Rt Hon. Helen Clark
Former Prime Minister of New Zealand Former Administrator of UNDP
Helen Clark was Prime Minister of New Zealand for three successive terms from 1999–2008. She was the first woman to become Prime Minister following a General Election in New Zealand and the second woman to serve as Prime Minister.
Throughout her tenure as Prime Minister and as a Member of Parliament over 27 years, Helen Clark engaged widely in policy development and advocacy across the international affairs, economic, social, environmental, and cultural spheres. She advocated strongly for a comprehensive programme on sustainability for New Zealand and for tackling the challenges of climate change. She was an active leader of her country’s foreign relations, engaging in a wide range of international issues.
In April 2009, Helen Clark became Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme. She was the first woman to lead the organisation, and served two terms there. At the same time, she was Chair of the United Nations Development Group, a committee consisting of all UN funds, programmes, agencies, and departments working on development issues. As Administrator, she led UNDP to be ranked the most transparent global development organisation. She completed her tenure in April 2017.
Prior to entering the New Zealand Parliament, Helen Clark taught in the Political Studies Department of the University of Auckland, from which she earlier graduated with her BA and MA (Hons) degrees.
Helen continues to speak widely and be a strong voice on sustainable development, climate action, gender equality and women’s leadership, peace and justice, and action on non-communicable diseases and on HIV. She serves on a number of advisory boards and commissions, including as Chair of the Advisory Board of the Global Education Monitoring Report, Chair of the Board of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, and Chair of the Board of the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health.
Membership, Strategy and Business Development | Council for International Development (CID)
Dr Jacqueline Parisi supports the Council for International Development (CID) in the areas of strategy, planning and business development.
As Executive Director of The Impact Effect, her focus is strengthening not-for-profit organisations and building social enterprises. Recent projects have seen her working in Thailand, Lao PDR, Cambodia, China, Myanmar, New Zealand and Indonesia.
Jacqueline has been working in strategy development, capacity development and organisational development for over 20 years. She has held executive leadership roles in the private, public and development aid sectors, and in international consulting firms. She also supervises doctoral research candidates engaged in academic research.
Executive Director, Greenpeace New Zealand
Russel Norman has been the Executive Director of Greenpeace Aotearoa New Zealand since November 2015. Before this he was a Member of the New Zealand Parliament and Co-leader of the Green Party from 2008-2015.
Russel co-led the Green Party during its period of growth leading up the 2014 election where the Party received 11% of the vote and 14 MPs, for the second election running. He was the Party Spokesperson on Economics and Environment and developed the Party’s economic policy. In the environmental space he was particularly focused on climate and freshwater issues. He served on numerous Parliamentary Committees, mostly the Finance and Expenditure Committee and the Intelligence and Security Committee.
Prior to entering Parliament he worked in a diverse range of industries including automobile manufacturing, sheetmetal fabrication, and viticulture.
He has PhD in political science from Macquarie University in Sydney.
His main area of expertise is in economics, climate, energy, and freshwater ecosystems.
Rachael Le Mesurier
Executive Director, Oxfam New Zealand
As the Executive Director of Oxfam New Zealand, Rachael brings a range of relevant skills and experience to this role. She has worked in leadership roles in the UK, New Zealand and in the Pacific for over 27 years, primarily amongst community based NGO providers (national and international). This includes the following leadership roles:
- Executive Director of the NZ AIDS Foundation
- Regional Director of Family Planning NZ
- Executive Director of the NZ Citizen’s Advice Bureaux
- Executive Director of the Muscular Dystrophy Association NZ
Her areas of expertise include: feminist/women’s advocacy; access to social welfare, health and legal services; and protection of human rights – particularly in sexual and reproductive health, HIV, disability and gender. Underpinning all of these roles has been the personal drive to promote human rights for those who are marginalised, disenfranchised and disadvantaged (e.g. sex workers, IDUs, women and girls, sexual minorities and transgender people, people with disabilities, victims of gender based violence and migrants/refugees).
