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Air NZ's Julia Raue up for global 'Disruptive CIO' award

09 Sep 2015

Air New Zealand CIO Julia Raue has been named a finalist in the global Talent Unleashed Awards.

Raue, who has been in IT for more than 20 years and has been Air New Zealand’s CIO since mid-2007, will go head to head with Russell Francis, CIO of Australian online training company Velpic, for the title of Most Disruptive CIO/CTO in the awards.

It is the first year the category has been included in the awards, which are now in their third year and are run by IT recruitment company Talent International and have a judging panel including Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, EY New Zealand Entrepreneur of the Year Dan Radcliffe and Sir Richard Branson.

The Most Disruptive CIO/CTO award will recognise the technology chief who has achieved ‘amazing’ results at their company through a disruptive or transformative approach to their technology strategy.

Last month Richard Earl, Talent International managing director, told IT Brief that the role of the CIO is changing dramatically, and CIOs now need to be ‘a different breed of person’.

“The modern CIO has to be in touch with what is happening, they have to understand big data and the opportunities it presents. They have to understand the internet of things because there is phenomenal change ahead of us,” Earl says.

He says the addition of the Disruptive CIO category to the annual awards is designed to highlight the changes needed for CIOs and recognise those who are doing well.

“This award recognises the growing necessity for individuals in these roles to innovate their business systems and harness technology so that they not only grow, but survive,” he says.

Raue has overseen a number of award-winning world first in innovation in the airline industry during her stint at the top, and has been a finalist in the Westpac Women of Influence Awards twice.

Winning the award would be something of a swansong for Raue, who has announced she will be leaving the role later this year.

The winners of the Talent Unleashed Awards will be announced in Sydney on Friday, with Branson presenting.

Five global technology awards are up for grabs, with five winners from Asia Pacific and two from the United Kingdom.

Raue won’t be the sole Kiwi flying the flag on awards night, with BE Intent also vying for an award as a finalist in the Best Digital Business (SME) category.

BE Intent dubs itself as ‘technology for thriving, flourishing, striving, attaining and sustaining’ and offers a range of apps for business, personal and youth.

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