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Our people

Susanne Ritzenhoff | Director

Susanne Ritzenhoff is a champion for change and loves collaborating to bring a vision to fruition. Susanne combines her passion for arts and learning with her business acumen.

Originally from Germany, she relocated to New Zealand with her Kiwi partner and dedicated her career to the for-purpose sector, following the completion of an MBA. With a great introduction to the performing arts working at Auckland Theatre Company, she led the development of the beautiful space of Q Theatre for Auckland.

Susanne then took the opportunity to serve in the social services sector, focusing on the mental health and disability sector. She has worked at Youthline, and as General Manager at Presbyterian Support Northern, she worked with Lifeline, Shine, Family Works and Enliven before leading the Fundraising team for Blind Low Vision NZ.

Susanne also serves as a Director of Creative Pathways Ltd.

T: 09 360 4171 E: susanne@toiora.org.nz

 

Andre Medland-Parker | Artist Liaison   
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Andre Medland-Parker is a creative professional who is a graduate of the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) with a Bachelors of Visual Arts. During his studies, he specialised in oil painting & music/sound recording. Andre has recently graduated from Unitec, studying the Certificate in Health & Wellbeing. He is interested in exploring the relationship between wellbeing and creativity. Previously, Andre has worked as a costume stylist for Desiree Costume Hire. Andre has a home studio where he works on his creative practices. 

T: 09 360 4171

 

Madhu Behl | Administrator 

Madhu Behl is a legal professional and holds a degree Master of  Law from University of Waikato,  she is also a holds a certificate in mental health and addiction. Before Joining Toi Ora as “Administrator” she has worked in Non Governmental sector for 6 years where she assisted migrant and refugee in settlement process and legal matters. She is also holds a full license to operate as Immigration adviser in New Zealand .

T: 09 360 4171

 

Samara Azam | Communications and Partnership Accelerator

Samara Azam brings 15 years of experience in nonprofit strategy, fundraising, and communications.  She holds a dual Bachelors degree in International Relations & History from the University of California and holds a Masters in Management with Social Entrepreneurship from Mills.  Her nonprofit background is in the issue areas of reproductive justice, domestic violence, disability and mental health.  She enjoys fostering a love of art and creativity for wellbeing with her children.

T: 09 360 4171

        

 

Toi Ora trustees

Frances Turner | Co-Chairperson

Frances Turner is a strategist and change leader with 25+ years’ experience in leadership roles with Ernst & Young and Carter Holt Harvey to co-founding The New Zealand Dance Company and Executive Director of the Royal New Zealand Ballet. She brings business acumen, a strong sense of justice, and a keen interest in building safe, strong and inclusive cultures for all. In addition to being Toi Ora Co-chair, she’s a Trustee for Arts Access Aotearoa. Additionally, she’s served on a school board and multiple arts boards. She holds a BS in Accounting and MIS from Pennsylvania State University.

 

Hilary Lewis | Co-Chairperson

Hilary Lewis’ strengths and experience is in leading programmes of change, technology, innovation and business process improvement in large, medium, entrepreneurial and social enterprises. Her particular focus has been the airline and travel sector, with over 25 years in senior, strategic and global  roles. Success has come from having clarity in vision, strong commercial imperative, attention to detail, and an ability to communicate and engage all involved. This is supported by a strong finance, IT, commercial, strategic and executive background.

Hilary has a strong affinity with creativity and the arts, and is a trustee for theatre company Nightsong, and has been a trustee for the NZ Contemporary Arts Trust and Silo Theatre. She was previously a trustee for Lifeline Auckland and Lifeline NZ and volunteered for Lifeline as a trained telephone counsellor. Hilary aims to combine her business and not for profit skills and experience with a passion for the arts to strengthen Toi Ora to further support its’ beneficiaries.

 

Farhana Khan | Board Member

Farhana Khan is a legal professional with seven years’ experience in the public sector in New Zealand and the United Kingdom in regulatory compliance. She also has experience in human rights law including historic physical and sexual abuse claims and Māori land law and currently works in refugee law. She was the founder and director of an interior design social enterprise which employed women from former refugee backgrounds.  Farhana also has a background in Indian classical dance and is a graduate of the New Zealand Academy of Bharata Natyam.

 

Wayne Ferguson | Board MemberWayne

Wayne Ferguson is the CEO of an NGO providing support services to children and families.   He has wide ranging international leadership and work experience gained in the UK, New Zealand, Japan and Australia.

Over the past 30 years Wayne has enjoyed working within the non-government sector leading service development for vulnerable children and their families.  He brings a strong sense of social justice and a commitment to creating inclusive and accessible environments where people are valued in order to thrive and achieve their goals. He has extensive experience of setting up and developing high quality foster care, family support and community services that are responsive to meet local needs.  

Wayne has a Master of Science in Family and Systemic Psychotherapy from the University of Bristol and has previously worked as a clinician and manager in child protection, child and family mental health, youth addictions and child bereavement services. 

 

Angela Suh | Board Member

Yoojung Angela (she/her) is a socially-minded arts worker with experience across contemporary art spaces, not-for-profit and community arts organisations, and access arts initiatives. She has led public programs focused on improving accessibility in the arts, and building resilience in the creative industries at Creative United, a National Portfolio Organisation of the Arts Council of England.
Prior to this, Yoojung led Mairangi Arts Centre as General Manager, where she ran a diverse education and exhibitions programme. This included the annual Art+feminism Wikipedia-Edit-a-thon and exhibition, and the regeneration of the MAC gardens beginning with the Pasture Painting project in collaboration with For The Love of Bees. 
Angela is currently studying towards a Masters in Public Management, and is Public Programmes Manager at McCahon House.

 

 

 

 

 

 
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