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Dr Diana Sarfati

Director-General of Health and Chief Executive

Dr Diana Sarfati was appointed to the role of Director-General of Health and Chief Executive of the Ministry of Health in November 2022 having acted in the role since July 2022.

Diana is a public health physician, cancer epidemiologist and health services researcher, and she has a PhD from the University of Otago.

Diana was previously Tumuaki, Chief Executive & National Director of Te Aho o Te Kahu - Cancer Control Agency and prior to that she was National Director of Cancer Control at the Ministry of Health where she oversaw the implementation of the agency. From 2015 to 2019, Diana was the co-head and then head of the Department of Public Health and the Director of the Cancer and Chronic Conditions (C3) research group at University of Otago, Wellington.

Diana is a former member of the National Cancer Programme Leadership Board, the National Screening Advisory Group, the National Ethics Advisory Committee, the Bowel Cancer Taskforce and the National Bowel Cancer Screening Advisory Committee.

She is currently a Lancet Commissioner for the Health Systems and Cancer Lancet Commission, and a member of the International Advisory Committee to Lancet Oncology, the Advisory Committee to International Agency for Research on Cancer’s (IARC) Pacific cancer hub, IARC’s international expert group on social inequalities in cancer, and the Board of the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership. 

She also led a Lancet Oncology series on cancer in small island developing states.


Margie Apa

Chief Executive of Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand

Margie Apa is Chief Executive of Te Whatu Ora - Health New Zealand, the government’s new centralised national health organisation. She has more than two decades of health-sector leadership experience, previously serving as CEO of Counties Manukau District Health Board.

Before becoming CEO of Counties Manukau District Health Board, Margie was Director of Population Health and Strategy at the district health board. She is the first Samoan to lead a district health board in New Zealand and has also served as Deputy Director-General Sector Capability and Implementation at the Ministry of Health. In December 2021 she was named as Chief Executive of Health New Zealand, which is set to come into operation on 1 July 2022.

Margie graduated from the University of Auckland with a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in management and employment relations, and also has a Master of Public Administration (Executive) from Victoria University of Wellington.

She has been on the Board of World Vision New Zealand since 2011 and was appointed Chair of the Board in 2019.

Margie is an active member of the Pacific Island Presbyterian community and carries the honorific title Fepulea’i from her family village of Sale’aula, Savai’I in Samoa.


Dr Liz Craig

Labour List MP

Dr Liz Craig is a Labour List MP based in Invercargill.

She is a Parliamentary Private Secretary for Health and a member of the Social Services and Community Select Committee.

Prior to entering Parliament in 2017 Liz was the founding Director of the NZ Child and Youth Epidemiology Service and spent nearly a decade monitoring the health of New Zealand’s children and young people.



Brooke Van Velden MP

Deputy Leader of the ACT Party

Brooke is the Deputy Leader of the ACT Party.  In Parliament she holds the roles of ACT Party Whip, and is spokesperson for Health, Housing, Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Brooke is qualified in international trade and economics, and began her career as a corporate affairs consultant, advocating for business clients facing policy challenges. 

Her practical and political experience means she knows what big government and rushed laws do to people and businesses.  Brooke left the private sector to work in Parliament where she has been credited as the brains behind the End of Life Choice Act. 

Since being elected in 2020, she has been named the Herald’s top performing new MP and described as “making an impact quietly, forcefully,” and “proving her worth as a role model to many MPs older than her.” 
She has been a voice for Kiwis concerned about health care in Parliament by leading urgent debates into both the Waikato DHB data breach and the COVID-19 deaths in self-isolation. Brooke successful advocated for a rural health strategy in the health reforms and continues to hold the Government accountable on health issues such as worsening MRI/CT scan post-code lotteries and money allocated vs results regarding ICU capacity.


Dr Shane Reti

National List MP

Dr Shane Reti is a National List MP based in Whangarei.

In his first career he was a medical practitioner in Whangarei for 20 years including consecutive DHB appointments and membership of the Institute of Chartered Accountants. He has won national research awards and was one of the youngest recipients of the Queens Service Medal for public service in the 2006 New Years Honours List.

In his second career he was Assistant Professor at Harvard University and a fellow in clinical informatics.

Dr Reti is currently in his 3rd term as the Member of Parliament for Whangarei. He is the Spokesperson for Health, Covid 19 Response, Maori- Crown Relations and Pacific Peoples.


