the Clive Water Ski Club for many years, going on to be President of the New Zealand Tournament Water Ski Assoc. where his daughter Susannah competed successfully, eventually representing New Zealand. He is a member of the Clive River Restoration Trust. Always interested in youth activities he joined the Camp Kaitawa Trust through Rotary and took on the roles of Secretary and Chairman of the Trust.


John was introduced to Rotary by Jim Dine and was inducted on 11 May 1989.  In 2004 he was Club President. During his year, the Club held a fundraising dinner, with celebrity guests  Georgina and Caroline Evers-Swindells. The event raised over $40,000, and with matching funds from the HB District Health Board, the Oliver Smales Memorial Trust was founded. John currently serves on this trust. He continues to serve of the Camp Kaitawa Trust.



Bob McCaw (Sapphire)

In June Bob was awarded with a sapphire pin to go along with the Paul Harris Medal awarded in 2004. This was in recognition of his work in preserving the Club history through the development of an extensive Club website. This website has more than 60 pages and remains a work in progress as it requires regular updating as current events pass into history.

In 2009, Bob, together with Club members, Warren Cooper and Frank Crotty, formed the Video History Productions, to record the complete history on DVD. This involves organising members in filming sequences to record their aural history of past events, and then editing extensive video and photographs to produce individual stories of the many events and projects the Club has been involved in.

Bob also made his computing video editing skills to produce mini-videos for the four years of Gourmet Experience, highlighting all exhibitors who were present. And at the Club's 50th Jubilee dinner, he produced two tribute videos celebrating the achievements of the recipients.

However, it is for his dedication in preserving the Club's history for which this award was made.


2009 Gil Cooper (Sapphire)

On Thursday 27 August 1959 Gil joined the Rotary Club of Taradale and On 27th August 2009 and 2450 meetings later he completed 50 years in Rotary with a perfect 100% attendance record. In recognition of this remarkable effort, the Club awarded him a Sapphire pin to accompany the Paul Harris Medal he was awarded in 1996.

Because attendance rules allow Rotarians to count their attendance by "making up" at other Rotary Club's, Gil has travelled widely with his wife Pat, and this has given him the opportunity to  visit Clubs in Australia, USA and England. This has given him a unique view of how other Clubs operate and he has been able to bring good ideas into the Club.

Through a  love of travel he and Pat have been members of the International Rotary Caravan Fellowship for nearly 30 years. He is a past-President of the group.

Despite his travels and many make-ups, Gil has used his retirement to gain new computing skills. He has been co-editor of the Bulletin for a number of years, and his photographs have played an integral part in enhancing each weeks production. He has used the same skills to enhance and simplify the production of the Club's handbook.

Gil retired from Rotary on 14th July 2016 after 57 years in Rotary, 53 years were remarkable for his 100% attendance. On his farewell night he revealed that he stood for the Taradale Borough Council and was elected in 1961 serving under Mayor Arthur Miller and in 1962 he was seconded to the Napier City Council. He was a strong proponent for amalgamation which eventually came about in 1968. The result greatly benefited the local Taradale community. 




Kelvin Tremain *(Posthumous Award)

Kelvin Tremain was born in 1938 in Auckland. His primary schooling was at Northcote Primary and Northcote Intermediate. His secondary schooling was at Auckland Grammar.

He excelled at rugby from an early age and played in the Intermediate Elixer Shield Team while still at primary school. He played for Grammar 1st XV.

Kel spent 3 years at Massey University and 2 years at Lincoln, where he obtained a Diploma in Valuation and Farm Management. He played rugby for Manawatu, Southland, and Hawke’s Bay, leading the latter though the three year tenure of the Ranfurly Shield 1966 – 1969. He was an outstanding loose forward and played 38 games scoring 9 tries for the All Blacks from 1959 to 1968. He is rated as one of the three great NZ loose forwards.


Following his retirement from rugby Kel became a successful and community oriented businessman. He joined Rotary in 1973 and was quickly involved with club youth projects included student exchange, both as a host family for incoming students and assisting New Zealand students heading overseas. In 1979 he was the prime mover setting up of an Education Trust as a Club 25th Anniversary project. The Trust was formed in 1983 and it first awards were made the same year. He was the inspiration in establishing the annual citrus drive, now a major annual Club project, organised members to concrete the driveway for the Crippled Children’s Home. Other involvements were clothing to  Pacific Harbour village in Fiji, the Samoan school water tank project, Planet Earth (now the Dolbel Reserve project), and the annual street auction in which he was auctioneer for a number of years.

Within the Club he loved the fellowship and was a regular participant in the annual Stress Seminar at Turangi and Taupo. He was the Sergeant Of Arms a number of times. As a member committed the the annual Auction and served as its convenor 1974, 1976, 1985. He was Youth Director 1978-79.

Sadly Kel died in April 1992.  In 1993, in recognition of his outstanding work for the Club, and in particular his involvement with assisting children and youth, the Education Trust was renamed the Kelvin Tremain Memorial Education Trust in his honour.

He is survived by his wife Pam, who accepted the honour on the night of the Club's 50th Jubilee Dinner, and sons Chris, Simon and Mark.



Bob Knappstein*

 Bob Knappstein was born in 1926 in Clare South Australia where he grew up and was educated. He attended Roseworthy Agricultural College where he graduated with first class honours in Oenology (the art of winemaking.) In 1952 he married Coral, and they later had two sons, David and Jim.

For 17 years he gained experience as a winemaker, first at McLaren’s Vale and later at Woodley Wines where he became a wine judge, judging shows throughout Australia. In 1964 he came to New Zealand as general manager of Penfolds and commenced the first of his 23 vintage years. In 1974, he took over from Tom McDonald as Winemaker, Director, and Product manager of McWilliams’s Wines in Faraday St Napier. During this time Cooks merged with McWilliams and he remained as manager until he retired in 1986. In 1978 his McWilliams Chardonnay swept the national awards. During this time he instigated the Hawke's Bay Vintners’ Association which just recently had it 30th anniversary.

After his retirement, he bought 12 acres of bare land in Meeanee, and together with Coral, established a citrus and apricot orchard, but he continued his interest in the wine industry by being competition director of Air New Zealand and the Bragato Wine Awards. He is a fellow of the Wine Institute of New Zealand.

