Club Committee

Brett Newell (President)

Brett, after a career in law and finance, a former Director of National Australia Finance and Vice-President of the Wellington Chamber of Commerce, managed Eurowine Fine Wines from 1990 to 2010. He remains a consultant to the successor, EuroVintage. He holds Victoria University’s Plunkett Medal for Oratory and was part of an unbeaten University team which toured the Eastern United States in 1974 . He was an active Member of the Wellington 22 Speaking Club and a Parliamentary Shield Debating competition finalist. Brett was the Evening Post’s first Wine and Food columnist and pioneered radio restaurant and wine reviews with Leighton Smith in the 1980s. During this period, he was a tutor for the Wine Education Programme at Wellington Polytechnic, a senior wine judge and a frequent MC for the Air New Zealand National Wine Awards. He continued his involvement in radio with the highly popular ‘Noshing with Newell’ programme, with legendary broadcaster, the late Garry Ward. Brett and his wife Erica were conferred with Veuve Clicquot Champagne’s honour as Members of the Cercle des Amis de La Veuve in 1995. He completed the Miguel Torres Wine Course in Vila franca del Penedes (Barcelona) Spain in 1997. Brett completed Monash University’s Mount Eliza Business School Wine Executive Programme in 2002. He was the inaugural MC for the now legendary triennial Pinot Noir event in Wellington in 2004 and has performed this task on a number of occasions since. An inveterate traveller, having visited virtually every wine producing region in the world, Brett and Erica have hosted members of the Wellington Jaguar Drivers Club on two European tours. Brett joined The Wellington Club in 1996 and served on the Committee from 2006 – 2014, with four years as Vice-President. He has hosted the Club’s Annual BYO night in February for the last 21 years.


Phillipa urlich (VICe-president)

Phillipa is a Chartered Accountant having graduated from Victoria University in 1977. She has previous experience tutoring accounting at Wellington Polytechnic and managing audits for Ernst Young and Munro Benge, tax compliance/advisory work at Touche Ross (now Deloitte NZ) and was Company Secretary / Financial Controller for a Public Company (Capital City Radio Limited). Phillipa
set up her own accountancy company in 1997 now known as Urlich Lander Limited.   Having competed in tennis tournaments from the age of seven she represented Poverty Bay and Hawke’s Bay in tennis and squash. She is now Chair of Wellington Regional Tennis Inc. and Treasurer of the Thorndon Tennis Club, Chair of Finance Committee and Trustee of St Patrick’s College Wellington. Phillipa enjoys golf, tennis and sailing with friends. Phillipa is married to Denis Urlich and has two adult children, David and Kate.

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Warren allen (treasurer)

Warren is a Chartered Accountant. He is CEO of the External Reporting Board, an independent Crown Entity responsible for accounting and audit standard setting.

Previously, Warren had 40 years with Ernst & Young (EY) with 30 years as an audit partner. During this time, he was the President of the NZ Institute of Chartered Accountants (1996) and President of the International Federation of Accountants (2012 -2014). He is a Life Member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, part-time teacher in accounting topics at Victoria University of Wellington and a sports fan.

Warren has been a Karori resident since 1978, is married to Helen and they have three adult daughters, Jennie, Deb and Kate.


Christopher Finlayson

Chris Finlayson returned to the Bar in January this year after having been an MP since 2005. During his time in public life, he served as Attorney General and Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations (2008 to 2017), Minister for Culture and Heritage (2008 to 2014) and Minister in charge of the GCSB and SIS (2014 to 2017). He also chaired Parliament’s Privileges Committee between 2011 and 2017. Since returning to the Bar he has joined a number of boards of arts organisations, including the Adam Foundation, the Dance School Foundation, Chamber Music NZ, the Sarjeant Art Gallery and the Archibald Baxter Memorial Trust. He is currently writing a book on the Crown Maori Relationship which will be published toward the end of 2019.

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Martin gleeson

Martin is the founder and Managing Director of the iPayroll group of companies, which operate in New Zealand and Australia.     iPayroll was established in the early 2000s at a time when internet services were in their infancy.  Most people were using dial up modems, if they had connections at all, and smart devices taken for granted today were unheard of.  Crossing the Tasman in 2011 was the next step when he set up CloudPayroll.  Martin continues to work on both sides of the Tasman.   As well as being a member of the Wellington Club he is a member of the RACV Club in Melbourne and between the two clubs has access to many facilities including over a dozen snooker tables.  Martin completed an MBA at the University of Otago and enjoys boating, fishing, golf, snooker, rugby and travel.  He is married to Clare and combines visiting their children in Melbourne, New York and London with attending sporting events around the world.   


Richard Laurenson

Richard is a barrister sole practising out of Central Chambers at Wellington. He has been a barrister sole since 1991. Prior to that he was a partner of then Scott Morrison Dunphy & Co (now Morrison Kent) and before that of Govett Quilliam & Co at New Plymouth.
Richard was born and raised in his early years in Wellington but attended Dunstan High School (Alexandra), Te Awamutu College and, for his final two years, Wellington College. He attended Victoria University.
Richard has wide and varied interests including a general interest in most sports. He is a long serving President of the Talavera Municipal Tennis Club, and has or has had different roles with rugby, cricket and tennis in Wellington, not to mention snooker at the Wellington Club.
Richard has been a member of the Club since 1989. He is married to Susan and has five children, Katherine, Alexander, Antonia, Jack and Isabella.

James Gould

James Gould is a partner with Caniwi Capital, a Wellington based private investment and advisory firm. He joined Caniwi in 2011 upon returning to New Zealand after investment banking roles in London and Sydney. Through his career James has worked closely with boards and senior management of companies on a range of strategic transactions. He is the Chairman of Kacific Broadband Satellites, a Singapore-based public company providing high speed remote access broadband throughout South East Asia, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand. Volunteer activity includes Chairman of the Scots College Old Boys’ Association. James holds commerce and law degrees from Victoria University of Wellington and an MBA from INSEAD (France), and is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors. He is an enthusiastic road cyclist (and member of the FFC Racing Team) and moonlights with the Croaking Toads (Karori’s famous Dad band). James is married to Sylvie, and has three children Jack, Alessandra and Thomas.

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Willow Sainsbury

Willow Sainsbury is an educational psychologist in Lower Hutt. She graduated from Princeton University in Art, Archaeology and fined arts, then studied at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar in Anthropology. After a long period in the USA and the UK she returned to Dunedin in 2012 where she taught Classical Studies for three years before relocating to Wellington. Willow is involved in a number of projects to do with education and the arts.

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Philip mcconchie

Philip lives in Oriental Bay having been born and bred in Wellington. Philip married Bridget in 1999 and they have two teenage sons, Connor and Angus. Philip is Director of Spencer Holmes Limited, a long-established Wellington-based engineering, survey and planning consultancy. Philip trained as an Architect at Victoria University before departing on his OE in the United Kingdom and Europe in 1988 for four years. On his return to New Zealand Philip became heavily involved in the design and management of BP Oil New Zealand Limited’s network, and continues to be so. Philip heads the fire and services area of Spencer Holmes Limited, and has a good understanding of the building regulations that affect building construction and operation. Given his broad understanding of the issues associated with building and construction, along with the associated commercial limitations, Philip provides high level strategic advice to a large number of owners, developers and tenants, most of whom are long-standing clients. Having joined the Club in 2002 Philip was an active Club Member being appointed to the Committee in 2010, and the Vice President for 2016.

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