Executive Board

The Network is governed by a board of regional rural clinicians including General Practitioners, Nurses, Rural Hospital Doctors and Managers. Following the 2016 AGM the new Board is:


Network chairperson Sharon Hansen is a Nurse Practitioner based in Temuka. She has both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Nursing, has diplomas in psycho paediatrics and general obstetrics and in 2007 she attained Nurse Practitioner status. Sharon joined the Board in 2007 as Southern South Island region representative. By virtue of her position as Network chairperson she is also a member of the General Practice Leaders Forum. Work: 03 615 8284, email: littlefatthings@gmail.com


Whitianga-based GP Dr David Wilson is the Board’s deputy chairperson. David has been based in Whitianga since 1991 where he is a full-time principal at the Mercury Bay Medical Centre. He was previously a Board member from 2003 to 2010. David has an MBBS from George’s Hospital in London (1978) and trained as a GP in Bridgwater, Somerset, England (1986-87). He has been a Member of the Royal College of GPs (England) since 1987 and became a Fellow of the Royal New Zealand College of GPs in 1996. David represented the Network and the college of GPs on the Palliative Care Council from 2008 to 2014 and currently represents the college on the Cancer Treatment Advisory Group. He is also a member of the Midlands Rural Advisory Group. Email: davidgfwilson@gmail.com

Ray Anton, Treasurer, holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University of California at Berkeley and a Masters Degree in Management from the University of Redlands. He has been CEO of Clutha Health First for the past 12 years, a member of the Network Board previously holding the office of Secretary, and is also on the executive of the Rural Hospital Network. His first six years in New Zealand were at the Otago DHB as the strategic planner and quality manager and previous to that he worked as a consultant for KPMG Peat Marwick and for a number of hospitals. Email: ray.anton@chf.co.nz

Dr James Reid is the Southern South Island representative on the Board. He is a rural hospital doctor and clinical leader at lakes district hospital, a Fellow of the division of rural hospital medicine (FDRHMNZ) and is involved with the administration of the rural hospital training scheme as chair of their Board of Studies. James has an MBCHB from Otago 1988, DpObst 1990. He was previously a general practitioner in Wellington. Email: james.reid@sdhb.govt.nz 


Ross Lawrenson is the western middle North Island representative on the Board. Ross is Professor of Population Health with the National Institute of Demographic and Economic Analysis (University of Waikato) and Clinical Director: Strategy and Funding with the Waikato DHB. He first moved to New Zealand in 1981 working in Te Kuiti hospital and later became a General Practitioner in Wairoa. He then moved into a career in public health before returning to the UK to take up an academic career. In 2005 he returned to the Waikato. He is particularly committed to the development of research and in supporting environments where students can get excellent clinical experience whether in hospitals or in rural and community placements. Ross is a Fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners (UK), a Fellow of the Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine, Chair of the National Screening Advisory Committee and has been until recently a board member of Pinnacle Group Ltd. Email: Ross.Lawrenson@waikatodhb.health.nz

 Nurse Practitioner Tania Kemp is the Network’s South Island representative. Tania is from Pitt Island, Chatham Islands, and is of Te Ati Awa, Nga Mahanga A Tairi decent. Tania co-owns a General Practice in Pleasant Point, South Canterbury with a nurse colleague. This new model of care provides effective and efficient health care in an environment that needs alternatives to the standard GP delivery model.  Tania is a Ministry of Health appointee to the New Zealand Nursing Council. She is PRIME trained and has taken part in after-hours roles for the past 12 years. Tania is involved in mentoring nurses in the undergraduate programs to Nurse Practitioner candidates. She has worked on the Chatham Islands, Pitt Island and the South Island’s West Coast, and South Canterbury, primarily in rural general practice. Tania’s interests outside work include time with her family, and exploring the great outdoors.
Email: taniadkemp@gmail.com

Kate Stark, Nurse Practitioner, is the Northern South Island representative. Originally from Dunedin, Kate graduated from Otago Polytechnic in 1988. Her nursing experience includes Neonatal Intensive Care, Orthopaedics/Trauma, Cardiology/Cardiac Surgery and General Medicine. Kate moved from Dunedin to rural West Otago 20 years ago and now works in rural primary health care. She became a Nurse Practitioner in July 2016 and is employed in this role at Gore Health Centre, part of an IHCF in Eastern Southland. As Gore is not a PRIME site, she works as a Prime Practitioner for the Roxburgh Medical Services Trust in Central Otago and is about to undertake a new contract for PRIME in Twizel, South Canterbury. Kate is on the College of Primary Health Care Nurses (CPHCN) Executive Committee and holds the following positions: Co-Editor LOGIC-Journal for CPHCN; External Rep: Liaison NZRGPN, Member Rural Health Advisory Group. (NZRHAG), Executive-National PRIME Review Steering Group, Clinical Governance Working Party. Kate is passionate about rural primary health care, she strives to improve the heath care of rural populations she cares for through having established the Nurse Practitioner role in her Gore community, and in the PRIME roles she currently holds. Kate is married with two teenage children and her family owns and operates a sheep/beef/crop farm in West Otago. Her outside interests include her family and friends, sport, photography and cooking. She also works as a volunteer sports medic. Katestark12@gorehealth.co.nz 

