Board Members

The Board is appointed by the Minister of Health and currently has seven members.

Anyone may make nominations to the Minister of Health of suitable people to be Board members.

The membership must include a majority of members who are practising dietitians and two Laypersons.

The current Board is:

Catherine Humphrey of Auckland – Practitioner – Board Chair

Catherine began her career as a New Zealand registered dietitian in 1985. She initially worked in Wellington then lived and worked in the United Kingdom before returning to Auckland. 

She has had significant experience across a range of dietetic fields having worked in clinical and community dietetics and as a professional teaching fellow for the University of Otago. Catherine currently works in private practice and corporate wellness. 

Catherine enjoys running, yoga and spending time with her family.

Soana Muimuiheata of Auckland – PractitionerDeputy Chair

Born and raised in Tonga, Soana came to New Zealand for further education and completed her dietetic training in 1995. She then returned to work for the Government of Tonga Ministry of Health and helped establish the National Diabetes and Cardiovascular Diseases Centre. Soana migrated to live in Auckland in 2002.

Passionate about Pacific health and wellbeing, Soana has extensive practical experience in community dietary services for people with diabetes, training and education, public health and community health promotion programmes. She has worked as a Dietitian Consultant for Pacific Primary Health Organisations and ProCare Health Ltd working at GP clinics, schools, Pacific Churches, community and Marae over the past 16 years. During this time she has also played an advisory role in nutrition & obesity on school and Community Boards.

Soana is currently working towards her Doctor of Health Science at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT). Her research interest is “Meaning of food and diabetes: the underlying factors that determine food practices of Tongan people with diabetes”.  In her spare time Soana enjoys serving her Tongan community through Church, radio programmes, whanau and community activities. She also loves walking, working out at the gym and travelling.

Jennifer Pelvin of Wellington – Layperson

Jennifer has worked in the not for profit environment and NGO sectors for over 30 years. She has a Masters of Business Administration (not for profit), is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a member of the Australasian Society of Association Executives. 

Jennifer is a Director of Butler Pelvin & Associates, an Association Management Company, providing governance, administration, management and leadership services with a particular focus on organisations with charitable or not for profit status.   

Currently, she holds a number of positions including chief executive for PodiatryNZ. Previous experience includes Registrar of the Architects Registration Board and Chair of Allied Health Aotearoa New Zealand (AHANZ),

Laila Cooper of Christchurch – Practitioner

Laila is currently the CEO of Christchurch PHO. Her broad dietetic experience has been gained in a range of settings. These have included clinical dietetics, food service management, mental health service management, health promotion, quality, safety and project management, and as a dietetic tutor with University of Otago. Laila has a particular interest in governance in the not for profit sector.

She has always been strongly committed to social justice, and actively works towards positive and equitable health outcomes for all.

Tom Shand of Whangarei – Practitioner

Tom Shand currently runs a private dietetic practice in Kilbirnie, Wellington, and is the performance nutritionist for the Hurricanes rugby franchise and the Pulse netball franchise.

His recent work experience includes working in diabetes for Northland DHB; as a tutor at NorthTec; and as a renal and diabetes dietitian at Counties Manakau DHB. He has previously worked in primary health care in the Horowhenua and Taranaki regions, and in various roles in the UK. 

Tom is passionate about using nutrition to treat and prevent chronic disease and believes that dietitians should be at the forefront of this.

Tom loves spending time with his young family, surfing, skiing, and running. 

Dr Jordan Waiti of Raglan – Layperson

Jordan Waiti of Ngāti Pikiao, Te Rarawa, and Ngaati Maahanga, is a lecturer in Māori Health and Community Health at the University of Waikato. He has a PhD from Massey University that focussed on Whānau Resilience, and a Masters Degree from Otago University that looked at the Psychology of Physical Activity for Māori.

Jordan has 16 years of research experience within Māori health and wellbeing (in its broader context), and currently has a focus on ‘bluespace’ research for Māori mental health. He is currently a Māori advisory member to Water Safety NZ, and has been a Māori Land Trustee in the past. 

Jordan will provide a ‘community-focused’ lens to the board, and ensure that the social determinants of health are considered within the role of the board.

The Board is supported by:

  • Registrar -Philippa Bascand
  • Operations Manager, Registration Officer  – Sherin de Souza