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Dr Allamanda Faatoese

Christchurch Heart Institute, UoO

Allamanda Faatoese is a Research Fellow and Lecturer at the University of Otago, Christchurch. Her research focuses on biomarkers of cardiovascular health among Pacific Peoples. She also convenes the Pacific Health teaching for year medical students in Christchurch. Allamanda is involved in STEM outreach activities with Māori and Pasifika students.



Andrea Fua

Founder of VAKA

Andrea is a Founder and Head of People + Culture at VAKA. She has a passion for helping Māori and Moana people get started on their own journeys in STEAM and business by tapping into the potential of 3D Printing. Andrea is a proud daughter of Samoa and Manurewa.



Andrew Clews

Head of Health Technology, Callaghan Innovation

Andrew is Callaghan Innovation’s Head of Health Technology. He leads the team that supports the scale-up of R&D intensive healthtech businesses and delivery of the HealthTech Activator initiative. He represents Callaghan Innovation on the steering committee of the CMDT and on the Science and Industry Advisory Group of Te Tītoki Mataora. 

A University of Auckland alumni, Andrew’s career has focused on the commercialisation of new technology. He has held global leadership roles in major corporates, and IPO-focused growth companies working extensively in the US, Japan, Korea, China and India.

Andrew is also an independent director of Auckland based Comprehensive Care. 


Professor Bev Lawton (Ngāti Porou)

Victoria University of Wellington

Professor Bev Lawton (ONZM) (Ngāti Porou) (she/her) is the founder/director of Te Tātai Hauora o Hine (the National Centre for Women’s Health Research Aotearoa) at Victoria University of Wellington. Bev’s research on women’s and children’s health has led to changes in policy and practice in Aotearoa and internationally. She has made a significant contribution to advancing cervical cancer prevention in Aotearoa through her advocacy and research in HPV self-testing. This supports the change in the cervical screening programme to ensure it is safe and equitable for wāhine Māori.



Brian Russell


Brian is a technology strategist and entrepreneur with a passion for medical technology applied to human machine teaming. He founded and served as CEO of Zephyr Technology Corp, a MedTech company deployed into US military and Hospitals. During that time he worked with organizations such as Under Armour, Motorola, 3M and NASA. Brian's technical expertise includes optics, silicon chip design, FDA medical product development, and AI modelling. He has advised Return on Science investment committees, SfTi, Dept of Homeland Security and held research positions with NASA's Human Research Program. Brian runs a technology consulting company, an AI product company, and is a research associate at AUT SPRINZ and Honoree Academic at the Auckland Biomedical Institute.


Chloe Wright


Chloe Wright as an anthropologist, humanitarian, philanthropist, has a focus on supporting initiatives that address the issues of maternal mental health, childhood development, intergenerational cohesion, environmental sustainability, and literacy. Chloe shares in the excitement of groundbreaking medical technology, an advocate for professional/humanitarian care of patient/client relationships. She is committed to projects that have a long-term view of making a difference now and in the future. Funding is directed to initiatives that will benefit generations to come.



Chris Heinrich

PhD Candidate, University of Otago

Chris Heinrich is a PhD candidate at the University of Otago whose experience includes developing and testing augmented reality/virtual reality system prototypes. He has developed an immersive virtual reality stroke rehabilitation system which allows people with stroke to carry out mirror therapy rehabilitation exercises while wearing a head-mounted display. He has run a clinical feasibility study using the system which showed that it can be used to carry out an established mirror therapy protocol in a clinical setting. He has also adapted this system for home (autonomous) rehabilitation which allows people with stroke to carry out those same clinical rehabilitation exercises in their home environment.



Associate Professor Christiane Theda

Co-founder, Director and Chief Medical Officer of Navi Medical Technologies

A/Prof Christiane Theda is Co-Founder, Director, and Chief Medical Officer of Navi Medical Technologies. Educated in Germany (Cologne) and the USA (Johns Hopkins), Christiane is a specialist in Newborn Medicine and Medical Genetics. In addition to her medical degree, Christiane holds a doctorate in Physiological Chemistry (Cologne) and an MBA from Johns Hopkins. After years on faculty at John Hopkins, she relocated to Melbourne in 2009 where she is a neonatal specialist at the Royal Women’s Hospital and a neonatal transport specialist at the Royal Children’s Hospital. She holds honorary appointments at the University of Melbourne and the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. Associated with several start-up companies, Christiane is involved in projects to develop new medical devices for neonatal and paediatric care.


