The chief executive of the New Zealand Nurses Organisation is resigning after more than a decade in the post saying it is time for new blood.
“I’ve been here 11 years and felt it was time for a change,” said Geoff Annals.
He said after a challenging year of putting in place a new constitution for NZNO, including quite a few ‘transition’ issues, he believed it was a good time to hand over the reins to someone else.
“I went into the job thinking I’d be here more like three to five years,” recalls Annals. “I’ve absolutely enjoyed it and it’s been a fantastic job and lots of aspects of the job are things I’m passionate about.”
He said the new constitution will bring in some extensive change including a smaller board and, from the New Year the newly elected NZNO president and kaiwhakahaere will be fulltime paid positions.
“NZNO is a very exciting organisation to be part of and I’ll miss that but equally I (think it) needs someone in this position who is coming in fresh.
“I just think its time. When we’ve gone through making the change …it will be like starting with a clean sheet.”
Annals three-month notice of resignation is up in mid-February but he has told the NZNO board he would be happy to stay on longer if they wanted further help during the transition phase.
He said he was yet to start actively jobseeking and was focused at present on finishing up work and projects.
“It is a great job – having bitten the bullet and resigned I think more about the things I’ll miss.” He said that included the energy and the people in nursing and health he has worked with across the last decade.
“Hopefully whatever job I go to will continue many of those relationships.”
Annals trained as a nurse in the early 1980s and went to become principal nurse at Waikato Hospital in 1992 and was Waikato Hospital general manager before taking up the NZNO chief executive post in 2001.
Jenny Carryer, College of Nurses executive director, paid tribute to Annals saying he left a “significant legacy and big shoes to fill”.