Our Board consists of a mix of people from all across Aotearoa with a broad range of skills and experience, from people living with epilepsy to those with experience in the medical, business and community sectors.
Current Board members are:
– Lucy Acott (Vice-President)
– Matthew Patterson (Treasurer)
– Dr Peter Bergin
– Philippa Tolley
– Richard Bennett
– Patricia Cook
Lucy is the Vice-President holding the Brand and Funder Development portfolios. Lucy is an experienced senior executive who has operated within large corporates in New Zealand and Australia including Air New Zealand and British Airways. Most recently she has been the on the Executive leadership team of the Accor Hotel group as the Director of Marketing for NZ, Fiji and French Polynesia. Lucy and her husband have three daughters with their eldest diagnosed with epilepsy as an infant.
Matthew (Matt) Patterson
Matt has fifteen years experience in the construction industry and currently works as a Commercial Estimator and Project Manager in Dunedin. Matt has personal and family experience with epilepsy; having epilepsy himself, a son with epilepsy and others in his extended family also living with epilepsy. He is passionate in sharing his own experiences growing up with epilepsy to help others deal with their journey in managing living with epilepsy. Matt is our Treasurer and serves on the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee.
Dr Peter Bergin
Dr Bergin has been on the Board for more than ten years having been the President in the past and now holding the Service Delivery, Clinical and Research portfolios. Dr Bergin is a consultant neurologist at Auckland Hospital where he also co-ordinates the Epilepsy Surgery Programme. Research is a passion for Dr Bergin who has established a research vehicle called EpiNet, an internet based research programme to facilitate investigator-initiated trials into the optimal management of epilepsy. Dr Bergin resides in Auckland and is a keen hiker and cyclist.
Philippa is a multi-award winning journalist currently working as the national day editor for Radio New Zealand. Previously Philippa has worked in London as well as covering events and stories from around the pacific and the Pasifika community. Working in a fast paced environment has allowed Philippa to demonstrate her empathy towards vulnerable groups and understanding of people. Philippa lives in Wellington with her whanau and has a son who lives with epilepsy. Portfolios held by Philippa are: Brand and Public Relations and Media.
Richard (Ricky) Bennett
Ricky lives in Queenstown and has a son who lives with epilepsy. Ricky joined the Board in 2019 sharing his vast knowledge around all financial matters. Ricky has extensive experience in governance having held directorships in both the corporate sector and the not-for-profit world. He is a Financial Advisor having been in the financial industry for more than 35 years. Ricky holds the Financial and Risk portfolio.
Patricia (Pat) Cook
Pat holds the Equity portfolio as well as the Service Delivery portfolio within the Board. She has multiple health qualifications right from her nursing degree through to her Masters of Health Practice in Maori Health. Pat is deeply immersed in te ao maori, living in Katikati and working as the Chief Executive Officer at Te Manu Toroa Trust. With several of her whanau living with epilepsy in their lives Pat is able to bring lived experience from a maori perspective.