Corina Grey

Chief Clinical Advisor, Pacific Health at Manatū Hauora Ministry of Health

Dr Corina Grey is a Samoan public health physician, epidemiologist and health researcher. She is the Chief Clinical Advisor, Pacific Health at Manatū Hauora and co-principal investigator of Manawataki Fatu Fatu, a 3-year programme of research funded by the Heart Foundation and Healthier Lives focused on heart health equity for Māori and Pacific people in Aotearoa.



Danae Staples-Moon

Manager, Medical Device and Strategy Development at Pharmac

Danae is leading the future for Pharmac’s hospital medical devices programme.  This aims to drive better value and more consistent and equitable access from the health sectors spend on medical device products. It will see a change in the way Pharmac, Te Whatu Ora and suppliers work together to manage publicly funded medical devices. 
Danae has worked at Pharmac for over 10 years and has held a number of previous roles including Senior Therapeutic Group Manager responsible for strategic commercial management of the national medical oncology portfolio with gross expenditure in excess of $200 million per year.  
She has a strong interest in innovation and ensuring appropriate and timely decision-making for medical devices. She is keen to see that publicly funded access to medical devices, and new technology, remains sustainable in the years to come.


Daymon Nin

Chief Customer Officer at Whānau Tahi

As Principal Consultant Daymon is a member of the executive team at Whānau Tahi, and leads the design and implementation of systems for Iwi, Urban Māori, and other indigenous groups internationally. He brings culturally involved design thinking for technology, people, and practices, as well as expertise in Maori Data Sovereignty and Governance practice. He has advised organisations and indigenous groups in Australia, USA, South-East Asia, Africa, and the UK. Daymon’s background has also included scaled ERP system implementations, solution architecture, outcome measurement, and organization change. Daymon has also been recognised for his work in the advancement of Māori Enterprise.


Dr Diana Siew

Strategic Relationship Manager at Auckland Bioengineering Institute

Cofounder of the Consortium of Medical Device Technologies (CMDT) and Co-lead of Te Titoki Mataora MedTech Research Translator (TTM), Diana is a medtech innovation sector specialist in research translation and early stage startups. An architect of national initiatives, Diana helps connect New Zealand's medtech sector through collaborative partnerships in country and internationally, and grow a pipeline of opportunities addressing health, social well-being and economic growth.


Dr Edgar Rodriguez

Associate Professor and Leader of Interaction Design

Dr Edgar Rodríguez is an Associate Professor and Leader of Interaction Design and the Tangible IX Lab at VUW’s School of Design. He designs physical devices and digital interactions to improve healthcare experiences. He has worked as a designer for Samsung Electronics (Seoul), Sismo Design (Paris), Studio Santachiara (Milan). 

Edgar investigates how to increase therapy engagement through smart physical medical devices, game design, and apps, including Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, for conditions that include stroke rehabilitation, cerebral palsy, and pelvic floor disorders. His academic and design work has won international awards and been published internationally, including in the Design Studies Journal, Dutch Design Week, Salone del Mobile in Milan, Core77 and Designboom, among others.


Associate Professor Ehsan Vaghefi

Founder and CEO of Toku Eyes

Ehsan's academic and then entrepreneurial career has been focused on developing and commercializing the AI-based technologies that is being used clinically to screen for early signs of disease in optometric and ophthalmic settings. In 2019, Ehsan started Toku Eyes ( Since then and as the CEO of Toku Eyes, Ehsan has raised $17M in venture capital funds, more than $4M in non-diluting funds, led the FDA submissions for their AI technologies and grown the company to a team of 20, with sales in Australia, New Zealand and India. Toku is now moving its HQ to the United States and starting a branch in UAE.



