Annette-Campbell White Speaks in Cape Town
The University of Cape Town’s (UCT) 2018 graduation season wrapped up in mid December with a clear call to graduates from alumnus, philanthropist and trailblazing venture capitalist on male-dominated Wall Street, New Zealand-born Annette-Campbell White, urging them to make a difference in society.
Speaking at the joint Faculty of Engineering & the Built Environment and the Faculty of Health Sciences ceremony, Campbell-White’s focus was on the future and the inevitable change it brings.
As a New Zealander educated in South Africa who crossed the Atlantic to smash glass ceilings on Wall Street, Campbell-White knows all too well how to adapt to change. And, having fought sexism throughout her career as well as cancer, she knows about battling the odds.
“Nothing can prepare you for change,” she said. “You have to be alert.”
The changes graduates will have to adapt to and find solutions for include climate change, famine and water shortages. But, “change brings opportunity”, a chance for graduates to use their UCT education to make a difference.
“You now have the educational foundation so that you can, in turn, help to develop solutions,” Campbell-White said.
And this gift of education, she said, can never be taken away.
“You have learned how to think and that is the greatest gift of all.”
Earlier in 2018, Campbell-White arts advocate and San Francisco Opera board member was honoured at the sixth annual International Opera Awards (IOA) in London for her lifelong commitment to opera and support of young artists and the performing arts.
Campbell-White was founder and senior managing partner of MedVenture Associates, a biomedical venture capital firm, from 1986 until her retirement in 2015.
Campbell-White founded the Kia Ora Foundation in 1997 to help shape New Zealand’s musical, artistic and creative landscape through higher education and global opportunities. The Foundation’s scholarships and special grants have contributed to the careers of many emerging and established New Zealand artists, including tenors Pene Pati, Amitai Pati and Simon O’Neill; soprano Amina Edris; baritone Hadleigh Adams; and bass Jonathan Lemalu, all of whom have performed with San Francisco Opera. In collaboration with her husband, Dr Ruediger Naumann-Etienne, Campbell-White has sponsored San Francisco Opera performances since 1995.
Original article by Carla Bernado, University of Cape Town News, December 18, 2018.
Photo by Je’nine May.