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26 Jul 2022

Appointment of new Chief Executive Officer to The Selwyn Foundation

Denise Cosgrove has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of The Selwyn Foundation, one of New Zealand’s largest charities serving older people and their families. Ms Cosgrove, who is the current CEO of Presbyterian Support Northern, Auckland, will succeed Garry Smith who recently retired after ten years in the role.

With a leadership career spanning more than 30 years, Ms Cosgrove has significant CEO experience leading large, complex operational businesses focused on social and commercial outcomes in the government and not-for-profit sectors in both New Zealand and Australia. With high-level strategic, financial, operations and risk management expertise, Ms Cosgrove is well placed to lead The Selwyn Foundation in the next stage of its journey. The Foundation will expand its philanthropic outreach to seniors in need, as well as provide best practice, whole-person care at its large and iconic Selwyn Village in Point Chevalier.

As CEO of Presbyterian Support Northern (PSN) for the past five years, Ms Cosgrove has been responsible for the provision of social and health and disability services in the upper North Island under the brands of Lifeline, Shine, Family Works and Enliven. A strategic and operational innovator, she has established successful cross-sector collaborations and strong partnerships to better honour PSN’s commitments to tangata whenua.

Her earlier career has included roles as Chief Executive of the Victorian Work Cover Authority in Australia, General Manager (Claims Management and People & Business Services) at ACC, Assistant Auditor General (Strategy) at the Office of the Auditor-General and General Manager (Operational Development and Communications) at Housing New Zealand Limited. In addition to serving as a Board member with a number of NGO and social enterprise organisations, Ms Cosgrove supports New Zealand’s contemporary art and design sector, especially new and emerging talent.

Commenting on her appointment, Ms Cosgrove said: “The Selwyn Foundation is a trusted and highly respected, faith-based charity and service provider of some 68 years’ standing. I’m honoured to have been appointed as its new CEO and I look forward to working with the Board and senior management team to lead its strategic development, philanthropic focus and enduring Mission well into the future.”

Chair of The Selwyn Foundation Board, David Cunliffe, comments: “We were blessed with having many high calibre candidates to select from and are delighted with this appointment. Denise brings the experience and personal qualities needed to help us progress our charitable Mission and our goal of expanding our charitable outreach, through investing giving up to $100 million to support the wellbeing of older New Zealanders over the next decade.”

Ms Cosgrove will take up her new role on 25 October 2022, with Chief Operating Officer Jason More in the position of Acting CEO until then.