Meet our team

Senior Leadership Team

Helen Robinson: Manutaki / CEO / Auckland City Missioner

Denice Bennett: CFO

Joanne Reidy:  Manutea / GM Māori

Jacqui Dillon: GM – Brand Innovation & Income

Micaela van der Schaaf: Strategic Advisor – Food Security & Distribution

Brendan Short: GM – Health Services

Natasha Mackie: GM – ACMHL (Housing)

Daniel Nelson: GM – Corporate Services

Ilana James: GM – Housing Support

Veronica White: GM – People

Deb Ward: Manager – Fundraising & Reputation

Manurau - our Senior Māori Caucus

Rosemarie Harrop (Te Rarawa ki Hokianga, Ngaiterangi): Team Leader/Whaea

Andre Matthews (Ngāpuhi, Te Rarawa): Operations Manager Māori

Leon Witehira (Ngāpuhi, Te Āti Haunui-a-Pāpārangi): Kaiwhakahaere Hub & Haeata Manager

Kahurangi Mara (Ngāti Tūwharetoa): Security Manager

Damian Ambrose (Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāti Porou): Manager of Socially Managed Withdrawal Services

Anoushka Berkley (Ngāti Pikiao): Digital Communications Specialist

Kaylene Edwards (Ngāti Kahungunu): Team Leader He Ara Whakamana Tangata

Tui Gallagher (Te Aūpouri): Team Leader Te Whare Hīnātore

Trent McVarnock (Ngāti Whakaue): Project Implementation Advisor – Māori

Our Board

We work with a Board of volunteer trustees who meet once a month to provide governance and support.

Joanna Pidgeon, Chair

LLB (Hons)
Joanna is a lawyer, one of the founding partners of Pidgeon Judd, a boutique property and commercial law firm and a past President of the Auckland District Law Society (ADLS). She has a particular interest in property matters, sitting on the New Zealand Law Society Land Titles Committee, Chair of the ADLS Documents and Precedents Committee and sits on the ADLS Property Law Committee

Gavin Rennie

Gavin Rennie is a Social Worker who for 30 years taught Social Work at Unitec. He was Chair of the New Zealand Schools of Social Work and for a number of years was a Board member of the International Association of Schools of Social Work (IASSW). Prior to teaching he was the Director of Friendship House in Manukau City and also worked as a Community Development Manager for Waitemata City Council.
He has an undergraduate degree in Sociology from the University of Auckland and Post Graduate degrees in Social Work from Massey University and in Theology from the Maryknoll School of Theology in Ossining, USA. He has long-standing commitment to social justice and continuing interest in church social services and in housing issues.

Evan Davies

Evan is Chief Executive Officer of Todd Capital, a portfolio of businesses and investments including: Todd Property, Integria Healthcare, Todd Minerals and PartsTrader. Prior to joining Todd, Evan was Managing Director of SkyCity Entertainment Group, growing the company from a single site to having business operations throughout New Zealand, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
Evan was named the Deloitte/Management Magazine Chief Executive of the Year in 2001.
Evan holds a Bachelor of Town Planning from the University of Auckland, a Master of Science in Tourism Management from the University of Surrey and a Master of Philosophy in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Birmingham. Evan has business interests in farming and viticulture and is involved in a range of charitable organisations.

Graeme Birkhead

Graeme has more than 30 years’ experience in the building sector. He is a Director of Graeme Birkhead Consulting and has considerable governance experience. He is National President of the New Zealand Institute of Building, a board member of the Property Council of New Zealand’s Auckland Branch and an advisory board member of the Auckland Council Urban Design panel. During his career Graeme has led major projects including large-scale housing developments, business parks, manufacturing facilities, infrastructure works and public sector facilities.

Paul Gilberd

Paul has significant experience in organisational change management, business development, service delivery and communications as well as in governance. He is the Chief Executive of Community Housing Aotearoa, a nationwide peak body for Community Housing Providers. Prior to this he was the General Manager of the social enterprise, Community Finance, which provides low-cost finance to New Zealand’s Community Housing Providers. He spent 10 years with the Meningitis Foundation as founding Director and Board Member. Paul has been a consultant to, and member of, the Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand and Polynesia and advised various tikanga Māori and pakeha Boards of Anglican entities. He is a previous General Manager – Strategy and Development of the New Zealand Housing Foundation and was the Development Manager for the University of Auckland Business School.

Arend Merrie

Arend is a surgeon and senior health leader with governance experience. He has a particular interest in Māori and Pacific health inequity. Alongside his work in general and colorectal surgery, Arend is a trainer on Auckland DHB workshops related to interpersonal skills and culture and a senior examiner for General Surgery for the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. He was previously the Director of Surgical Services for Auckland DHB and the Chair of the DHB’s Surgical Board. His other previous governance and leadership roles include Board Member of the Gut Cancer Foundation; Member of the Clinical Advisory Group for MercyAscot Hospitals; Chair of the General Surgical Specialty Group for MercyAscot Hospitals; Member of the Executive for the New Zealand Association of General Surgeons; Director of the Auckland Colorectal Centre and Director of Endometriosis Auckland. In addition, Arend is an Honorary Associate Professor at the University of Auckland and a visiting surgeon at Auckland City Mission’s Calder Health Centre.

Erica Whineray Kelly

Erica is a Health Sector Consultant, Breast Cancer Surgeon and Executive Leader based in Auckland. Erica has shifted from clinical practice to sector consulting with an innovation and equity focus following 25 years as a doctor and advocate. Erica has considerable experience leading teams in high pressure environments, and leading innovation. Erica co-founded and was the Managing Director of both Auckland Breast Centre (ABC) and Focus Radiotherapy exiting the former to Private Equity. She has been a consultant with Breast Screen Aotearoa, an expert for the Health and Disability Commissioner, and was the founding Chair of the Advisory Board for InZone Girls. Erica is a Fab 50 leader with Be Lab advocating for accessibility, and a member of New Zealand Global Women. Outside of this, she is a mentor to STEM students, and married with two children.