OUR TEAM

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Damon Birchfield

CEO

I’m the CEO here at EcoMatters Trust, and I have the privilege of leading our great team of passionate and talented ecowarriors and environmental experts. This is an exciting time at EcoMatters as we look to grow on our past success and multiply our effectiveness within the communities we are involved. We are very approachable and love to hear from anyone who wants to get alongside and get involved, be it volunteering in our community garden, or partnering on new and ambitious projects.

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Carla Gee

Operations & HR Manager and Team Leader - Housing Initiatives

My role here at EcoMatters is Operations & HR Manager, and as such, I work closely with Damon, assisting with HR, Heath & Safety, Payroll, Board requirements and general administration for the team. I am relishing working with such an amazing team of talent and dedicated people, and I feel reinvigorated to be exposed to and learning about caring for our environment on a daily basis. Outside of work, I am kept busy with my two sons, who love soccer, kung fu, motorbike riding, swimming, and fighting zombies! Email: carla@ecomatters.org.nz, Ph. ext. 102

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Tina Ivory

Accounts Manager

I’m the accounts manager at EcoMatters. Outside of work my hubby and his business, kids and menagerie of dogs, cat and chickens all keep me pretty busy. For downtime I enjoy Pilates/yoga, walking, exploring the outdoors and curling up with a good book.  Email: tina@ecomatters.org.nz Phone: 09 827 4997

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Dr Dan Ducker

Research & Strategy Lead

As the resident geek at EcoMatters, my primary role is developing our research and strategy capability. I love hearing about, creating, or trialling new and interesting ways that communities (including businesses) can work together to make progress on the complex social and environmental issues we face. You’ll often find me at a desk but I’m more at home in the ocean, watching sunsets over our beautiful west coast lagoons, or chatting with mates with a beer in hand. Please do get in touch if you have any cool ideas for projects, or want to bounce any thoughts off me. Email: dan@ecomatters.org.nz

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Jessie Jellick

Administration and Accounts Support

I am the administration and accounts support person here at EcoMatters.
Being on my own ‘eco journey’ for many years has meant that I have often taken advantage of EcoMatters' many awesome offerings.
Now it is wonderful to be part of this passionate team creating change for wellbeing and to deepen my own journey.
During summer you will find me splashing in the ocean alongside my daughter and our little dog. In the winter I will be walking the beach with the family enjoying the birdsong and peace and quiet. I also love gardening, meditation, eating out with friends, or tucking up with a good film or novel.
Email: jessie@ecomatters.org.nz

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Lorna Painter

Retail Assistant

You will find me at the EcoMatter Store. I love the daily interaction with customers and fellow EcoMatters staff as there is always something to learn from every person. Whether they are well on their way with sustainability or just taking their first step, everybody who pops into the store is helping towards an effective change and I love being part of that! I am interested in building up and winding our range of products, gathering feedback and connecting with people, so if you have any ideas or suggestions for products or crafts you would like to see in the store, please stop into the store or email me.
When I am not in the store, I love growing plants and trees which are a really big part of my life. Watching the trees change colour along the valley and different birds that come and go as the seasons change is bliss for me.
Email: lorna@ecomatters.org.nz

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Emily Harris

Team Leader - Partnerships & Events

My team creates EcoMatters' big events like EcoWest Festival and EcoDay, works with our wonderful partners, and shares with our supporters all the ways they can get involved. I also look after the Co.Starters for Causes programme where I get to support participants working through turning their ideas into impactful social enterprises. I currently work part-time and spend the rest of my time chasing after my toddler, exploring Auckland's beautiful beaches, bush and streams, and trying to grow as much of our own fruit and veggies as I can. Email: emily@ecomatters.org.nz

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Myrthe Braam

Project & Events Manager

I work at EcoMatters as Project & Event Manager, dividing my time over a few different projects. I am looking after the Love Your Neighbourhood campaign and I help the Homes Team with the administrative side of our Love Your Water project.
I'm also organising our annual festival EcoFest West and several smaller cycling events, like the Power Box Bike Challenge.
Working remote from Wanaka means I'm in the perfect place to spend all my spare time either hiking, trailrunning, cycling, climbing, mountaineering or paddleboarding. Email: myrthe@ecomatters.org.nz

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Deborah Teh

Marketing and Communications Lead

My job is to tell stories about how our community cares for the environment, and why. I'm often found with my nose behind a camera, and when I'm not at work I'm partial to sunny weekend bike rides and river-side reading. Email: deborah@ecomatters.org.nz

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Anna Kary

Digital Media and Communications Coordinator

The best part of my role here is getting to share the amazing stories of all the different ways people in our community are helping the environment.
When I’m not at work, you’ll find me walking our dog, listening obsessively to podcasts, or cooking up a storm in the kitchen.
Email: anna@ecomatters.org.nz

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Melanie Hull (ML)