In 1974, having previously been a member of the Henderson Rotary Club where he was sponsored by none other than Alex Corban, he joined the Rotary Club of Taradale, sponsored this time by Tom McDonald.

In Rotary he was a director in 1979 and 1988, and President in 1991. He has spent many hours each week helping develop the Dolbel Reserve, being involved since the beginning. Together with Coral, he has hosted many Friendship Exchange, GSE and Student Exchange recipients. He has also served as a Trustee for the Kel Tremain Memorial Education Trust from 2001 to 2006. During his president’s year, the Rotary Auction netted $16,833 much of which went towards the refurbishing of the Taradale Town Hall. Under his leadership, the Building Committee completed a $250,000 upgrade of the Lower Hall.

He has been an unassuming, humble, dedicated and talented Rotarian who has given so much to the ideals of Rotary. He resigned from the Club on 31st July 2015 for health reasons.



Des Stephens*

Des Stephens was the Club’s first non-charter member, joining the club on 6 August 1959. Almost immediately he became Attendance Recorder, a position he filled for many years, and in 1994 was an original member of the cash/recorder group.

During his 50 plus years he has served on all major committees and was a Director of International Service in 1976-77. He was one of the original Dolbel Reserve team until his health prevented him from participating further.

He has looked after the club’s electronic equipment and for all the club auctions he provided a sound system, often acting as announcer, as well as safety testing and repairing electronic goods to be put up for sale, using much of his own equipment and materials.

Outside of Rotary, he has been active for many years with the local Tramping Club, participating in both New Zealand and overseas.

Earlier this year he walked the Aztec Trail in South America – quite an achievement for someone who quietly turned 80 in October of this year. He was also active in mountain safety, acting as radio base operator, as well as being an active Amateur Radio operator.

Des went to Te Awa School and Napier Boys’ High School. He had a sister Shirley and spent considerable time caring for his mother in her latter years.


Frank Crotty*

Frank Crotty was born in 1938. In 1963 he married Julia Monro, and together they moved to Invercargill where he gained an M.Sc. studying extramurally while working for the Southland Frozen Meat Company.

In the late 1960’s he moved his family to Hawke's Bay where he took up the position of Production Supervisor and Chief Chemist of the East Coast Fertiliser Works. In 1977 he was appointed works manager of the NZ Farmers’ Fertiliser Company in New Plymouth. In 1984 he was appointed General Manager of Moa-Nui Co-operative Dairies Ltd in Inglewood. In 1992 Frank and Julia  returned to HB and brought a vineyard which they sold in 1999 and are happily retired.

In his youth Frank was an elite sportsman. As a member of the Union Rowing Club in Wanganui, he was in the Senior 4 which won the famous Boss Rooster trophy at the National Championships in 1958. This crew was selected for the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games in Cardiff finishing a metre away from a bronze medal.

While in New Plymouth, Frank joined the New Plymouth North Rotary Club and served as President during the 1981-82 Rotary year, serving as the District Governors’ Representative. On returning to Napier in 1992, he joined the Rotary Club of Taradale. For the last 6 year he has organised members to usher at sporting events at McLean Park. These efforts have resulted in over $15,000 being raised for Club projects.

In the community Frank was a leader in the formation of SeniorNet and served as its President for several years.



Robert Pattullo

Rob Pattullo was born at Napier on 29 February 1960.  At 12 ¾ leap years, this must surely make him the youngest Rotarian to be awarded a Paul Harris Fellow.  His schooling commenced at Rissington Primary and continued at Wanganui Collegiate where he was a prefect for Selwyn House.  He went farming in Hawke's Bay and travelled overseas before returning here where he met and married “the love of his life” Helen in 1986. They have two children Matthew and Georgina.

He has since achieved Qualification as a Graduate of the University of Queensland attaining the RaboBank Executive Development Programme class of 2009/2010 and is currently the newly elected President of the Hawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society, being the third generation to hold this position.  He is on the Agricultural Advisory Board of the Eastern Institute of Technology.

He has also served on the Puketapu Church Vestry and was a committee member at a dinner auction for the Puketapu School Play Ground Fund Raiser in 2007 which raised $30,000 with Tom Scott as guest speaker.

In 1993 he went to South Africa as a Rotary Group Study Exchange Team member and on 31 March 1994 he joined the Rotary Club of Taradale. He has served as a Director in  the years 1995-1996,  1998-1999,  became President in 2001-2002 when a major project  was the Golf and Dinner Fundraiser featuring Steve Williams [Tiger Woods’s caddy] which raised $64,000 for the Kel Tremain Memorial Education Trust - $10,000 went to Steve Williams’s own Trust.  For this, the club won a Significant Event Award and was a finalist in Hawke's Bay Business Awards.  He has since been a Director again in 2003-2004,  2005-2006 and 2006-2007. He is currently a member of the District 9930 Group Study Exchange committee and has always been a driving force in arranging the club’s Rural/Urban meetings.



Ross Pinkham QPM

Ross Pinkham joined Taradale Rotary in July 1984, departed in 1986 for New Plymouth, returned again 1991 to 1999, left for work postings to Bangkok and Dunedin, before arriving back again in early 2010. 

He was Taradale President in 1994-95. Highlights were the inducting of Pam Tremain as first women member, completing the Town Hall air conditioning project, the Omarunui Bowl’s tournament with 200 entries raising funds for Friendship Centre, a successful auction and firewood project.

His vocational career with the NZ Police was been long and distinguished. He was awarded the Queens Police Medal (QPM) in 1992 and is on the Executive of the International Police Association. He retired after 42 years of continuous service, holding the rank of Detective Inspector. He was District Manager of Criminal Investigations for the Eastern Police District.

While in New Plymouth he helped organize a mid-winter swim to raise funds for a new indoor heated pool, and then in Bangkok he pushed hard for water filters and books for the health and education of the remote village people.  He has always been a keen supporter of GSE and the vocational exchanges it brings. 

He is currently the Assistant Governor for the five Napier Rotary clubs.



Gordon Buckley

Gordon Buckley joined the TRC in 1995 having emigrated form Britain, and purchased a motel at Westshore. Since joining the Club, he has been a very active and loyal member. While he has never taken up any executive positions within the Club because of his annual trips back to Britain to assist with the management of the family farm, he has played major and essential roles in a number of important Club projects. In particular, the Auction and Charity Fair was one where he went out every week collecting donated goods (some were very large items). For over 15 years he has served the fellowship of the Club, maintaining the organization of the bar from week to week.

