Thought Leadership Speakers

Dr. Mahina-a-rangi Baker – Te Wānanga o Raukawa

Dr. Mahina-a-rangi Baker (Ātiawa, Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Toa), is a lecturer in Kaitiakitanga Pūtaiao at Te Wānanga o Raukawa. She also runs Te Kōnae, a Māori environmental consultancy that supports iwi and hapū all over the country, and also does work providing advice to government on Māori environmental issues. The work that takes up most of her time is working as the Environment Manager for Te Āti Awa ki Whakarongotai. Her PhD is in Envirnomental Planning and her thesis was focused on mātauranga Māori tools for modelling water catchments. She was closely involved in the development of the National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management 2020 in her role on the Kāhui Wai Māori, and has more recently been involved in advising on the reform of the Resource Management Act.


Liz Brown – Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu

Liz Brown grew up on the shores of Te Waihora where her whānau have lived for many generations close to the marae. Liz is a highly experienced governor, holding a variety of Board roles across the public, private and not-for-profit sectors.  Most roles have involved contributing Mātauranga Māori into Board thinking to find positive outcomes for Māori, the wider community and the environment.  Liz is generationally focused and has strong leadership to work collaboratively with entities to develop short-term solutions and long-term strategies.  She has extensive experience over an extended period, with over 30 years in Taumutu leadership.  Liz is the current Ngāi Tahu Co-Chair for Te Waihora Co-Governance Group.

Outside of governance, Liz works fulltime as the Deputy Assistant Vice-Chancellor Māori at the University of Canterbury.  She assists the University to create a learning environment which recognises and promotes Aotearoa New Zealand’s unique bicultural society.


Craig Pauling – Environment Canterbury, Councillor

Craig is of Māori and European descent, with tribal affiliations to Ngāi Tahu and Ngāti Mutunga.

He holds a degree in Environmental Management, and post-graduate qualifications in Social Science and Ecology.

He is also a qualified RMA hearings commissioner, and has worked in a variety of roles in environmental policy, research, and as a consultant.

He is a founding trustee of Te Ara Kākāriki, a charitable organisation dedicated to ecological restoration on the Canterbury Plains, and is also heavily involved in competitive waka ama (outrigger canoeing).


Julian Williams – Te Huia Resources

Julian is a descendent of Ngaati Makirangi, Waikato. Julian regards himself as a Kaitiaki to his Tupuna Awa, the Waikato River and all of its taonga. Julian was raised in between the Waikato and Waipaa Rivers in Ngaaruawaahia and spent much of his youth swimming, eeling and catching koura in the rivers and Hakarimata paemaunga. This initiated his desire to work in the kaitiaki and taonga space. Along with his wife, they have a small whaanau consultancy focussed on policy, engagement, climate action, taangata whenua assessments and kaitiaki training. Julian is currently involved in multiple works including three waters projects, transport, RM policy and planning, and sector training on Te Mana o te Wai.


Dr Emily Afoa (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Maniapoto) is a Pou Whakarae / Director of Tektus Consultants Ltd

Dr Emily Afoa (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Maniapoto) is a Pou Whakarae / Director of Tektus Consultants Ltd and a Board Member for the Association of Consulting and Engineering NZ. Emily’s professional experience spans local government, academia, and consultancy environments – all with a focus on water systems. Emily is driven to normalise the valuing of mātauranga and tikanga Māori aligned with non-indigenous knowledge systems in engineering practice, to uplift te mana me te mauri o te wai.


Jon Lamonte, PhD, MA, BSc(Hons), CCMI, CMath, CDir, FRICS, FIOD, FIMA, FRIN, FCILT, RAF(retd) – Watercare Services

Jon is a former senior officer in the Royal Air Force in the UK, flying operationally before tours in the Ministry of Defence (logistics and procurement). After leaving the Service, he became Chief Executive of Tube Lines, running the engineering and upgrade of London’s busiest underground lines before taking over all modes of transport in the Greater Manchester region as Chief Executive for TfGM. More recently, he led Sydney Metro through the opening of their first driverless line, whilst constructing three more lines in Australia’s largest public transport project.

