Saint Kentigern appoints Merle Boniface to the new role of Chief Operating Officer
Saint Kentigern welcomes Mrs Merle Boniface to the newly created role of Chief Operating Officer for the Trust Board with responsibility for the commercial operations of Saint Kentigern, including Finance, ICT, Marketing and Communication, Human Resources, Facilities Management, Major Property Projects and Risk Management. She brings significant strategic business and leadership experience to the role gained in the banking, education and Small Business Development sectors. She joins Saint Kentigern from Diocesan School for Girls, where she held a similar position for a number of years and played a pivotal role in the implementation of a significant Campus Master Plan, including the successful completion of several construction projects.
Merle’s contribution to the wider independent education sector has been recognised through national awards both in New Zealand and Australia. She has held executive positions as President of ASBA NZ Inc, member of the ISNZ executive and Chairman of ASBA Ltd. She is the only New Zealander to have led this umbrella organisation for senior business administrators employed in the independent education sectors across Australasia and was instrumental in realigning and focussing their strategic direction.
Arriving from South Africa in 1998, Merle initially joined Countrywide Bank in their Strategy Division where she led significant projects across the organisation. She subsequently joined the team tasked with the merger of Countrywide and National Banks, where she had responsibility for six workstreams and their many projects.
Prior to emigrating, Merle led the major turnaround of a university business school, which had been running at a loss. Her success in this venture was recognised through nominations for the Young Human Resource Person of the Year and the Mayor’s Citizen of the Year.
Merle is well qualified for this role with two Business degrees from the University of South Africa, leadership programmes completed at Harvard Business School and Mount Eliza Business School and a Banking qualification. She has also completed the Certificate of Company Direction through the NZ Institute of Directors and the Certificate in Governance and Risk Management through the Governance Institute of Australia.
Merle has appreciated the warm welcome she has received and is looking forward to playing an integral part in the future of Saint Kentigern.
Merle Boniface - Chief Operating Officer