I joined the Foundation in January 2012 as part of the team delivering the hepatitis C pilot. Since then I have held the Hepatitis B programme manager and operations manager roles. I have recently been appointed the Chief Executive Officer.
I come from an allied health background. I spent seven years at the Ministry of Health, four of those years as senior project manager for the Bowel Cancer Screening Programme. I hold a Masters in Health Science and a Prince2 practitioner qualification, and I belong to the Institute of Directors.
In my spare time I like to garden. Recently I became a grandmother for the first time, which also keeps me busy.
I have had a special interest in hepatitis since 1979, when I did studies on the epidemiology of hepatitis B with Sandy Milne, as well as trials of the vaccine. I was involved in treatment of hepatitis B and C carriers since the early 1990s. I have initial specialist qualifications in adult medicine as well as further specialising in paediatrics. I am partly retired but still working in hepatitis and paediatrics.
I am married with one child and live in Whakatane. My interests include trout fishing, sailing, kayaking, classical guitar and European travel.
I completed my advanced training in Gastroenterology in 2014. Included in my training was 1.5 years at the New Zealand Liver Transplant Unit. I completed a Masters in Medical Science focusing on Palliative Care in End Stage Liver Disease. Subsequent to completion of my training I did a year as the Hepatology Fellow at the Princess Alexandra Hospital, home of the Queensland Liver Transplant Unit. In 2016 I returned permanently to New Zealand and have taken up employment as a gastroenterologist and hepatologist at Bay of Plenty District Health Board. I am excited to also be the clinical director of the Hepatitis Foundation.
I started working for the Foundation in September 2016, in the newly created Nurse Manager role. I am also the deputy CEO.
I am a registered nurse with almost 19 years’ experience in various areas, such as emergency, community and practice nursing. I have a Bachelor of Nursing, a post-graduate diploma in advanced nursing, a certificate of proficiency in pharmacology, certificate in clinical nurse education and nurse preceptorship, and a certificate in business management.
I enjoy running, travel and spending time with my two sons, friends and family.
I started with the Foundation on a casual six-month contract for data entry in 1994 and have never left. It has become my second home; my colleagues are like family, as some of us have known each other for 10 years or more. I have held a number of positions within the Foundation over my long service, including the gardener and receptionist during the early years. I am proud of and believe in the service we provide and feel we make a positive impact on our clients’ lives. I have developed long-lasting relationships with staff, stakeholders and – most importantly – our clients. There’s nowhere I’d rather work.
I started with the Hepatitis Foundation in May 2018 after 12 years working in PR and communications for local government. I’ve been in the media industry for more than 20 years and have worked as a journalist for various regional, national and international publications. When I’m not working I’m often found running, reading or refereeing disputes between my children. I’m also currently writing a collection of short stories.
© The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand 2016