Our board

NIWA's Board of Directors is responsible to our shareholders (the New Zealand Government) for the strategic direction and operational performance of the company. 

Chris is an Auckland-based businessman. He chaired the Crown Research Institute ESR in the 1990s, and later Antarctica New Zealand. He is Commissioner of the Tertiary Education Commission, a founding trustee and life member of the Sir Peter Blake Trust and continues as a trustee of the Antarctic Heritage Trust. Chris was awarded a CNZM for services to Antarctica and the community and was appointed Chairman of NIWA in July 2009.
Deputy Chairman
Nick is a chartered accountant and was Chief Executive and later Chairman of Deloitte in New Zealand. More recently, he was Deloitte’s Global Managing Partner of Sustainability and Climate Change Services and Global Chief Sustainability Officer, based in London. He has also served as Deloitte’s Global Chief Ethics Officer. Nick currently chairs the Middlemore Foundation for Health Innovation, is a member of the Westpac New Zealand Sustainable Business External Advisory Panel, and is co-opted onto the Finance and Audit Committee for Counties Manukau DHB.
Chief Executive
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John joined NIWA as Chief Executive in April 2007. He has extensive senior executive and governance experience in public and private sector organisations covering a range of markets and activities including business, science, education and sport. His science sector roles have included Chairman of Science New Zealand, Chief Executive of AgriQuality Ltd, Executive Director of Orica New Zealand Ltd, and Chairman of New Zealand Pharmaceuticals Ltd. John is passionate about the role science can play in transforming New Zealand's economy, environment, society and global reputation.
Keith has been Pro-Vice- Chancellor of Sciences at the University of Otago since early 2010. Before that, he was Head of the Department of Chemistry. A graduate of the University of Auckland, Keith joined the department at Otago in August 1979 after five years of PhD and postdoctoral study in Britain and France. His research speciality is chemical oceanography and he is one of New Zealand's delegates to the UN’s Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research.
Gillian is a professor of microbiology and with the Faculty of Science at the University of Auckland. She was formerly Associate Dean of Research and Head of the School of Biological Sciences. She is Chair on the Board of Grafton Halls of Residence and Deputy Director of the Centre for Microbial Innovation. Gillian is a former President of the New Zealand Microbiological Society. She has a PhD in Microbiology from the University of Otago. Her research focuses on the interactions of complex microbial communities and their response to natural and anthropogenic impacts in freshwater environments.
Helen chairs the BRANZ and Fulbright NZ boards and is an independent director of DairyNZ and WREDA. She also serves on the Massey University Council and the National Council of the Institute of Directors. She was Chief Executive of the Ministry of Research, Science and Technology for six years, preceded by six years as Chief Science Adviser. Helen chairs or is a member of advisory boards for LINZ, DIA, and the NZ Police. She has a PhD in geophysics from Cambridge University and enjoys keeping up-to-date with the latest science developments.
Jason is Managing Director of TNS New Zealand. He has led consulting assignments across a range of industries and disciplines in New Zealand and overseas. Before his consulting career, Jason held a number of senior commercial and financial management posts, both internationally and in New Zealand, in large corporates and with an international chartered accounting firm.
Mike is a Hamilton-based director. More recently, he was the Chief Executive of Tainui Group Holdings. Mike is currently the Pro Chancellor for the University of Waikato and holds directorships on the boards of Transpower and Bay Radiotherapy Services. He is also Chairman of BNZ Partners, Waikato Region. Mike holds an MBA from IMD, Lausanne and an FCA from the Chartered Accountants Australia & New Zealand.