New Zealand Newsletter Friday July 13, 2018

THANK YOU JULIE FRY – Fellow NZer Julie Fry is a consulting economist and author who divides her time between New York and a family kūmara farm near Motueka.

Her latest project, AmbitionNZ, explores how ambition features in the national character and conversation of New Zealanders. The project is designed to encourage more New Zealanders to be more ambitious about more things: sport and business; family and community life; music and the arts; science, technology, education and the future; our environment, culture, and heritage; and our wider wellbeing.

The AmbitionNZ team would love to find out whether Kiwis who have moved away think differently from those at home in terms of how ambitious we are, what we’re ambitious about, and what we think about ambitious people. 

You can fill out the survey at and find out more about the project while you’re there. Please share the link! 

The survey results will be used in a book coming out later this year. The website will also host short video interviews about ambition with New Zealanders from all walks of life – if you’re interested in being interviewed, drop Julie an email:

Shout out: the site and branding are the work of another NYC-based Motueka export, Ronnie Peters, and his team at 360 Design.


APARTMENT FOR RENT IN BROOKLYN: – Top floor of a Victorian house, one minute from the Q train stop, 35 minutes to midtown Manhattan. Fully furnished and equipped, with a large main room with open kitchen, one large and one small bedroom (could become an office), bathroom with shower. One block from shopping street with several excellent restaurants and coffee bars, organic food market, supermarket, dry cleaner, pharmacies, library, Sunday Farmers’ Market. Cats welcome but no dogs. A quiet, sunny space. WiFi, TV all utilities included. Available early September. Monthly rent $2000. Call 718 469 2767.


SITUATIONS WANTED: – Rosel Labone is here on a 12 month J1 Visa and is looking for work  She has over 14 years administration experience, including EA work as a Legal Secretary at DLA Piper (accounts, billing, software, scheduling, and international travel) and is experienced in database and data analyst roles across government departments, and as a minute taker and transcriptionist for hearing and visually impaired students and lawyers at the Supreme Court of Melbourne. Her other background includes culture and communications, as a journalist and grant writer, and she has a Bachelor of Arts in English and Music, and a postgraduate diploma in Journalism. For her resume and more information, please contact Rosel at

SPALK ABOUT TO BE LAUNCHED IN NYC: – Ben Reynolds and Michael Prendergast started Spalk after growing frustrated with Justin Marshall’s commentary on Super Rugby back home in New Zealand. They started doing their own audio only commentary and soon built an audience of tens of thousands who were muting their TVs and listening to their commentary instead of Justin Marshall & Nisbo. BUT, they received a lot of complaints that their commentary was out of time with the live video on TV.

So they built Spalk. Spalk’s Virtual Sportscasting Studio allows broadcasters, sports leagues and teams to offer hundreds of different commentary options on their existing live coverage. Commentators can call games, without having to travel, from a laptop anywhere in the world and Spalk’s technology ensures lip-sync perfect synchronisation between the alternate commentary and live video stream. This means broadcasters can offer multi-lingual, comedic and influencer commentators and fans can get commentary customised to suit their preferences.

Spalk works with broadcasters and sports organisations like Māori Television, FIBA & World Rugby to power commentary for thousands of the world’s biggest sporting events. Ben has recently relocated to NYC as they increase their focus on the North American market – particularly college athletics. With a team of 8 split across the US and NZ, Ben is eager to meet Kiwi’s in the sports and broadcast industries and get involved in the expat community up here in the city.

You can reach Ben at, +1 646-659-6509 or +64 21-101-4896


 INTRODUCING GEORGETTE POLLOCK-JOHNSTON: Georgette has recently arrived in NYC on the J1 visa (one year after graduation can work anywhere visa), and is looking for work in the fashion industry and more importantly looking for accommodation. She and another NZ friend are looking for an apartment for 2 people for a year or maybe joining an existing roommate.

 For Georgette’s resume and other information, please contact her directly at


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT DEPT: – Some of you might remember Michael Hobbs who spent time in NYC some years ago and who recently graduated from Stamford with an MBA. Michael (son of the late former All Black Captain and NZRU board Chairman Jock Hobbs) is currently living in California and is on the team helping change the face of the Kibera slums in Kenya through education with the construction of the Blessed Hope Primary School being the first step in the journey.


Michael’s work is so important despite becoming collateral damage in the NFL protests last year as this story in the NY Times explains –

And this story from Rebecca Wright of TVNZ –


SITUATIONS VACANT – VINEYARD (in NZ) GENERAL MANAGER WANTED: – Stonyridge Vineyard is one of New Zealand’s most prestigious wineries, located on beautiful Waiheke Island, which has been described as NZ’s answer to the Hamptons or Byron Bay.

Responsibilities – The General Manager will be responsible for both the strategic planning of the business and the operations of the winery and restaurant, with a key focus on demonstrating excellent leadership to our management team. The GM will be accountable for both the employee and guest experience, financial leadership including optimising profitability and revenue generation, as well as developing strong relationships with our loyal clients. The Location:  Stonyridge Vineyard is located at 36 degrees 47 S (the same latitude as Sicily and San Luis Obisbo), on Waiheke Island just one kilometre from white sand Onetangi Beach. Regular hourly ferries (half hour in summer) take just 35 minutes to arrive to/from downtown Auckland or you can choose to take a ten-minute helicopter ride, should you have one!  Waiheke is the Byron Bay of New Zealand, sophisticated yet still spiritual, surrounded by beautiful beaches and spectacular coastline and a climate that is warmer and dryer than most of New Zealand. It’s a paradise … a paradise that grows really great red wine!