Jon was appointed as Watercare Services Limited’s CEO in April 2021. He is Director of the Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA).


Hannah Edmond – Mott MacDonald

Hannah is a Technical Director and the Water Team Lead for Mott MacDonald’s Wellington Office. She is a Chartered Civil Engineer with project management experience, including tunnelling and 3 waters projects in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. This has included Thames Tideway Tunnel in London, Rosedale Wastewater treatment plant in Auckland and the Duck Creek wastewater storage tanks in Wellington.
Hannah is an advocate of carbon emission reduction in the construction sector, and her work and leadership in infrastructure carbon in the NZ Water Sector earnt her the title Young Water Professional of the year in 2020. She is passionate about focusing on climate change within her projects, and the importance of adapting for the future.


Petra Carey – Russell Mcveagh

Within a broad competition and regulatory practice, Petra specialises in infrastructure regulation. Petra is currently advising clients on the design of the regulatory frameworks for the proposed water service entities, including transfer of assets and liabilities, powers and duties, pricing and charging, and stormwater management. For the economic regulation proposals, Petra’s advice is drawing on her experience advising airports and energy companies on the establishment and implementation of regulation under Part 4 of the Commerce Act.


David Allen – Buddle Findlay

David Allen specialises in all aspects of resource management, environmental and natural resources law.  He is a leading adviser on complex and large-scale infrastructure projects and has particular experience in wastewater and freshwater, roading and energy projects.



Frances Wedde – Buddle Findlay

Frances Wedde specialises in resource management and local government law, and she has a particular expertise in Māori and Treaty law. Frances has advised the Crown on many Treaty settlements, and advises Crown entities and local authorities on iwi engagement frameworks and Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 litigation.


Katy Te Amo – Taumata Arowai

Katy has been a public servant for most of her career. She trained as a teacher which led her to Te Papa Tongarewa in a range of roles which used her education training. Since her Te Papa days Katy has spent the last 10 plus years in a range of roles across central government. This has included policy roles at Te Puni Kōkiri and three years as Private Secretary to the former Minister of Māori Affairs, Hon Pita Sharples.

In 2014, Katy moved into the Treaty Settlement sector as a Negotiation and Settlement Manager at the Office for Māori Crown Relations – Te Arawhiti. Katy has been involved in the Three Waters Reform Programme since early 2019, initially leading iwi Māori engagement and policy, then governance in the establishment phase of Taumata Arowai. Katy is Head of Strategy and Insights at Taumata Arowai.

“For me, Taumata Arowai embodies the fundamental characteristic of the public service which is wanting to make a difference for Aotearoa and the communities we serve.”


Michael Howden – Taumata Arowai

Michael Howden BE, MComm has 20 years of international experience using data to solve complex problems in the water, environmental, humanitarian, and agricultural sectors. Through studies across regulation and systems thinking, he recognises the impact we can achieve through diverse ecosystems of organisations working together, the barriers to collaboration, and the opportunity that data can offer.
Michael was previously immersed in the world of water data, supporting the Ministry of Health through his role at Beca and as the previous chair of the Water New Zealand Smart Water Infrastructure Group. In his role as Data and Insights Manager at Taumata Arowai, Michael is working with organisations across the water sector to better inform drinking water regulation and provide evidence to help lift the water sector’s performance.


Allan MacMaster – Scottish Water/Aecom

Allan has 30 years of international utilities experience and is an industry expert in information and asset management and business transformation programs. For the past 6 years, Allan has been providing specialist advisory services to the Australian Water Industry with a focus on efficiency and effectiveness across capital investment programs, organisational design and continuous improvement.


