Media personalities Jesse Mulligan and Kerre McIvor hosted the event last Friday night. On stage, Grayston expressed his admiration for The Warehouse Group's emphasis on social responsibility, saying its wider mission to help New Zealanders flourish was one of the reasons he chose to join the group.
He confirmed in a briefing last week that community would remain a core strategic area for the group under his leadership.
The charity benefiting from The Warehouse Group's community focus this year was a new partnership between the Life Education Trust and the Garden to Table Trust called Empower. This initiative aims to tackle child obesity by educating them about growing and cooking healthy food.
The Warehouse Group general manager community and environment Paul Walsh says obesity is a serious concern which means children in the 21st century are likely to be the first generation to have lifespans shorter than those of their parents.
“When we choose who to support, we really consider who's going to make a difference in the community,” Walsh says.
Through its silent auction, main auction and donation drive, the Gala Dinner managed to raise more than $760,000 for Empower.
The Gala Dinner also hosted The Warehouse Group's annual Supplier Awards. In lieu of prize money, the group chose to donate $25,000 to Empower on behalf of the winners.
The awards results are:
Community Hero Award (The Warehouse): Kiri Swannell, of Limitless Hope, Hawke's Bay.
H2T Supplier of the Year Award (The Warehouse): Heze Elegance
General Merchandise Supplier of the Year Award (The Warehouse): Huawei NZ
Supplier of the Year Award (Warehouse Stationery): Brother NZ
Supplier of the Year Award (Torpedo7): Expert Infotech
Technology Supplier of the Year Award (Noel Leeming): Exeed
Appliance Supplier of the Year Award (Noel Leeming): Electrolux Home Products
Innovator of the Year Award: MEA Mobile
Representative of the Year Award: Richard Townend – CourierPost
Financial Services Award: Finance Now
Business Service Partner of the Year Award: Site Property
Supplier of the Year Supreme Award: Huawei NZ