 Applicants should please email them a covering letter and resume to  The Selection team will include the owner and directors.


KEN GRIFFEN EXHIBITION: – Ken Griffen grew up in Auckland. In 2006 he was awarded a University Scholarship for Visual Arts and went on to graduate with excellence from AUT (Auckland University of Technology) in 2009.  Since his graduation, Griffen has done two artist-in-residency programs in Berlin and LA, and has held several solo exhibitions.

His latest exhibition is 4 Eyes – 12 Months opened in Brooklyn (RSOAA Gallery 400b S 2nd St Brooklyn NY 11221) on July 13th and goes through until July 31st.

Viewings are by appointment (phone 347-673-3383) or by contacting him directly at


OOPS DEPT: – Young NZ friend visiting NYC arrived wearing a shirt with “very” large MAGA letters on the front……

ME: – “Kevin, you OK wearing that T shirt?”
KEVIN: – “Sure, why?”
ME: – “I just don’t want you to get abused or yelled at”
KEVIN: – “I’ll be fine, why would I get abused”
ME: -“The letters….M A G A… are a sensitive issue these days, especially in NYC. It’s quite a political statement”
KEVIN: – “What, you’re kidding. People in NYC don’t even know where Auckland is let alone anything about the MOUNT ALBERT GRAMMAR ALUMNI”
ME: – “Would you like a cuppa tea?”


CONGRATULATIONS JAN BROOK – On Co-Founding  the Koha Konnection.  The Koha Konnection is made up of 7 fabulous Kiwi Committee Members and is currently in the process of setting up as a nonprofit to help send fellow US ex-pat Kiwis home in time of immediate Family Need. 

Jan and her team recently published a cook book “BRING A PLATE” of typical New Zealand recipes adapted with American ingredients and measurements with current and former Prime Ministers, and other NZ celebrities contributing with their favorite recipes.  The info about the Koha and their mission is in the cookbook! They still have cookbooks available for sale for $25/book, just PM or email Jan at for more information – proceeds go to the Koha Konnection.

The “Koha” mission is to ‘give with no expectation of repayment’ and to find out more, please contact Jan directly at


INTRODUCING SYLVIA VARHAM O’REGAN, a New Zealand freelance journalist based in New York.

Sylvia grew up in Wellington and attended Wellington Girls’ College.

She moved to New York in 2016 to study a Master’s Degree at Columbia Journalism School after five years working for a public broadcaster in Australia. This July, she published a story in The New York Times, examining the high rate of New Zealander’s being deported from Australia. He work has also appeared in The Atlantic, Los Angeles Times, VICE, Toronto Star and more.


To connect with Sylvia, email her at


ATTN OTAGO UNIVERSITY ALUMNI: – Calling all University of Otago graduates: save the date for an Alumni function on the evening of Tuesday 30th October 2018.  More to come.  Questions? Contact


MAORI LESSONS IN NYC: – “Kia ora! A group of New Zealanders in NYC are aiming to set up regular Te Reo Maori lessons in the city. The idea is still in it’s infancy so if you have anything to help out in terms of a venue, or if you are interested in being a part of this then please either join the ‘Learn Te Reo Maori in NYC’ Facebook group ( or if not on Facebook then email”


NEW ZEALAND’S “BROKEN SHED” VODKA: – Currently available in NJ, CT, MI, RI, KY and CA,  and adding MA, WI, DC, DE, MD, NV and expanding distribution in CA over the next few months with more US markets to come.  Broken Shed is the clean, crisp vodka crafted from whey and blended with water from the north and south islands to create the perfect vodka. Check the locator to find an establishment carrying this fine vodka.


WHO’D HAVE THUNK? – Is it just me, or does anyone else have a problem that the official Wimbledon website is .com and not .net?


SITUATIONS WANTED – Rose Hewetson is here on a J1 – Visa and looking for work in the food media/sustainable food and food distribution industry.

Originally from Wanaka and Auckland Rose attended St Cuthbert’s College and King’s College and has worked as a design atelier in Stockholm. She has also lived in France, volunteered in Jaipur and India. She completed her BA majoring in English literature, philosophy and French and completed her final year at Sciences Po in Paris

After graduating she returned to Melbourne and worked for a social enterprise, The Social Food Project, founded with the intent to connect people living in urban environments with local, regenerative farmers. She also started a supper club, Scotch & Rose, and hosted pop-up dinners at various locations around Melbourne, and recently co-authored a cookbook with my mother, Annabel Langbein, that will be coming out in September.

For more information please contact Rose directly at



RIP Graeme Lindsay

Dear fellow New Zealanders and friends of NZ. It is with great sadness I advise the passing of New Zealander Graeme Lindsay today. Originally from Oamaru Graeme attended St Kevin’s College, and went on to become a Fulbright scholar and graduate from Massey University.

He moved to the US in 1974 with the NZ Meat Board and went onto run the NZ Lamb Co. in North America. Graeme was a pioneer of things NZ in NY City and beyond, such as founding the NZ picnic, co founding the Kiwi Club of NY, sitting on the BOD of Kea North America and the American New Zealand Association where he was instrumental in raising nearly a million dollars to support school Christchurch children after the devastating earthquake.

Behind the scenes he quietly helped many NZ companies enter the US market. He also helped individuals work through various issues always holding confidentiality. He was the go to guy for many including non New Zealanders. He will be missed by, oh ,so many.
Graeme’s wonderful life partner Nancy Hart will advise of funeral details and I will forward accordingly.

RIP Graeme Lindsay