2013 NZAMI Inaugural Immigration Awards - RESULTS
(from right to left): Simon Laurent, Chantal Janssen with her husband Franswa Janssen (accepting on behalf of her Dad Norman Markgraaff who was overseas at the time), Dana Rotberg, Jimmy Lee, Gurpreet Bassan, and Katy Armstrong.
Immigration Adviser or Lawyer of the Year – FINALISTS
- Simon Laurent - Award Winner
Simon has been practicing in immigration since 1996. He has built a successful business now employing 5 other full time staff and is highly respected within the immigration field. He has built an excellent working relationship of mutual respect with INZ and the IPT, described by an INZ manager as “… a force to be reckoned with”. His firm is respected in all aspects of immigration, including refugee and protection claims, appeals, Ministerials and deportation matters, business category applications including LTBV/Entrepreneur, Investor 1 and 2, Employees and Relocating businesses. His sophisticated practice management and paper-less document management systems have resulted in minimal paper storage and reduced the firm’s carbon footprint.
- Vanessa Sharratt
Vanessa is prepared to tackle the difficult cases at a detailed, technical level, focusing not only on Immigration Instructions but IPT cases, regular interaction with technical advisers and the Immigration Act. She has many successes including a recent positive ministerial decision, which required an extraordinary amount of work so that a family could be together. Many will attest to Vanessa’s professionalism and 120% commitment to her clients – her work is certainly outstanding and industry best practice.
- Tuariki Delamere
Tuariki has shown great personal commitment to his clients and industry. He has proven that during the past 3 years his tenacity and his will to succeed for his clients has become public knowledge by going above and beyond what can normally be expected. His ability to challenge the adversity of bureaucracy, which he has demonstrated by being prepared to stand up and fight against unjust decisions and the changing of legislation that is flawed. Tuariki’s background of having been a Minister of Immigration, his years of experience and continued willingness to tackle hard decisions and the bad legislation that most would find a daunting task, sets him apart.
NZAMI Business / Investor Award - FINALISTS
- Mark Horning
Mark has invested in the world of adventure tourism in New Zealand and he has revitalized not 1 but 2 New Zealand businesses (which in turn has saved the jobs of employees). His unique technical skills enhance the adventure tourism industry and provide training opportunities in an area of skills shortage; he is a great asset to New Zealand tourism being a qualified teacher of active tandem, and a parachute rigging examiner approved by the New Zealand Parachute Industry Association.
- Norman Markgraaff - Award Winner
An outstanding migrant with a real business vision which is showing incredible results. This entrepreneur provides employment for more than 80 staff through the establishment of stores selling a healthy dessert - KiwiYo. His first store of many was opened in December 2011, and Franchise KiwiYo stores are now open in Auckland and the Bay of Plenty, with more coming throughout New Zealand.
- Dionne Urban
Nominated for turning a rundown cattery business into a thriving “nurturing holiday retreat” for animals. A former veterinary nurse who has made her mark on beautiful Kerikeri in the Bay of Islands. Her caring attitude is reflected in the business practices and recognition by local Vets. Her business now provides employment and a superior service.
Award for Community Outreach - FINALISTS
- Gurpreet Bassan - Award Winner
Gurpreet was nominated for the amount of pro bono work he does for the community. He has worked in the Indian community for over 25 years and his work has included obtaining residence visas, visitor visas, and making appeals to Ministers, the Ombudsman and handling refugee cases. He is highly regarded and well known in the community for his work and his humanitarian outlook. He acts as a mentor to young people and instantly involves himself in charity work to assist those migrants in trouble.
- Mike Bell
Mike has established a company with a constitution of donating 100% of net profits for charitable purposes. Their company is a strong community worker within Christchurch and offers migrants pro bono advice.
- Royal Reed
A selfless worker and an advocate for minority groups within the migrant community. She understands the pain of language and cultural barriers faced by most migrants and provides top quality legal education to the migrant community on a pro bono basis. An educator and TV presenter, offering legal education in Chinese at no cost.
Migrant of the Year - FINALISTS
- Lesley Davies
Lesley has been nominated for her outstanding work in the education field and in particular in Murupara where she is Deputy Principal of the newly created Murupara Area School. Lesley has played an integral role in establishing this school and brings to New Zealand a wealth of experience in education from around the world, including the UK, Thailand, Qatar, UAE, India, China and Kenya.