Dr Eryn Kwon

Research Fellow, Auckland Bioengineering Institute

Dr Eryn Kwon is a biomechanical engineer with a diverse, multi-disciplinary background, which enables her to bridge both computational simulation (subject-specific, biofidelic modelling) and real-world validation. Her research focuses on cranial impact simulation, ranging from ballistic impacts to mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI). Currently, Eryn is leading a cutting-edge mTBI data collection project, utilizing multiple imaging modalities as well as other biometrics such as instrumented mouthguards to advance our understanding and diagnosis of mTBI. Eryn’s impact models leverage machine learning (cluster computing) with feature extraction to identify the best biomarker of the ‘most complex injury of the most complex organ’



Dr Gonzalo Talou

Senior Research Fellow, Auckland Bioengineering Institute

Gonzalo Daniel Maso Talou is the leader of the Animus Laboratory at Auckland Bioengineering Institute. The research group focuses on advanced image processing and integrated modelling of the cardiovascular/nervous system with clinical applications such as hypertension, idiopathic intracranial hypertension and neurodegenerative diseases. Recently, he started a multiscale modelling of the nervous system, aiming to integrate the vascular effects in the development and sustain of brain activity.



Dr Grace Walker

Think Analytic

Dr. Grace Walker is a data scientist with a background in psychology. She has a passion for using data to represent communities realistically. Grace is also the director of a research consultancy, and is the Māori research lead in the RAP funded project LEAPS - an ultra low-cost insulin pump, a non-invasive glucose sensor, and digital twin software control, enabling closed loop automated insulin delivery. Grace connects the research team with the community to ensure we are meeting community needs.



Professor Grant Searchfield

Professor in Audiology at UoA

Professor Grant D Searchfield has been an audiologist since 1994 and obtained his Doctorate in Audiology in 2004. Grant is deputy director of the Eisdell Moore Centre for hearing and balance research based in Auckland, New Zealand. He is a founder and scientific director of Tinnitus Tunes an online tinnitus resource and TrueSilence Therapeutics a tinnitus digital therapeutic company. He is the tinnitus section editor for Frontiers in Audiology and Otology, an associate editor, Scientific Reports and Frontiers in Neuroscience and Psychology. Grant is well known internationally for his research investigating the use of sound and hearing aids for tinnitus management.



Hanie Yee

COO at Alimetry

Hanie has over 23 years of international experience working in the commercialization biotech, pharmaceutical, and medical device industries. Hanie is the current COO at Alimetry and also chairs the Medtech and Surgery Investment committee for Return on Science. She is also the Executive in Residence at Matu (a deeptech investment fund). Hanie’s passion in helping grow the NZ medtech ecosystem and support Kiwi companies access and thrive on the global stage. Hanie mentors young entrepreneurs and next generation leaders through kiwinet, SheEO and wahine connect.

Hanie has a BSc in Molecular Biology, MSc in Medical Science from the University of Auckland and a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Management from Darden Business School, University of Virginia. She has also served on multiple boards as a non-executive director.


Ian Goon

Head of Strategy and Innovation at the Tyree Institute of Health Engineering

Ian is Head of Strategy and Innovation at the Tyree Institute of Health Engineering (IHealthE) focused on executing IHealthE's strategic initiatives for identifying unmet healthcare needs and driving the translation of innovations to address these needs. Ian and his team engage with healthcare professionals to understand the unmet needs, assess translation potential and bring the best of UNSW expertise to co-design and accelerate the development of solutions that deliver improved healthcare outcomes. Ian has a background in engineering, having completed a Ph.D at UNSW and has spent time in commercially-focused roles as a consultant with the Boston Consulting Group and co-founding a digital health start up.


Professor Ian Town

Chief Science Advisor, Manatū Hauora the Ministry of Health

Ian Town is the Chief Science Advisor at Manatū Hauora |The Ministry of Health. Ian is based in the Evidence, Research and Innovation Directorate/Te Pou Whakamārama at Manatū Hauora.
Ian Town has worked across both the health and education sectors during his 30-year career. A physician by training, he has published extensively in respiratory medicine. Much of this research has been implemented through evidenced based guidelines for the management of common conditions such as asthma, COPD and pneumonia. Following an 8-year term at the University of Canterbury as Deputy Vice-Chancellor he has had a wide range of governance roles and completed a 5-year term as the Chair of the Health Precinct Advisory Council leading one of the key Christchurch Earthquake recovery projects.
In his role as Chief Science Advisor he is leading the Ministry’s work to referesh the New Zealand Health Research Strategy (2017-2027) in partnership with Te Whātu Ora and Te Aka Whai Ora. A key project for the next 12 months is to enhance the approach to Clinical Trials in the health system
Until recently he has been working full-time on the Government’s COVID-19 Response. With the implementation of the Pae Ora Act (2022) and the Health Reforms the COVID-19 response has moved to the Public Health Agency. 


