Our team & board

Meet our team

Heather Saunderson
CEO

Heather’s experience has been varied and well rounded; having worked for numerous sectors, both commercial and not for profit, in New Zealand and abroad. Her professional work ranges from leading Law Societies for close on a decade in the States, to serving the Keep New Zealand Beautiful Society for nearly ten years.

Heather has a proven track record of success in managing complex business initiatives and achieving exceptional rather than expected results. She is a leader who possesses the capabilities and judgment for taking a business to its next level of success or resolving the deficiencies that impede its ability to grow and prosper.

Christine White
Operations Manager

Christine has over 15 years’ experience in the not for profit sector working for both large and small charitable organisations.  During this time she has been involved in organisational change projects and has utilised her science and mathematics background to contribute to scientific research projects. She is currently completing a Network Climate Action Course through Cornell University.

Anna Parkin
Marketing Director

Having studied Resource and Environmental Planning, and with a post-graduate in Museum Studies, Anna has always had a passion for protecting New Zealand’s unique environment.  She began her Marketing career in London, before heading home to develop her talent in the financial services industry as a sponsorship, communications, and brand expert. Anna spent a number of years working at a design agency dedicated to building authentic brands and high performing cultures inside purpose-led organisations.   She has a unique perspective having worked in, and for corporates, government, advertising agencies and the not-for-profit sector.

Jo Mulholland
Marketing Manager

Jo has over 10 years’ experience working in marketing and communications across the advertising, tourism, retail and not-for-profit sectors in New Zealand and abroad. With a Bachelor of Communications Studies from the Auckland University of Technology Jo is an expert in content creation, digital marketing and brand communications. Her diverse range of skills and experience supports the implementation of Keep Zealand Beautiful’s marketing strategy across all communication channels. Jo is passionate about the environment and is an advocate of living sustainably on her small lifestyle block with her young family in Auckland.

Mike Buddle
Communications Manager

Mike has over a decade of diverse marketing and communications experience in the not-for-profit sector. Originally from Southland, Mike has also worked in marketing roles across prominent retail and B2B organisations, bringing a varied skillset including media management, communications planning and content development with him to Keep New Zealand Beautiful. Drawn to the concept of kaitiakitanga – the relationship and guardianship between us and the world we live in – Mike is keen to connect with supporters, members and the public to help Keep New Zealand Beautiful.

Rebecca Hampton
Education Director

Rebecca has over 20 years’ of experience in the education sector and is passionate about the role of education in increasing our understanding of the world around us and in driving positive behaviour change. Born and educated in Christchurch, Rebecca has taught, developed programmes and lead teams across all levels from school aged to tertiary to adult learners. As an advocate of life long learning, she is committed to continuing to build on the success of Keep New Zealand Beautiful’s environmental education programmes.

Lauren Marais
Education Manager

Lauren studied Mechanical Engineering and worked in the industry for 5 years before switching career paths. She then gained a Masters in Teaching and Education Leadership while teaching Mathematics in a low decile high school. Her varied expertise and experience comes from a passion for problem solving, helping people and making a difference. She has always had a passion for New Zealand’s natural environment and combines her skills to ensure that the next generation of New Zealanders are prepared to protect it.

Ria Goble
Research Director

Ria has almost five years’ experience working in research and insights across both the private and government sectors. Having an undergraduate degree in science and policy, and a master’s degree in Environmental Studies, protecting the environment has always been close to Ria’s heart. Her passion lies in conducting meaningful social research and communicating results in a way that is easily understood by everyone.

Sarah Goedhart
Field Researcher

Sarah recently graduated from the University of Auckland, completing a Bachelor of Science and Commerce conjoint, which highlighted her passion for the natural environment and scientific research. During her studies, she was employed by the University of Auckland, contributing to multiple research projects focussing on coastal and marine environments. Sarah strives to have a positive impact through her work to help protect the mauri (life force) of the environment. This reflects in her role as a Field Researcher for Keep New Zealand Beautiful, collecting data around Aotearoa for the 2022 National Litter Audit.

Karina Brehmer
Field Researcher

After completing a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Karina travelled abroad undertaking volunteer work in Amsterdam, France and Serbia. This experience cemented her passion for environmental issues and solutions, with a particular focus on behavioural insights. Karina continued her studies and received a Post Graduate Diploma in Sustainable Management and began working with Sustainable Coastlines facilitating data collection clean up initiatives with volunteers and schools. She is currently travelling around the country, conducting field research for Keep New Zealand Beautiful’s 2022 National Litter Audit.