Jennie Vickers – Zeopardlaw

Announced late in 2021 as the inaugural supreme IFSEC Global Security Influencer of the year 2021-22, Jennie is currently full time consulting and keynote speaking.
Jennie had her first glimpse of governance at age 14 as a local government Youth Councillor, while running a financially successful youth club. Fast forward to 2022, and Jennie is intentionally not in any governance roles, despite being named in the New Zealand 100 Top Diverse Board Ready Directors List.
Over time, Jennie has served on, or with governance groups as diverse as a sports governing body (Chair), Social Enterprise (Chair), Listed Companies (Company Secretary), Law Society (Councillor and Vice President) and Associations (as CEO and Board Coach).
Jennie made New Zealand her home over 25 years ago having forged a successful career in the UK as a commercial/business/IT lawyer with organisations like Slaughter & May, EMI Music, Pace Microtechnology, Comshare and Synthomer.
In New Zealand, a long spell in the utility sector covering electricity, gas and telecommunications, gave Jennie a deep understanding of OT and IT enterprise risk management and related Board responsibilities.
The last 8 years saw Jennie in the NFP (Not for Profit) Association space, as a CEO and Business Development Director. The common thread was thought leadership and connecting people in the Defence, Security and Infrastructure Sectors in both New Zealand and Australia and further afield.

As a result of the IFSEC win, initially as the top Influencer in the Category- “Associations and Thought Leaders” and then as the Inaugural overall winner, Jennie has been using her position of influence to connect people and businesses and governments to secure better security and business outcomes for others.
A lifetime and constant learner, Jennie has a Masters of Management, a Degree in Law, is admitted to practice law in the UK, Australia and New Zealand and is now studying Disruptive Technologies, Digital Transformation, Cyber Security and Art Appreciation.
Further Awards in 2021/2022 include being a Finalist in the Inaugural 2022 New Zealand OSPAs Outstanding Female Security Professional Category and Co-winner of the 2021 New Zealand Security Sector Network (NZSSN) Women in Security Awards Aotearoa (WiSAA) ‘Thought Leader’ category.

Bryce Davies –  IAG New Zealand

Bryce is responsible for IAGs presence and standing within New Zealand through its relationships with governments and its social responsibility.  Bryce has a strong and long-standing focus climate change adaption and natural hazard risk reduction.  He has been part of numerous government and business working groups focused on these matters, including the Government Climate Change Adaptation Working  Group.  Bryce also speaks regularly on these topics, with a particular focus on their connections to insurance and keeping New Zealand well insured.


Gill Jolly – GNS

Gill is a volcanologist from the UK and after researching magma physics for her PhD, she started work at the British Geological Survey. After a few years exploring for gold and base metals in the UK, she was involved in the eruption of Soufriere Hills volcano, Montserrat from 1995 to 2005. In 2006 she moved to NZ where she led the Volcanology team at GNS Science through New Zealand and SW Pacific eruptions. Between 2014 and 2018, she was the Director of the Natural Hazards Division and led the division through the response to the 2016 M7.8 Kaikōura Earthquake. She is currently the Leader of the Natural Hazards and Risks Science Theme. She is responsible for developing GNS’ strategic direction for research on volcanoes, tsunami, landslides and earthquakes, and she is a conduit between the natural hazards research community and senior decision-makers.


Adam Coxhead – BNZ

Adam leads BNZ’s Sustainable Finance team, which is focussed on delivering tailored sustainable financing solutions for corporate & institutional customers.

Adam re-joined BNZ in January 2022 having spent the previous 8 years with NAB in the UK, most recently leading the European Corporate Finance business, including project and acquisition finance, asset finance & leasing, and debt capital markets.

With 18 years financial services experience across NZ and the UK/Europe, a background in renewable energy project finance and recent experience of the rapid growth in the use of sustainable finance across NAB’s European client base, Adam brings an international perspective to BNZ’s sustainable finance offering.

Adam holds Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Commerce degrees from University of Canterbury and has completed a University of Cambridge Business


Helen Tua – Mercury

In an industry (and believed to be large business)-first, Mercury established Helen’s role 12 years ago, with a focus on having someone on the ground in communities working with organisations who support whanāu, to better understand the circumstances of its customers living in hardship.

