Bright horizons ahead
28 April 2020
We find ourselves in extraordinary times, but times of great opportunity. It feels almost like we get to take a step back and reflect on what we have, what is important to us and where we want to be in the future as individuals, organisations and a nation. This time of reflection also comes with much excitement and ambition for us at the Spirit of Adventure Trust.
The Trust, was built on a commitment to the community and a passion to improve the lives of others, especially youth, born from a love of sailing and the ocean. Life has changed since the Trust started and young people find themselves in a world of likes, #hashtags and the ability to ‘connect’ 24/7; but at the cost of human connection and appreciation of the natural world around them. With every voyage, when we turn off the noise and put away the tech to come together with a shared single purpose of sailing a tall ship we see resilience, leadership and connection shine through the transformation in our trainees. We have been supporting positive change in the young people of Aotearoa for nearly 50 years and post COVID-19 there will be an even greater need for what we do.
Dean Lawrence, our current CEO, announced his retirement for mid-2021, so we set about looking for someone who can lead us through the years ahead. Someone with passion for people, especially youth, for changing lives through a creative approach, which tests the boundaries around youth development and what it means to our community. After a robust recruitment process, I am delighted to announce that Bruce Pilbrow will be taking up the role of CEO on February 1, 2021.
We are most fortunate to have secured Bruce, who comes to us with a proven track record as a CEO and Board Director in the youth development field and more recently as Chief Transformation Officer for Yellow NZ. With pastoral empathy combined with marketing intelligence and a sprinkling of salt in his veins, Bruce is well placed to lead the Spirit into this decade. “Bringing young people together, with a common purpose, tests who they are and what they’re capable of and brings real and positive change; I love seeing that change. We need now, more than ever, life skills like resilience, adaptability and self-confidence. We have to see our young people in Aotearoa thrive; the Spirit of Adventure has been transforming lives for decades and I am honoured to be trusted with the next stage of the Trust’s voyage” said Bruce, on what he describes as an exciting and worthy opportunity.
We know that February 2021 will be here quickly and we’re ready for what Bruce’s appointment brings. In the meantime, we are fortunate to be able to adapt what we do and remain flexible and agile around our programmes, to deliver the best possible outcomes to the youth of Aotearoa.
Stephen Fisher, QSO
Chairman, Spirit of Adventure Trust