Volunteer Spotlight – Anne Withington

Be sure to check out our “first volunteer spotlight” on the Volunteer Website! This month’s edition features Anne Withington who is our transport leader for the 2017 tournament.

1. Tell us a little about yourself outside your role as volunteer

My husband (Barry) and I have a family of five sons & daughters and six grandies who live in various parts of NZ & Aus. I’m now a “lady of leisure” having had a very rewarding career focussed on customer service in various corporate organisations, nationally and internationally. I took up golf last year when we retired and moved to Queenstown and am loving being a member at Arrowtown Golf Club. I’ve decided to dedicate my time to doing stuff that I enjoy and stuff that helps others. So as well as chasing that ball around the course, I currently help out at the local Hospice shop, and am a Marriage Celebrant.

2. What made you start volunteering at the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open?

Being new in Queenstown just prior to Christmas I thought that getting involved with the 2016 tournament was a great way to meet new people. So I put my name forward and ended up co-ordinating the shuttle transport service and drivers. I met a great bunch of people who were just so willing to do anything asked of them. It seems to me that volunteering brings out the best in people who are giving their time because they want to, not because they have to.

3. What is your role and how long have you been volunteering?

This will be my second year and my role this year is to oversee and co-ordinate all of the transport requirements for players between The Hills and Millbrook, driving ranges, tee off points and between various accommodation points around the Queenstown area. This time around I can’t wait to catch up with folk who volunteered last year as well as new faces. I’m also looking forward to putting the feedback we gathered last year from the drivers into the mix so we can continue to improve the service we provide.

4. What are some of your favourite memories from the tournament?

It was fun to meet the golfing pros and the celebrities. I recognised a few faces but couldn’t quite put names to some of them until I heard their voices. It became a bit of a game to see how many famous people I could recognise and chat to.

5. Any player you are pulling for to win the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open this year?

It’d be nice to see a Kiwi take out the 2017 title on home soil (no disrespect meant to our wonderful overseas players) but regardless of who the winner is, there’s sure to be some great golf played.

6. Who is your favourite all time golfer and why?

Lydia Ko is my absolute hero. Such skill and calmness & professionalism in someone so young.

7. What is your favourite golf memory either as a player or a spectator?

One of the ladies I was playing with recently chipped into the hole from behind a hill where she had no view of the green. I was thrilled for her, and thrilled for me to actually see it happen live!

8. Tell us some fun facts about yourself.

Golf is “a game of two halves” for me. 19 stablefords on the front nine and 5 on the back nine last week demonstrates why I’m loving the challenge golf brings.

I’m a marriage celebrant and haven’t yet conducted a ceremony on a golf course. There are some lovely spots in Queenstown. Just saying…

The most exciting things I’ve done in recent times are riding a camel in the desert in Egypt, searching for and finding the “big five” game animals while on Safari in Africa and enjoying fine wine and the sunset at the Duke of Marlborough Hotel in Russell (Bay of Islands). None of that however, beats the thrill of the bungy jump I somehow managed to do a few years back off the Kawarau bridge. It still gives me a rush of adrenalin to think about it. Maybe we can convince some out of town volunteers to give it a go while they’re here in 2017!


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