Wananga landing Wananga landing

Ben Gough Family Foundation Unveils Trailblazing Leaders of the 2024 Leaders Scholarship

15 December 2023

The Ben Gough Family Foundation in partnership with the UC Business School MBA Programme is delighted to announce the recipients of the 2024 Leaders Scholarship: Luke Johnson, Nicola Peddie, and Tony Fallon. These outstanding individuals have demonstrated exceptional leadership in their respective fields, embodying the values of innovation, collaboration, and positive impact.

Luke Johnson: Strategic Business Advisor and High-Performance Leadership Coach

Luke Johnson, a seasoned Strategic Business Advisor and High-Performance Leadership Coach, is a dynamic leader with a passion for solving complex problems through leadership development, strategic planning, and change management. Luke's extensive background includes leadership roles in the Defence Force, the Public Sector, and global motorsport, providing him with a unique perspective on leadership in diverse environments.

Currently working with SMEs across New Zealand, Luke specializes in developing tangible and relevant strategies to scale and grow businesses. He expressed excitement about the scholarship opportunity, emphasizing his eagerness to collaborate with fellow scholars and mentors to further enhance his leadership skills. Luke envisions making a positive impact not only in Canterbury but also on a broader scale across New Zealand.

Nicola Peddie: MBA Student and Agricultural Industry Leader

Nicola Peddie, a full-time MBA student at UC, brings a wealth of experience from the agricultural industry. In her role as the Northern Regional and Offshore Manager at The New Zealand Merino Company, Nicola showcased strategic leadership by establishing the Australian procurement arm, launching ZQRX, and collaborating with globally esteemed brands like Reda, Lora Piana, Allbirds, Icebreaker, Smartwool, and Mons Royale.

Nicola's influence extends globally, positioning her at the intersection of industry leaders. She played a pivotal role in enhancing value for growers by meeting the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) requirements of brand partners. Having participated in two Te Hono boot camps, Nicola's forward-thinking approach and global market insights position her as a leader in the evolving agricultural sector.

Tony Fallon: Program Manager in Health New Zealand

Tony Fallon, a Program Manager in the Office of the Chief Executive for Te Whatu Ora | Health New Zealand, is a distinguished leader with a wide range of roles in the health sector. As a board member of Athletics Canterbury and with leadership roles in organizations such as the New Zealand AIDS Foundation and the Needle Exchange Program Te Waipounamu, Tony has demonstrated a commitment to community well-being. A graduate of Trinity College Dublin and Lincoln University, Tony's leadership extends beyond his professional endeavours. In his downtime, he can be found at F45 or engaging in road biking and running in the Port Hills.

“We’re confident that Tony, Luke and Nicola’s dedication and diverse experiences will contribute significantly to the program,” commented Ben Gough. Elsamari Botha, MBA Director at the University of Canterbury, reiterated the sentiment and noted that, “these scholarships have had a big impact not only on the scholarship recipients, but the UC MBA as a whole”, noting that the network of mentors and scholars have accelerated the programme’s focus on industry integration and impact.

The Ben Gough Family Foundation congratulates Luke Johnson, Nicola Peddie, and Tony Fallon on being selected as the 2024 Leaders Scholarship recipients. These exceptional leaders will undoubtedly play key roles in shaping the future of leadership and making a positive impact on their communities and beyond.

About the Ben Gough Family Foundation Leaders Scholarship

The Ben Gough Family Foundation is committed to supporting and empowering emerging leaders who demonstrate exceptional promise and commitment to making a positive impact on their communities and industries. To learn more about the Scholarship visit

Ben Gough Scholars - Luke Johnson, Nicola Peddie, Tony Fallon Ben Gough Scholars (left to right) - Luke Johnson, Nicola Peddie, Tony Fallon

More information
Visit our media enquiries page to contact UC Media.
What to read next
Privacy Preferences

By clicking "Accept All Cookies", you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyse site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.