Leigh Donoghue

Chief Data and Digital, Te Whatu Ora – Health New Zealand

Leigh joined Te Whatu Ora – Health New Zealand in May 2023 from Accenture in Australia where held the role of Health Industry Lead for the Asia Pacific region.

He has 25 years’ experience in digital health, including leading complex, multi-year change programmes across diverse teams and delivery challenges.

This includes post-merger integration, the national rollout of electronic medical record systems across primary and secondary care at the National Health Service (England), introducing a national electronic health platform in Australia, and transforming national telehealth services in New Zealand.

His passion is co-creating the future of healthcare, using data, technology and the knowledge held within communities to create large-scale, sustainable change.

He holds a M. Commerce (Hons), University of New South Wales, and a B. Engineering (Hons), University of Tasmania.


Andrew Davies

Manager, Device Funding, Pharmac

Andrew oversees the work programme to build and manage the national list of medical devices - including procurement and category management requirements. He has over 20 years’ experience in the heath sector, in roles relating to the funding and commercial management of medical products.


Sarah Najdek

General Manager & Country Director, Johnson & Johnson MedTech

Sarah has more than 20 years of strategic management expertise across the manufacturing, medical device and pharmaceutical industries in New Zealand, Australia, and Asia. In addition to being the General Manager & Country Director of Johnson & Johnson MedTech New Zealand, Sarah is a board member of both Johnson & Johnson MedTech ANZ, and the Medical Technology Association of New Zealand (MTANZ). Sarah leads the MedTech organization across general surgery, orthopedics, cardiovascular and interventional solutions and is the J&J NZ Statutory Director.

Prior to New Zealand, Sarah was based in Singapore in the position of APAC Senior Director for Ethicon (a franchise of J&J) and was a member of Ethicon’s Global and Regional Leadership Team. During this period, Sarah played an integral role in shaping the global strategy, accelerating market access in APAC through real world evidence, surgeon education and shaping future product and service innovation.

Sarah has held diverse senior leadership roles across Johnson & Johnson MedTech and Janssen (Pharmaceutical sector of J&J), in the disease state/specialty areas of General Surgery, Bariatrics, Orthopedics, Diabetes Management, Oncology, Immunology and Medical Affairs.

Sarah has a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) from University of Technology, Sydney, and a Master of Business Administration (with High Distinction) from Charles Sturt University.


Associate Professor David McCormack

National Clinical Lead for Procurement and Supply Chain at Te Whatu Ora - Health NZ

A/Prof David McCormack has had an impactful career in healthcare spanning across the UK and New Zealand. An accomplished cardiothoracic surgeon, his journey began in prestigious UK institutions such as Barts Heart Centre, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Foundation Trust, Imperial College Healthcare Trust and the Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust, before taking his expertise to Aotearoa New Zealand. 

His surgical acumen is complemented by his ability in health administration. A/Prof McCormack has held leadership roles at Te Whatu Ora Waikato as the Associate Chief Medical Officer of Waikato and is presently the National Clinical Lead for Procurement and Supply Chain at Te Whatu Ora. These roles underscore his command over strategy and leadership in healthcare systems.

An MBA, graduated with distinction, has fortified McCormack's practical experience with a firm grounding in business administration. He is an Associate Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators. In his capacity as an Associate Professor of Surgery at the University of Auckland, he is passionate about imparting this blend of knowledge and experience to the next generation of healthcare professionals.

A/Prof McCormack is currently leading a crucial project at Te Whatu Ora that aims to develop a national health technology assessment pathway. Despite his extensive administrative responsibilities, McCormack remains intimately connected to the pulse of medical practice, literally operating on patient’s hearts on most days as a cardiothoracic surgeon. This regular immersion in frontline healthcare provides invaluable perspective, shaping his strategic efforts with a practical understanding of the daily realities within the healthcare sector. The initiative aims to promote the strategic implementation of technology within New Zealand's healthcare landscape. McCormack's leadership in this ambitious project embodies his dedication to enhance patient outcomes through the intelligent use of technology.