Dr Jake Campbell (Te Rarawa)

University of Canterbury

Dr Jake Campbell (Te Rarawa) is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Canterbury. His PhD in Mechanical engineering included the development of non-invasive optical sensing methods, including venous oxygen, arterial pulse wave velocity and glucose sensing. Jake is the technical lead for LEAPS, taking the research designed in the UC bioengineering lab to commercial development. LEAPS is funded through TTM and SfTI to develop affordable diabetes technology to improve health equity. This technology includes an ultra low-cost insulin pump, a non-invasive glucose sensor, and digital twin software control, enabling closed loop automated insulin delivery.



Associate Professor Joanna Williams

Brain Health Research Centre, University of Otago

One focus of Joanna’s lab is early detection of people at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. To achieve this, the lab is exploring panels of microRNA within plasma as biomarkers of disease progression. Joanna is a molecular biologist. Her lab is based within the Department of Anatomy, University of Otago, and she is Co-Director of the Dementia Prevention Research Clinic’s Blood biobank.



Jon Herries

Emerging Health Technology & Innovation at Te Whatu Ora

JJon and his team are focused on bringing technology to the health sector faster, ensuring that technology provides impact, and establishing a network of interested and expert people and organisations who are working on new technology solutions in health. Previously Jon established the Alliance Leadership Team and programme for CCDHB and was involved in project management, technology development and analytics in a number of clinical areas. He originally trained and practiced as a Physiotherapist and also completed a post-graduate diploma in Health Management.




Josh Robb

Chief Product and Technology Officer at Tend Health

Josh has over 20 years’ experience leading teams and building software products in Australasia, Europe and the USA. He has built products in verticals including eLearning, advertising, human resources, FinTech and now HealthTech. Josh led the growth of Pushpay’s product design and development for 6 years from 4 to over 100 people and $200m of annual revenue. He co-founded Tend Health in 2019 with Cecilia and James Robinson and Dr Mataroria Lyndon where he's working on completely reimagining the traditional doctors visit.



Julia Chambers


An internationally experienced and trusted company Director and Board Chair with a strong commercial focus and deep understanding in research, development, and innovative technology commercialisation. With a demonstrated track record translating science into commercially viable products plus extensive investment experience. Over 25 years working with value-based, purpose-driven companies in various sectors - Pharma-Biotech, MedTech, Digital Health, Agritech & Primary Industries, and Industrial materials - with expertise in early stage technology investment, capital raising and funding, bridging both the private and public sectors. 


Lance Chia

Director, Investment and Innovation at the Liverpool Innovation Precinct

Lance is currently Director, Investment and Innovation at the Liverpool Innovation Precinct, in South Western Sydney. His career began as a Clinical Biochemist, spending >23 years in diagnostic pathology including 6 years with NYSE-listed multinational Abbott Laboratories. He is a former National President of the Australian Institute of Medical Scientists. As Head of Global Marketing at dual-listed Australian medtech company ResMed Ltd (2002-2008), he led the development of new medical devices and launched them globally. He was Marketing Director for APAC, MENA and eventually also Europe up to 2016, departing ResMed to join a leading consulting firm as partner. 

Lance mentors for a number of start-up accelerator programs, including CSIRO ON, D.Start, Remarkable Tech, UNSW Health 10x and Cruxes Ascend. He has Masters Degrees in Clinical Biochemistry, Business Administration and Commercial Law, is a Graduate Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, is a Non-Executive Director for a NFP and Chairs the board of successful medtech start-up, Navi Medical Technologies. Lance also currently serves on an Expert Advisory Group for the NSW Innovation and Productivity Council, is an Advisory Board Member for Ti Titoki Mataora MedTech Research Translator in New Zealand and is a grant assessor for the Federal Government’s Clinical Translation and Commercialisation MedTech (CTCM) grant program.


Dr Marc Gutenstein

Senior Lecturer & Emergency Physician

Dr Marc Gutenstein is a specialist Emergency physician with Te Whatu Ora, and Senior Lecturer with University of Otago. He has a background in cognitive psychology, digital health and clinical co-design. His work focuses on how human factors, teams and technology interact in complex healthcare settings. Marc is a founder of, a decision support tool for acute healthcare teams, and a component part of a learning health system. Wayfind is currently deployed in Christchurch hospital for the assessment of traumatic brain injury, and cardiac chest pain.



