New Trustee announced for Cawthron Institute Trust Board

20 December 2021

Cawthron is delighted to announce the appointment of Danette Olsen as a new Trustee to the Cawthron Institute Trust Board.

Danette has extensive experience working in the research sector and is currently employed as Director of the Research Office at Victoria University of Wellington. She has held senior leadership roles at Cawthron, Plant & Food Research and MBIE. Her time at Cawthron included the positions of Manager Research Strategy and Group Manager Aquaculture and Biotechnology.  At MBIE Danette managed a range of funds including National Science Challenges and Strategic Science Investment Fund.

Danette has lived in Te Tau Ihu for almost 20 years, mostly in Nelson, before moving to Blenheim two years ago. She understands the value of philanthropic activities and the benefits they can deliver. She says that, “Thomas Cawthron’s legacy has had a profound impact on the New Zealand science system, and the research undertaken by Cawthron has made a tangible and important difference to the improved management of our coastal and freshwater ecosystems and growth of our aquaculture sector.”

Cawthron Institute Trust Board Chair John Palmer says, “Danette is well connected across the science and innovation system. She has a strong background in science strategy and her diverse experiences in a range of science roles will bring new perspectives to our board.  We are thrilled to gain the benefit of her expertise.”

Trustee Helen Smale stepped down from the Board in September 2020.


Danette Olsen
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