She has also worked as a technical consultant in the Pacific (regional CSOs, UN Women, UNAIDS, IPPF, SPC, Australian Aid Programme and NZ Aid Programme). She has been invited by: civil society organisations to represent their perspectives to regional and global committees (e.g. ICAAP, ASAP, APA); NZ government to join government delegations to international fora (e.g. UN General Assembly Special Sessions, UNAIDS Programme Co-ordinating Board, WHO Regional Meetings); and by the NZ Aid programme personnel to assist with engaging civil society groups in the Asia and Pacific region. She has a LLB from Sussex University, UK and studied at the Council of Legal Education in Grey’s Inn, London, UK.
Earth System Scientist
Dan Hikuroa (Ngāti Maniapoto, Waikato-Tainui) is an Earth System Scientist and established world expert on weaving indigenous knowledge and science to realise the dreams and aspirations of the communities he works with. From 2011 to 2016 he was Research Director of Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, New Zealand’s Māori Centre of Research Excellence, and is currently a member of Ngā Kaihautū Tikanga Taiao (EPA Statutory Māori Advisory), Watercare & Pāmu Environmental Reference Groups and Pūniu River Care Board.
Dan has been spearheading alternative ways of assessing sustainability, including weaving indigenous knowledge and epistemologies into legislation, assessment frameworks and decision-support tools.
CBE, MNZM, PHD
As CE of Rare Disorders New Zealand; the National Council of Women (2017-18); Volunteer Service Abroad; Director General of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and New Zealand Family Planning, Gill has focussed on gender equality and human rights, so vulnerable individuals and communities can realise their identity and full potential.
This involved service delivery, advocacy with the UN, governments, parliamentarians, communities, and cross sectoral coalitions.
Previously Assistant Vice Chancellor (HR and Equity) at Victoria University, a teacher and writer, she is on the Board of Evofem Bioscience (USA), a mentor, facilitator and speaker, and the co-writer of The People’s Report on the SDGs.
Chief Executive, Forest and Bird
Hailing from Greymouth on the South Island’s West Coast, Kevin joined Forest & Bird as Chief Executive in October 2016.
He has held leadership roles in business, and in the Government and community sectors. Before joining Forest & Bird Kevin served as a Member of Parliament for eight years, and was previously Executive Director of the New Zealand AIDS Foundation and Chief Executive of the West Coast District Health Board.
Kevin has also been extensively involved in various human rights issues and has a strong commitment to honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
A previous member of the West Coast Tai Poutini Conservation Board, Kevin has also been involved in conservation advocacy and campaigning, as well as practical conservation work of planting and pest control.
He is also a mountain biker and tramper.
Director Surgical Services, Auckland District Health Board
Arend is Director of Surgical Services and a Colorectal Surgeon at Auckland DHB. His passion is in the delivery of sustainable, high quality healthcare with a focus on developing teams through a culture of kindness, safety and excellence.
He has been a key partner in developing the Auckland DHB sustainability strategy and a participant in The People’s Report on the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals: An alternate report for New Zealand (2019). Arend is also a Senior Lecturer at University of Auckland and Examiner for the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.
Arend has been leading the clinical teams in driving the values of the organisation and initiated the Speak Up programme to address bullying, harassment and discrimination in the workplace. He is also a strong advocate in promoting health and wellbeing within the work-place.
National Coordinator for School Strike 4 Climate
At 18 years of age, Sophie Handford serves as the national coordinator for School Strike 4 Climate.
Last year, she was added to a Facebook group of young environmental activists from around the country by a teacher at Kapiti College. Sophie was deeply moved by student strikers across Europe and Australia, striking for urgent action on climate change. She started to wonder if it would be possible for something similar to take place in New Zealand.
After Googling ‘how to organise a strike’ and not finding much, Sophie came to the conclusion that it couldn’t be too hard, and started to make connections across the country.
The first NZ School Strike 4 Climate was on March 15 and 20,000 young people made their voices heard. It gained the attention of the entire country, with news outlets such as Stuff & Newshub reporting.