Dr Mataroria Lyndon (Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Whātua, Ngāti Wai, Waikato)

Co-founder and Director of Health Equity at Tend Health

Dr Lyndon is a Senior Lecturer in Medical Education at the University of Auckland, and co-founder and Director of Health Equity at Tend Health - a digitally led health care provider. He also co-hosts the TVNZ medical series The Check Up, and was previously Equity Lead at Mahitahi Hauora Primary Health Organisation and a medical lead for Māori health at Counties Manukau District Health Board.

With governance roles spanning health, academia, and sport, Dr Lyndon is a Board member of Te Aka Whai Ora Māori Health Authority and the Data and Digital Innovation Committee for Te Whatu Ora Health NZ, Pūtahi Manawa Centre of Research Excellence, and was previously Deputy Chair of Te Hiringa Hauora Health Promotion Agency NZ, and member of the Northland District Health Board. 

He completed his Master of Public Health at Harvard University as a Fulbright Scholar and Frank Knox Fellow, and his PhD is focused on medical education. He was also awarded the Deloitte IPANZ Public Sector Young Professional of the Year 2016.


Natalia Lopez

COO, Kitea Health

Natalia’s career started off in the heavily regulated automotive industry as a systems engineer. This complemented her shift into the life science and medical device industry 10 years ago where she designed and implemented quality management systems. She has worked with multiple medical device spinouts to develop their quality systems and to ensure regulatory compliant product development. She was previously the Chief Operating Officer for Kaha Sciences, a wireless telemetry solutions company. She now focuses on market entry strategy for the Kitea System. Natalia holds a Bachelor of Science Electrical Engineering from Louisiana Tech University and a Postgraduate Diploma in Quality Systems Design from Massey University.



Dr Nicole Bassett

Development Manager, University of Auckland

Dr Nicole Bassett is a former research scientist who completed her PhD under the supervision of Distinguished Prof Sir Peter Gluckman, and then spent 10 years as part of his research team. She has spent the last 20 years working in the philanthropic space generating support for health-related research. She is currently the Development Manager for the University of Auckland’s flagship research institutes the Auckland Bioengineering Institute, the Liggins Institute, and Koi Tū : The Centre for Informed Futures. She has raised in excess of $30million for the Institutes over the past 5 years and is highly skilled at developing deep meaningful relationships with major donors to help them find projects where they will have the greatest impact. Donors are inspired by great research that has potential impact to change lives for generations to come. Understanding your donors and their motivation is vital. Taking the time to build these relationships will lead long-term significant support that can be transformational for your organisation.



Professor Nigel Lovell

Professor, Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering, University of New South Wales

Nigel Lovell received the B.E. (Hons) and Ph.D. degrees from UNSW Sydney, Australia. He is currently at the Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering UNSW Sydney where he holds a position of Scientia Professor and Head of School. He is also inaugural Director of the Tyree Institute of health Engineering. He has authored 700+ journal papers and conference proceedings and been awarded over $110 million in R&D funding. Over his career he has mentored 70 PhD students and delivered more than a 150 keynote presentations. He is a Fellow of seven learned academies throughout the world including the IEEE and AIMBE.

His research work has covered areas of expertise ranging from cardiac and retinal modeling, medical informatics and data analytics especially related to physiological monitoring, control of implantable heart pumps, biological signal processing, and visual prosthesis design. He has successfully commercialised a range of telehealth technologies and holds more than a dozen patents. For 2017 and 2018 he was the President of the world’s largest biomedical engineering society – the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society.


Professor Paul Breen

Professor at Western Sydney University

Paul is a member of the Biomedical & Human Technologies Group and the International Centre for Neuromorphic Systems at The MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development, Western Sydney University. He focuses on transdisciplinary research with real-world impact and collaboration with consumers, healthcare and industry.
Since joining WSU, two Australian start-up companies have been formed based on his collaborative work. Medical Monitoring Solutions commercialises cardio-respiratory diagnostic and monitoring technologies. PAYO Scientific, in which he is a Founder/Director, commercialised Braincubator, an incubation system for tissue samples. His current primary focus is on the translation of neuromodulation devices to enhance sensory perception.


