Founders' Day celebrated with Children's Commissioner Andrew Becroft

Each year, all three Dilworth School campuses gather together to celebrate the incredible legacy of James and Isabella Dilworth on Founders’ Day.

This year marked 114 years of education at the school and 126 years since the foundation of the Trust.

Chairman of the Dilworth Trust Board, Aaron Snodgrass spoke about the enduring gift from James and Isabella Dilworth and how old boys could also be part of this legacy through leaving a gift in their will to the school and becoming a part of the newly established James and Isabella Dilworth Circle.

The guest speaker for 2020 was Judge Andrew Becroft who is the Children’s Commissioner for New Zealand. He was an engaging speaker who gave the audience four key messages to take away: be brave when facing change, be confident in your own voice, be sincere and have moral courage. His messages all related to a significant historical moment or pop culture including Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” address and Dr Seuss’s “Green Eggs and Ham”.


As part of Founders’ Day, a number of Old Boys were acknowledged with special scholarship awards to assist with ongoing study. This included Hemi Kaka from class of 2015 who is in his fifth year of a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery at the University of Otago. He was one of three recipients of the David Beattie Award for 2020. Hemi plans to use his degree and the status associated with it to advocate for disadvantaged peoples in the Maori and Pasifika communities and in relation to this goal, will go to Samoa in his final year to gain additional perspectives of medical practice.

Old Boy and Ella Burford Award recipient Thomas Swinburn thanked the school for the ongoing support offered to Old Boys to pursue their dreams. His parting message was a challenge for all current students to ponder their talents and make a plan and find a mentor to help them fulfil their aspirations.

March 10, 2020