Kim Gosman is the Board’s southern North Island representative. She has worked as a nurse, midwife, educator, in community health in urban and rural, and in management. In 2005 she was co-opted to work with the Network Board in a voluntary capacity. Between 2005 and 2008 a focus was preparing the Network for nurses to become equal partners and members. Kim was an elected member of the Board from 2009 to 2014 during which time she supported the Board to implement a relationship with Iwi/Maori across the country. During 2014-15 Kim was made an Honorary Board member. She was re-elected to the Board in 2016. Other offices held include trustee NZ Institute of Rural Health, Iwi/Maori Councils, Lakes and Waikato District Health Boards and Lake Taupo Hospice. Other past positions include inaugural Vice President of the College of Nurses Aotearoa for five years, foundation member of the Kaunihera O Neehi Maori, Secretary, Hutt Valley New Zealand Nurses Association, Nurse Director of Rural Health, North Island. Work: 027 255 0943, email: kim.gosman@xtra.co.nz

Rose Lightfoot is the northern North Island representative on the Board. Rose gained her General and Obstetric Nursing Registration at the Auckland School of Nursing and has a post basic certificate in Plunket Nursing. She holds a BA (Soc Sci) from Massey University, a Certificate in Teaching Practice (AIT), a Masters in Public Health (Hons) from Auckland University and has completed two post graduate certificates in evidence-based medicine (2000). Until November 2016 Rose was Chief Executive Officer of Te Tai Tokerau PHO with overall responsibility for the day-to-day management of the PHO with 52 GPs, seven Iwi providers, and 62,000 enrolled patients covering rural Northland from Kawakawa, north. She was also a member of the Northland Rural SLAT and involved in developing strategies for sustaining the competency and capacity for the rural workforce. Email: rose@lightfoot.co.nz

Dr Grahame Jelley is the eastern middle North Island representative on the Network Board.
Grahame is a General Practitioner at KeriKeri Medical Centre and is also employed by Te Tai Tokerau PHO as a Rural Clinical Advisor for the Northern Primary Health Organisations.
After completing his secondary education in Zimbabwe, Grahame trained at the University of Cape Town in South Africa in 1983. He has worked as a rural GP for 30 years in the mission hospital service, regional rural hospital service in South Africa, large corporate medical services and in solo General Practice in Zimbabwe.
Grahame arrived in New Zealand in 2000 commencing as a DHB employed General Practitioner attached to Buller Hospital on the West Coast of the South Island. This included work as a GP and as a hospital doctor.
In 2004 Grahame moved to the Bay of Plenty and during the past 12 years has mainly practised there at locations including Ohope and Whakatane, and as a volunteer GP in the Cook Islands at Aitutaki Base Hospital.
Grahame worked as a solo practitioner and then as a corporate shareholder contractor GP for Radius Whakatane. He was actively involved with the Eastern Bay of Plenty PHO and Primary Health Alliance and was employed as a Clinical Advisor to Planning and Funding with the Bay of Plenty DHB.
In his spare time Grahame enjoys sailing and other outdoor activities, and getting his “hands dirty” on his rural property in Kerikeri where he lives with his wife Renene, a nurse. Email: drjel@xtra.co.nz

Nancy Malloy joined the Network Board in early 2016 and is the Board’s North Island representative. She is a Registered General and Obstetric Nurse (RGON), is PRIME trained and is currently the Practice Manager at Coast to Coast Health Care based in Wellsford, a position she has held since 2013. She is also currently working in Maternity Nursing in the Birthing Unit and rest home at Wellsford. Born in Canada, Nancy completed her schooling in Hamilton before completing her RGON qualification. She has also had nursing roles in operating theatres, Occupational Health and has completed small business and General Practice management courses. Nancy has lived in a rural community for 32 years and previously established and managed a Rural PHO. Email: Manager@ctchc.co.nz


Dalton Kelly is the Network's Chief Executive. Dalton was Chief Executive of the Cancer Society of New Zealand Inc from September 2006 to July 31, 2014. In 2006 Dalton received a QSM in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for service to Hospice and Business, was made an Honorary Member of Hospice New Zealand in 2007, and in 2008 was made a Life Member of the Employers and Manufacturers Association. He is also the former Chief Executive of the New Zealand Chambers of Commerce and Wellington Chamber of Commerce. Email dalton@rgpn.org.nz


