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Dr Lester

A wealth of experience in leadership and management


Professor Lester Levy, CNZM started his working life as a medical doctor and subsequently became a chief executive, entrepreneur and chair of board of directors. He has extensive management and governance experience in both the public and private sectors.

Lester has been appointed to twenty five boards, fourteen as chair and three as deputy chair. The boards he has chaired include large scale and complex organisations such as the Auckland, Waitemata and Counties Manukau District Health Boards, Auckland Transport and Tonkin+Taylor. The boards he has been on represent a diverse range of sectors including private and public healthcare, transport, engineering, film and television production, biotechnology, software, logistics, platform technology and research.

Lester has previously been a chief executive (three times), one of five independent advisors on the Ministerial Advisory Group on Health and a Lead Reviewer for the State Service Commission’s Performance Improvement Framework, a joint central agency initiative to help public sector senior leaders improve performance of their agencies. He was also previously seconded to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and was awarded a King's Fund International Fellowship from the King's Fund in London.

Current work
Lester is the Professor of Digital Health Leadership at AUT, chair of the New Zealand Health Research Council, strategic advisor on the future of healthcare to the chief executive of Southern Cross Health Society and the Ministerial appointed Crown Monitor to the Canterbury District Health Board. He is widely recognised and respected for his leadership knowledge and research and was the foundation Head of the New Zealand Leadership Institute at the University of Auckland, where he was for many years the Adjunct Professor of Leadership at the Business School. Lester taught leadership, ethics and governance on the MBA program at the University of Auckland, including leadership in times of crisis. He has also taught leadership in times of crisis on the global executive MBA at the University of Sydney.

Lester is best known for leading a number of very successful organisational performance transformations in both the private and public sector. In the 2013 New Year’s Honours List he was appointed as a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to health and education.

Lester's presentation exceeded our expectations and the audience's reaction was overwhelmingly positive. RNZAF

Lester's presentation was both entertaining and thought provoking, something that is not easy to achieve. The audience thoroughly enjoyed the presentation, there was a good balance of humour and sharing of ideas.

Auckland City Council - Directors Group

Lester picked up on parts in the brief and offered a challenge to current practices. An informative and entertaining presentation.

Royal NZ Naval Officers Training School

Lester has the ability to engage people immediately and to hold their attention throughout his presentation. The audience were impressed with his honesty and how he was able to make it lively and relevant to them.

Land Information New Zealand

"Dr Levy was very generous with his time and because he had spoken to us prior to the event, he was able to deliver a motivating, relevant and personalised speech. Feedback from participants at the event was very positive and included comments such as "Dr Lester Levy was a wealth of knowledge!"

Coca Cola Amatil Conference Dinner - Authentic Leadership
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