Outside of Rotary, Gordon is a foundation member of SeniorNet an organization which offers training in computing to senior members of our local community. He always dreamed of the organization having its own rooms, and thanks to his drive as treasurer of the club, this has now been realized with a building besides All Saints Church housing a network of modern computers. He relinquished executive positions in the organization in 2011, but has been recognized for his work with a life membership.

Unseen, but vital, is his work with the Napier Community Patrols. Each week he spends several hours at night patrolling the streets, helping keep the streets of Napier and Taradale safer for its citizens.

Gordon is married to Margret and they have two adult children.



Richard Howell

Richard Howell was born 1948 in Hornchurch, Essex, England. His parents immigrated to New Zealand when he was two years old and first settled in Christchurch, then later in Hastings. He attended Raureka Primary School, Heretaunga and later on, Hastings Boys High School. He left High School at the age of 15 to pursue a career as a motor mechanic and took up an apprenticeship with Baillie Motors, Hastings in 1964.

He met Diane Littleford and in 1977 they married and set up business together. Richard Howell Motors was born next to the old McDonald’s supermarket. Richard became a registered Motor Vehicle Salesman in 1980. He helped set up the first Dealer Council in New Zealand for Caltex, being the Foundation Chairman for two years. He was also involved nationally for a number of years on the Dealer Council for Firestone. 

Richard joined Rotary in 1980 and has been involved with the Taradale Rotary Club for over 33 years.  He was the 50th Jubilee President in 2008-09 and on the committee for the 50th Jubilee Celebrations which were held in the War Memorial Hall. He was on the committee in 1996 which organised a Car Show, Director on several committees and with Diane he was active in Student Exchange liaison work for over 8 years. As keen supporters of GSE, he and Diane hosted many team members over the years.

He was the building committee Convener to raise funds so that the Omni Gymnastic Centre could own its own facility. It took over eight year’s hard work, but the new gym was eventually built. His dedication and commitment to the project was recognised when the building was opened in 2005 and he was made an Honorary Member. to mark his contribution the mezzanine floor is called the “Howell Mezzanine Floor”.

Other fundraising activities was assisting Iona College raise $100,000 for swimming pool improvements.

Other community activity included 8 years of service on the Committee for Redevelopment of Taradale Shopping Area and on the Taradale 125 Year Celebrations Committee.

Richard and Diane have two children, Blair and Natasha.





Max Plested

Max Plested was born in Napier in May 1946 the youngest of five children. He was educated in Napier attending Nelson Park Primary School, Napier Intermediate School before attending Colenso High School where he was a prefect, played cricket for the first eleven and rugby for the first fifteen.

In 1965 he joined the Government Valuation Department as an Urban Field Trainee. The first year spent in Napier followed by two years in Wellington and then onto Gisborne.  He became a Registered Valuer in 1971, and within a year was promoted to a Senior Valuer. He entered Public Practice as a Valuer in 1973. He joined Telfer Young Hawke's Bay Ltd  in 2000 where he specialises in the commercial and industrial sector, plus motel and Hotel valuations. He was a Director until 2010, but retains his involvement with the company as a consultant. He was HB Branch Councillor to the NZ Institute of Valuers from 1994 until 2001 reaching the position of Vice President in 1999, and was made a fellow of the Institute in 2005. He has served time as a trustee of the Manchester Unity Credit Union from 2002 until 2012.

Outside of his work commitments he has had extensive involvement with sporting organisations. For 16 years he was a Rugby referee of which 12 were with premier and representative Rugby. During this time he served on the Hawkes Bay Rugby Union. He has had a long association with the Tech Cricket Club having played premier cricket from 1968 till 1980. He has held numerous administrative roles rising to be President of the club from 1991 to 2006. His services to the Tech Cricket Club were recognised in 1996 when he was made a Life Member.

Max he joined the Taradale Rotary Club In April 1989 and has held many many positions within the club including: Club Bulletin editor; Committee Director (three times); Matched student Exchange convener; Vice President; President in 1996 / 1997 year; Programme convener (three times); Programme assistant (twice; District Governors Rep 1997 / 1998 year. Max has also served on many other sub committees: Town Hall administration; Auction committee; The Kelvin Tremain Memorial Education Trust; Rotary Foundation; Gourmet Experience. During his year as president several successful events were held including, the Car Show raising around $12,000.00, Charity Fair / Auction Day raising $11,000.00, KRT Trust Dinner with John Hart as speaker raising $21,000.00, and The Otatara Combined Probus Club was chartered.

In 1969 he married his High School sweet heart, Heather. They have two daughters both married and four grandchildren.





Trevor Kilpatrick

Trevor Kilpatrick was born in Napier in 1949 and educated locally at Nelson Park Primary School, Napier Intermediate then at Colenso High School. On leaving school, he took up an apprenticeship at Robert Holt and Sons Limited as an apprentice joiner, completing that in 1971. After a period he moved on to work for Ivor Curtis Limited and then Consolidated Joinery, which was then part owned by one of our former members, Ian Norrie. 

Having achieved a complete practical and administrative background as a joiner, he became aware of an opportunity to tender for a joinery contract for the Huntly Power Project, for cabinetry, windows and doors, so he tendered and got the job, even though at that stage he didn’t have his own business. He approached a work colleague to see if he would be interested in joining him as a business partner and hence Residential Joinery Limited was born. He served on the Hawke's Bay Joinery Manufacturers Association for a number of years. After 35 successful years Trevor retired after selling his shares to his original partner and he is now enjoying a busy life in retirement.

Trevor’s sporting interests include sailing, participating in "P Class", "Paper Tigers" and "Keeler" yachts. He played for Pirates. He is also been a keen fisherman.

Trevor joined Rotary Taradale in 1985 and has given 30 years of service to this club. He was President in 1993-1994 and has undertaken numerous committee directorships over the years. He was the Auction Convener in 1989 which raised $15,000. The family have hosted exchange students Vibeke Jarness from Norway in 1994. and Alicia Budner from USA in 1995.

He was a significant contributor to the redevelopment of the two areas of the Town Hall. He made significant contributions to Gourmet Experience; Pathway Shelters; the construction of the "Shakespeare in the Park" booths,

Trevor married Carolyn in 1972 and they later had two sons Hayden and Trent, Trent having sadly passed away in 2010 after a long illness which required constant nursing by Trevor and Carolyn. Today he enjoys his retirement and participates in Rotary projects where his skills fit.



