The Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust is a not-for-profit conservation organisation (charities number CC22822) highly respected by the Minister of Conservation for its work in the preservation of the endangered yellow-eyed penguin. In 2016 the Trust was formally recognised as a Key Programme Partner both to the Department of Conservation and Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu for its conservation work with hoiho.
Lady Beverley Reeves (1988 - 2006)
Anton Oliver (2006 – 2017)
Richard Roberts (2017 - Current)
Kieran Read (2011 - 2017)
Sue Murray (since July 1999)
General Manager (1.0 FTE)
NZCS (Botany), Grad. Dip NFP Management. Lifelong interest in conservation. Employment has included science technician, teacher-aide and her previous position was fundraising/public relations work with a not-for-profit organisation.
Trudi Webster (since February 2016)
Conservation Science Advisor (1.0 FTE)
BSc(Hons), MSc, PhD (Marine Science and Zoology). Worked on a variety of terrestrial and marine conservation projects in New Zealand (lizards, birds, marine mammals). Previously employed as Assistant Curator at Otago Museum, teaching fellow at the University of Otago and ranger at the Department of Conservation.
Ben Goldsworthy (since April 2017)
Lead Ranger (1.0 FTE)
BSC (Zoology), Grad. Dip Wildlife Management, Master of Wildlife Management. Lifelong interest in the natural world. Worked for DOC as a Ranger (Stewart Island, 2016) on the weeds team, then as a Ranger (Pureora, 2016-2017) on the pests team. Also volunteer roles for DOC (Wanganui) and the Bushy Park Trust (Wanganui).
Louise Ashton (since June 2015)
Nursery Supervisor (0.5 FTE)
BSc Zoology (Victoria). Grew up in Hawke's Bay, studied Radiography at Waikato Hospital, worked as a radiographer in Hawkes Bay and Dunedin. Took 23 years to get a job in zoology/biology field, but excited to now be here!
Amanda Salt (since January 2020)
Operations Manager (1.0 FTE)
My role as Operations Manager is to lead field operations across the Trust's hoiho conservation and habitat/reserves programmes. The Operations team comprises Rangers and a Nursery Supervisor and its management involves planning and executing our work in the most safe and efficient way to achieve the Trust's strategic priorities.
No two days are the same; adaptability is essential as is being 'on the tools' especially during the hoiho breeding season when our focus is 100% on species management. It's about achieving good outcomes for hoiho and producing high quality work via a team approach. Seeing my colleagues enjoy their work and develop new skills all while making a significant contribution to conservation of this endangered species is highly rewarding.
Cat Lea (since September 2021)
Ranger (1.0 FTE)
BSc(Hons) in Zoology and MSc in Marine Environmental Management. Prior experience in Europe and NZ on sea turtle, cetacean and sea lion conservation projects. Previous roles include Marine Mammal Necropsy Technician for Massey University, Marine Conservation Officer for Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari and Volunteer Facilitator for DOC and Dunedin City Council.
Max Harvey (since September 2021)
Ranger (1.0 FTE)
BSc (Ecology), PGDip Wildlife Management, MSc (Marine Science). Passionate about conservation of threatened species and ecosystems in Aotearoa. Previously worked on the West Coast with Powelliphanta snails (MBC Environmental), as a zoology lab demonstrator (University of Otago), and as a summer intern/lab researcher investigating rat population dynamics (Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research). Loves to volunteer and has experience with Hector’s and bottlenose dolphins, sperm whales, little penguins, sooty shearwaters, and various lizards.
Caitlin Bowie (since August 2020)
Administrator (0.7 FTE)
BA (Philosophy). Previous employment throughout Europe, Australia & NZ in customer experience roles including booking.com, Zoos Victoria, and Otago Museum. Most recently a Permissions Advisor processing Wildlife Act and Research applications at DOC.
Euan Whitton (since June 2022)
Ranger (1.0 FTE)
A 2020 NMIT Trainee Ranger graduate. Has 15 years of experience in track and hut maintenance for DOC and city councils throughout New Zealand, including 1 year as a Trainee Ranger with the DOC Coastal Otago Operations team. Interests in pest trapping, volunteer planting, and tramping.
Eric Shelton (since 2003)
PhD, Dip. Sci., Dip. Tour. Appointed Chair 2014. Former wildlife and heritage guide. Convinced that tourism can make a major contribution to achieving conservation goals.
Euan Kennedy (since 1987)
BA (Hons), M. Appl Sc. (Hons), PhD. Founding Trustee. Now based in Christchurch where he co-ordinates the Department of Conservation’s island biosecurity work nationwide. Has four decades of experience with endangered species recovery in all major vertebrate taxa, marine and terrestrial. Research experience in foreign languages, sociology and conservation biology. Euan’s doctoral research defined extinction risk in today’s two small, highly inbred populations of Chatham Island black robin.