Professor Peter Thorne

Professor at University of Auckland; Director of Eisdell Moore Centre; Co-Director of BRNZ

Professor Peter Thorne is an expert in diseases of the inner ear, the effects of noise, and consequences of ageing on the auditory system. Peter has a joint appointment in the Section of Audiology and Department of Physiology at the University of Auckland. He is a Director of the Eisdell Moore Centre and Co-Director of Brain Research New Zealand.


Ralph Highnam


Ralph Highnam has successfully built & exited medical device software start-ups in the UK and NZ. The most recent is ASX-listed, Wellington-based, Volpara Health, a leader in personalized breast care with 40% market coverage in the US. Ralph has been Founder, CEO, and Chief Scientist, as well as dealing directly with the FDA and other regulatory bodies and has raised over $130M with Volpara Health.



Dr Samuela Ofanoa

Research Fellow at University of Auckland

Dr Samuela Ofanoa (Tonga, Felemea Ha’apai, Vaimalo Vava’u) completed a PhD in Population Health at the University of Auckland investigating the risk and protective factors among mid and older community-dwelling adults in New Zealand. Samuela is currently working alongside other Pacific researchers, health professionals, and members of the community to co-design an intervention to improve the uptake of urate-lowering therapy for gout among Pacific people in South Auckland. He is also a Senior Researcher at Moana Connect, working alongside Pacific researchers to elevate the stories of Pacific families and communities to produce transformative change.



Scott McPhee

Co-Founder MQB Parners

Dr McPhee recently co-founded MQB Partners, an investment group based in NZ. After completing post-doctoral studies in translational neuroscience, Dr McPhee was involved in the founding of various startups, working in Hematology (Chatham Therapeutics, acq Baxter), Neurology (Bamboo Therapeutics, acq, Pfizer), RNA therapeutics (Torque Bio), and various other fields (Asklepios/AskBio BioPharmaceutical, acq, Bayer). Dr McPhee has also been a startup investor for over a decade (Allbirds, BIRD, Obvious Engineering, acq Snapchat).



Sean Gray

CEO at Peke Waihanga, the Artificial Limb Service

Sean Gray is a successful leader with a passion for life and helping others. He has held various senior positions in different industries, including CEO of Peke Waihanga/Artificial Limb Service and Managing Director of the Peer Support Service and Orthotic Service. Sean also has experience in community service and governance, including serving as Board and National Council Chair of Scouts Aotearoa, Director of Ginan Biomedic, Expert Advisor on the Major Trauma panel for the Health Quality and Safety Commission and a member of the Serious Injury Panel at the ACC. 

Sean has a strong background in health, medical devices and services to vulnerable patient groups, with a particular focus on innovation and disruptive technologies in this field. For example, Sean has chaired several sessions at the Australian Orthotics & Prosthetic Association (AOPA) Congress, as well as presented and published scientific research in the area of prosthetic and orthotic service delivery, user satisfaction, and the experiences of amputees using microprocessor knees.
Additionally, Sean has also presented at various international conferences, authored or co-authored several scientific publications and posters on the topic of diabetes.



Professor Simon Fraser

Professor of Industrial Design, School of Design Innovation at Victoria University of Wellington

Simon’s career as an industrial designer ranges from professional practice through to research and teaching in academia. Industry experience incorporates Fisher and Paykel Appliances, including their early medical devices, followed by more than 20 years at the internationally renowned Porsche Design studio as Assistant Design Director. Simon joined Victoria University of Wellington/Te Herenga Waka as the founding Programme Director of Industrial Design and subsequently as Head of the School of Design Innovation and Associate Dean, Research & Innovation. Current activities include facilitating translational research by bringing together science, design and industry via active affiliations with Te Tītoki Mataora, the NZ Product Accelerator and SfTI.



Dr Siobhan Tu'akoi

Research Fellow at University of Auckland

Dr Siobhan Tu'akoi (Tonga, Holonga Tongatapu, Pākehā) is a research fellow in the Pacific Health section, School of Population Health at the University of Auckland. She completed a PhD focused on adolescent wellbeing and intergenerational health in the Cook Islands. She has also been involved in research across both New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, including projects on maternal wellbeing, health literacy in schools and COVID-19 vaccination awareness. Her current research involves working alongside Pacific researchers, health professionals, and community members to co-design an intervention targeting rheumatic fever prevention within South Auckland Pasifika communities.