Warren Cooper*

Warren Cooper was born in Lower Hutt in 1942, attending Hutt Valley High School. On leaving school he joined Radio New Zealand as an announcer and following his marriage to Raewyn in 1967, they moved to Napier. After 32 years he left broadcasting, aged 50. The rest of his working career was devoted to Community work.

He took on the task of raising funds for the Hohepa School for children and young adults who have special needs. His work helped raise $3.5 million and the school was completed in 2010.

Warren joined the Rotary Club of Taradale in 1977 and resigned in 1985. He rejoined in 1996 but resigned in 2011 because of health problems. In 1998 he was Convener of the Auction Committee. That year the Auction grossed $20,000 and for a number of years he was the regular announcer on auction day.

He was vice-President to Iain Angus and assumed the president’s role in 2000. That year a successful Auction, allowed the Club to make a significant donation of $12,000 to the Dolbel Reserve committee for tree planting.

In 2002 he served as the publicity officer for the “Steve Williams Golf and Dinner” event which raised nearly $52,000 for the Kelvin Tremain Memorial Education Trust. In 2005 he organised a monthly Column in the “Courier”, reporting Club news. He was a Director 2009-10 and served on the Club’s nominating committee.

In late 2008 the "Club History on DVD" project commenced with a team of Bob McCaw, Warren Cooper and Frank Crotty who called themselves the “Video History Productions” (VHP) team. As anchorman for each video story, his skill and professionalism, particularly his interviews, was vital to the success of this project. He continued with this work long after he resigned from the club.

In the community, Warren was a long time member of the Greendale Tennis Club playing inter-club tennis and coaching over a long period. He coached for many years at Iona College. He and Raewyn were members of the Napier Golf Club and more recently members of the Taradale Club Bowling Club.

Warren and Raewyn have three sons. Dean lives in Hong Kong, Mark in Taradale and Grant in Auckland.  



Mark Oldershaw

Nelson Mark Oldershaw was born in Wairoa in 1951.  His father was the Army recruiting officer there, but after leaving the family lived in other rural areas. The family moved to Wellington and  Mark attended Hutt Valley High School.  Mark was a prefect, played for the First XV and gained awards through the Duke of Edinburgh scheme. They shifted to Napier and Mark’s final year at high school, was  at Napier BHS where he played in the First XV

Mark took up a Cadetship with Industrial Gas in Technical Drawing and attended Auckland University studying architecture.

He met Gail at his university holiday job – Rothmans Tobacco -and they married in 1971.  Their first born Mary Louise was born in 1972 but sadly passed away when she was one year old. Kylie was born 7 years later.

Mark’s first job was with the TAB and it was here that Mark got his first taste of horse racing.  Both Gail and Mark worked at Chelsea Sugar but they shifted back to Napier and it was at this time Kylie was born, Mark working as the Office Manager for Ravensdown.

In 1999 he moved the family to Nelson, becoming a franchisee for Fastway Couriers. He returned to HB  in November 2004 and now works at the Hawke’s Bay Regional Prison as an Office Team Leader

Mark joined Rotary in 1992 and became Secretary of the Club in 1994 holding  this position for 3 years He served as a Director in 1998/99. On returning from Nelson, Mark rejoined the Club, and was appointed Treasurer for three years 2007-09. He was inducted as President in June 2012.

He fund-raised for Camp Kaitawa’s new fire box by riding around Lake Taupo in 2010. Major projects during his presidential year were Shakespeare in the Park and the Membership Growth Project. Fundraising included stocktaking, wine barrel sales, Church Road winery clean ups, and the Conference Golf Tournament.  Over $17000 was distributed by the Taradale Rotary Club’s Charitable Trust.

Mark and his brother were owners of a race horse called Woodbury Belle.  Surprisingly this horse went on to win races– 13 races before being sent off as a brood mare.

Cycling is Mark’s passion now and he is usually found at the end of a ride at a salubrious café somewhere in the Hawke’s Bay.  He is very proud of Kylie and her family, and the support that Gail has given to Mark throughout all these years associated with Rotary, is also acknowledged.




Bill Hawkins

Bill Hawkins was born on 29 July 1945 in the Naval Hospital in Devonport, Auckland, his father being a signals officer in both the Royal and Merchant Navies. He is the fourth generation of only sons, all with the same Christian name – Bill.

The family lived on the North Shore where he attended the Northcote College. He was a foundation pupil at Westlake Boys High, where his Prefects blazer and cap are framed and on display.

In his last year at High School, Bill applied to become a Rural Field Cadet. After being accepted as a cadet he started a short induction period at Lincoln College. This was followed by two and a half years of practical experience. He spent a year in Tapanui Central Otago on a cropping property, a year in Gisborne, where he played rugby for Ngatapa with the Kirkpatrick boys, then milking cows in Otorohanga.

Two and a half years of study at Lincoln followed. Of the twenty cadets in his intake he was one of only four to graduate in 1964 with a degree in valuation and farm management. He has been a Rural Valuer, in both the public and private sector, all his working life. Bill was President of the Lincoln College Old Boys Association for three years.

Tennis was the family sport and Bill won several championships in and around Auckland, even beating Brian Fairlie who was the local international star at the time.

Bill's love of vehicles started with a Vespa motor scooter when at High School. The Vespa had a short life, ending up under a large lorry, but he did manage to pass his driver’s license in the family Citroën. European motor cars have always been the favourite, although he has owned two Model A’s. The first was sold to buy an engagement ring for Meda. The second he still owns. It is used frequently for rallies and transporting “Celebs” at Art Deco time. Bill was President of the Mercedes Car Club for seven years and is involved with the Community Patrol, Napier.

Bill joined the Rotary Club of Taradale on 17 March 1983 – 33 years ago. He was a Director in– 1988/89 – 1993/94 – 1995/96 –  2003/04 – 2008/09 – 2012/13 and now 2016/17.  He was Secretary from 1989 to 1993.

He was also the Auction Chairman in 2000 which raised $21,000. Bill was the Club’s President in 1997/1998.  The major project that year was erecting a secure fence foe the local Plunket. He is currently the Friendship Exchange liaison person in our club and is the Dolbel Reserve co-ordinator. 



