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Food and Nutrition Manager receives Award of Excellence

Dave Monro, Heart Foundation Food and Nutrition Manager, was recently awarded the Dietitians New Zealand Award of Excellence at the organisation’s 75th Jubilee conference in Auckland.

Dave Munro, Food and Nutrition Manager

The award – the highest accolade from Dietitians New Zealand – recognises the outstanding contribution of a dietitian to the advancement of the profession of dietetics.

Clare Tahu, Dietitians New Zealand Council Chair, presented the award and paid tribute to Monro’s significant contribution to health gain for New Zealanders through his leadership in population health nutrition. 

Monro was acknowledged as congenial and highly respected – a role model known for his ability to influence government agencies and the food industry to improve health policies with his wide knowledge and integrity of advice around food composition and regulations.

Monro thanked the Heart Foundation’s food and nutrition partners for their “willingness to engage and work together” as well as the “incredibly talented and highly professional” dietitians who nominated him and his Heart Foundation team and colleagues, past and present.

“This award is a wonderful acknowledgement of the Heart Foundation’s work over many years. These achievements would not be possible without your support, expertise, passion and desire to work together as a team,” says Monro.

Heart Foundation CEO Tony Duncan congratulated Monro – the first Heart Foundation dietitian to receive the award – saying he is “a much deserved recipient of Dietitians New Zealand’s highest honour”.

“Nutrition is a core competency at the Heart Foundation. I would like to thank Dave for his leadership of this discipline to its current position, and of being recognised nationally as being trusted as the voice of reason,” says Duncan.  

Monro’s wife Angela was there to see him receive the award as was his father John – who inspired and influenced Monro to become a dietitian.

“Dad’s love of cooking taught me that food is so much more than a bundle of nutrients – it’s about taste, enjoyment, family and love. He also introduced me to Rob Quigley, one of the first male dietitians, which gave me insight into the possibility of a nutrition and dietetics career,” says Monro.

Monro says he loves his work as it allows him to use his knowledge of nutrition to make a practical difference in people’s lives.

“Dietitians can make a huge contribution. As a profession I urge us to stay practical and relevant, not get too caught up in the detail and process and look for common ground when addressing food and nutrition issues.”