Visionary Leader : Douglas Goodfellow – A world view

The 2010 Designworks Top 200 Visionary Leader, William Douglas Goodfellow OBE, has followed in his father’s footsteps as one of New Zealand’s truly visionary businessmen and generous benefactors.
His father, the late Sir William Goodfellow, was the visionary who effectively kick-started the New Zealand dairy industry and launched its co-operative model. Douglas then led the expansion of his family’s business into exporting of almost every kind – from fish to meat, live breeding stock to fruit and vegetables, while simultaneously building the Goodfellow’s Amalgamated Dairies enterprise.
Douglas Goodfellow is, however, more than visionary and motivated businessman committed to expanding New Zealand’s exports. He is philanthropist, particularly committed to supporting education and medical science research and aged care programmes in New Zealand.
He has unstintingly supported Auckland’s St Kentigern College, the Presbyterian school his father helped establish in 1951. Now 93, he remained on the school’s trust board until 2000.
In 1978, to mark the 50th anniversary of Amalgamated Dairies and in memory of his father, Douglas funded the Goodfellow unit in the School of Population Health at Auckland University. He also established postgraduate chair in general practice at Auckland Medical School.
He was Chair of the Auckland Medical Research Foundation for many years and has been generous benefactor to this and, along with the whole Goodfellow family, the St Andrew’s Village retirement complex.
Douglas Goodfellow’s Presbyterian work ethic is evident in everything he tackles and his approach to life. He is self-confessed workaholic who prefers to labour into the night on the projects with which he becomes involved. “It all comes from the basis of his Presbyterian faith which is about hard work, study and giving back to society,” says his son Bruce who is chairman of The St Kentigern Trust Board.
Douglas Goodfellow and his wife Judith prefer to keep low personal profiles. Douglas shuns publicity of almost any kind and is reluctant to accept accolades for either his commercial success or his many charitable contributions to the community.
But, said the Top 200 judges, Douglas Goodfellow has made significant contribution to New Zealand in many different ways. He built successful family business and always thought outside the square. He was and still is committed to New Zealand, to the need to export our products to the world and to promote education and medical care. He has always taken global view of New Zealand’s needs. He is worthy Top 200 Awards Designworks Visionary Leader.

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