Cancer Society project manager June Mills holds a bunch of
fabric daffodils, which are associated with one of the
organisation's main fundraisers. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
June Mills is leaving the Otago-Southland Cancer Society
today after 29 years working mainly in fundraising, but will
continue to be involved as a new board member.
Yesterday, the 72-year-old said she would miss the day-to-day
contact with colleagues, volunteers, sponsors and the public.
She looked forward to using experience gained in her long
career to help the board guide the organisation's future. She
spent most of her time at the organisation leading
fundraising, although she said every society staff member and
volunteer played a part in that. The role meant adapting
big-ticket national fundraisers such as Daffodil Day and
Relay for Life for the South. Daffodil Day started in 1990,
while the first southern Relay for Life was in 2002.
Daffodil Day was her favourite fundraiser because it was
gratifying to see people receive a ''wonderful gift'' in the
form of daffodils for contributing.
The 22 years she spent in her first career, in television and
radio, provided a background for the networking and
relationship-building needed for fundraising. She felt
fortunate and privileged to have worked at the society for so
long, and to have spent her entire career in Dunedin, where
she was born. Two years ago, she took on a new role, as
project manager, with a focus on how the society could expand
to meet expected growth in Central Otago.
Fundraising would always be the organisation's chief
challenge, she said.
Chief executive Mike Kernaghan said Mrs Mills was a
''legendary'' figure who inspired colleagues and volunteers.
Earlier this year Mrs Mills was awarded a Queen's Service
Medal in the New Year Honours for her contribution to the