Marketing Support
I first became acquainted with EcoMatters through the Co-Starters for Causes Programme and when a role became available, I jumped at the chance to work with such a passionate group of changemakers! 
I wear multiple hats across the organisation, most recently taking on the role of Marketing Support which is offering me a variety of new challenges. When I'm not here I'm trying to perfect the art of the 'low maintenance garden' in Titirangi and can often be found on adventures with the family.
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Ana Davison

Events and Community Engagement Specialist

I am new to the EcoMatters team, working part-time organising key events like EcoHub Market Day and the Love Your Place Awards, as well as community engagement with the Whau Low Carbon Network. My background includes delivering community events for Auckland Council, and film and television production. I am a passionate West Aucklander and Laingholm local, wife and mother of two young boys. In my spare time I love gardening, yoga and being with family and friends, and I also help facilitate a group of volunteer parents getting involved with environmental projects at Laingholm School.

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Lisa Baudry

Graphic Designer

I work in the marketing team here at EcoMatters and create all the visuals used to communicate what EcoMatters does. That includes everything from photography, signage, video editing, social media graphics, and design for print and web.
Email: lisa@ecomatters.org.nz

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Brent Bielby

Team Leader - Bike Hub Initiatives

I manage the bike related activities across Auckland for EcoMatters. I love cycling... it's got to be best form of transport ever created! I enjoy being able to help out with basic bike maintenance advice, and am always happy to chat about bike stuff (like bike routes). I've been a bike commuter most of my life, and have also tried some road racing, mountain biking, and have cycled toured around NZ and Europe.
My colleague Bruce (in the middle) can be quiet and unassuming, but make no mistake...he is our spiritual leader at the Bike Hub. Stan (on the left) is a bit sheepish, but is a real dag when you get to know him!
Email: brent@ecomatters.org.nz

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Josca Craig-Smith

Community Bike Mechanic

I'm usually found at the Bike Hub in New Lynn working alongside our trusty volunteers. We guide visitors through their own bicycle repairs or adjustments, help with cycling advice, get donated bikes back on the road and stock recycled bike parts.
I love helping get Aucklanders started on bikes or on the road to happier, more efficient and comfier cycling.
At home I am a proud father of two. Since 2003 I have been a bike mechanic and tinkerer with a love for retro and custom bikes. I also have a passion for classic boats, recycled wood furniture, sign painting and other crafts. Email: josca@ecomatters.org.nz

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Eugene Dranovskiy

Community Bike Mechanic

I manage New Lynn Bike Hub on Sundays and happy to see more and more people spending their weekends cycling around the area. I maintain my own bikes from the age of 5 and work as a Mechanic in Auckland bike stores. I like to share all my experience with our visitors and volunteers, and I am very proud when they use this knowledge to improve their lives. I believe that our team and community effort to the environment will make it healthier and more comfortable for everybody.
Outside of work, I enjoy exploring new frontiers around Auckland and New Zealand with my family.

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Jackie Makasani

Coordinator - Bike Hub @ Glen Innes

I’m a Glen Innes local of 18 years and love my neighbourhood, where my five daughters have grown up.
While I trained as a motor mechanic, this is my first foray in to the cycling world and I’ve very quickly become a convert.
With the growing number of bike paths being built in Auckland, I’m looking forward to introducing the Glen Innes community to the joy, convenience and environmental benefits of riding a bike. Call past and say hello!

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Meg Liptrot

Community Garden & EcoHub Education Coordinator

Meg has a background in sustainable land management and green design so can advise you on organic, productive solutions for your backyard or block of land. She has also been through an eco renovation and can help with ideas and eco products for your place. Meg has worked at EcoMatters since 2005 and over that time has developed a comprehensive workshop programme and network of expert tutors for the centre, the line-up is refreshed every season. Email: meg@ecomatters.org.nz

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Pamela Gill

Principal: Restoration, Community & Iwi Relationships

I am the Manager – Restorative Projects here at EcoMatters. Many of the projects I work on are focused on restoring stream side areas out west or dealing to pervasive weeds. I love working with the community to restore their environment. When not at work you’ll most probably find me further out west enjoying the beautiful bush & beach environment I live in. Email: pamela@ecomatters.org.nz
Ph: (09) 826 0554

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Chrissy Yates

Nursery Manager

I joined EcoMatters in January 2016 to set up small native plant nursery with the aim of contributing to environmental restoration activities in our local community, as well as providing an enjoyable setting where people can connect, share knowledge, learn and grow to love our native bush. I love my work and from a very early age I was fascinated with our native fauna and flora. The Waitakere Ranges was the perfect playground and over the years my passion for protecting our natural environment has grown. I am a resident of Glen Eden and for the past 15 years have gained much experience in native plant propagation and forest restoration.
Email: chrissy@ecomatters.org.nz
Mobile: 0274 810 688

