LBC farewells CEO Pru Etcheverry

1 February 2018 -
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After 15 years at the helm, Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand’s (LBC’s) CEO Pru Etcheverry has made the decision to leave the organisation.

Ms Etcheverry has significantly grown and developed LBC from a small, fledgling organisation with a team of just two part-time people to one of New Zealand’s most prominent NGOs. She was honoured as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM), in recognition of this work.

Throughout her tenure as CEO Ms Etcheverry has led on advocating on behalf of patients to ensure they have access to the best possible care and treatment. This is an area she is particularly passionate about and she has worked to ensure a number of drugs receive funding in New Zealand. She also established a national patient support service that extends the length of the country.

Ms Etcheverry was instrumental in establishing the first Leukaemia & Blood Cancer Research Unit in the country at the University of Auckland in 2014, for which LBC is the major funder. This unit, the first of its kind in New Zealand, is undertaking ground-breaking genetic research into the causes and treatment for blood cancer. The unit enables patients across New Zealand to have access to contemporary molecular diagnostic strategies that will enable better survival outcomes.

LBC receives no Government funding and Ms Etcheverry established significant income streams which continue to achieve year-on-year growth. These include iconic fundraising events such as Shave for a Cure, the Firefighter Sky Tower Stair Challenge (each raises in excess of $1.25 million annually), SKYCITY Dining for a Difference, and the Corporate Sky Tower Stair Challenge. She also oversaw the establishment of an endowment fund to ensure future sustainability for the organisation.

Etcheverry has forged strong and long-standing partnerships with well-known organisations such as Farmers, SKYCITY, Fidelity Life, PwC, BellGully, Suzuki and most recently Bridgestone New Zealand.

“The outstanding support from the teams within these wonderful organisations has been integral to LBC’s growth and development,” she says.

In addition to her role at LBC Ms Etcheverry has also contributed to other healthcare organisations and networks in New Zealand. She has served as Chair of CANGO (the national Cancer NGO working group), on the Governance Advisory Board of the Leukaemia and Blood Cancer Research Unit and is Chair of the Governance Advisory Group for the Auckland Regional Tissue Bank. She is also influential and active in a global setting and has been Chair of the Lymphoma Coalition (an international non-profit organisation) since 2013.

Ms Etcheverry plans to apply her knowledge and experience in a consulting capacity both locally and internationally. She will work with non-profit organisations to build their capacity and businesses to advise on best practice with community engagement and Corporate Social Responsibility.

“Whilst I am sad to be leaving it has been an absolute privilege, and extremely fulfilling, to do this work for the communities we serve. I hugely appreciate the encouragement and support of everyone who has worked alongside me to grow the organisation into what it is today,”

“It feels like just the right time for me to leave LBC. The organisation is in a strong and sustainable financial position with a dedicated board, team of staff and supporters.” says Ms Etcheverry

LBC’s Chair Tony Wilding says it has been a pleasure to work with Pru. While the organisation is sad to see her go, he and the board want to sincerely thank her for her leadership and dedication and of many years and leaving LBC in such good heart.

“Pru’s legacy will be marked by her inspirational leadership, passion, professionalism, revenue raising and work in patient advocacy and awareness of blood cancers. Her commitment to the organisation has ensured thousands of families across the country have received the help they need,” he says

Ms Etcheverry will finish with the organisation on 6 April 2018 and will be involved in the short to medium term after this date to aid with the transition of a successor into the CEO role.

For more information please contact:
Georgie Hackett
General Manager
021 523 172
georgie@leukaemia.org.nz