Co-founder and Chief Executive Endometriosis New Zealand
Director EPP Coaching and Consulting (Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain)
Deborah has had a global influence on health promotion and prevention of endometriosis. Using her experience as a teacher, she developed the world’s first Menstrual Health and Endometriosis (me) school education programme in 1997. A unique well-health model promoting early intervention and appropriate management, ‘me’ is positively and profoundly influencing current data and improving health outcomes in this demographic.
Deborah has contributed to the medical literature through published articles and books and sits on International Boards, advisory and research committees for endometriosis.
She has frequently presented as key note speaker at international academic conferences and as MC at many functions. She was described by the judges at the 2012 Woman of the Year Awards as “a pioneer, a visionary, a highly effective lay person in a specialised medical world bringing relief from disability and pain to thousands.”
Deborah has established and maintains:
Endometriosis NZ, a national charitable non-government organisation
health initiatives and ground-breaking programmes for schools, workplaces, hospitals and CME
EPP Coaching and Consulting; her private practice for women and girls with endometriosis and pelvic pain which integrates into treatment centres offering multi-disciplinary expertise.
Deborah’s achievements are reflected in the following awards:
Queens Service Medal (QSM), Queen Elizabeth II Birthday Honours, 2003.
Commonwealth Award for Excellence in Women’s Health (Endometriosis NZ under her leadership).
Paul Newman Award, 2007.
International Outstanding Service Award, 2011 (for 100th International Women’s Day).
Zonta International Woman of the Biennium Award 2011 – 2013.
Woman of the Year – Health and Science, 2012
Woman of Influence Finalist 2014
World Endometriosis Society Board
Order of Merit (MNZM) Queen Elizabeth ll Birthday Honours 2017
Tayla first came across Endometriosis New Zealand when the ‘me’ programme came to her high school. This programme gave her the knowledge and encouragement to speak out and seek help for her symptoms which resulted in her being diagnosed with endometriosis.
It also influenced Tayla’s choice of career, as she wanted to join her love of helping others with her interest in health to be able to have a positive impact on other girls and woman going through similar experiences.
This lead her to study at the University of Canterbury completing a Batchelor of Health Sciences majoring in Health Education. During the degree, she carried out an internship with Endometriosis New Zealand which further fuelled her passion and desire to make a change for those with endometriosis.
Tayla is super excited to now be a national educator with Endometriosis New Zealand, and cannot wait to see where this new chapter with the organisation will take her!
Monique was introduced to Endometriosis New Zealand when she was diagnosed with endometriosis at the age of 17. She found the organisation extremely helpful when seeking more information. Monique studies Science at the University of Canterbury with a particular interest in Human Biology and Health. She is also passionate about dancing and theatre and teaches jazz and contemporary dance in Christchurch.
Monique is thrilled to now be working for Endometriosis New Zealand as a ‘me’ educator and enjoys speaking to young girls to raise awareness.
Angela joined Endometriosis NZ in 2016 as the National Administrator.
“This is my first role in a not-for-profit or registered charity and I am really enjoying the change of focus in terms of an organisations values, vision and goals.”
With qualifications in accounting and human resources, Angela’s background is mainly in finance and human resource management in the private sector. She brings a wealth of knowledge around managing finances, human resource policy & practise, as well as general business management and administration. Angela’s main role at ENZ is to manage the financial and funding requirements of the organisation including searching out and applying for grants and funds from all over New Zealand, as well as general administration and support. She is the first person you will touch base with when contacting us via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Angela is married with a young daughter. She spends her free time with her family and friends and relishes savouring the precious moments with them all.
Heather is excited to be part of the Endometriosis New Zealand team and is looking forward to helping make a difference in the lives of others.
She previously worked in the American not-for-profit sector for three years with ‘at risk’ youth. After obtaining her bachelor’s in teaching she moved to New Zealand, where she worked in various schools across New Zealand.