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Alanah Mullin

Stream Ranger

I'm proud to have been a Stream Ranger at EcoMatters for 8 years, working alongside West Auckland neighbours restoring streamside environs together.
In my spare time I love following the Womens Professional Tennis Circuit, going to local music performances, working, swimming and yoga where possible. Email: alanah@ecomatters.org.nz or phone (09) 813 2285 / 021 308 268

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Melissa Ward

Nature Team Assistant

A self confessed Nature Lover! I am at my best in the outdoors and love connecting with people and sharing my passion. I always look for ways to improve the environment - even small things like banning glad wrap in my home. I like to compost, reuse, recycle and grow my own vegetables.
Having started off as a volunteer at EcoMatters, I have now come on board to help with a few projects including Pest Free Olympic Park, the Waitahurangi Wildlink & the Albert-Eden Pest Quest - all of these projects have an emphasis on reducing pests in our local areas.
I believe that reducing pests is essential & a great way to improve our environment for the future.
Email: melissa@ecomatters.org.nz

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Erika Kuschel

Weed Ranger

My work as a Weed Ranger for EcoMatters finds me scouring the foothills of the Waitākeres,  searching for wild ginger and climbing asparagus. It feels good to stop the spread of these weeds in our beautiful Waitākere Ranges and work with the residents in these communities to help remove them.
I love the outdoors and meeting big fat kereru every day is the best part of my job!
Previously I worked as a Park Ranger for Auckland Regional Council in my local area of Muriwai. For relaxation I love to rest and go fishing, in between taxi-driving my two teenagers and walking my three dogs.

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Sarah Jane Murray

Team Leader Waste Initiatives

I blaze the Waste Minimisation trail here at EcoMatters. I am currently the team leader for all our Waste Initiatives, these include Compost Collective, Wesley Market, Humming Gardens, Adopt-A-Resource, the Waste Brokerage Project, Zero Waste Events & Love Food Hate Waste.
In my spare time, I love kite surfing and hanging at my home beach of Muriwai with my dog Chilli.
Email: sarah@ecomatters.org.nz

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Thomas Peters

Assistant Manager Waste Initiatives

As a Waste Project Assistant at EcoMatters, my work involves supporting projects that are helping to make Auckland Tāmaki Makaurau a less wasteful place, such as Humming Gardens, and Adopt-a-Resource. I also deal to the electronic waste (e-waste) that gets dropped off to us.
Aside from EcoMatters, I’m an avid nature enthusiast so will likely be out getting lost in some far flung corner of our beautiful country, or at home watching a David Attenborough doco.
Email: thomas@ecomatters.org.nz

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Amanda Hookham-Kraft

Waste Project Assistant & Schools Education Coordinator

I carry a background in Waste Wise Advisory, Regenerative development, Design and Holistic Plant medicine.
The various projects at Ecomatters allow me to share with others this diversity of skills through the platforms of education, community resilience and waste development.
Through nurturing co-operative and collaborative practices we continue to deepen our innate connections back into the living world.
Growing awareness and change together that brings holistic health for ourselves and the living world is what inspires my work on a daily basis.
I love West Auckland, practising yoga, biodynamic gardening and being a part of the regenerative development of the land at Titirangi Rudolf Steiner school where our three daughters attend.
Email: amanda@ecomatters.org.nz

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Shannon Otene

Waste Project Assistant & Sustainability Advisor

I work between two teams at EcoMatters, as a driver for the Zero Waste team and as a WAL (Water Advice Line) – Sustainability Advisor for the Homes team. Both roles are varied and busy, which I love as it keeps me on my toes. I’m not the type to dilly dally with tasks or jobs, rather just jump in and get stuck into it! Although I am fairly new to the EcoMatters family, in the short time I have been here, I have already learnt so much and have eagerness to learn more in protecting our ataahua planet and be more resourceful in our everyday living.
Outside of work I enjoy being active by playing netball, touch, walks and going to the gym. I also enjoy spending quality time with my children.
Email: shannon@ecomatters.org.nz

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Dominique Crowe

Sustainability Advisor

I am a sustainability advisor for the Homes Team, mainly working on the Love Your Water and Homewise projects. I studied ecology at University and am really passionate about working within communities. I am thoroughly enjoying working with a group of such passionate people and working with communities to be more sustainable. When I'm not at work, you can find me outdoors hiking and taking photos along the West Coast. I am also partial to a good boardgame and frequently play Dungeons and Dragons.
Email: dominique@ecomatters.org.nz

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Alix McKenzie

Sustainability Advisor

I work as a Sustainability Advisor in the Homes team at EcoMatters. I work across two amazing initiatives, Love your Water and Healthy Rentals. My love of New Zealand’s beautiful landscapes and the desire to preserve them for future generations set me on a path to become a Sustainability Advisor.
Having completed a Bachelor of Applied Science, specialising in Environmental Science and Biodiversity Management, I now apply my knowledge and experience to work towards a sustainable future. Aside from my work at EcoMatters, you can also find me out exploring what Aotearoa has to offer or hunting in op shops for pre-loved gems, and I'm also very partial to a good iced latte.