The 29th Annual Meeting was held on 1 June. The meeting was presided over by the Rt Hon Trevor Mallard MP in his capacity as President and chaired by Peter Griffiths, Board Chair.
In his opening remarks the President spoke about the two Parliamentary seminars he had the pleasure of opening this year and how these seminars, while intensive, are insightful in providing a realistic picture of how Government is exercised through Parliament and the day-to-day work of parliamentarians, Ministers, the House and select committees.
He then acknowledged the Trust’s charitable work with the provision of small grants to schools undertaking visits to Parliament and concluded that while school students and the corporate seminar attendees are two very different audiences, both were equally important for parliamentary engagement.
Peter Griffiths, in speaking to the Annual Review, stated that like so many organisations, the Trust was impacted by COVID-19 in 2020 but that the Trust has fared well and acknowledged the loyal support of our seventy plus corporate members.
Notwithstanding COVID and 2020 being a General Election year, the Trust managed to deliver two parliamentary seminars between lockdown and the closing of the 52nd Parliament.
The Chair acknowledged the presence of Dr Deborah Russell MP Parliamentary Under-Secretary to the Minister of Revenue and Tim van de Molen MP (National Party) and was pleased their respective party caucuses had agree to their continuing on the Board providing good continuity. He also acknowledged Ricardo Menéndez March MP, replacing Gareth Hughes who retired at the General Election, as Green Party representative on the Trustee Council.
The presence of James Heath, the inaugural recipient of the University of Otago Prize in Politics and who is now working for the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment in Wellington was also acknowledged.