Over time, Helen has become highly regarded in communities and played a pivotal role in crafting Mercury’s strategic approach to customer care, from supporting day-to-day decision making, to developing longer-term, innovative and sustainable solutions.

She is a member of the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment Energy Hardship Reference Group, sits on several community boards and supports others wishing to take a similar approach to serving alongside our communities.


Anton Matthews – Hussle Group

First and foremost, Anton is the proud father of three beautiful tamariki, and husband to Jess. Born and bread in Ōtautahi but with whakapapa back to Te Rarawa, he links to the far north in Ahipara too. Anton owns and operates Hustle Group, an organisation comprised of Hustle Hospitality which has several local eateries, a catering company and a handful of food trucks; as well as Hustle Education which delivers workshops, online courses, and mentoring to many businesses and business owners throughout Ōtautahi. Also within Hustle Group is Hustle Events, who has an exciting event coming up in September, called Angitu 22.
Hustle Group also maintains strong community ties through their charitable trust, Angitu Charitable Trust, which has a particular focus around creating opportunities for rangatahi Māori to experience success as Māori. Hustle Group is focussed on developing its people, sharing Māori culture and language with the community, developing intergenerational wealth, and building a great company that will live on for many generations to come.


Alan Dent – Deloitte

Alan retired from Deloitte in May 2021 after 26 years as a partner in the firm’s Corporate Finance practice. During his time at Deloitte Alan was extensively involved in the provision of financial advisory services in relation to many of the government initiated sectoral reforms – including fisheries, social housing, health, electricity and telecommunications. His experience including advising on the establishment processes for the various state and crown owned entities formed as part of those sectoral reforms. Alan led the Deloitte firm’s Water Sector group until his retirement. He co-led the Deloitte Three Waters Economic Impact study commissioned be the Department of Internal Affairs in 2021 and the Deloitte Water Workforce analysis jointly commissioned by DIA and Waihanga Ara Rau.


Adrienne Miller – CEO at UDINZ

Adrienne L Miller, a lawyer by training, has worked as an adviser and executive for more than 25 years in and around construction and infrastructure and was recently appointed as CEO at the Urban Development Institute of New Zealand (UDINZ). She has a range of perspectives having worked in waste and environmental services (Waste Management), building products (Carter Holt), contracting companies (Downer & Fletchers), a public sector water utility (Watercare), consulting (private practice and her own boutique consulting firm Cupola) and most recently as GM, New Zealand for sustainability rating tool provider, the Infrastructure Sustainability Council.

She has also been involved in number of industry initiatives beyond her executive roles. She served a term on the Building Advisory Panel at the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE); was a foundational member of the WIN Advisory Board at Infrastructure New Zealand; was involved in a Water NZ committee that developed H&S guidance for the sector; was involved in the #BuildAKL campaign and, in her capacity as a Trustee of Diversity Works NZ, chaired the project steering committee for the Construction Diversity Roadmap, recently delivered by DWNZ for the Construction Sector Accord.

She writes and speaks regularly on industry issues and contributes to a number of publications.


Teina Boasa-Dean – MSocSci., PhDcompleting

I am Teina Boasa-Dean, a linguist, a poet, a musician, an educationalist and scientist.  I am of Tūhoe and Pacific Island ancestry.  I reside in the northern reaches of the Te Urewera forest and have done so for the past 25 years.  The things dearest to me are whānau, hapū and iwi.  I do not see these parts of life as distinct from the forest I live in but indeed one and the same dynamic ecosystem.  I revel in the opportunities to touch the soils of my ancestors each day in the communal gardens of my valley home.  I am the co-creator of the Takarangi, which is only one Māori interpretation of a circular and regenerative economy.  I believe to be separated from ‘ōnukurangi’, the environment and biosphere is tantamount to ‘eco-apartheid’ where the human element has created an unnatural distance from ōnukurangi physically, mentally, emotionally and most strikingly, a spiritual disconnect.  The Takarangi works toward a restoration of this imbalance.