Tara Croft

CEO, Baymatob

Tara is a passionate advocate for women’s health, female representation in STEM, and women in leadership positions. A MedTech expert with 20 years industry experience, Tara is the CEO of Baymatob, a female-founded, female-led, early-stage business aiming to improve and save the lives of mothers and their babies, by developing an AI-enabled monitoring and early-warning system to transform health outcomes.
Tara has worked across various technical, business and leadership roles in innovative health technology companies. Academically, Tara developed and lectures the Biomedical Industry Frameworks subject at UTS. Tara has a B. Engineering, B. Medical Science, and an MBA.



Tāria Tane (Te Roroa, Ngāpuhi)

University of Auckland

Tāria Tane (Te Roroa, Ngāpuhi) is a doctoral student at the School of Population Health at the University of Auckland. Tāria is also a seasoned project manager, working on diverse projects spanning Māori health, primary care, mental health, child health, digital health, and long-term conditions. Tāria currently resides in her hometown in rural Te Tai Tokerau and is passionate about digital health solutions that support rural communities to thrive.



Dr Usman Ghani

Research Fellow, Centre of Chiropractic Research

Dr. Usman is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Centre of Chiropractic research at New Zealand College of Chiropractic. A major focus of his research at CCR is to use electroencephalograms (EEGs) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to identify how chiropractic care alters brain dynamics. The areas of research he is interested in including rehabilitation technologies are motor control and neuroplasticity. While pursuing his PhD in health sciences at Auckland University of Technology, he studied brain signals, mainly EEGs and ERPs, and how they are associated with cognitive workload variations.



Professor Valery Feigin

Professor, National Institute for Stroke and Applied Neurosciences

Prof Valery Feigin is Professor of Neurology and Epidemiology and the Director of the National Institute for Stroke and Applied Neurosciences, Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. Valery has published over 450 journal articles, and according to Web of Science, is one of the 1% most cited scientists worldwide across all field of science in 2018, 2020, 2021 and 2022; Google Scholar h-index = 130, Scopus h-index = 114; Web of Science h-index = 106). Professor Feigin is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Neuroepidemiology (IF=5.4), Co-Chair of the Global Policy Committee of the World Stroke Organization, and member of WHO TAG on NCD-related Research and Innovation.



Dr Victor Dieriks

Centre for Brain Research, University of Auckland

Dr Dieriks is currently a Sir Charles Hercus Senior Research Fellow and Head of the Synuclein lab at the Centre for Brain Research. As an emerging leader in Parkinson's disease and multiple system atrophy research, he focuses on the molecular mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration to find a therapy that will delay or stop the onset of these chronic conditions.



Vignesh Kumar

Partner at GD1

Vignesh Kumar is a Partner at VC firm GD1, where he focusses on emerging platforms across Connected Hardware, Deep Tech, and Health Tech, and is an investor and board member of companies such as Formus Labs (Pre-op planning software for orthopaedics), and Junofem (improving pelvic floor health). 
Prior to GD1, and after successfully overcoming his own battle with blood cancer, he co-founded a digital health patient reported outcomes platform for oncology care. Prior to this Vignesh was based in California and led hardware execution for Apple. Previous to Apple, he was a product design engineer at Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, working to bring to market several products in the neonatal resuscitation space.
Vignesh holds an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Fulbright Scholar. Vignesh also earned a BE (Hons) degree in Biomedical Engineering and a MEngSt (Hons) in Medical Device Design and Technologies from The University of Auckland.


Associate Professor Yusuf Cakmak

Brain Health Research Centre, University of Otago

A/Prof. Yusuf O. Cakmak (MD, PhD) is a leading expert in non-invasive wearable neuromodulation and remote health monitoring using nearable devices. He holds over ten international patents and has founded two spinoff companies specializing in wearable neuromodulation and mobile phone-based diagnostics in the US. He leads point-of-care technologies theme for Centre for Bioengineering at the University of Otago where he holds an Associate professor position at the Department of Anatomy. He is also a member of Interventional Technologies theme at NZ Consortium for Medical Device Technologies. Cakmak’s research is supported by HRC, Medtech Core grants. A/Prof. Cakmak provides invited expert opinions to numerous governmental grants for Medtech including NIH(US) and ERC(EU) and MRFF(AU).



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