- Norman Markgraaff
An outstanding migrant with a real business vision which is showing incredible results. This entrepreneur provides employment for more than 80 staff through the establishment of stores selling a healthy dessert - KiwiYo. His first store was opened in December 2011, and Franchise KiwiYo stores are now open in Auckland and the Bay of Plenty, with more coming throughout New Zealand.
- Dana Rotberg - Award Winner
A highly acclaimed Mexican Film Director who has chosen to make New Zealand her home. She has been nominated for the fact that she has moved to New Zealand from Mexico and immersed herself in the local culture of Maori and Pakeha. She has made a unique contribution to New Zealand by scripting and directing the film “White Lies - Tuakiri Huna” (adapted from the Novella “Medicine Woman“ by Witi Ihimaera) which honors the cultural heritage of this country; “ the nature of identity; those who deny it and those who strive to protect it”. Dana’s inspiration for this movie was to answer the questions about colonialism and identity; a celebration of uniqueness of New Zealand cultural heritage.
NZAMI Service Award - FINALISTS
- Katy Armstrong - Award Winner
Katy has given tirelessly of her time and expertise in the pursuit of improving the services of the NZAMI to its members. She has been on the Board of NZAMI for 3 years, and has been instrumental in many key representations to the INZ and other bodies through the Policy Committee of the NZAMI. Katy has spearheaded the webinar project for NZAMI which will certainly have a major impact on the timeliness and attendance of NZAMI seminars, whilst reducing costs. Her presentations at various conferences and seminars are always entertaining as well as informative and her involvement in the NZAMI CPD Committee has resulted in significant improvements in topics and speakers.
- Vanessa Sharratt
Vanessa was on the Board of NZAMI in 2012. Her individual contributions including crafting and leading NZAMI’s recent submission to the IRD in relation to GST issues that affect not only the Advisor profession but other service industries alike. Her efforts in the finance portfolio for NZAMI have been outstanding, and she was a leading contributor to NZAMI’s submission to INZ that resulted in the recent IAC circular cleaning up incorrect INZ procedures around medical exclusions at EOI stage. Vanessa was also the very first NZAMI Webinar presenter.
- Bill Milnes
Bill had been practicing as an immigration consultant since 1993 and was the Managing Director of Access Immigration from 2001 to 2012, and now works as a consultant at Laurent Law. He was a Director on the Board of NZAMI since 1997 to 2007 and Chairman from 2000 to 2004. He is a popular media spokesperson and has presented at many of NZAMI CPD seminars. Bill has authored NZAMI submissions and appeared before the Parliamentary Select Committee to present verbal submissions. He was also the recipient of the NZAMI Chairman’s Certificate of Appreciation in 2007.
Hall of Fame
- Jimmy Lee - Award Winner
Jimmy is a Founder Member of NZAMI. He Chaired the Policy Committee with drive and energy, and is a continuously strong advocate for the immigration industry. He is always championing INZ to adopt transparency in its dealings and has built a strong reputation within the Association for his enthusiasm to further NZAMI’s interests. He has worked loyally and tirelessly to promote the objectives of NZAMI, and is very highly regarded to all those who have had the pleasure of working alongside him.
(from right to left): Dionne Urban, Royal Reed, Lesley Davies, Vanessa Sharratt, Bill Milnes, Mark Horning and NZAMI Chairman Walter Stone.
It was a truly wonderful evening and such an important first for New Zealand. A unique part of the entertainment for the evening was the NZAMI song written and performed by Ward & Tutheridge!
NZAMI Song 2013
Back in nineteen eighty-nine
NZAMI was born
To raise professional standards
Above the Immigration norm
A sought-after destination
New Zealand shines out bright
And the folk at the NZAMI
Helps migrants do it right
With excellence as the focus
And a pride in what we do
And a team of service providers
We make migrants dreams come true
We’re lifting up the industry
Getting strong every day
Like our wonderful new migrants
We’ve come a real long way
Greg: The Americas
Greg: Middle East
Brett: Pink Pussycat
So thank you all for coming
You all look such a treat
You’ve made a special effort
From your heads down to your feet
So raise your glasses in the air
We’ll drink a toast tonight
Let’s celebrate this winning team
NZAMI shining bright