Apra Boyle-Gotla – Watercare Service

Apra Boyle-Gotla currently serves as head of innovation at Watercare Services Ltd. She has a chemical engineering background having worked in academia, consulting and in water utilities. In her former role as an infrastructure planner, she introduced the concepts of planning under deep uncertainty including tools such as adaptive planning for infrastructure in climate impacted locations. In her current role, she is passionate about enabling safe-to-fail experimentation within Watercare and partnering with those in the industry and beyond to foster an innovation ecosystem as a means of further tackling complexity and deep uncertainty.


Debbie O’Byrne – Beca

Debbie has been involved in the Circular Economy (CE) space for almost a decade working with multiple organizations to integrate CE principles into the redesign of their business strategy. She has extensive experience in the practical application of CE principals in local government projects and was appointed to the College of Assessors as a CE expert for MBIE, an Affiliate Academic to the University of Newcastle and participates in multiple CE related Advisory Groups.


Matthew Jackson – Alimentary Systems

Matthew is an Edmund Hillary Fellow and Broadband and Energy Innovation Awards Judge.
He co-founded Alimentary Systems in 2021 to convert Aotearoa’s $16B organic waste emissions liability into economic value. Alimentary’s waste to value model is circular, creating near-zero waste and zero emissions.

Outcomes from their intelligent Integrated Waste Treatment Plant include clean energy, cleaner waterways and increased biodiversity.
He is known for creating Aotearoa’s first decentralised telehealth network and for being sued for enabling Netflix in Aotearoa with Global Mode™.
Matthew is a disruptor who takes on systems-level change with a tau iwi commitment to kaitiakitanga.
I tipu au I Waiharakeke ki Te Waipounamu, Kei Tamaki Makaurau e noho ana au


Lucy Tukua – Mott MacDonald

Lucy has whakapapa ties to Ngāti Tahinga, Ngāti Paoa and Ngāti Whanaunga. A child of Tāmaki Makaurau she has supported her Iwi in both governance and operations roles. She has an extensive background in local government and a strong influence in cultural engagement, design and regenerative practice, being in service to place, Iwi and Community. She is an executive member for Ngā Aho a collective of Māori design professionals, a member on the Auckland Council Urban Design Governance Panel, an Iwi representative for the Hauraki Gulf Marine Spatial Plan and also a newly appointed Board member for Auckland’s Light Rail. Her role as Kaihautū Whakarito, advocates for a place sourced, indigenous led and community empowered practice. A nested system and ecology that puts place and nature at its heart requiring Aotearoatanga and indigeneity at its core.


Andy Burgess – Commerce Commission

Andy Burgess, General Manager, Infrastructure Regulation at the Commerce Commission.  Andy joined the Commission in December 2019 after working for regulators in the United Kingdom. At the energy regulator, Ofgem, he had senior roles managing the energy transition, network regulation, and enforcement and competition policy, and was on the Bureau of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Network of Economic Regulators. Andy was also on the Board of the Agency for the Cooperation of European Energy Regulators and the General Assembly of the Council of European Energy Regulators (CEER).  He previously had several roles at the Office of Rail Regulation.


Heather Shotter – Department of Internal Affairs

Heather heads the National Transition Unit, responsible for establishing the four new water services entities that will deliver the three waters to people across New Zealand. Heather has held previous roles as the Palmerston North City Council Chief Executive, and Executive Director of the Committee for Auckland, which promotes positive social and economic development. Prior to joining the Committee for Auckland Heather had a extensive career in senior roles in the private sector including 12 years with SKyCity Entertainment Group.

Heather has worked closely in the Three Waters Reform programme as a member of the Joint Central/Local Government Three Waters Steering Group established in Mid-2020 and the Local Government Infrastructure Reference Group.