Heather values the enthusiasm and energy young people share. She believes, “Wellness is heavily connected with someone’s ability to learn and if you’re in pain, mentally unwell, or facing other barriers, then it is very difficult to engage and enjoy life.”
Heather enjoys being a part of a team of people who help improve pathways for individuals, families, and communities.
Sharon Woodings resides in Christchurch and has two grown-up daughters. Ten years ago she established Blue Mercury Leadership, a people development business which now works with some of New Zealand’s biggest corporations and smallest companies, not for profits, and individuals.
She has many years of experience working with people and organisations, having commenced her working life as a trained teacher she then developed and delivered community based programmes for a regional sports trust before heading a regional YMCA. Her other passion is as a sports coach and mentor which has seen her coaching Netball at local, regional and national levels in New Zealand. Sharon is a proud Rotarian and has been working for the community through this organisation for 16 years in both Southland and Canterbury. She has been a member, past president and currently holds a regional role as an Assistant Governor.
Sharon is excited about bringing her experience to the Endometriosis Board, an issue which, because of direct family associations, is very dear to her heart.
MD CREI FRANZCOG FRCOG MRCGP, Auckland
Neil is a Gynaecologist and Fertility Specialist in Auckland. In private practice at 105 Remuera Road with Auckland Gynaecology Group (that includes the old Endometriosis Auckland) and Repromed Auckland and in public practice as Medical Director of Fertility Plus at Auckland District Health Board. Neil trained in both the UK and New Zealand, and has a special interest in treating women with endometriosis.
Neil’s main clinical interests are endometriosis, fertility, laparoscopic and hysteroscopic surgery, menstrual disorders, and colposcopy. With a national and growing international reputation for clinical research in gynaecology and fertility, his main areas of research interest currently include evidence based fertility treatments, endometriosis, polycystic ovaries and ovarian reserve.
He has developed an innovative treatment for endometriosis-related infertility, using lipiodol, a poppy seed oil. Neil is Honorary Associate Professor of Reproductive Medicine and Obstetrics & Gynaecology at the University of Auckland.
He has served on the Trust Board of Endometriosis New Zealand since 2004 and on the Board of the World Endometriosis Society since 2008 and is President Elect of the World Endometriosis Society (2014-17). He is Immediate Past Chairperson of the RANZCOG Subspecialty Training programme in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, was the inaugural Chair of the Australasian multi-centre clinical research network REproduction And Clinical Trials (REACT-ANZ) and the Reproductive Medicine consensus group ACCEPT (Australasian CREI Consensus Expert Panel on Trial evidence), and is an Associate Editor of the Australasian journal ANZJOG.
For twenty years, Rachel has been providing assistance to innovators and ideators so that they can get their great ideas off the ground. During this time, her roles have included: working in private practice in New Zealand and the UK; heading an in-house legal team in the UK; and acting as Assistant Commissioner of Trade Marks.
Rachel is currently the General Counsel for Powerhouse Ventures Limited, and is the founder of aRc intellectual property. She is also on the Board of Trustees for Ministry of Awesome which supports early-stage entrepreneurs.
Joining the Endometriosis Board of Trustees in 2017 was another opportunity for Rachel to assist in removing barriers for those wanting to realise their full potential, through supporting the Endometriosis New Zealand team in providing information, education and support to women with endometriosis.
Rachel now lives in Christchurch where she is an amateur wife, trainee mum, and experienced earthquake survivor (with great tips on escaping a 20 story building when you’re 6 months pregnant if needed).
MRCSA CEM, Christchurch
For the past 17 years Glenda has been facing endometriosis head on, with a daughter who has endured more surgeries than the years she’s been suffering. She is thrilled to have been asked to contribute and be a part of the board of Endometriosis NZ. Without the support of this organisation and Deborah Bush she can’t imagine where they may have ended up.
