Media release: Independent Appointments Panel Seeks Expressions of Interest for Steering Committee 

Anna RobertsonIndependent Review, Media Release

Help Shape the Future of Gymnastics in Aotearoa New Zealand

The independent Appointments Panel is calling for individuals from the gymnastics and wider community to put their hand up to become a member of the Gymnastics New Zealand Steering Committee and help shape the future of gymnastics in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The Steering Committee will engage widely with the gymnastics community and stakeholders to oversee the design of a work programme to implement the Independent Review recommendations.

Expressions of interest open on Tuesday 26 October and will be open until 5 pm on Tuesday 9 November.

Consultation on the Gymnastics New Zealand Steering Committee Terms of Reference and role descriptions covering individual and collective attributes, skills, knowledge, and experience took place during September and October 2021.

“We would like to sincerely thank all of those who took the time to share their feedback as part of the inclusive consultation process. The candid feedback, insights, and ideas gave us lots to think about and added immense value to the process,” said Dr Shane Collins, Chair of the independent Steering Committee Appointments Panel. 

“We’re now clear on what we’re looking for in terms of the individual and collective attributes for the Committee. We’re encouraging people to put themselves forward or encourage someone who they think would be good to do so,” said Shane.

Following consultation, the composition of the Steering Committee has changed.

“The Board has listened to the feedback from the community for a stronger and broader gymnast presence,” said Quinton Hall, Chair of Gymnastics New Zealand. “Given the high level of trust and confidence in the Steering Committee and its process, the Board willingly offered its place on the Committee to allow for an additional gymnast member to strengthen community representation,” said Quinton. 

Seven roles are currently being recruited for the Steering Committee: 

  • Five gymnast members notably survivors and those with lived experience of harm, and with a mix of experience across codes, clubs, genders, and other roles within the gymnastics community
  • One human rights specialist member, including athletes and children’s rights, with experience of applying human rights and responsibilities in practice
  • One child and youth specialist member in the empowerment and protection of children and young people, with experience implementing practical safeguarding strategies

There are two other members of the Committee: Independent Chair, Sally McKechnie, and a Sports New Zealand representative. Sports New Zealand has been asked to nominate someone who demonstrates the key competencies required for the Committee. Gymnastic New Zealand’s Chief Executive is a member in an ex-officio capacity.

The Appointments Panel is seeking to appoint a membership that collectively provides what is required for the Committee. Individuals will bring different combinations of knowledge, skills, and experience which may contribute to more than one role. Importantly, survivors and those who have lived experience of harm who have held a variety of roles in gymnastics are encouraged to come forward.

“What has become apparent to us is that the roles are not clear-cut from each other. People within the gymnastics community often wear multiple hats – starting out as a gymnast, some as recreational gymnasts, and others in competitive or elite – and may also now be a coach, parent, administrator, judge, or volunteer along with their experiences from the wider world. We heard that a community voice is important, as is the safety of gymnast members who are survivors or have lived experience of harm,” added Shane.

“We’ve heard the gymnastics community wants to actively contribute to the process of implementing the recommendations of the Independent Review. We recognise being on the Steering Committee is not something everyone is able to commit to. There will be plenty of opportunities to get involved in other ways, including on working groups advising the Committee and by responding to consultation. This reinforces that the community will be instrumental in implementing the required changes the Steering Committee will recommend,” said Shane.

The Steering Committee will operate over the next 15 months and will require a commitment of about two days per month. It will be supported by a small, dedicated team, and can call on expert advice, as needed.

This confidential appointments process is being run by the Steering Committee Appointments Panel, supported by professional services firm MartinJenkins, and is independent of Gymnastics New Zealand. 

The Steering Committee Appointments Panel includes Dr Shane Collins – Independent Chair, Dr Karina McHardy, Maree Burnett, Chantal Brunner, and the independent Chair of the Steering Committee, Sally McKechnie.

Expressions of interest open on Tuesday 26 October and will be open until 5 pm on Tuesday 9 November.

How to apply

For an informal discussion, contact the Chair of the independent Appointments Panel at

The deadline for applications is 5 pm Tuesday 9 November.

Interviews will be held with shortlisted candidates between Monday 15 and Friday 26 November 2021. These will be online due to likely COVID-19 alert levels.


More information:
Dr. Shane Collins
Chair of the independent Steering Committee Appointments Panel