Our Board and Team

Passionate about your hearing

The team at Hearing Nelson are dedicated to improving the lives of people who are hard of hearing and preventing hearing loss through education in schools, workplaces and community groups.


Philip Woollaston


A former mayor of Nelson, MP and cabinet minister, Philip also has over 20 years of experience as a local vineyard and winery proprietor. Married to former Hearing Nelson board member Chan, he has moderate hearing loss and wears hearing aids (when he remembers!)

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Connie Charlton

Board Member

As part of a varied career Connie ran her successful design business for 20 years. She enjoys community involvement in causes that are close to her heart.

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Herman van Gessel


Herman has background in management accounting and has experienced working in not-for-profit organisations both in New Zealand and overseas.


Emma King

Board Member

Emma comes to us with a great deal of experience acting as an advocate for the Hard of Hearing in our community.

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Mariana Silva Algorta

Board Member

Mariana is from Uruguay and is a proud New Zealand resident. Her experience comes from the Deaf Community as an Interpreter of Uruguayan Sign Language. She is a professional psychomotricity therapist, with a recent Master degree in Deafblindness and Communication.

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Frans Dellebeke

Board Member

Frans has extensive experience as an HR Manager, Business Analyst, Stakeholder Relations Manager and was the CEO of the Nelson Tasman Hospice for nine years. He has a BA (Psychology) and a Masters in Business Management. Frans and his wife enjoy walking their two border collies, sport, travelling, music and photography.


Cathy Gutschlag

NZ Sign Language Tutor

Cathy has been teaching NZSL for over 10 years. She loves introducing Deaf community members to her students so they can practice communicating with their new language skills. She has a Hard-of-Hearing daughter and Deaf extended family so is passionate about promoting NZSL within the Nelson community.

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Lisa Dudley


Lisa has been with Hearing Nelson since late 2019 and has loved every moment of her job as the Nelson/Motueka Fieldworker. With a background in caring for the elderly, she loves helping people continue to communicate by maintaining hearing aids to residents throughout rest homes.

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Liz Wright


Having spent the past 15 years in management positions within two Auckland based charities, Liz is now enjoying serving her new community as Manager at Hearing Nelson.

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Marg Palmer


With a blend of years of Banking experience and serving local communities as a volunteer and also a Celebrant, Marg can be seen at Hearing House reception or as a fieldworker in local rest homes.

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Morfydd Barker

Golden Bay Fieldworker

Born in Wales and given a name that goes back to the Arthurian legends, Morfydd was brought up in London.  She has had two lives - one was as a scientist and software engineer in the UK and Singapore. The second is as a resident of Golden Bay, charity worker, painter and teacher, but primarily carer for her late husband Bill.  She is now delighted to be able support those with hearing loss.

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Tracy Dawson


Tracy is energised by engaging and connecting with young people (through the schools) and older members of our community. Imparting facts in a creative, compelling and meaningful way to encourage individuals to see the value in preserving their hearing, the benefits of taking action and how they can change the culture around hearing and hearing loss.