Lala Frazer (since 1987)
BA (Otago), QSM. Founding Trustee. A qualified teacher, retired from position as Teaching Facilities Manager at the University of Otago. Active in a number of conservation and ecological organisations.
Margaret Murrell (since 1994)
BSC (Botany). Retired secondary school teacher. Actively involved in practical conservation for many years.
Peter Simkins (since 1995)
Wildlife Film Editor at BBC Bristol and NHNZ. Appointed spokesperson 1999-2008 and Chair in 2010-2012. Whilst working at BBC Bristol Natural History Unit he organised the Bristol Conservation Volunteers. Moved with his family to NZ in 1987. August 2010 bought Penguin Café in Portobello.
Tim Mepham (since 2013)
BCom Accounting, Chartered Accountant with broad experience in export markets, manufacturing process control, HR management, Information systems implementation, corporate strategy, growth through acquisitions, change management and governance. Director of City Forests Ltd and Deputy Chairman of Presbyterian Support Otago.
Murray Brass (since 2014)
BSc (Geol), Dip for Grad (Environmental), has worked in RMA for 20 years, dealing with both natural resources and the built environment. He has also worked in Economic Development, and been involved in a wide range of community organisations.
Hoani Langsbury (since 2012)
BSc (Zoology & Ecology) PgDipSci Geography. Active kaitiaki / Tangata Tiaki for Kai Tahu, Kati Mamoe, Waitaha, Rapuwai, Kati Hawea. Employed as the Manager of Operations Taiaroa Head. Responsible for the day to day management of the Royal Albatross Centre and Blue Penguins Pukekura. Environmental Consultant, RMA Commissioner, Trustee of the Otago Peninsula Biodiversity Group. Past member of various species recovery groups, and the former chairman of the Otago Conservation Board. Actively involved in the Otago ecological community, taking a holistic approach to environmental management.
Olaf Nilsen (since 2018)
Raised in Stewart Island and of Ngai Tahu descent. He has been a commercial fisherman for the past 50 years with deep connections to the Southern Oceans. Fishing from Bluff down as far as The Snares, and all the way to the West Coast of both North and South Islands. He has been responsible for the pest eradication of Big Mokonui and re-introduction of Saddlebacks and Tutu Kiwi for future generations. His ethos is to respect the seas and all it has to offer, and he is passionate about conservation for his future Whanau and fellow New Zealanders
Helen Dent (since 2018)
BSc (Hons) Mathematics. An IT consultant specialising in information and analytics with a side line running a small vineyard. Originally from England now settled in Otago with a desire for tourism to exist in harmony with conservation so that visitors can support and enjoy the unique Otago environment and wildlife.
Abby Clarke (since 2019)
Emerging Leader Trustee (2019). 4th year University of Otago student undertaking Bachelor of Arts and Science degree, majoring in Zoology and Psychology Moving to Owaka (Catlins) aged 12 grew her passion and curiosity about animals and our unique native wildlife which led into her studies. Hopes to continue into either a Wildlife management course and/or a Masters looking at hoiho breeding ecology. Volunteers for several organisations that have played a vital role in hoiho conservation.
Vicki Crosbie (since 2022)
BPRTM (Parks Recreation and Tourism Management), worked in Conservation for 24 years, within recreation, biodiversity and tourism streams, including two seasons with the Department of Conservation Takahe Recovery programme. Moved to Dunedin in 2015 after 18 years living and working in Fiordland. Enjoys exploring places that make Coastal Otago special to people and our endemic wildlife. Keen to support hoiho to thrive and be part of their amazing story of recovery.
Luke Gardener (since 2013)
BA (Hons), MA. Luke first joined the Trust in 2013 as an Emerging Leader Trustee subsequently serving on the Trust until 2016. He re-joined the Trust in 2022 when he moved back to Otepoti-Dunedin. He has a keen interest in the conservation of our native fauna and flora, and has participated directly in a number of conservation projects including short stints with the kakapo programme on Whenua Hou and Anchor Islands, and a much longer period on Raoul Island. Luke's professional experience is in the areas of biosecurity response, government policy, and environmental regulation and compliance.
Gus Griffin (since 2022)
Emerging Leader Trustee
LLB and BSci (Zoology). Gus started volunteering with hoiho aged 15 on the Otago Peninsula. He now works in resource management law.
Jenna Sinclair (since 2022)
Emerging Leader Trustee
BSci (Botany). Jenna has always had an interest in Conservation from a young age, after studying in Dunedin she moved on to be Consents Planner at the Regional Council, Jenna has called Otepoti-Dunedin home for the last 5 years.