Meet our board

Victoria Kaye-Simmons
Chairperson/Zone 3 Representative

Victoria has been has been a member of Keep New Zealand Beautiful since 2015 and is the current Chairperson and Zone 3 Representative. She was the Local Government Representative from 2015-2022.

As a local Horowhenua business owner, Victoria is dedicated to her community and environment. She is Chair of the Levin/Otaki Budget Service; a Board Member of Contact Incorporated overseeing Te Whare Mahana Community Hub; a Committee Member of the Horowhenua Family Violence Intervention Services Trust and was recently appointed to the  Lotteries Community Committee for Manawatu/ Wanganui region. Victoria is also a member of the Horowhenua Waitangi Day Committee which is supported by Muaupoko Tribal Authority and Horowhenua District Council.

Mandy Mayhem-Bullock
Deputy Chairperson/Zone 5 Representative

Born and raised in Dunedin, educated at both Otago and Victoria University, Mandy is an Events Coordinator, a Celebrant, MC and Chair of Keep Dunedin Beautiful. She is a Dunedin City Councillor, on the Otago Local Advisory Committee for Fire and Emergency New Zealand, and holds the office bearer role in many local organisations. 

A positive person with a passion for our people Mandy is dedicated to advocating for the community and enhancing our cities for more accessible and beautiful shared spaces.

John Riddell
Zone 1 Representative

John is the Deputy Chairperson of Keep West Auckland Beautiful and is a past Chair of Keep New Zealand Beautiful. John has a Graduate Diploma in Professional Practice Occupational Health and Safety, a ProfNZISM and works as a health and safety consultant.

He is registered on the national HASANZ Register for Health and Safety Professionals, is a member of the Henderson Rotary Club (current Director of Projects), Secretary of the Massey Birdwood Settlers Association, current Chair of the Waitakere Local Community Organisation Grant Distribution Committee, is an Appointed Representative to the Benefit Review Committee, a member of the Henderson Community Patrol and an active motorsport competitor.

Cr. Andrew Iles
Zone 2 Representative

Andrew is a Chairperson of the Projects and Services Committee and a member of the Policy Committee for Whakatane District Council.

He is also the Deputy Mayor of Whakatane District Council, Ward Member appointed to the Taneatua Community Board, Chair of Whakatane AMP Association, Whakatane District Council representative on the Ohiwa Harbour Implementation Forum, as well as the alternate representative to the Regional Transport Committee.

Andrew is on the Council appointees to the Whakatane District Sister Cities Association and member of the Conduct Review Panel.

Alexandra Davids
Zone 4 Representative

Alexandra currently serves as the Zone 4 Representative for Keep New Zealand Beautiful and is Chairperson for Keep Christchurch Beautiful as well as a Board member of Whitau School. 

Glen Hughes

Originally from the Bay of Plenty and with a master’s qualification in Earth Sciences and Planning, Glen is based in Ōtautahi Christchurch.

With a career in professional engineering consultancy, the majority of which has been in the South Island, Glen has significant commercial experience across both public and private sectors.

He is currently Chair of Innovative Waste Kaikōura and has held previous Trustee and Emerging Director positions with Harrison Grierson Ltd and the University of Waikato.

Peter Bernhardt

Pete is strategy practitioner with a passion for helping businesses thrive while caring for our communities and environment. With a focus on strategy, governance and climate change, he has extensive experience working with Boards, CEOs and senior leadership teams across the private, public, and not-for-profit sectors.

Pete has an MBA from the University of Otago, is a Chartered Member of the Institute of Directors, and is currently a Trustee and Board Member of Melanoma New Zealand.

Emma Jeffery

Emma is the founder and co-owner of Emendas, a no-nonsense provider of people, process, and safety advisory services to Kiwi companies.

She is HASANZ registered and sits on a number of industry councils and panels across consulting, compliance, and qualification development, helping to shape and support how organisations operate.

In her work, Emma often comes across organisations and teams with an interest in the push for a sustainable future who are not sure how to channel their enthusiasm. Her vision includes mutually beneficial partnerships, events, and initiatives that will help companies, and individuals within them, to engage with Keep New Zealand Beautiful and the wider environmental movement.