Student representatives on the Board:

The Network Board welcomed its new student sub-committee at its face-to-face meeting in Wellington in early December 2016. Those appointed to the student sub-committee are medical students Natasha Austin from the University of Otago and Mischa Tosswill from Auckland University; nursing students, Kazushi Noiri, Otago Polytechnic and Erika Burton, Massey University and pharmacy student, Alycia Chapman, University of Auckland.  The sub-committee will be chaired by Natasha Austin. All correspondence should be emailed to: student.nzrgpn@gmail.com

Tash Austin will be a fifth year medical student based at Grey Base Hospital for 2017. She grew up in Invercargill and prior to starting her medical training she studied Genetics and Pharmacology, obtaining a Masters in Genetics at the University of Otago. She also spent four years teaching and travelling abroad. Since returning to university Tash has been heavily involved with advocacy work through various students’ associations and groups. In 2015 she led the Otago University Medical Students Association to win Society of the Year. Tash also holds a Silver Service award for service to the University and an Otago Leadership Award. In her free time, she enjoys running, multiday tramping and training with her Border Collie. As Chairperson of the Network student sub-committee she would like to see an increased collaboration between different healthcare specialities, as well as increased information sharing on rural health issues and events.  She is excited that, with the support of the Network, increased outreach will assist future healthcare professionals into the rural workforce. 

Auckland born and raised Mischa Tosswill is a medical student at the University of Auckland whose interest in rural health and love for the rural communities in New Zealand has grown exponentially throughout his years in medical school. “I have a strong belief for the need to provide a holistic model of care, and this is perfectly suited to practising in a rural community. My mother came from the West Coast of the South Island, and my father spent his childhood and youth between Rawene, in the North, and Whanganui. I have spent a lot of time in these places, as well as exploring the rest of New Zealand, and have always felt completely at home in these smaller towns.” His main goals on the student sub-committee are to: promote student interest in careers in rural health, and facilitate students to have experience in rural communities, especially those with little prior exposure to rural communities, and foster interdisciplinary relationships at a student level in order to be able to provide the best possible multi-disciplinary care in the future. Mischa will begin a trainee intern placement at Taranaki Base Hospital in New Plymouth in 2017. 

 Erika Burton is a third year nursing student at Massey University, Wellington. Erika grew up in Kawhia, a small West Coast town of around 400 people in the Waikato region. Her interest in nursing began as a child spending time in her father’s, Dr John Burton, general practice playing with his medical equipment, talking with patients, or being allowed to spin blood in an old centrifuge and watching how it separated. By Year 13 Erika says she knew she was interested in a career in healthcare. A gap year after finishing high school saw her work as an au pair in France, where she looked after four children in a non-English speaking family. “I had to have a good sense of humour as my poor French was the butt of many jokes.” During that year, Erika says the idea of nursing settled in her mind, so she moved down to Wellington to study at Massey. 

 Alycia Chapman is a fourth year pharmacy student at the University of Auckland. Born and raised in Auckland Alycia says she hasn’t let that stop her from immersing herself in rural culture wherever possible. Her family live in rural areas including Thames, Te Awamutu, Te Kuiti, Kaikohe, Kaiwaka and  Kerikeri.  ”My passion for rural life in general was first sparked on my high school camp trips at Avondale College. We had an enthusiastic leader who taught us to appreciate the outside world and we got to experience life outdoors in Taurewa and the Tongariro National Park.” Alycia says Auckland University’s Grassroots rural health club also accelerated her interest in rural health, helping her personally to break barriers between pharmacy and medical students, which she wouldn't have had the opportunity to do without club trips. “I am excited now more than ever to embrace inter-professional collaboration and encourage as many students as possible to explore rural health. It is an experience that can't be taught in the classroom and knowledge that can't be obtained in the city. Working so tightly with a community and becoming an important and trusted figure is where my ambitions lie and I believe you can't truly help people until you know where they are coming from.”

Kazushi “Kaz“ Noiri is a second year nursing student at Otago Polytechnic. Originally form Osaka City, Japan, Kaz came to New Zealand when he was 17. After studying at Whangamata area school, he moved to Dunedin to gain a tertiary education and was accepted into the nursing school. The 29 year-old says he is enjoying every moment of his nursing education.
In his spare time he enjoys being outdoors and playing sports: tramping, surfing, running, cycling, swimming, boxing, climbing and snowboarding.
Kaz also plans to take his “home on wheels” around New Zealand discovering new hidden spots and spending time in the great outdoors. “I am planning to continue my van life until I graduate, and if I still haven’t had enough of the off-grid life, I may upgrade to a camper bus.
“I am absolutely excited to taking a part in the position of the student sub-committee and looking forward to meeting you soon."