Doug McGechan

Doug McGechan was born in 1939. Doug’s grandparents and family arrived in New Zealand in 1924. Doug attended Waiwhetu School in Lower Hutt, Hutt Intermediate School, and Hutt Valley High School.

His first job was at the Shaw Saville shipping company in Wellington where he worked for seven years. He later worked for W. D & H. O. Wills Tobacco Company in their advertising and marketing department in Wakefield Street, Wellington. and in 1966 he started work with McKnight Oliver & Bryce advertising agency.

While living in Lower Hutt and Stokes Valley, he belonged to the Hutt Valley Pipe Band, playing the pipes, although he had also earlier played the drums in the school pipe band. When he moved to Hawke's Bay Doug joined the City of Hastings Pipe Band.

He married Merilyn and started their family of Andrew and Fiona, joined by a third child, Stuart, in 1968. 

He moved his family from Stokes Valley to Hastings where he was appointed sales manager at the Hawke's Bay Herald Tribune newspaper in Hastings working there for 27 years and during this time he has been a past President and Fellow of the Advertising Institute of New Zealand.

He was member of the Havelock North Squash Club and is a past-president & Life Member. It was during this period that he was a National Grade Squash Umpire.

At the age of 55, with the newspaper industry beginning to undergo changes, he decided to leave the advertising field, and after a brief spell in "retirement", running his own small farm in rural Hawke's Bay, he rejoined the work force but in a completely different industry. He took a wine manager's course and earned his license in 1996 and then accepted a position as the cellar door manager at Church Road Winery in Taradale. He worked there for many years before then becoming the manager of cellar door operations and sales at Crossroads Winery near Fernhill.

Doug joined the Te Puni Lodge (Freemasons) in Lower Hutt. He is now a member of the Frimley Lodge (Freemasons) in Taradale and has been Master of the Lodge on three occasions. Three years ago he received his 50-year jewel. He is also a Past Grand Lodge Director of Ceremonies.

For many years Doug and his second wife Claire were volunteers for the Napier Red Cross. They worked as drivers for Meals on Wheels and, even after Claire passed away a few years ago, he remained a volunteer.

He joined The Rotary Club of Taradale on 15 November 1979.  He has been a Director twice, was convenor of the club’s Auction held in Taradale’s main street in 1997 and 2002.

In 1999 he became the Club’s President.

Whilst working at Church Road winery Doug organised concert cleanups in 2008 and 2009 raising $1,000 each year. He also organised for the club to purchase used wine barrels and the sales of these has raised many thousands of dollars over the years. 

Doug is a family man who is community focused.



Doug Syme

Douglas James Syme was born in Hawera on 1 November 1943. Doug’s parents had many outdoor interests with his father being a mountaineer of some note. He has an older brother and a large extended family living around the Hawera area.

Doug was educated at local primary schools and Hawera Technical High School. His interests during these years were Scouts, becoming a Queen Scout, tennis, fishing, tramping and skiing on Mt Ruapehu & Mt Egmont, even participating in the annual ski race from the top of Mt Egmont down the steep south side to the Syme Hut.

On leaving school, he was encouraged to gain farming experience on two Taranaki farms; one on the coast south of Hawera at Waitotara, and the other at Omona, inland from Stratford in the backblocks.

This farming experience led him to a successful career path in agriculture. Doug enrolled at Lincoln College in 1964 where he gained a Diploma of Valuation & Farm Management and a Diploma in Living through which he met his future wife Mary, a trainee nurse at Christchurch Hospital.

After Lincoln College he served 3 months compulsory military training at Burnham Military Camp which he really enjoyed, progressing to Sergeant.

In 1967 he and Mary married, settling in Hawera for his first job as a farm adviser to the South Taranaki Improvement Club. After three years in Taranaki he commenced his 40 year career with the NZ Meat & Wool Board Economic Service, now called Beef & Lamb NZ.  Doug spent the first 10 years in Napier, then transferred to Invercargill for 10 years, returning to Napier in 1990. He retired in 2010, after a very rewarding career.

During these years Doug and Mary raised children Richard, Geoff, Andrew and Elizabeth (Liz), together enjoying the interests of tennis, squash, camping, skiing and tramping. Their adult children and now eight grandchildren are spread from New Plymouth, to Christchurch, to the UK.

Doug joined the Rotary Club of Taradale on 21 of June 1991. He has held many positions within the club including Club Treasurer for five years, Assistant treasurer for three years and Committee Director twice. He has also served on Reserve Planet Earth, Dare, Reaching out, Rypen and Ryla sub-committees.

As club treasurer he mastered the Xero cloud based accounting system.. He has a wealth of knowledge on all aspects of the club accounts, club procedures, making him a worthwhile adviser to the president and the board.

Doug has been responsible for keeping many separate accounts of different fund raisers that the club has been involved in and has been able to report the financial results to the club.

In 2015, he decided that the work load was too much so stepped down from the roll as Treasurer but still wanted to contribute and now assists the new treasurer as his deputy with various roles within that position. He has undertaken all these responsibilities in a quiet and professional manner with excellent results being delivered in each and every case without exception.




Merv Kite (Sapphire)

At the dinner at Church Road, Past President Steve Winter took the opportunity to award a Paul Harris Sapphire pin to Merv Kite The Citation reads…

Merv joined the Rotary Club of Taradale on 1 November 2007. He was previously a member of the Masterton South Rotary Club and had received a Paul Harris Fellow Award for his endeavour’s from this Club.

He has been a Director of the Rotary Club of Taradale twice, 2013-2014 and 2015-2016 and was President 2014-2015.

He has assisted with books to the Solomon Islands project and helps with the weekly attendance numbers.

In 2016 he initiated what is now the Puketapu Auction and Fair and has been convener for three years and is convener again for next year’s auction, making his involvement four years. He puts in many hours of work and never complains when extra tasks are required to be carried out. He is always a willing worker.The Puketapu Auction and Fair has been a huge success.

He has also been the ‘main man’ behind the development of the Esk Ridge walkways for the past nine years.



John Reid (Sapphire)

John  was awarded a Paul Harris Sapphire pin by President Richard Hay at a Club meeting in July 2019. This was in recognition of his strong support of Rotary Foundation. John was awarded his first Paul Harris in 2014 in recognition of his $US1000 contribution to Rotary International.