Glenda owns Harding Consultants, a small consultancy that organises conferences, seminars and events for a wide variety of organisations. She is one of only 50 certified Event Managers throughout Australasia. She also runs a very successful recruitment training business, where she trains recruitment consultants throughout New Zealand. Board roles in the past included Chairing the Board of Trustees at Paparoa Street Primary School (11 years) and Dress for Success Christchurch (5 years). Charity work has involved the Koru Care Charity Auction, Canterbury Cancer Ball and Lions Foundation Charity Dinner for Camp Quality (Children Living with Cancer). She is regarded as someone who ‘can look outside the square’ to help create and look at different and unique solutions.
Glenda is married to Julian, who has his own jewellery business, and has 3 children, Abby, Tyler and Rosie: a very new grandson – Huxley along with 3 fabulous partners to their children.
Glenda looks forward to contributing towards Endometriosis NZ, which already has a well proven track record in supporting the research and treatment of endometriosis; a significant education programme and ongoing support to the many thousands of sufferers.
Brylie has recently qualified as a chartered accountant and is currently working for Nexia New Zealand. Her role includes business advisory services and more recently corporate services. Brylie originally studied in Marketing and Management before re-training as an accountant in 2014.
Brylie has been living in Christchurch for 10 years now and throroughly enjoys the city. She is a keen snowboarder in winter and loves the water in summer. She also enjoys spending time with her cat, Vaya.
The opportunity to join the Endometriosis Board of Trustees in 2017 was Brylie’s first board opportunity with which she is very excited to be a part of. Brylie looks forward to assisting Endometriosis NZ with accounting knowledge, marketing support and supporting women with endometriosis.
Dr Fiona Connell
Dr Fiona Connell
Fiona is a New Zealand trained gynaecologist. She completed her fellowship at The Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne, an accredited advanced laparoscopy training centre. This means she is qualified to perform the most difficult levels of endometriosis surgery.
Fiona’s focus with patients is to understand how their symptoms and concerns affect them and to figure out what they need to be able to live their lives to the full. Her aim is to help patients find a solution that works for their lifestyle and if they need surgery, will always recommend the safest option that will give the least disruption to their life. She understands the complexity of pelvic pain and endometriosis and keeps up to date by attending international conferences and keeping in contact with endometriosis experts internationally. When a broader approach is needed and the answer is not entirely based in gynaecology, she enjoys working with other experts to give the best quality of life possible.
ENZ Voice of Youth
Emma was first introduced to Endometriosis NZ when she was diagnosed with endometriosis at the age of 13. A year later, she discovered that endometriosis is not talked about enough and she wanted to get the ‘me’ programme down to her high school in Timaru, South Canterbury. This lead her to organising a concert to raise funds for the programme and was excited to find out that she had raised enough money for the ‘me’ programme to visit 4 high schools in her region. Emma did another fundraiser this year (2018) towards getting the programme back down to Timaru again.
Emma got involved with ENZ because she wants to educate the youth today about Endometriosis because it’s something that needs to be talked about more often. She is excited to be involved with Endometriosis New Zealand as the ENZ Voice of Youth and is looking forward to what it will bring.
Thousands of women and their families have benefitted Endometriosis NZ's strength and support...."it’s a national treasure”.
Why Lorelei loves Endometriosis New Zealand…
“In my job I am repeatedly faced with interviewing patients struggling under the burden of chronic illness and pain. Their bravery in the face of obstacles is humbling. But one can never underestimate the uplifting power and healing of genuine support … not just from dedicated medical staff and family … but also organisations agitating for their future health and happiness. The NZ Endometriosis Foundation is one such organisation … playing a vital role in educating young and old about the condition, encouraging support groups to flourish and agitating continuously for genuine improvements for women through the health system. Thousands of women and their families have benefitted from the Foundation’s strength and support ..it’s a national treasure”.
One News Health Reporter Lorelei Mason has been a supporter of the New Zealand Endometriosis Foundation for many years and is a former Foundation Board member.