School Strike 4 Climate is still planning and still taking action and are planning an intergenerational Strike on Sept 27th. Climate change is a crisis and needs to be treated with urgency. Aside from being one of the national coordinators of School Strike 4 Climate NZ, Sophie also works for Enviroschools and the GO Club, a science and technology group for girls.
Waitākere Ward, Auckland Council and Chair of the Environment and Community Committee
Councillor Penny Hulse represents the Waitākere Ward on the Auckland Council and is Chair of the Environment and Community Committee.
Penny brings 25 years of local government experience to the role having first been elected to the Waitākere Community Board in 1992 before being elected Chair of the Board in 1994.
In 1995 she was elected as a Waitākere City Councillor and as a Trustee of the Waitakere Licensing Trust.
Since then she has served as chair on a range of committees including Healthy City, Environmental Management, City Development, and Community & Public Health. She was Deputy Mayor to Sir Bob Harvey from 2007 until 2010. Following amalgamation, she then served two terms as Deputy Mayor to Len Brown and successfully led the Unitary Plan process.
She has been instrumental in helping build the West and understands the area and people well. Penny has strong links with her community and cares passionately about the Auckland region. She served two terms on the Waitemata District Health Board, is currently a Director of West Auckland Trust Services and an elected member of the Waitakere Licensing Trust.
Her other community involvement includes Community Waitākere Charitable Trust, West Auckland Riding for the Disabled, The Waitākere Brass Band, Trustee of Swanson Railway Station Trust, Waitākere Anti Violence Essential Services, and former Director of EECA Board.
Penny’s special areas of interest are Climate Change, Sustainable City Development, Environmental Advocacy, Community Development and Youth Empowerment. She is also a big supporter of arts and culture.
Penny is a keen cyclist and has been commuting to the CBD from Te Atatu Peninsula by electric bike since the opening of the Nelson Street Cycleway in December 2015.
Manager, Place Making at Panuku Development Auckland
An advocate of the UN ratified New Urban Agenda global standard for urban development, and a New Zealand representative for the international network Placemaking X, Frith Walker is Manager, Place Making at Panuku Development Auckland. She works within the Design and Place Directorate on the creation of successful public space networks, supporting the programming and activation of Auckland’s public spaces, and champions the difference a healthy public realm can make in terms of creating liveable cities. She and her team are also key contributors to the implementation of Green Star Communities across Panuku’s key development projects
What can a NZ owned Property Maintenance Contracting Company do to assist with the 17 SDG goals? At APS, our evolving business practices, social and environmental initiatives have a direct impact on 14 with an indirect effect on the remaining 3.
The usual improving waste management and work practices methodologies as well as ongoing Health & Safety and staff wellbeing which is expected in our industry but APS does so much more than that. We pay living wage as a minimum, gender equality and opportunity in our 6 trades and within management, extensive apprenticeship and cadetship programmes. Refugee employment with NZ Red Cross, EAP (Employment Assistance Programme) available to all staff, year 13 Scholarships to 4 decile 1 High Schools, supporting the Painga Trust with South Auckland primary and intermediate schools. Extensive conservation planting and pest control on 4 large rural properties, aiming for carbon zero certification by 2020, supporting child fund in Africa, East Timor and the Pacific region.
Aotearoa Youth Leader, New Zealand Commission for UNESCO
Hi, my name is Shahin Najak and I am 19 years old. I am currently in my second year of a conjoint programme at the University of Auckland comprising of Science and Commerce. Earlier this year I was honoured joined the Aotearoa youth leaders that work with the New Zealand commission for UNESCO and part of our positions is to provide the youth perspective to the New Zealand commission regarding the 17 sustainable development goals.
Counties Manukau Health - Director, Strategy & Infrastructure
Parekawhia has recently started at Counties Manukau Health in her role as Director, Strategy & Infrastructure, her previous role was from the New Zealand Transport Agency where she was Central North Island Regional Director from September 2016. Prior to that, she was the Chief Executive Officer of Waikato-Tainui for six years.
