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Our People

The Presbyterian Support Central team is made up of more than one-thousand staff, 350 volunteers and 15 Board and committee members.

These dedicated  and passionate nurses, social workers, counsellors, healthcare assistants, diversional therapists, mentors, managers, professionals and volunteers share a vision of supporting and empowering people and communities across the lower North Island.

Introducing PSC’s Senior Leadership Team

Pat Waite, Interim Chief Executive

Pat Waite has had an extensive career in financial services both in New Zealand and overseas, and in the trustee industry where he was a former Chief Executive of Public Trust. He is a Past President of the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants, a member of the Risk and Audit Committee for Te Tumu Paeroa (the Maori Trustee) and a member of the Audit and Risk Management Committee for Te Puni Kokiri.

In his consulting capacity, Pat has also provided strategic and change management support to a range of organisations, including Surf Life Saving New Zealand, Queen Elizabeth II National Trust, New Zealand Land Search and Rescue and various community foundations and social services agencies.

Julia Hennessy, General Manager – Family Works Central

Julia is the General Manager at Family Works Central. She has been a practicing social worker and senior manager in the field of children and families for more than 20 years. During this time she has spoken to audiences and led training world-wide, as well as contributing to a number of printed resources.

Julia is the New Zealand representative on the board of Restorative Practices International (RPI), and an elected Board member on the Cannon’s Creek Opportunity Centre, and the co-chair of the Wellington Community Network.

Nicola Turner, General Manager – Enliven

Nicola is the General Manager of Enliven’s residential services, responsible for 16 rest homes and seven retirement villages. Originally an Occupational Therapist, Nicola left clinical work in the late 1980’s to become Registrar of the Occupational Therapy Board. Since then her career has spanned a range of health management roles in both government and private sector organisations.

Nicola joined Presbyterian Support Central in 2007. Nicola also sits on the older persons policy group of the New Zealand Christian Council for Social Services and was an Eden in Oz and NZ Board member between 2009 and 2017.

Alisha Kennedy, General Manager – External Relations

Alisha is the General Manager – External Relations, responsible for the organisation’s marketing, communications and fundraising. Alisha’s background is in journalism, but she found her true passion in communications and marketing for organisations that make a real difference in people’s lives. She’s held communications roles with a variety of organisations including the Wise Group, Cancer Society and Ministry of Social Development.

Alisha joined Presbyterian Support Central in 2013, attracted to the organisation’s unique position of offering support to not only children and families, but also older New Zealanders.

Introducing our Board

Peter Sherwin (Chair)

Peter is a Partner in Grant Thornton New Zealand, chartered accountants. He specialises in business development, governance and succession planning.

Peter holds a number of governance and advisory roles with business and public benefit entities.

Stuart Francis (Deputy Chair)

Stuart is a management and health care consultant working at senior levels, particularly facilitating organisational design and transformation, multi-agency initiatives and national programmes.

Stuart is also the National Chair of Scouts New Zealand.

Marie Callander

Marie began her career in teaching and is now a commercial lawyer in New Plymouth where she works with commercial and not-for-profit entities specialising in governance, commercial and property advice.

Marie is a member of the Institute of Directors and former deputy chair of Scripture Union.

So’o Leatigaga

So’o is currently an Economist for New Zealand Post Group. He has extensive experience in corporate strategy services, network economics, financial business case modeling and negotiations in mergers and acquisitions.

Chris Nichol

Chris is a director at Mixed Media Ltd. He is an ordained Presbyterian Minister and had held a number of positions within the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa.

Chris also has a career in TV where he has worked as a producer, director and presenter.

Nigel Willis

Nigel is an orthopaedic surgeon currently working for Capital and Coast District Health Board, as well as private practice.

He has a number of roles with the New Zealand National Board of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, is an associated clinical leader at Capital and Coast DHB and the chair of the Brooklyn Community Centre.