From humble beginnings.
Born and raised on the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island, Guy grew up with the beach down the backyard and the bush over the road. After finishing High School his passion for adventure and surfing took him to Otago University, where he completed a double degree in Commerce and Design, and then a Masters in Science Communication. From creating an adventure festival, to co-founding a film production company and winning international awards for filmmaking – he dabbled in all sorts of entrepreneurial ventures.
In 2010 he co-directed and produced a film called Carving the Future, a 25-minute documentary about four young New Zealanders taking action on climate change and environmental issues. The film won Platinum Best Film at the Colorado International Film Festival, was one of three finalists in the world for the BBC’s Best Newcomer Award, and was a finalist for Best New Zealand Film at Reel Earth.
“Imagine – if every young New Zealander unleashed their potential to change the world. Imagine of the stories of those young people could inspire others – peers, communities, nationwide and beyond.”
Building on the lessons of previous ventures and the success of the film Carving the Future, Guy founded Inspiring Stories in 2011, initially winning a ‘World of Difference’ scholarship from the Vodafone New Zealand Foundation. The next few years would become a whirlwind adventure of developing programmes, partnerships, and trying to build the organisation into a viable social enterprise.
Young New Zealander of the Year.
Guy was awarded Young New Zealander for the Year in 2015. Under his leadership the organisation had developed and grown the prestigious national event Festival for the Future; and supported thousands of young New Zealanders to develop their entrepreneurship and leadership skills, and their ideas to make a difference. Of course it wasn’t all smooth sailing, and the organisation had some huge ups and downs getting started.
Founder & CEO of Inspiring Stories, Guy Ryan, awarded Young New Zealander of the Year in 2015 (pictured second from left, bottom row).