The College President automatically becomes a Trustee of College and Chair of the College Board.
In 1973 the College was incorporated as Charitable Trust. Its Charitable Purpose is to ‘encourage, foster and maintain the highest possible standards for medical care within the scope of general practice, in order to reduce health inequalities and achieve improved health for all New Zealanders.’
As trustee, the President has legal and financial responsibilities in ensuring the College operates in accordance with the rules and requirements of the Charities Act 2005. This includes responsibilities relating to financial management and personal liability.
Chair of the Board
The Board is responsible for managing, directing and supervising the business affairs of the College, in order to achieve its Charitable Purpose.
As Chair of the Board, the President is the main link with the College Chief Executive. They have legal and financial responsibilities, for example, in relation to the Health and Safety Act.
They will be required to attend and chair the College Board meetings. There are eight scheduled each year, and these are typically held in Wellington and Auckland. They will also be required to deliver the opening address and chair the College’s AGM. This is held in July each year (the 2019 AGM will be held in Dunedin on 27 July 2019). For more information, you may like to visit the Institute of Directors’ website and WorkSafe’s website.
The President is one of three media spokespeople for the College. As such, they are often sought for comment on sector issues and may be regarded as the ‘public face’ of the College and all GPs. The President is also invited to represent the College a health sector events – both domestic and international. In terms of leading the College, the President may develop relationships with key influencers and decision makers, for instance the Minister of Health.
The size and extent of the role, will depend on the individual who fills it. Members will vote for the candidate they feel can best represent them, so it will be up to each candidate to communicate what they can bring to the role and what their priorities will be. The College will provide a fair, impartial platform for candidates’ messages.