Miang Tanakasemsub

Regional Regulatory Affairs head, Asia Pacific at JNJ Vision

Miang is a Pharmacist, MBA. She has more than 25 years of regulatory affairs experience with numbers of medical devices and pharmaceutical companies. Her current position at JNJ Vision is the Regional Regulatory Affairs head, Asia Pacific. Miang has a board experience in Regulatory Affairs, Clinical Research, Reimbursement, Government Affairs and Quality Assurance in Asia Pacific including Japan. Prior to Cardinal Health, Miang worked for numbers of healthcare companies (Takeda, Boston Scientific, JNJ, Actelion, Cochlear, Bausch & Lomb, Zimmer Biomet, Alcon & Cardinal Health) in different locations (Bangkok, Hong Kong, Sydney and Singapore). In addition to her current job, she has been heavily involved with numbers of harmonization activities including GHTF, AHWP, APEC RHSC and ACCSQ. She was one of the members of GHTF SG02 (Postmarket Surveillance) and Co-chair of AHWP TC 2 terms. Currently, she is a chair of APACMED Regulatory Affairs group and an industry Vice chair of GHWP (Global Harmonization Working Party) Technical committee.


Geoff Bryan

Television Sports Broadcaster

Geoff Bryan has been lucky enough to spend much of his professional life getting paid for what he enjoys doing rather than working. He is best known as a long-standing television sports broadcaster, and has 35 years experience in the media.

He has seen many changes in sport and the media, but the heart of his job remains being able to relate to either the viewer or listener. These skills draw them in, and add value, to what they are either listening to or watching.

These are the skills that Geoff brings to conferences, dinners and events. He is a polished and popular MC and speaker with the ability to suit all occasions and audiences and his understanding of a brief and his easy manner are reflected in the number of our clients who want him to come back time and again.


Tim Vines

Therapeutics Policy Team Manager, Manatū Hauora | the Ministry of Health

Tim Vines is the manager of the Therapeutics policy team in Manatū Hauora | the Ministry of Health. 

Tim moved to Aotearoa/New Zealand from Canberra, Australia in 2019, having spent the previous 10 years working in the Australian Public Service. In Australia, Tim led a number of projects at the National Health and Medical Research Council (Australia’s main public funder of health and medical research) involving clinical trials policy, the development of the national Human Research Ethics Application system, and the establishment of the Australian Research Integrity Committee. 


Chris Morgan

Director Procurement and Supply Chain, Health NZ

Chris graduated as an Aeronautical Engineer in the UK and spent the early part of his career working in the aerospace and defence industries in procurement, production planning, and operations management roles. 

He and his wife fell in love with New Zealand during an all too short holiday in 2000. A year later they emigrated with their two daughters. 

Since arriving in NZ he has worked in the healthcare (ADHB), the Accident Compensation Corporation, and Auckland Transport in various procurement and strategic development roles. He has also been privileged to be:

  • Chair the NZ branch of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply,
  • Treasurer and Chair for Inspiring Communities, a not for profit committed to supporting Community Led Development in NZ
  • Mentor for a number of organisations including First Foundation

He currently lives in Auckland but has a national role as Director Procurement and Supply Chain for Te Whatu Ora.


Michael Johnson

Director of Strategy, Policy and Performance

Michael joined Pharmac's senior leadership team in September 2017. His experience and knowledge of the health sector include 9 years working in various roles for the Ministry of Health – with the last 5 years working as Senior Health Advisor to the Minister of Health – and various roles with the NHS in Scotland.

As Director of Strategy, Policy and Performance, Michael provides leadership and coordination of Pharmac’s strategy and related project work, including supporting Pharmac’s work in hospital medical devices.


Anne Arndt

Director of the Johner Institute New Zealand

Anne started her career over 20 years ago as a software developer. After leaving software development, Anne moved into quality and process management and has been successfully working on medical device approvals in Europe for the last 10 years.

Five years ago, Anne joined the Johner Institute and has since successfully supported clients with medical device approvals with a focus on software as a medical device. In 2018, Anne relocated from Europe to New Zealand and while supporting clients in Europe, she began supporting medical device manufacturers in New Zealand and Australia.

In 2021, Anne was appointed Director of the Johner Institute New Zealand. With a main focus on the global regulatory landscape, Anne is now at the forefront of helping clients in New Zealand and Australia ensure their products are ready for international regulatory approval.

Anne's influence extends far beyond the manufacturers. She is a tireless advocate for a holistic approach to regulatory compliance. She guides and supports suppliers to medical device manufacturers, equipping software developers and testers with the tools and knowledge they need to move forward within the confines of a rigorous regulatory framework.

Anne's expertise in emerging technologies means she has a unique affinity for active medical devices, deftly navigating the intricate interplay between hardware and software. From medical-grade software solutions to cutting-edge innovations, she leads the way in preparing these medical devices for global approval.


