Acting Chair Announcement

The Electric Fencepost

Andy Justice looking dapper

Kiwiburn’s ExCom has appointed Andy Justice as Acting Chair. It is a busy time for the ExCom, so the decision was made to put the search for a new Chairperson on the back-burner until after the event next year. Thanks Andy for stepping up to the plate.

Andy also holds the Treasurer role, aka “The Beancounter” (beanie). As such, he manages the more mundane tasks, such as paying the bills, keeping the accounts sharp and ensuring we get the biggest bang for every Kiwiburn buck spent. His ultimate goals as Treasurer are to help ensure Kiwiburn not only survives but grows, and that activities can be expanded to arts and events outside of the annual gathering. His vision for this includes the implementation of a development plan to help willing volunteers and community members broaden their life experiences via Burner Exchange Programmes and attending Regional Events and Summits.

Here is what he has to say about the Acting Chair role:

Firstly, what does the Chair role involve?

It is not just chairing any ExCom or other meetings – that is a small part of the role. The Chair’s role is to coordinate the activities of ExCom so we all work as a team as efficiently as possible, whilst minimising stress and still having some fun. It entails making sure everyone has the support they need to do their role in terms of resources, training, and getting answers when needed. Listening to everyone, facilitating resolution of any issues, and channeling feedback when needed.

At times the Chair may be required to represent Kiwiburn in dealings with Burner communities, both local and overseas, including Burning Man, and also with external partners such as the site’s land owners, local Councils, various consultants, and the general public.

The Chair also works with the Secretary and the Treasurer making sure all necessary processes are carried out, forms filed, etc to ensure Kiwiburn’s non-profit incorporated status is maintained. And ensuring we uphold our commitment to the 10 Principles [as newbie Acting Chair that is what I think it entails – ask me again in three months and it may be different].

How do you spend your time when you are not doing things related to Kiwiburn?

Kiwiburn has been pretty full on recently, though outside of that I also do work for other festivals and then any spare time is spent trail running in the Hunua Ranges or around the Tongariro and Ruapehu parks. 

Being involved with Kiwiburn can take a lot of energy. How do you re-energise?

As above trail running is my main escape as there is nothing like a dose of natural ozone therapy running in the forests and mountains. Also hoping to get back into paragliding – closest thing to being as free as a bird – almost.

Do you have a favourite Burn outfit?

Generally always been a traditional Kiwi in shorts and t-shirt. Some beanies (fellow accountants) call that daring, even extreme.

What skills have you learned by being involved with Kiwiburn? 

Learning how to achieve goals, or even define them in the first place, when you are part of a group consisting of an eclectic mix of extraordinary people who have their own unique ways to get things accomplished and often have diverse views on life itself.

What has been your favourite moment at a Burn?

The compassion and camaraderie shown throughout the event particularly on the two Burn nights. The entertaining and hilarious events such as naked Olympics and robot jousting. Plus in the evening, the amazing and wide ranging repertoire of music and dance available. 

What are you most excited about for Kiwiburn 2020? 

Getting Kiwiburn back on the Paddock after a gap year.  I think everyone is going to go for it with even more vigour.  There are some amazing artworks planned, an interesting and wonderful range of Theme Camps and registered events, and then there are all the glorious impromptu things that only happen at Kiwiburn. It is always great to catch up with all our volunteers, both longstanding ones and newbies, who put in countless hours during both the pre-event preparation phase and the main event days. Without all these wonderful people Kiwiburn could not happen.