Changing of the guard: Outgoing Wakatipu Community Foundation chair Ray Key, left, with his successor Steve Brent

Wakatipu Community Foundation’s (WCF) inaugural chair Ray Key is reflecting on an amazing six years as he prepares to step aside at the end of the month.

The foundation, he says, has become the favoured vehicle for creating local legacies for the future benefit of the community, while also launching initiatives like the Greatest Need Fund during the Covid crisis.

‘‘We have raised over $4 million and have in excess of $35m pledged in wills for the local community,’’ Key says.

‘‘As the foundation matures, I feel it is the ideal time for fresh energy and leadership to take over.’’

His replacement is Queenstown lawyer Steve Brent, an initial trustee who rejoined the board last year.

He believes the community foundation model makes so much sense — ‘‘at its core is the aim to build and grow funds so money is available to the local community forever’’.

Brent says his vision is for WCF to be a billion-dollar fund within 30 years, ‘‘and I’m excited to guide the organisation to realise this goal’’.

‘‘It’s a big one, but with the significant funds being transferred from the baby boomer generation in the next few decades, it’s entirely achievable.’’

Meanwhile, Key’s remaining chair of the umbrella Community Foundation of Aotearoa NZ, and is staying on as a WCF trustee.

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