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National Vice President Candidate

Janet Castell (MNZM)

 

Kia ora Koutou, my name is Janet Castell MNZM, and I am asking for you to support me as National Vice President. 

Through my association with, and the many years I have served in various appointments in the RSA, I have developed critical insights into how we can improve this great organisation and return it to its core purpose of supporting veterans and their families.  

I make no secret about my passion to ensure that all service personnel, whether retired or serving, receive the support that they are entitled to whether it be from Veterans Affairs, NZDF, other government agencies or their local RSA. My passion comes partly from my firm belief that “service” is still my duty and responsibility to ones’ troops goes beyond retirement from the NZDF. Being keenly aware of the weaknesses of the Veterans Support Act 2014 and the inability of Veterans Affairs to consistently deliver high-quality support to those who have served, I am dedicated to ensuring that all veterans and their families get improved services from the Government. I am also an avid supporter of the concept of RSA’s without borders which allows for the expenditure of individual RSA Poppy Funds to support eligible individuals or their families in need regardless of location. 

My vision for the RSA, is that it works cohesively on getting our support services right, positions itself as an organisation able to support the next generation of veterans, and is reflective of the organisation that inspired the returning men in 1916 to set up the RSA.  

My skills are directly related to ensuring that we have support services that are able to be accessed by those that still serve, those veterans that are transitioning out of the military, the large cohort of veterans that we have created since 1990, and those veterans that are in their retirement years. My experience is in ensuring that support advisors are trained and skilled in accessing services, which entails me travelling up and down the country training and mentoring support staff.  

I have a significant background in governance and strategy enabling me to be able to work collaboratively with the Board and the President's forum in ensuring our strategy sets a vision that enables us to be there for the oncoming generation of veterans.  

I have significant experience in the Government sector working as a Senior Manager in Corrections and prior to that was a Senior Officer in the NZDF 

I served as an officer in the Army for 28 eight years. I started my career as a Territorial soldier in 1975, joined the Regular Force in 1977 and was commissioned into RNZSigs in December 1977.  I served in numerous command and staff appointments, highlights being Commandant Officer Cadet School (NZ) and Commandant Cadet Forces, retiring in 2005 from the role of Deputy Chief Defence Intelligence in the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. 

My RSA experience is as District Vice President and District Support Manager of Wairarapa, Hawkes Bay, and East Coast District. I am currently President of the Waipukurau and Districts RSA.