Our Structure

Our Structure

Our Senior Leadership Team
Raelene Castle

Chief Executive

Raelene is the Chief Executive of High Performance Sport New Zealand and Sport New Zealand.

She joined Sport New Zealand after seven years working in Australia as Chief Executive of the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and then Chief Executive of Rugby Australia. She was previously Chief Executive of Netball New Zealand from 2007 to 2013.

Before beginning her career in sports administration, Raelene built a successful career in communications, sales and marketing. This included general management and other senior roles at Telecom New Zealand (now Spark), Bank of New Zealand and Fuji Xerox.

Raelene has held several governance roles in sport, previously serving as a board director of the ANZ Championship Netball, International Federations of Netball Associations, SANZAAR Rugby and the World Rugby Council.

She also has a rich sporting background as a former representative-level netball, tennis and lawn bowls player.

Raelene was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) in 2015 for services to Business and Sport.

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Steve Tew

Director of High Performance

Steve is an internationally renowned sports administrator. Having previously held the position of Chief Executive Officer for New Zealand Rugby from 2008 to 2019 and the Crusaders from 1996 to 2001, Steve remains active in sporting matters having assisted Sport New Zealand to review the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on professional sport and National Sporting Organisations.

He is also an Advisor to World Rugby and USA Rugby as well as holding several Board Directorships.

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Eddie Kohlhase, MNZM

General Manager Performance Partnerships

Eddie Kohlhase leads HPSNZ’s Performance Partnerships team, which works in partnership with National Sporting Organisations (NSOs) to provide performance and strategic investment, high performance coaching support, campaign planning and administers the Prime Minister’s Scholarship programme for athletes, coaches and support staff.

Eddie is a World Hall of Fame Softball player whose career with the Black Sox spanned 30 years, making history as the first New Zealander to win world championships as a player and a coach. In the 2014 Queen’s Birthday Honours, he was appointed a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to softball.

Since joining HPSNZ, Eddie has worked as a Coaching Consultant, High Performance Consultant and Performance Team Leader. Prior to joining HPSNZ Eddie has a highly successful career with New Zealand Customs and was a graduate of the University of Auckland Hillary Leadership Programme.

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Fiona Mather

General Manager Athlete Performance Support

Fiona Mather leads the Athlete Performance Support team, promoting inclusive environments where athletes can progress their potential by applying cutting edge, integrated performance solutions that enable fast learning and sustainable growth at individual, sport, and system levels. The team includes performance specialists in Strength and Conditioning, Health (Medicine, Physiotherapy, and massage), Nutrition, Performance and Technique Analysis, Psychology and Physiology.

As a physiotherapist, Fiona has experienced first-hand the importance of promoting health as a key foundation of athletic performance. She has an extensive track record working in elite sporting environments, initially in professional rugby and then exclusively with Olympic/Paralympic sports on behalf of Sport Scotland institute, British Olympic Association, UK Sport and, since 2015, with HPSNZ.

Fiona has held leadership positions across government agencies implementing the “systemisation” of sport, influencing policy and governance for the advancement of Olympic and Paralympic sporting institutions, as well as experiencing numerous Olympic and Commonwealth Games cycles through games’ time delivery and local organising committees.

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Andrew Matheson

General Manager Strategy, Intelligence and Innovation

Andrew Matheson has nearly 20 years of high performance sport leadership experience, with his most recent role as HPSNZ’s Acting General Manager – Strategy Implementation. He led the detailed development of our Investment Framework which is a key element of HPSNZ’s 2024 Strategy and took effect from January 2022.

Andrew’s previous roles have included High Performance Manager at Rowing New Zealand, High Performance Director at Rowing Australia/Australian Institute of Sport, CEO of Cycling New Zealand and previously General Manager – Performance and Strategic Investment at HPSNZ.

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Emily Downes

GM Wellbeing and Leadership

Emily leads HPSNZ’s Wellbeing and Leadership group which includes the Performance Life Coaching, Leadership Capability and Women in High Performance Sport programmes. It also includes additional dedicated resources to work with sports to support wellbeing outcomes for athletes and all those in New Zealand’s high performance sport system.

