it takes a village to raise a child and a community to protect our fresh water and ecosystems

Our team and trustees come from a range of backgrounds in science, local government, academia, community fundraising and more.


Abbey Egan

Field Team Crew

Abby Fisher

Field Team Crew

Beka Burbery

Field Team Crew

Ben Youngman

Science Communicator

Bob Olerenshaw

Field Team Crew

Cat Dillon

Operations Manager

Cathy Patoine

Field Team Crew

Celyn Edwards

Field Team Crew

Elaine Kelly

Partnerships Coordinator

Emberly Wetherall

Field Team Crew

Emily Walker

Knowledge Broker

Emma Cranmer

Field Team Crew

Jaylene Harper

Education Support & Communications

Jose Cranfield

Education & Outreach Coordinator

Julie Perry

Partnerships Manager

Kelly Humphries

Admin Superstar

Kyle Learmonth

Field Team Supervisor

Lucy Murray

Project Lead

Magali Domingo

Farm Lead

Merle Sea

Web Design

Michaela Blackblock

Special Projects

Millie Ginnett

Funding Support

Nicky Davis

Field Team Supervisor

Nina Rongokea

Project Support

Olivia Newman

Field Team Crew

Ollie Eden-Mann

Urban Facilitator

Prue Kane

Programmes Manager

Sally Hudson

Field Team Senior Crew

Sarah Taylor

Human Resource and Health & Safety Manager

Silvia Yardley

Field Team Senior Crew


Dr Amanda Bell


Mandy is an experienced director and business owner in the primary sector, veterinary, biotec and tourism industries. Her focus is One Health, the optimal integrated health of water, environment, animals and people, and in integrating science and technology to create roadmaps and actions to deliver on future thinking and vision. She chairs the MfE-funded Wānaka Water Project and DINZ/MPI Passion to Profit programmes and was a member of the Freshwater Leaders Group which assisted Ministers to develop national freshwater quality policy.

Criffel Station is home base for Mandy, husband Jerry and their three children. Having grown up on farming properties in Otago and Canterbury, Mandy holidayed with family for many years in Wānaka, underpinning her passion for helping to ensure that future generations continue to enjoy local waterways in the same way.

Calum Macleod


Calum has been involved in a number of roles since coming to Wanaka but is best known for starting the iconic Paradiso Cinema in Wanaka. Calum was elected as a Wanaka Councilor on the Queenstown Lakes District Council in 2013. He was reelected to the QLDC in 2016 and 2019.

Calum’s current QLDC roles include: Deputy Mayor, Deputy Chair, Infrastructure Committee, Liaison with the Guardians of Lake Wanaka, Member of the Lake Wanaka Lagarosiphon Management Committee, Liaison with the Upper Clutha A&P Society and Liaison with the Wanaka Chamber of Commerce.

Dr Don Robertson


Don is the Chair of Guardians of Lake Wānaka and a member of Guardians of Lake Hāwea. His background includes 40 years in marine fisheries science & management, marine ecology, biodiversity and biosecurity. He held senior research and management roles in NZ Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries & NZ National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research Ltd (NIWA), including NIWA Vessels Ltd. Don led the campaign to design, fund and build the NIWA research vessel “Tangaroa”, commissioned in 1991.

Don was the NZ member on the Governing Board of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, as a member of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System Management Committee & Node Manager for the Southwestern Pacific Ocean (part of the global Census of Marine Life programme). He has also served on a number of government and Royal Society research committees.

Jeff Donaldson


Jeff is a Biosecurity/Biodiversity specialist managing his own environmental company. He has been a senior Environmental Manager in central and local government and has been involved in freshwater management at both government levels for over 30 years, with a strong passion for the preservation of the lakes of the South Island.

Jeff is a response manager for biosecurity incursions and acted as the National Operations manager for the Didymo incursion. He has been involved with Mycoplasma bovis since November 2017. He is a trained Civil Defence Response Manager for QLDC. Jeff’s passion for the Upper Clutha waterways extends to his role in the QLDC Harbourmaster team, patrolling and educating on the lakes and rivers in the region.

Kate Scott


Kate, a resource management planner by trade is an Executive Director of Landpro Limited. Kate lives in Bannockburn with her husband and three young sons, where they enjoy all that Central Otago has to offer. In 2018, Kate was awarded a Nuffield Scholarship, which enabled her to undertake a period of international travel and study, completing a research paper entitled ‘Enabling Better Environmental Outcomes in Agriculture’. Kate is interested in facilitating community engagement and change from the ‘ground–up’. As a trustee of Wai Wānaka, Kate is able to bring these skills to the governance table, to help support the fantastic initiatives run by the Trust in the interest of achieving integrated catchment management across the Upper Clutha.

Katie Hart


Katie has over 20 years’ experience as a fundraising & marketing professional for not-for-profits across the UK, Australia and NZ. She’s played a key role in the strategic development and growth of many high-profile charities, including The Fred Hollows Foundation in Australia and Amnesty International in Australia and the UK. Katie currently works for Orange Sky New Zealand, a start up charity supporting people experiencing homelessness. She’s helping them to build a sustainable future and long-lasting, meaningful relationships with their supporters as awareness of their work grows in Aotearoa. Prior to becoming a trustee, Katie was involved with WAI Wānaka as a project manager.

Peter Treacy


Peter is a ‘recovering lawyer’ having spent much of his career as a partner of an international law firm in Europe and Asia, specialising in the construction and financing of large-scale infrastructure projects. He is a Director of several companies and is a consultant to various businesses. Peter was born and educated in Dunedin and has had a life-long association with Wānaka. He is passionate about all things Wānaka, and is an avid skier, mountain biker and fly fisherman.

Andrew Gawith


Andrew is a lapsed economist with experience in setting up and managing an economics consulting business and an investment management firm. He is currently a Trustee at Te Kakano, a founder and Trustee of the New Zealand Rivers Trust, which is involved in the Cawthron NZ River Awards. He is a director of two farming businesses and is acutely aware of the biological and economic tensions between land use and the health of freshwater eco-systems.


We couldn’t achieve what we do without the combined effort, help and support of our amazing funders, stakeholders and the Upper Clutha community. Thank you for your continued partnership and support!