Rachael Newsome (née Ruddenklau) attended St Hilda's between 1992 and 1997, and boarded at Tolcarne. Rachael loved her time at St Hilda's and got involved in as many activities as she could fit in, including plays and productions, rugby, rowing, netball, and was a prefect and Sacristan in her final year. The opportunity to get involved and give things a go is an approach Rachael has taken into the rest of her life.
Rachael went on to graduate from Victoria University of Wellington with LLB and BCom (Marketing) degrees. Rachael commenced her legal career at Bell Gully in Wellington, before heading to London with her husband for the first time, to work in an investment bank just before the GFC. Rachael returned to Wellington for 5 years during which she had three children, and then they returned to London a second time when her youngest was 11 weeks old. Rachael's love of learning and doing, instilled during her time at St Hilda's, has seen her shift sectors (and countries) a number of times, working in a number of senior legal and executive roles in Wellington, London and Auckland, including at the NZX (the New Zealand Stock exchange), Study Group, an international education business, and iconic kiwi brand Icebreaker. Rachael is currently the Chief Risk Officer and General Counsel at FNZC, New Zealand's leading investment bank and broker.
Rachael also sits on two boards, Steens Honey, a small Manuka honey company based in Tauranga that exports its honey, and has recently joined the Auckland University Council.
Rachael has three children and now lives in Auckland, close to family. Rachael's husband died unexpectedly in 2014, while she and her family were living in London. The challenges of living through that and parenting three young children alone has been difficult. However, amazing support from family and friends, including those made while at St Hilda's, has played a huge part in ensuring that Rachael and her family are thriving.