Emily joined us in 2022 after almost six years at the New Zealand Rugby Players Association, where her most recent role has been GM People Development, overseeing personal development, wellbeing and networking initiatives that educate, empower and support players prior to, during and after their professional rugby career.

She has also worked as a Player Services Advisor at New Zealand Rugby and as a Solicitor at Bell Gully.

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Rachel Williams

General Manager – Business Operations

Rachel joined HPSNZ in 2011 and has been leading the financial planning and analysis team.  She has a deep understanding of the high performance sport system and is well respected within HPSNZ and across the high performance sport sector’s financial network.

She has extensive experience in finance, administration and business analysis in the public and private sector, both in New Zealand and internationally.

Prior to joining HPSNZ she held senior roles in Canada with APPS Cargo Terminals, Nestle Canada Inc, McDonald’s Restaurants of Western Canada; in England with Moog Controls Ltd and in New Zealand with Mainland Products Ltd.

Rachel has a successful record of leading teams, working in complex environments and adding value through her financial and business acumen.

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Neena Ullal

General Counsel

Neena Ullal is the General Counsel for High Performance Sport New Zealand and is also leading the implementation of the Wellbeing and Engagement system shift in HPSNZ’s 2024 Strategy.

After spending many years specialising in entertainment and media law, working first for the distribution and networks business of Sony Pictures Entertainment in London and Miami, and then as the newsroom lawyer for TVNZ, she made the switch to sports and HPSNZ in 2019.

As HPSNZ’s General Counsel, Neena advises on a wide range of matters across the organisation including contractual arrangements, risk and compliance, and integrity issues.  And in her role leading the Wellbeing and Engagement system shift, she is focused on how HPSNZ can help to promote and support enriching performance environments across the high performance sport system.

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Simon Roche

Strategic Communications Manager

Simon brings more than 20 years’ experience in communications and public relations to HPSNZ.

He has successfully held critical roles in two of the country’s biggest ever sporting events, as Communications Manager for World Masters Games 2017 and Auckland Communications Manager for Rugby World Cup 2011. Simon has also provided strategic communications support for America’s Cup 2003 and 2021, ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, FIFA under-20 World Cup 2015, NRL Auckland Nines and the ITM 500 (V8 Supercars).

He is a highly effective communications practitioner with a record of achieving positive outcomes for complex public and private sector organisations with multiple stakeholders.

Simon is a Fellow of the Public Relations Institute of New Zealand. He has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Auckland and a Diploma of Journalism from Auckland Technical Institute (now AUT).

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Our Board of Directors

Our Board of Directors are led by Chair, Raewyn Lovett and includes representatives from across the sporting and commercial sector.

Raewyn Lovett (Chair)

Raewyn Lovett joined the HPSNZ Board in 2022.

She is a partner at Duncan Cotterill specialising in commercial law. Raewyn has experience in a variety of governance roles in the sport and not for profit sectors. 

She is currently chair of Quotable Value Limited, co-chair of the International Working Group on Women and Sport and chair of Dunedin Venues Management Limited. Her other current appointments include being a trustee of CHT Healthcare and a trustee of the Sir Ray Avery Foundation. Raewyn recently stood down as chair of Aktive – Auckland Sport and Recreation (the umbrella regional sport trust for Auckland) and is also a former Netball New Zealand chair.

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Duane Kale ONZM (Deputy Chair)

Duane was with the ANZ/National Bank from 1995 to 2021 holding Regional Management and Head of Department positions.

Paralympian #96, Duane achieved multi medal success at the Atlanta Paralympic Games and went on to lead the New Zealand team to Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Paralympic Games as Chef de Mission. He was elected to the International Paralympic Committee Governing Board in 2013 and in 2017 became Vice President.

Duane has spent 11 years as a Board member of Paralympics New Zealand and has been appointed by the International Olympic Committee to the Evaluation Commission for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

In 1997 he was made an Officer of the New Zealand Oder of Merit for services to swimming and in 2019 was awarded the Sport New Zealand Lifetime Achievement Award. He holds an MBA from Massey University.