Darren Forrest

Regulatory and Quality Leader, Medtronic

Darren Forrest joined Medtronic as Regulatory and Quality leader in June 2010, and covers both Australia and New Zealand. Prior to Medtronic, Darren has held both design and research roles in the medical device space as well as his regulatory and quality roles, in companies ranging from start-up to large multinationals. Darren is also involved in local industry associations ensuring Medtronic’s interests as well as industry as a whole is represented on important regulatory issues. He holds a PhD in Failure mechanisms of coated medical materials as well as a Masters in Clinical Engineering, he is also a Charted Engineer.


Georgina Townley

Regulatory Affairs Market Manager – Fisher & Paykel Healthcare

As a Regulatory Affairs Market Manager, Georgina leads regulatory market access and maintenance strategies across a range of regulated and transitioning markets. Georgina has been heavily involved in F&P’s assessment of, and response to, the New Zealand Therapeutic Products Bill (TPB) and submissions to the Health Select Committee.

Georgina holds a Master of International Trade from Te Herenga Waka - Victoria University of Wellington as well as a conjoint Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Arts from the University of Auckland.


Professor Jonathan Koea

Hepatobiliary & General Surgeon

Jonathan Koea is a full professor at University of Auckland School of Medicine, the President of the ANZHPBA and is the head of the Upper Gastrointestinal Unit at North Shore Hospital and a founding partner at Harbour Surgery Centre, Southern Cross North Harbour.

  • Prof. Koea completed fellowship training in surgical oncology and hepatobiliary and pancreatic surgery at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre (MSKCC) in New York City prior to returning to Aotearoa NZ 
  • Examiner for RACS and ANZHPBA
  • Board Member - National Cancer Agency
  • Active researcher interests in HPB surgery and indigenous health


Chris James

Group Manager of Medsafe

Chris is the Group Manager of Medsafe, the medicine and medical device regulator in New Zealand. Chris is a registered Pharmacist in New Zealand and has a post graduate qualification in Public Health. Chris also has formal training in regulatory systems. In 2006 Chris joined Medsafe, initially in the premarket assessment of new medicines, then moving to the post market pharmacovigilance team. Chris was appointed Manager of the Clinical Risk team in 2011, responsible for providing clinical advice, communications, and the regulation of clinical trials. Chris has been Medsafe Group Manager since 2015.

Dr Chris Moyes

Medical Director of the Hepatitis Foundation of NZ

Dr Chris Moyes, Medical Director of the Hepatitis Foundation of NZ, has been interested in hepatitis since 1979, when he studied the epidemiology of hepatitis B and undertook vaccine trials. He has been involved in treating people with hepatitis B and C since the early 1990s. Chris has initial specialist qualifications in adult medicine and paediatrics. He is partly retired but still works in hepatitis and paediatrics. Chris is married with one child and lives in Whakatane. His interests include trout fishing, sailing, kayaking, classical guitar and European travel. In 2021 Chris was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to healthcare.


Christopher Chiam

Head Value Stream Digital Insights, Roche Diagnostic Asia Pacific

Chris has been in the IT industry since 1997 and has worked in the banking, education, semi-conductor and Healthcare Industry. His career has brought him to live in Munich, Shanghai and Singapore in various roles and capacities.

In his current role, Head, Value Stream Digital Insights, Roche Diagnostic Asia Pacific,  Chris sees himself as a Digital Wellness & Healthcare Transformation Advocate & Futurist. He has a strong Passion of Consumerization of Healthcare IT and it's impact of bringing accessible and quality care to all that the Global healthcare Ecosystem can offer!

 He is especially involved and providing leadership in digital transformation of organization, advocating change healthcare.


Wing Lam Wong

General Manager, Roche Diagnostics

Wing graduated from Victoria University of Wellington with a double degree in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology and Commercial Law/Management.

She has over 20 years of experience in the in vitro diagnostics industry. Since beginning her career as a Product Specialist, she has held numerous roles in Commercial Strategy, Market Access, Medical Affairs and Policy across many Asian and international markets.

She returned home to New Zealand in November 2021 as General Manager at Roche Diagnostics New Zealand. She is passionate about improving the lives of patients, and their loved ones, by accelerating patient access to diagnostics solutions and healthcare innovations to improve patient outcomes.

Wing is also committed to developing the next generation leaders in healthcare. Her focus goes beyond her local Roche team and she is on the Steering Committee of Women in Health Tech in New Zealand. She strives to build a diverse and inclusive culture wherever she goes.


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