The Spirit of Aegis - presented to Stephen Kannangara
August 21st was a pretty special night for the KT team, as our partner Stephen Kannangara was presented with the Spirit of Aegis award. This award was established in 2010 in an attempt to provide recognition of the charitable and voluntary work, and community endeavours, of a lawyer who is a member of LANZ (Law Alliance NZ). Many lawyers volunteer without charging their time, effort and services to a number of charitable endeavours with passion, enthusiasm and wisdom - and we are so proud that Stephen is one of these lawyers.
Stephen is the founding partner of Cherry Kannangara, now known as Kannangara Thomson. Kannangara Thomson was one of the founding firms of Law Alliance New Zealand. Embracing the cultural diversity and unique make up of the region, Kannangara Thomson is committed to delivering a comprehensive range of quality legal services to clients primarily throughout Christchurch and in the wider Canterbury area.
Led by Stephen, the team at Kannangara Thomson draws on life experiences gained from all corners of the globe, with the unique personal histories forming a rich tapestry of wisdom, intelligence and practical thinking. Stephen was born in Singapore. He came to New Zealand to study law and was admitted to the Bar as barrister and a solicitor in 1987. He briefly practised in Papua New Guinea before being admitted as a solicitor of England and Wales in 1992. Stephen later added the Singapore Bar to his list of achievements, where he practised until 1996 when he returned with his family to New Zealand.
Across an accomplished career, Stephen has practised in legal areas as diverse as litigation, criminal law, employment, finance, franchising, immigration, mortgaging sales, family trust probate and administration of estates and probably many more areas as well. Outside of the office, Stephen enjoys cooking, fishing and travelling and of course his family. Stephen has been an active member of the Singapore Club since 1996. He's worked tirelessly for many years as a member of the Club committee and is also a past president. Stephen usually acts MC for the National Day dinner. The Singapore Club itself was actually set up to help new migrants to settle in. It celebrates the key festivals, including Singapore National Day and often hosts dignitaries such as the Singapore High Commissioner, New Zealand members of Parliament, the ex-chief justice of Singapore and on one occasion, I understand, also the president of Singapore and his wife.
Stephen has also been a regular volunteer at the local community law centre. Stephen has been active also with the Stewards Gully Residents Association on a voluntary basis for over 20 years, working for residents through the various neighbourhood. Dealing with legal matters and attending their meetings, whilst also assisting with various issues relating to living in that particular neighbourhood. As a member of LANZ, as a lawyer, a businessman, a gentleman, father, husband and friend, Stephen Kannangara brings all that is good to his community and to LANZ.
Thank you Stephen for all you do, we know you are very humble about the work you do and tend to shun any formal recognition, but we are proud of you, and congratulations!
As well as receiving the award itself, a significant cash grant was provided to a charity of Stephen's choice, and Stephen chose ChildFund, and in particular a project to build a water supply and storage system in Lung Ruoi village in Vietnam, an ethnic community with limited access to basic services including safe water, healthcare and education. We're very indebted to Marsh, QBA, Sovereign Insurance as well as LANZ for the fiscal support provided, which enabled such recognition to be advanced.