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Bill Moran

Bill Moran was with the New Zealand Treasury from 1985 to 2016.

His most recent role as Chief Operating Officer saw him overseeing work on New Zealand’s economic strategy and ensuring the Treasury operates effectively as an organisation.

He previously led and managed work for the Treasury in macroeconomic and fiscal policy, tax strategy and state sector management. Prior to this he spent eight years as principal economic advisor to two Ministers of Finance and a Deputy Minister of Finance. A strong advocate for ensuring that the Treasury’s work is informed by external views and involving New Zealanders in the policy process, in 2013 Bill led a wide-ranging public engagement programme to test the assumptions and analysis for the Treasury’s long-term fiscal statement.

Bill holds a master’s degree in political science from Victoria University of Wellington. He spent eight years on the board of New Zealand Football and was chair of the organising committee for the 2015 FIFA Under-20 Men’s World Cup. He also has ties with the creative sector as founder and initial chair of the Play It Strange Trust.

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Dr. Chelsea Grootveld

Ngai Tai, Ngāti Porou, Whānau-a-Apanui, Whakatōhea, Te Arawa.

Chelsea has an extensive background in education research, policy and evaluation. She completed her doctoral studies in 2013, gaining a PhD in Education, at Victoria University of Wellington and started her own indigenous research and evaluation company.

Chelsea joined the HPSNZ Board in 2019.  She is a member of the Institute of Directors and Governance New Zealand, Director on CORE Education Limited, Chair of JR McKenzie Trust, former Chair of Hato Pāora College Board of Trustees and former Future Director on the Sport New Zealand Board. Chelsea was a Women in Governance award winner in 2019.

She is proud mum to Kahuroa and Mihi-Terina, wife to Timoti, and passionate triathlete, trail runner, netball player and coach.

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Hetty Van Hale

Hetty joined the HPSNZ Board in July 2020.

She is also a trustee of Central Lakes Trust,a trustee of Northland Events Centre (2021) Trust, and a member of the Sport NZ Finance, Audit & Risk Committee. . She has been a past chair of Badminton NZ and a past board member of Sky City Community Trust, Snow Sports NZ, Wanaka Wastebusters, Mt Aspiring College Foundation, Lake Wanaka Tourism, Project Crimson, and the Sir Edmund Hillary Outdoor Pursuits Centre of NZ.

Hetty has extensive experience in corporate communications and marketing and previous roles included Information Manager at Brierley Investments, Communications Manager for Carter Holt Harvey, Marketing Manager-Treble Cone for Tourism Holdings Ltd, and Communications Manager for Infinity Investment Group.

Hetty has a BA in Linguistics from Victoria University, a post-graduate Diploma of Information Science from Riverina Institute, Australia, and a Certificate in Company Direction from the NZ Institute of Directors.

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Annette Purvis

Annette Purvis joined the HPSNZ Board as the New Zealand Olympic Committee (NZOC) nominee in August 2020.

Annette is a current member of the NZOC Board of Directors and a member of World Athletics Development Commission and World Athletics Gender Leadership Taskforce. She was a member of the Athletics New Zealand Board for 14 years, 11 of those as Chair. She has led several high performance development and revitalisation strategies. Annette has previously held governance roles the IPC World Athletic Championships and the IAAF Women’s Committee. She was also General Manager for IAG, leading their residential earthquake customer settlements programme for Canterbury and Kaikoura.

As someone who was inspired to take up athletics after watching the 1974 Christchurch Commonwealth Games, Annette is passionate about contributing towards HPSNZ’s goal of inspiring the nation and its communities

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Martin Toomey

Martin (Marty) Toomey joined the HPSNZ Board in 2021. Marty has been involved in high performance sport since completing a Masters degree in Physical Education at Otago University. After establishing and running the University of Otago Human Performance Centre he was the All Blacks and Team New Zealand Fitness Trainer. He then joined the NZ Sports Foundation and SPARC as a Performance Consultant before assuming the role of General Manager High Performance. Marty oversaw the establishment of HPSNZ in 2011 before becoming CEO of Snow Sports NZ and then Winter Games NZ.

