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Meet the team

Our team is dedicated to improving the wellbeing of people, family/whānau and communities.

Our Board

Our Board is committed to providing us with best practice governance, expertise, advice and guidance.

  • Caleb  Watson

    Caleb Watson


    Caleb has worked in the digital services and telecommunications sector in roles spanning learning development, operations, technology,...

  • John Marsden

    John Marsden


    John Marsden is a highly respected Kaumatua, Reverend and long-time supporter of Hearts & Minds. His extensive professional background...

  • Maurice  Murphy

    Maurice Murphy


    Maurice has had an extensive career in the banking industry spanning New Zealand, Singapore and Australia. He is currently employed in a...

  • Clayton  Rangitutia

    Clayton Rangitutia

    Board Member & Cultural Advisor

    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā kārangaranga maha o te motu. Tēnā tātou katoa. My role is an Iwi Support Worker at Te Puna Hauora, working...

  • Selena Griffith

    Selena Griffith

    Board Member

    Selena has a wealth of experience in the health sector working with both youth and adults in roles spanning Mental Health, Public Health,...

  • Josh Lee

    Josh Lee

    Board Member

    Josh has a background in Psychology and has worked in mental health for a number of years. He is currently employed with the Psychology and...

Our People

Our people are committed to providing an inclusive and safe space that fosters wellbeing and encourages growth.

  • Amberlee  Wharton

    Amberlee Wharton

    Acting Chief Executive

    I am a big believer in the vital role the community sector plays in generating wellbeing outcomes and am delighted to be involved in such an...

  • Maria  Thorndyke

    Maria Thorndyke

    Operations Manager

    Originally from the UK, I came to NZ in 2007 with my husband and my son where we made our home on the North Shore. I trained in the UK, and I...

  • Xiaoying  Zhang

    Xiaoying Zhang


    Ni Hao! Hi, I am Xiaoying. I was born in Qingdao, China. I arrived in Auckland in 2004 with my family. I have extensive voluntary experiences...

  • Stephen Baker

    Stephen Baker

    Project Manager Shared Vision

    Greetings! My name is Stephen and I am pleased to take on the role of Shared Vision Project Manager for the North Shore and Rodney regions. I...

  • Yavanna Hallam

    Yavanna Hallam

    Community Engagement Manager

    The importance of connection and community was emphasised for me when I returned to New Zealand with my young family after being abroad for a...

  • Gabby Greene

    Gabby Greene

    Support Coordinator

    I joined Hearts & Minds as a newcomer to New Zealand after relocating from the UK in November 2020 with my Kiwi husband and two young sons....

  • Becky Gong

    Becky Gong

    Operational Support Coordinator

    Kia Ora, my name is Becky. I came to New Zealand as an international student and have completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Business and...

Our Facilitators

Led by our Clinical Director, our Facilitators are a talented group of qualified psychologists, counsellors, and therapists.

  • Dr. Ruth  Jillings

    Dr. Ruth Jillings

    Clinical Director - Registered Psychologist; BA (Hons); PhD; PGDip I/O Psych; PG Cert Child/Ado Mental Health; Primary Cert CBT; MNZPsS; Registered NZCER Tester

    I am a Registered Psychologist who has worked with Hearts and Minds for over 20 years. My role is to assist the facilitators with any issues...

  • Nicola  Duncan

    Nicola Duncan

    Facilitator - BA Hons, Post Grad Dip CBT, MNZAC

    Nicola Duncan (BA (Hons), PGDip in CBT, MNAC) is a Relationship Counsellor with over 20 years’ experience working for a national organisation...

  • Karen  Venter

    Karen Venter

    Facilitator - MA Clinical Psych, MSocSci Psych, HED

    My background is in clinical psychology, education and careers counselling. Some specific interests: Balancing attention to positives with...

  • Laverne  Robinson

    Laverne Robinson

    Facilitator - BsSocPrac Counselling, Cert Sup Coaching, ANZCAL

    Kia ora. I am a mother of two, qualified counsellor, coach and supervisor with a background in supporting rangatahi (youth) and whanau in a...

  • Matthew  Flynn

    Matthew Flynn

    Facilitator - MNZAC LLB/Post Graduate Counselling

    I am a registered counsellor with extensive experience in New Zealand and overseas. I am passionate about my work, and I have worked with...

  • Sasha Iyengar

    Sasha Iyengar

    Facilitator - MAATh, GradDipPsyc, ATHR

    Sasha is a registered Art Therapist who specialises in child and adolescent mental health, women’s health, adult wellbeing and...

  • Maria  Thorndyke

    Maria Thorndyke

    Facilitator - Dip PC Couns, Dip Sach Psych, Dip Clinical Sup, Reg ICP

    I am a Registered Psychotherapist/Counsellor and Casework Supervisor and have over 20 years' experience. During this time, I have worked in...

  • Mary McGeever

    Mary McGeever

    MAAT, ANZACATA Reg, BA, Dip Tchg

    Mary is a registered Creative Arts therapist with a broad background of experience. Before completing her Master of Arts in Arts Therapy in...

  • Becky 异 Gong 龚

    Becky 异 Gong 龚

    BSc Psychology & Post Grad MBA 心理学学士 & 工商管理研究生

    Becky is originally from China and has lived in New Zealand for over 20 years. In the last 3 years she has worked with Hearts & Minds to...