Wed 6 Dec 2017 AT 17:00 pm , Wellington

The 2017 Political Year in Review

Left to right: Spiro Anastasiou, Mark Unsworth, Therese Arseneau, Stephen Mills

Join us for our annual end-of-year event, the 2017 Political Year in Review.

Lobbyist Mark Unsworth, political scientist Therese Arseneau, and researcher Stephen Mills and will share their views on this tumultuous year, moderated by strategic communications specialist Spiro Anastasiou.

Come from 5.00pm for drinks and nibbles with the event starting at 5.30pm. After the session, stay on to network over more refreshments provided by our generous hosts Russell McVeagh.

About the Speakers:

Spiro Anastasiou

Spiro is a strategic communications specialist experienced in managing issues of public and political sensitivity. He heads Senate’s government relations practice in New Zealand and has a background in journalism, change management, and crisis management.

Before joining Senate, Spiro was strategic communications manager at the Ministry of Health, where he played a lead role in the response to the swine flu pandemic and was seconded to the government’s response to the Christchurch Earthquake.

Mark Unsworth

Mark Unsworth is a Director of Saunders Unsworth Limited, one of New Zealand’s foremost lobbying companies.

Mark specialises in building strong and enduring personal relationships with politicians, advisors and civil servants in Wellington. Specific areas of experience includes pharmaceuticals, banking, food and alcohol, energy and gaming.

Prior to establishing Saunders Unsworth, Mark spent 7 years at the specialist lobbying firm Link Consultants; that followed two years in Parliament as the Private Secretary to the Hon David Caygill.

Therese Arseneau

Dr Therese Arseneau is a political scientist with particular interest in elections. She has lectured in Canadian and New Zealand universities and is currently a Senior Research Fellow in Political Science at the University of Canterbury. In 2011 she received the UC Teaching Award for excellence in teaching.

Dr. Arseneau was a member of the New Zealand Electoral Commission’s Expert Advisory Panel for the 2011 referendum on the electoral system and the post-referendum review of MMP. She is currently an Expert Advisor to the Commission on its voter participation strategy and the referendum on New Zealand’s flag Therese also has extensive experience as a political and election night analyst for TVNZ and TV3 in New Zealand and for CBC TV and Radio in Canada.

A Canadian by birth, she completed a BA Honours (First Class) at St. Francis Xavier University, Canada, and Doctorate and Master’s degrees in Politics at Oxford University, UK which she attended as a Commonwealth Scholar.

Stephen Mills

Stephen is one of New Zealand's most experienced issues management consultants, with over 20 years experience both undertaking and using market research to handle major issues and develop communication strategies. He has extensive experience with major corporate and political clients in New Zealand, Australia and throughout Asia, and his extensive experience working at the top level in politics and involvement in numerous issue management and political campaigns in New Zealand and Australia brings a vital additional dimension to many UMR projects.

Stephen is known for giving direct and clear advice based on UMR research findings. He was a senior political advisor to New Zealand Prime Minister David Lange prior to joining UMR and was one of Helen Clark's closest advisors when she was Leader of the Opposition and then Prime Minister.