Robert Kyle

Robert  was awarded a Paul Harris Sapphire pin by President Richard Hay at a Club meeting in July 2019. This was in recognition of his strong support of Rotary through his $US1000 contribution to Rotary International.

Robert Kyle trained at Sydney University as this was prior to a Vet school being established at Massey in Palmerston North. After graduating in 1966 he returned to NZ spe3nding 10 years with the Taradale Veterinary Hospital. In 1981 he joined the Ministry of Agriculture and ended his professional career as the Veterinary Certifying Officer.

Married to Sue and they have four children Robert is a willing club member and can be relied on to lend a hand to any project where assistance is needed.

A few years ago Robert and Sue recorded an interview for the HB Knowledge Bank. Readers can listen to it on the link below





Awarded by other Clubs or Rotary Foundation

Kevyn Moore (Eastwood, Glasgow)

While working overseas, Kevyn joined the small Rotary club of Eastwood, Glasgow, Scotland. He was awarded a Paul Harris Medal for his organisation of a major fundraiser. This was to organise a boxing tournament between the amateur champions of Scotland and England. He managed this remarkable event by co-opting the services of Jimmy Watt, World Welterweight champion and owner of the garage Kevyn used to service his car. Jimmy's contacts worked wonders and the black tie event was a huge success. The sale of tables and auctioning of memorabilia, all fundamentals to Kevyn's latter successful fund raisers back in Taradale, were tested and proven successful formulas at this first event. Kevyn repeated the event for two more years, and to his understanding, is still going.



lan Atkins (Hutt) *

Ian was born and educated in Napier moved to take up a job in the Hutt Valley before returning to Taradale in 1998.

Ian has had a life linked to sport, particularly with the Taradale Rugby and Cricket Clubs. Before leaving for Lower Hutt he coached the H.B. rugby team with some success in the post Ranfurly Shield era.

While in the Hutt Valley, lan actively participated in cricket and was encouraged as well to learn the skills of coaching. This he did with the Hutt Cricket Association, and a coaching course at Massey University. When he returned to Taradale he saw the need for junior coaching, and together with his brother, Richard, he set up the coaching regime he now supervises.

Ian was a member of the Lower Hutt Rotary Club and a past President and was awarded the Paul Harris medal for services to the Club and community.

He died in 2012.



 Bob Wallis (Wanganui)

Bob joined the Rotary Club of Wanganui in December 1985. He was that Club’s Secretary for 7 years from 1989 to 1996 and Secretary to the District 9930  Governor from 1996-1997

He left the Wanganui Club in June 2003 when he came to Taradale after his remarriage.

He joined  Rotary Club of Taradale  in July 2003 and has served as Secretary for 5 years from 2004 to 2005 and 2007-2011.. He is a lawyer, having been admitted as a barrister and solicitor on 21 February 1963, and has practised as such for 50 years.

His award was made by his Wanganui Club in January 1997 as part of their celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the passing of Paul Harris. He was awarded a Sapphire Pin in June 2002 and District 9930 awarded him a second sapphire pin and presented it in August 2011. This was in recognition of outstanding work he did on revising the District Constitution.



Merv Kite (Masterton South)

Merv was born in Hastings and subsequently entered the wool industry with Williams & Kettle before eventually starting his own wool brokering business in Masterton where he spent most of his working life before selling out in 1994.

He was a member of Masterton South Rotary for 22 years and during his time he ran a very successful ongoing club fundraiser for a number of years and then was instrumental in setting up and driving a native plant revegetation project of 6 hectares within the urban area of Masterton which is now the second biggest park or reserve within the town. In recognition of his work, Merv was awarded a Paul Harris Medal in 1997. He was  strongly involved in the operations of the club and held a number of  committee directorships over the years.

He eventually return to The Bay and joined the Taradale Rotary Club in November 2007. With his wife Ann, he has travelled overseas extensively, their main interests being out of the way places. They have 3 children.

Merv was awarded a Sapphire Pin in 2018 for work he subsequently did in establishing the Puketapu Auction and Fair. Click here. Merv and PAF.



Neil Kittow (Waipukurau)*

Neil was awarded the Paul Harris by his Waipukarau Club. He was a former farmer of the year and farmer of the decade. He is the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry's Good-recovery facilitator after the 2003 floods which damaged so much farmland around Porangahau.

Neil is known for his passion for trees and the environment and his own farm at Omakere in Central Hawke's Bay is planted for erosion control and amenity. He was prompted by a disastrous storm in 1951. He won a Hawke's Bay Regional Council award for setting up the Omakere Landcare Group, was farmer of the year in 1981 and farmer of the decade in 1982.

He recently retired as co-ordinator of the East Coast Rural Support Trust, a group established to help farmers who hit hard times when subsidies were withdrawn in the 1980's. He joined Taradale Rotary in 2003.



John Reid (Rotary Foundation)

Ross Pinkham made the award to John, stating that

In my role as Assistant Governor for the Napier Area and on behalf of District Governor Paul Wright it is with great pleasure that I advise the Club that John Reid has contributed $US1,000 and has been recognised by The Rotary Foundation and Rotary International as a Paul Harris Fellow.


John is the current(2019) chairman of the Kelvin Tremain Memorial  Education Trust and was Club President in 2011-2012.



Ross Pinkham (District 9930 Award- Sapphire)

Ross  was awarded awarded a Paul Harris Sapphire pin for his great work organising the D9930 Conference. Ross was awarded a  third pin was awarded for his $1000 donation to Rotary Foundation.



Peter Ball (Rotary Foundation)

Peter was awarded a  Paul Harris for his $1000 donation to Rotary Foundation. For several years he has been of great assistance with Club accounts.



Selwyn Dyet (Sapphire)


In 2010-11 Selwyn was president of the Club and resigned in 2012, but retained an active interest working for the Dolbel Reserve committee.



Community Awards



Hazel Dawson QSM*

At the time of the presentation, Hazel had been involved in public service for about 50 years. She had a burning desire to help women and she had a long association with the WDFF (Women's Division of the Federated Farmers). During her presidency, 14 new branches were opened. She was a prime mover in the founding of Taradale Senior Citizens Association and drove the fundraising which raised $72,000 and ensured the Friendship Centre opened debt free. Other initiatives of hers were the Taradale Care and Craft Centre (1982) and the Taradale Sunset Club (1985). She gave outstanding service to the Plunket Society, Girl Guides, National Council of Women, Red Cross and St John's. Hazel held a Napier Civic Award and QSM.



