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Executive Committee

Catherine Murray

Acting-President

Catherine became a member of Coeliac New Zealand in 2012 when her daughter was diagnosed at the age of 5. Attending many of the kids club events and family fun days arranged by the organisation, Catherine felt privileged when offered the opportunity to join the Committee and help to achieve the goals of the organisation

Living in Auckland, Catherine has a business degree, manages an HR consultancy business and has two children. She is also the Managing Director of a charitable organisation for the benefit of the Auckland Deaf Society.

Prior to starting her business in 2007, she worked in various corporate businesses in Auckland and spent two years working for a Swedish Volvo Ocean Race team. When she finds the time, Catherine enjoys playing squash, netball and running.

Debbie Nelson

Treasurer

Debbie is a qualified chartered accountant with 17 years’ experience in Business Advisory both in Chartered accountancy firms, the private sector and the not for profit sector. She studied at AUT and majored in Accounting and IT.

Debbie has been associated with Coeliac New Zealand since having a child diagnosed in August last year at 22 months old. Since then her sibling has been diagnosed as well.

She is able to offer a financial eye to the Executive Committee along with other business skills such as IT. With two children diagnosed under the age of five, her interests lie in ensuring a good life and continuing support from the society in bringing about change that ensures their interests are protected at the policy level and helping assist in the progression of diagnosis, availability of foods, and further research.

Sylvia Maunder

Committee Member

Sylvia and Peter recently sold their business, as Land Surveyors and Resource Management Consultants, in Wellington. Both are still employed as a Consultants by the new owner of the business but Sylvia is now semi-retired in Carterton with two beautiful cats. Most of her spare time during summer months is occupied with officiating at major Track and Field meetings around the country and sometimes overseas.

While in Wellington Sylvia was heavily involved with Athletics administration as secretary of the Wellington Track and Field Committee for 15 years and then a further 6 years as Chairperson of Athletics Wellington. During that time she has also spent 20 years as a Wellington Councillor to Athletics New Zealand. Sylvia was diagnosed as a coeliac in 2006 and joined Coeliac New Zealand and the Support Group in Wellington. With the recent move to Carterton, Sylvia has set about resurrecting the Wairarapa Support Group and also taken over the role of Support Group Leader/Key Contact for the area. 

Brett Thorburn

Committee Member

Brett returned to New Zealand a few years ago after 15 years in Italy. His daughter was diagnosed with coeliac disease when she was 2 and as a result he has been involved with the Italian Coeliac Society for the past 8 years. He is director of a successful tech business and has experience in international business and finance.

In his spare time, Brett likes to explore the Hauraki Gulf or take to the hills on tramping expeditions – although most hikes are less ambitious than his successful ascent of Kilimanjaro in 2008.

Nic McKenzie

Committee Member

Nic’s involvement with Coeliac NZ began in mid-2015 when both she and her son were diagnosed with Coeliac Disease. Since then she has enjoyed the path back to better health, while becoming increasingly aware of the ongoing challenges that face the Coeliac community.

Nic lives in Christchurch with her husband, school-aged son, and Bruno the cat. She works as a contractor in the disability sector, on projects related to service and policy development, research and evaluation, and education programmes. In her spare time Nic enjoys being in the outdoors with her family, exploring new things (through, travel, food, or culture), reading, and cooking.

Danny Auger

Committee Member

Danny has been involved with the not for profit sector in leadership roads for over 10 years. With a National Dip in Business and being a qualified project manager Danny has helped organizations though many change processes most recently being the SPCA. Danny has a keen interest in getting the best out of people through positive reinforcement and empowerment. When not behind the desk Danny can be found playing with his young son or will be under the bonnet of a classic car or two.

“I applied to join the Board of CNZ as I hold an interest in helping people with coeliac disease and the research that goes along with it. I am looking forward to helping change and grow the society from a governance point of view”.

Tracey Paterson 

Committee Member

Tracey’s journey into the world of Coeliac Disease started earlier this year when her eight year old son was diagnosed with the condition. Improving her understanding and the changes required in his diet also aligned with her personal interests in food, health and wellbeing issues. As a result her family are now eating a tasty, delicious gluten free diet and enjoying the change. 

Tracey has experience as a Board Member, Senior Executive and Chartered Accountant. Her twenty five year career has been primarily in international trade and investment, working in both the private and government sectors. She has held roles in Europe, the United States, South America and New Zealand. Tracey is looking forward to combining her personal interest in the Coeliac condition along with her governance, commercial, financial, policy and advocacy skills to contribute to successful outcomes for the Coeliac New Zealand Board.

Libby Sinden 

Committee Member

Libby Sinden is a new member of the Executive Committee. With close family members, including her brother and niece, being diagnosed coeliac she has a passion for making a difference in the lives of those affected by the disease. She is a lawyer with a background in corporate law who currently works part time in general practice at a family firm in Eden Terrace. Living in Auckland with her husband and two young children, Libby has a passion for good nutrition, food and cooking. She enjoys adapting recipes to make them gluten free and testing them out on her discerning niece. Libby is also a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors.

Kath Fouhy 

Committee Member

Kath first became involved with Coeliac NZ a few years ago as a member of the Medical Advisory Panel. As a New Zealand Registered Dietitian, she has assisted many people overcome the nutritional challenges that come with coeliac disease and following a gluten-free diet. Kath is currently a Senior Performance Dietitian at High Performance Sport NZ, leading the nutrition support for many of our Olympic & Paralympic athletes and has recently returned from the Paralympic Games in Rio. As a former President and Board member of Dietitians NZ, Kath is passionate about member, not-for-profit organisations and is looking forward to working with the CNZ team.