Parekawhia has more than 25 years of public policy and public sector management experience including being an advisor to three prime ministers during her time at the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.
She brings significant stakeholder management and governance experience to the role. For almost seven years she was director of her own company dedicated to advancing the creative potential of Māori knowledge, people and resources.
Parekawhia has Masters’ degrees in Social Sciences from the University of Waikato and in Public Administration and Development Policy from the University of Wisconsin. She also undertook an executive leadership programme at Stanford University. In 2014, she received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Waikato and in 2016 was a finalist in theBoard and Management category for the Westpac-Fairfax Women of Influence Awards.
In September 2017, Parekawhia was elected for a three year period, the Chair of Te Whakakitenga o Waikato – the governing tribal body of Waikato-Tainui.
Victoria leads the Aotearoa Youth Declaration conference, bringing together hundreds of rangatahi to create The Youth Declaration policy document. Through this kaupapa, she advocates for youth involvement in decision-making, campaigns on issues young people care about and supports rangatahi engaging with their local leaders. She has been active in the environmental space, alongside Blake (Sir Peter Blake Trust), and has recently returned from COP24 in Poland last year. She is in her final year at Victoria University of Wellington, studying environmental studies, development studies, and politics.
Sustainability Engineer at Tonkin + Taylor
Kate Boylan is a sustainability engineer at Tonkin + Taylor, and at the beginning of 2019 was named the NZGBC Future Thinker of the year. She is a member of the social engineering Advisory team and has the privilege of working on a variety of projects across the Sustainability and Resilience spectrum. Kate dedicates a lot of her spare time to spreading the sustainability message as widely as possible. She initiated and now chairs T+T’s internal green team (the Kākāriki Team) that’s purpose is to engage and encourage colleagues to be more conscious of their impact on the environment. Kate also sits on the Board of ‘The Now Crowd’ – a young professionals network for ‘intrepreneurs’ who are passionate about sustainability and driving positive change within their organisations, powered by SBN. Kate is the editor of social media channels, KiwiGalSaysReduce, aimed at educating family, friends, and followers about how to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
Tamoko Ormsby and Waimirirangi Ormsby (Koopu-Stone)
Pipiri Ki A Papatūānuku
He paapaka o Rangataua
He kaawau o Maniapoto
He taniwha o Waikato
He mokopuna o Tuurangawaewae marae
Ko Tamoko-O-Te-Rangi Taipari Ormsby ahau
No te moana o Mōkau
No ngā wai matamata o Hāparapara
No Te Awahou o Īhenga
No Waikato Taniwharau tēnei mokopuna e waiora ai
Ko Waimirirangi Ormsby (Koopu-Stone) ahau
Were Wai and Ta – ringaringa-waewae (hands-legs) of Pipiri Ki A Papatūānuku. PKP is an initiative aimed at raising more awareness around the current state of our taiao and its impacts on our pepeha (environmental connections) and essentially, our identity. Mauri Ora.
Dewy Sacayan is a litigation lawyer by day and a climate activist by night. After project managing a relief mission in the aftermath of super typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, Dewy started working on disaster management, climate change policy, and grassroots campaigning. She facilitated academic research, published policy briefs, participated at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change COP negotiations, sold premium electric vehicles via Tesla, and campaigned for the Zero Carbon Bill through Generation Zero. As a young lawyer and activist, she is passionate about using her legal skills to properly enforce New Zealand’s environmental commitments in court.
Fale Andrew Lesa
Policy Consultant, Asia Development Bank Aotearoa Representative, UNESCO Asia Pacific Youth Advisory Board
Fale is a policy consultant at the Asia Development Bank and represents Aotearoa on the UNESCO Asia Pacific Youth Advisory Board.
He spent the last ten years as the elected vice chairman of Manurewa High School and will spend the next six years on the Conservation Board of New Zealand and the Child & Youth Mortality Review Committee.
A former city councillor for Manukau, he is currently an international adviser for China’s belt & road project and a fellow at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) in Washington DC.
Fale offers a much needed indigenous perspective as a Samoan immigrant.