Rita hanegraaf receives royal award for efforts in Meierijstad region

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Rita Hanegraaf-Penninx was today appointed Member in the Order of Orange-Nassau. Mayor Kees van Rooij of the municipality of Meierijstad presented her with this royal award during the annual ribbon-cutting ceremony. Rita Hanegraaf is CFO of the OPACKGROUP and receives the award for her administrative involvement with the church, cultural institutions and volunteer work in the region.


Together with her husband Joan, Rita Hanegraaf runs the OPACKGROUP, a group of seven packaging manufacturers, from Keldonk. Both own the family business with more than 750 employees spread over ten locations in the Netherlands. Despite the energy it takes to run this company as CFO, Rita Hanegraaf also manages to invest in social projects.

As early as 1985, she combined her work with volunteer activities. For example, she was involved in the neighborhood association “D’n Auwe Mèrge” in Keldonk as secretary and treasurer. For the faith community in the area, Hanegraaf applied her financial knowledge to responsible policies. In the role as fundraiser and treasurer of Faith Community H. Antonius van Padua and later involved with the parish of St. Franciscus Veghel.


When the children were still in elementary school, Hanegraaf was an involved parent. From 2003 to 2013, she was a member of the parent council that organized all kinds of activities for the school children, was a class parent, and during that time she set up the childcare arrangement, for which she was a childcare parent herself.

In addition, Rita Hanegraaf is also active in the cultural field; since 2022 she has been administratively responsible for the development of Stichting Cultuurfabriek Noordkade in Veghel, where in recent years a vibrant cultural life has emerged with various events; regional and national.

Mayor Kees van Rooij is impressed by this commitment: “You have been described as the backbone of the family, leading in intellectual and financial decision-making; combined with a gróót heart. A typical example of this which also touched me is that at the celebration of the 10th anniversary of the OPACKGROUP, you donated all the gifts to the Liliane Fund. It can surprise no one if we can proudly qualify you as a personality who has been working for the benefit of society for quite some time!”

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