Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) says rural communities are being ignored as Kiwibank moves to close five banks in regional areas.
The company was one of seven category award winners announced at the Public Trust Hall in Wellington.
“We strive to break through the status quo of the shearing industry,” owner Sarah Higgins said.
Higgins said that her inspiration comes from passion for the job.
“When I left school, having worked as a woolhandler in the sheds, I had developed a real passion for wool,” she said.
She said that since she’d started shearing full time, it had become her passion.
“I love to see others excel in what is essentially a professional sport,” she said.
She added that it was the company’s passion and commitment that endeared them to farmers.
“Farmers love our passion for the work we do and the commitment we put in to doing the best we can for their wool in such a professional manner,” she said.
RWNZ national president Fiona Gower said Higgins was a fantastic role model for women in the industry.
“Sarah’s passion for her work, together with her support for her community, and the shearing industry is outstanding,” she said.
Christina Chellew, NZI’s executive manager commercial underwriting, said that a combination of commitment, leadership and support for the rural community made Higgins “a very deserving winner.”