Ray Neill*

Ray has been a social worker with the Presbyterian Church for most of his working life. He was inducted as a Clerk of Session in 1978 and spent most of his spare time offering help and advice to the elderly people of the district. Ray was a member of the Taradale Rotary Club, holding the post of Secretary. He has worked for Atawhai, being a member of the East Coast Support Board, regular visitor, and driver taking inmates on their many trips out. He was a regular weekly visitor to the Napier Hospital and trustee of the Arthur Miller estate and through this has links to the Taradale High School. Ray was a member of the Taradale Rotary Club, holding the post of Secretary, but when he changed his job which no longer matched his classification, he resigned.



Gillian Davies QSM

Gillian was presented with a Paul Harris Medal on the 29th May 2008. She was introduced Graham Duncan and the Award was presented by A.D.G. Carol Charman on behalf of the Trustees of Rotary Foundation. Gillian has taught Speech and Drama for many years to many Napier children. , but she is best known as a Director of the Napier Operatic Society, with a great number of highly successful shows to her credit, including “Les Miserables”, "Chicago", "Beauty & the Beast" and "Cats". She was at the forefront in establishing Napier Operatic Society's popular Tabard Theatre and been a tutor at EIT's Performing Arts courses.

However it was the production of “Bugsy Malone” for which she is identified by our Club members. This show raised over $57,000 for Child Cancer HB and the legacy continues. Her involvement epitomises her love of being involved with children. 

In her acceptance speech Gillian was very moved to be made a Paul Harris Fellow. She acknowledged the importance of theatre in educating and informing and thereby changing people’s lives. 



Caroline Meyer & Georgina Earl (nee Evers-Swindell) ONZM

Caroline and Georgina were awarded Paul Harris Medals at the Club's 50th Jubilee Dinner in recognition of their outstanding success in International rowing. Their record is well known a double Olympic Gold medallists in 2004 and 2008, but they were also 3 times World Champions in their double sculls specialty. There success on the water has been prolific and in recognition they have been Halberg Award winners 3 times, and in 2005 the were awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit.

In 2004 they graciously accepted the invitation to be celebrity guests at a fund raising dinner and as a result of their involvement, the Oliver Smales Memorial Trust Fund was established by the Club, with $100,000 being invested. The work of the Trust, training nurses working in pediatrics,  is strongly supported by the sisters who were friends of Oliver Smales. Two Club members continue to serve on the Trust Board.



Jane Sheldrake

She has been coaching gymnastics for 40 years, her involvement has been at all levels, displaying a total commitment to the sport.  She has applied this commitment to gymnasts, coach education, judging, judge education, her club, her association and the national body.

Some of the things she is involved in include –

Coaching from club level to Junior Elite, H B Poverty Bay Junior and Senior Coach and central Region Coach Levels 7 -9 and in 1984 Level 10 Coach to Hawaii, USA. She has been a National Gym School Lecturer  and  NZ Gymnastics Coach Education Course Presenter as well as HB Poverty Bay Coaches Course Presenter. 

She has had many years as a Senior National Judge and holds a FIG Brevet – International Level.  She is head Judge at Junior events and also Head Judge at local club ribbon meets.  She has conducted National and Provincial Judges courses.

She has been a board member on the NZ Gymnastic Association, NZ Women’s Technical Director and Member, Gymsports NZ Central Regional Board 2007 and 2008.  She is a Life Member of the HB Poverty Bay Gymnastic Association, was President of that Association for two years and an executive member for three years.  She has also been the Technical Officer for the HB Poverty Bay Gymnastics Association for over 9 years and currently holds this position.

Her overseas experience includes 1984 – Coach Aloha Fest, 1987/88/93 Coach Australian Levels, 1987 Manager/Coach Aloha Fest, 1989 Manager World Championships Germany and 1992 Judge Sanyo Cup. In 2000 she was awarded New Zealand Gymnastics Meritorious Award and has been the Senior Coach for the Omni Gymnastics Centre since 1982 and basically runs the club on a day to day basis.

Jane's Paul Harris was a District Award presented by Carol Charman



David and Gary Conroy

Born and raised in Napier both brothers, Gary and David, attended St John’s College in Hastings.

Gary, after leaving school, moved to Wellington to work for Shell Oil for a few years.

David always wanted to be a truck driver. So he left school as soon as he could, into a truck driving job, with the dream of one day owning his own truck. This goal was realised, at the age of 21, when a local Napier furniture removal business came up for sale. So in 1972 Conroy Removals was established.

A year later, another removal company in Hastings became available, which Gary purchased, and they went into business together.

The industry was highly regulated in those days to protect the government owned railways. In spite of this, opportunities came along, and over the years they grew the business to become one of New Zealand’s leading removal companies. Their first branch office was opened in Auckland, followed by Wellington, Christchurch and Tauranga. 15 years ago the company entered the Australian market, with a branch in Brisbane, later expanding to other major centres.

Conroy’s have now been in business for 42 years, employing over 250 staff. Although the business is truly Australasian, they still have their roots firmly planted in Hawkes Bay with the Head Office remaining in Napier.

David and his wife Marie have been married almost 40 years. They have 4 children and 4 grandchildren.

Gary and his wife Pauline have been married 45 years. They have 6 children, 20 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren.

For decades David and Gary have supported the Rotary Club of Taradale with its various projects and fund raising events. If we required cartage, storage, containers, or freighting advice for any of our projects, David and Gary have provided this, often at no cost to the club. They have also been generous sponsors to many of our events.

Whenever called upon, they are always willing and eager to assist. Their generosity to this club has been immense.

Conroy’s contribution and support to the local community is a lot larger than just Taradale Rotary.

They have been major sponsors of:

  • Art Deco Trust

  • Sacred Heart College Annual Scholarship

  • Hawkes Bay Rugby Union

  • Napier City Rovers

  • Napier Old Boys Marist Rugby Football Club

  • National Art Exhibition (Rotary Greenmeadows)

  • Lowe Corporation Rescue Helicopter

They have also assisted with donations to numerous National charities and groups.

But it is their contribution to this club which we are recognising tonight.

A few examples of the events and projects which they have helped us with.