Marty was Chef de Mission of the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games Team, is Chair of the Ski Areas Association of NZ, is a Trustee of the Skeggs Foundation and Mount Aspiring College and has served on a number of International Ski Federation committees.

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Dame Valerie Adams

Dame Valerie Adams is one of New Zealand’s most dominant track and field stars. From 2006-2014 Dame Valerie enjoyed an unprecedented winning streak in world athletics of 107 competitions. Her major wins included back-to-back Olympic gold at the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Olympic Games, and four world championship titles. In 2016, Dame Valerie added silver to her Olympic medal collection at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and was later appointed as a Dame of the New Zealand Order of Merit for Services to Athletics.

As a mother of two, Dame Valerie continued to compete at the top level and won bronze at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games (postponed to 2021) whilst also coaching younger sister Lisa to her gold medal win at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in the shotput.

Dame Valerie announced she would be hanging up her throwing shoes in March 2022.  She continues to be involved in Athletics through coaching and is the Deputy Chair of the World Athletics Athletes Commission and World Athletics Board Member and Chair of the Oceania and Athletics NZ Athletes Commission.  Dame Valerie also enjoys spending time with her young family, working in the community and with her commercial partners.

Dame Valerie is a leader and role model in the Pacific community, and a seven-time Halberg sportswoman of the year winner.

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Dame Noeline Taurua

With a Masters of Science in Performance coaching, Dame Noeline Taurua is at home in the high performance environment.  She has been involved with netball for over 40 years and has fashioned a stellar career at all levels.

Dame Noeline was appointed Silver Ferns Head Coach in 2018 and in less than a year transformed the team’s fortunes to win the world championship in 2019.

She has tasted coaching success on both sides of the Tasman, leading newly established franchise Sunshine Coast Lightning to back-to-back premierships (2017,2018) and minor premiership (2019) in the Suncorp Super Netball competition.

Dame Noeline coached the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic from 2002-2013, leading them to two National Back Cup titles and one ANZ Championship title – the first and only New Zealand team to win the Trans-Tasman championship.

She was also an assistant coach for the Silver Ferns in 2011 and 2012 and represented the team as a player from 1993-99.

Dame Noeline won the Coach of the Year and Supreme awards in the Aotearoa Maori Sports Awards for 2019. In 2020 she won the Halberg Coach of the Year and Leadership awards while the Silver Ferns won the Supreme Award, Team of the Year and Favourite Sporting Moment awards. In the 2020 New Year Honours, Noeline was appointed a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to netball.

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Don Tricker ONZM

Don Tricker is now in his fifth season as the Director of Player Health and Performance at the San Diego Padres

Prior to joining the Padres, Don spent seven years as the High Performance Manager for New Zealand Rugby (NZR) and led their High Performance Programme. While with NZR, Don facilitated the development of their High Performance Strategy, facilitated the All Blacks 2011 and 2015 Rugby World Cup campaign plans, and completed the reviews of those campaigns. In 2008, along with Mike Heron, Tricker completed the independent review of the All Blacks 2007 Rugby World Cup campaign.

Prior to joining NZR, Don was a Performance Consultant with High Performance Sport NZ (HPSNZ). During his time with HPSNZ, he led the development of New Zealand’s Coaching strategy and attended the Athens and Beijing Olympics in a coach mentoring role.

Don played softball for New Zealand’s national team from 1985 to 1991, finishing second at the 1988 World Championships. He coached the Black Sox from 1998 to 2004, leading them to World Titles in 2000 and 2004. Don was inducted to the New Zealand Softball Hall of Fame and the International Softball Federation Hall of Fame. In 2000 Don was named Coach of the Year at the Halberg awards. He was also honored in 2004 with an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

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Review of Sport NZ and High Performance Sport NZ governance and organisational structure

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