The Foundation was formed in 1976 when brothers Alan and Don Mackenzie made the decision to leave their estates to the community of Mid-Canterbury. They were successful farmers at Ealing owning nearly 2,500 acres of land, 2 stud herds of cattle and 2 stud flocks of sheep.
Each brother brought their own skills and talents to their farming business and the community. Don Mackenzie was a visionary and involved himself in farming interests and commercial activities off the farm. Alan on the other hand was the practical man that brought Don’s vision into reality on the farm. They were a complimentary team
Both were diagnosed with cancer in the mid-1970’s. Anticipating the end of their lives together they decided to leave a legacy to the community they had lived in and loved. Almost their entire wealth was transferred to the Foundation shortly before they died.
It is a fitting reflection of the matters that were important to them and their community that they left their wealth for the following purposes:
They went on to guide the trustees to confer the greatest possible benefit on the province of Canterbury.
The trustees assumed ownership of the farming assets and continued farming until 2002 when they sold the farms and have since successfully managed a diverse investment portfolio.