Goss up for Woman of the Year award

By Regan Paranihi

Next Magazine has announced their finalists for the 2018 Woman of the Year awards.

Amongst the 30 finalists is Black Ferns Sevens captain Sarah Goss, who has made a major impact in woman’s rugby since captaining the Manawatu Sevens side that took out the 2013 National Women’s Sevens title in Queenstown.

Goss has several accolades to her name, including winning a world championship in 2013 and Olympic silver medal in 2016.  She is a four-time world series winner and in 2017 was named New Zealand Rugby’s woman player of the year.

The Next Magazine Woman Of The Year award was established in 2010 to recognise woman who are achieving in all aspects of their lives while contributing and giving back to others.

Across six categories - Arts & Culture, Sports, Education, Community, Health & Science, and Business & Innovation - the finalists are examples of what can be accomplished through drive and determination.

Each finalist is profiled in the October issue of Next magazine.

The NEXT Woman of the Year winners will be chosen by a judging panel featuring Next editor Rachael Russell, The Project’s Kanoa Lloyd, and Global Women CEO Miranda Burdon. 

The winners will be announced at an awards event at the Cordis hotel in Auckland on October 11.

NEXT Woman of the Year 2018 Finalists:

 Arts & Culture

Anne O'Brien, Auckland Writers Festival director

Pietra Brettkelly, filmmaker

Dawn Sanders, Shakespeare Globe Centre NZ founder

Jacqui Kenny, The Agoraphobic Traveller artist

Renee Liang, community arts activist


Business & Innovation

Erica Crawford, Loveblock Wines co-founder

Wendy Thompson, Socialites founder

Sharndre Kushor, Crimson education co-founder

Lillian Grace, Figure.NZ founder

Michelle Sharp, Kilmarnock Enterprises chief executive



Merenia Donne, Kotuku Foundation Assistance Animals Aotearoa founder

Verna McFelin, Pillars chief executive

Louise Allnutt, Foster Hope Charitable Trust founder

Dr Ann Brower, senior lecturer geography

Deborah Manning, KiwiHarvest founder



Dr Rachel Williamson, The Summer Learning Journey founder

Brittany Teei, KidsCoin founder

Ariana Paul, Squiggle co-founder

Rez Gardi, Empower Youth Trust founder

Dr Lucy Hone, resilience educator


Health & Science

Dr Jane Harding, professor of neonatology

Dr Julia Rucklidge, professor of clinical psychology

Dr Nicola Gaston, MacDiamond Institute co-director

Dr Philippa Howden-Chapman, professor of public health

Dr Malvindar Singh-Bains, research fellow



Sarah Goss, Black Ferns Sevens captain

Professor Sarah Leberman, sports researcher

Natalie Taylor, Tall Ferns co-captain

Sophie Devine, White Ferns player

Luisa Avaiki, NZ Rugby League Wellbeing and Women's Development manager