  • Gourmet Experience was a major fundraiser for three years. A full Fisher & Paykel kitchen was required for the celebrity chefs to use. Conroy’s transported the entire kitchen down from Auckland and return FOC.

  • Celebrity Gala Dinners and Auction.- Dinner where celebrities such as Steve Williams and the Evers-Swindell sisters were guest speakers. Gary and David were table sponsors for these.

  • Annual Street Auctions – This fundraiser went for 33 years. No one can remember just when David and Gary began their support. A fleet of trucks and men crammed all the goods on board from Tremain’s shed and distributed them down the main street.

  • PNG Tsunami – Transportation and shipping of 37 cartons of goods to Port Moresby then onto the village of Aitape on the northern coast.

  • Citrus to Chatham Islands – shipping citrus to the Chatham’s and fish back, which was distributed to rest homes / elderly care centres, without cost.

  • Computers for Tonga Project   Conroy’s shipped a large consignment of computers to the Tonga Institute of Education.

  • Shelter Box – transportation of the old shelter box to Hamilton and new box to Napier (FOC).

  • Bugsy Malone Production –cartage to Napier for various items required for the production as well as a container for storage of the props.

  • Shakespeare in the Park – Transportation and use of a large container for storage, at no cost. Provided cartage, from Wellington and back, for other items used in the show.

It is probably our latest project, the ‘Solomon Island Books for Schools’ which best exemplifies their help and generosity.


  • Sorting / storage facilities,

  • Boxes and packaging materials,

  • Pallets for transportation,

  • Shipping advice and negotiated discounted rate,

  • Documentation,

  • Cartage to Auckland (FOC)




Diane Howell

Diane has lived all her life in Napier, attending Colenso High School where she won the 6th Form Secretarial Award, setting the scene for her skills in office management.

Diane has  a passion for the arts.  She was a member of the Napier Operatic for many years. She was part of Camelot, My Fair Lady and It’s Entertainment to name a few. Beyond the stage, she was extremely successful, winning numerous competitions and awards either as an individual or in pairs, mastering a number of disciplines from ballet, tap dancing, singing and speech and drama. Later with her children she devoted her energy to supporting them at gym meets, soccer matches, dance recitals and any other activity they got involved in.

Her involvement in Rotary started soon after leaving school and in the early 1970’s was a member of the Napier Rotaract Club.  She was a RYLA scholar sponsored by Taradale Rotary in 1974, and through Rotaract, held many Director positions and helped organise the District Rotaract Conference in Napier.

It was through Rotary that she met Richard in 1974.  They married in 1977 and together with Richard formed Richard Howell Motors with Diane taking a leading role as a working Director.

Diane has been involved in many community-based organizations. She worked on Parent Centre and assisted the Iona College Garden Festival raise over $100,000. With Richard, she supported her daughter Natasha as an international gymnast, and together they organised fund-raising of thousands of dollars to build a national standard gymnasium at Onekawa.

She assisted Richard’s first presidency in 2009, helping to organise the Club’s very successful 50th Anniversary celebration.

When Richard, at the beginning of 2016 took over from President Paul Bee mid-term, followed by a second term as President, Diane gave him full support. She coordinated all his speeches, agendas, thank-you occasions, and  with Richard, she has been instrumental in re-writing the president’s manual. She first prepared this in 2009 but has updated it so a new manual is now available for the incoming President and successive Presidents.

Diane has also been part of the volunteers for two recent Rotary Conferences, assisting Richard, who was on the organising Committees.

Rotary Student Exchange has been a big part of their Rotary lives as Diane makes up a team with Richard as counselors for numerous incoming exchange students over many years.

With Richard, her commitment to the ideals of Rotary stretch back over 45 years.

Richard and Diane have two children, Blair and Natasha.  and outside of Rotary they continue with their passion for travel.



 Roger Alexander QSM

Roger Alexander was born on 3rd December 1937. He married Diane in 1962 and they have two sons Phil and Geoff and a daughter Wendy. The Alexander name is well known in the picturesque settlement of Puketapu. The first Alexander family settled their farm back in the 1920’s. Second generation Roger took over when he was twenty. His sons Phil and Geoff now run the split 840 hectare property as two farms. Now retired, conservationist Roger has lived in Puketapu for over eighty years.

Roger was a Lindisfarne foundation pupil and has served on the Old Boys Committee and on the Lindisfarne School Committee. He was responsible for the grounds and landscaping. Roger is a Patron of the School and has been involved in all the Jubilees.

For those wondering what other interests Roger had in his early years, he was in the 1st Fifteen for rugby at Lindisfarne College, moved to offshore power boat racing, snow and water skiing, and later on to golf and fishing. 

Roger became a committee member of the Puketapu School when Phil started school in the late 1960’s. His involvement included the 100th & 150th Jubilees. He was involved with the building of the Puketapu Pre-School on the old Puketapu Hall site. He remains a Trustee to this day.

Roger has had a close association with the A & P Society over many years. This includes winning numerous awards and having an involvement on the General Committee, the Cattle Committee, the HB Beef Carcass competition, the Charolais Society, and was one of the first to import Charolais semen.

Roger has spent 40 years creating a wetland and a lake of note. In 2006 Roger was an advisor for a student’s PHD on wetlands and their maintenance which was centred around his lake. He was awarded the inaugural Environmental Award from the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council in 2017.

In his spare time, he enjoys landscaping and planting and pruning trees. He thoroughly enjoys seeing visitors to the lake admiring the fruits of his labour and takes great delight in guiding people around his wonderful creation.

Roger has been very generous with his time over the years towards consultants and scientists trialling their products, ideas and theories. He has an inquiring mind and is always interested in new ideas and products. He taught himself how to use an ipad in his early eighties.

Roger continues to be a generous philanthropist to the Puketapu School, Puketapu Parish, Puketapu Pre-school, Lindisfarne College, Rotary and various other worthy charities. He is currently a member of the Food and Wine Club HB, Mercedes Club HB and the Hawke’s Bay Club.

In 2016 the Rotary Club of Taradale approached Roger with the idea of having a Fair and Auction on and around his farm and lake area. He has given many hours of his time to make this major club project a success. Without his generosity it would not happen.

Roger is one of those people who quietly goes about doing things in the community.

The Queen’s Birthday award of the Queen’s Service Medal and this Paul Harris Fellow Award are in recognition of his outstanding work in conservation and the community.




  End of Table