Our Stories: Melissa Roberts

Written by Bronwyn Huband.

As Kiwis we have a certain ridiculousness about us – you just have to look at some of what we report on in the news. What other country running a Penguin of the Year Competition would make international news?Melissa Roberts

Melissa Roberts reckons it’s something we need to make the most of, especially in the UK office environment. “It’s nice to accept that we are a little odd, but it’s about making it work to your advantage. People find it quite endearing.”

As well as being able to keep her colleagues in the television and advertising production industry amused, Melissa is also one of our invaluable volunteers working on the events side. She helped pull together our amazing birthday event earlier this year, and believes events and production are fairly similar – “it’s often just herding cats.”

And it sounds as though she’s always been good at that. Growing up back home in Auckland, she spent her free time writing scripts for her younger sister to (often begrudgingly) perform while she recorded them on the family’s old VHS camera.

Our Stories: Jacqui Gilbert

Written by Emma Keeling.

What could be simpler than designing a handbag? Any six year-old with a few felt pens could do it. But designing the perfect boardroom handbag that doubles as a backpack, using the finest leather, made by the best craftsmen that catches the eye of the world’s fashion media? Ahhhh, now that takes creativity, innovation and one determined Kiwi, as it turns out.Jacqui Gilbert

To understand how Jacqui Gilbert operates, you only have to listen to her reason for leaving Telecom in her 20’s. “It didn’t capture my imagination and I love working for things that make me dream.” She finishes this sentence with what sounds like a self-conscious laugh but it doesn’t sound silly to me and it explains a life lived with passion and curiosity.

A Wellingtonian, who majored in psychology and political science at Canterbury University, Jacqui worked for a few years but “I’d always wanted to do an MBA somewhere because I really wanted to have the chance to see how I stood against the rest of the world.” She was drawn to Cambridge in England because...you guessed it, “I loved the innovation and the history.” That was 2013 when she was 31.

Our Stories: Anna Petchell

Written by NZBWN.

Anna

Not one to sit still for long, Anna Petchell has a CV of adventure to envy. From TV to the high seas and protecting our planet, Anna is an inspirational Kiwi.

Hailing from a farm in Kiwitahi in the Waikato, Anna studied communications and went on to work as a Camera Operator and Floor Manager on shows like Police Ten 7 and TV3 news. Leaving New Zealand nine years ago, she moved to London after being made redundant and had planned to work for the BBC, but chose to travel instead.

Leaving home for a life of travel, and then at sea on super yachts, Anna has clocked up more clocked up more than 60 countries, 10,000 nautical miles, learned six languages (basic), and made countless friends around the world.

That has seen her “live” all over the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, the East Coast of USA, the Bahamas, Bermuda, and in the Auckland Viaduct. “Home is wherever the boat ends up – which was sometimes the middle of the Atlantic.”

What's the Goss?