The Christchurch mother of three children is a firm believer in the power of education and support to help women with endometriosis, and those who love them, forge a brighter future.
I was delighted when invited in 2010 to become an ambassador for Endometriosis New Zealand. My support for this organisation is unwavering.
Why Jennie loves Endometriosis New Zealand…
“I was delighted when invited in 2010 to become an ambassador for Endometriosis New Zealand. My support for this organisation is unwavering. Deborah Bush and her team are doing a superb job in helping girls and women in NZ to deal with this cruel and often silent condition. The World Endometriosis Society was not even established when I was suffering from endometriosis, particularly affecting my fertility. I was extremely fortunate to have an excellent gynaecological surgeon who performed a number of procedures to enable me to conceive my daughter naturally. Prior to that I experienced many years of severe pain and discomfort, having no one to turn to and was quite ignorant of the cause of my condition. 30-40 years ago, there was no organisation available in NZ to offer the support and reassurance that is now available through Endometriosis New Zealand. Today this organisation is able to play a vital role in educating girls and women (and their families), giving them encouragement to face the future with more confidence in managing endometriosis.”
Jennie Goodwin was New Zealand’s first woman network television newsreader – in fact the first woman to read prime time TV news in the British Commonwealth in June 1975. Jennie worked many years in radio and television and left broadcasting to have her daughter in 1985 at the age of 40. She is very happy to continue supporting Endometriosis New Zealand and the invaluable work they carry out.
Nerida and Shane Cortese
Nerida and Shane Cortese
Why Nerida loves Endometriosis New Zealand…
“I support Endometriosis NZ, as I have several close friends with this disease, who inspire me to help other women feel good about themselves, no matter what shape, size or time of the month it is! I encourage women to celebrate who they are through dance. Great music, laughter and fun movements help women to enjoy their bodies and escape from the everyday-even if its for just 45 minutes!!”
Born in Australia, Nerida moved to NZ in 2001 to turn Professional and teach with her Kiwi Ballroom dancing partner after traveling around the world to compete in international and world championships. In 2005, Dancing with the stars came along for the first time, where she came runner-up and met her husband Shane Cortese and had 2 beautiful sons. In 2008, she repeated the runner-up position with league and boxing star, Monty Betham. From here, Nerida has gone on to coach past and current NZ dance champions, choreograph for television shows such as “So you think you can dance” and the NZ television awards, NZ Fashion week, Christmas in the Park and for large corporates, such as Westpac and Vodafone. She now also enjoys guiding couples through their First Dance for their wedding day and taking Ladies Latin classes to boost ladies’ self esteem and get them enjoying the art she has loved for so long!
MA, Dean Te Puna Wanaka, Maori Faculty, CPIT, Christchurch
Dean of Te Puna Wanaka, Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology, New Zealand
Kāi Tahu, MA with Distinction, University of Otago
Hana O’Regan was raised in Wellington in a family immersed in Māori Treaty and identity politics. She received her secondary schooling at Queen Victoria Māori Girls Boarding school in Auckland before becoming an American Field Scholar in Thailand for one year. Hana returned to pursue an undergraduate degree with a double major in Māori Studies and Political Science at the Victoria University of Wellington. Upon graduating Hana took up a lecturing position at the University of Otago where she lectured for four years in the areas of Māori language, creative writing and the Treaty. During this time Hana undertook post-graduate study and graduated with her Masters of Arts in 1997. The topic of her thesis, Māori tribal identity development, became the basis of her book Ko Tahu Ko Au – Kāi Tahu Tribal identity, that was published in 2000.
She left Otago in 1997 to take up a position at the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology where she headed the Māori language programme before taking up the position of Head of School in 2000.
After four years at the Polytechnic Hana took up the position of co-Manager of the Māori language Unit of the Ngai Tahu tribal organisation where she helped develop and lead the tribal language strategy for a further four years.
She returned to the Polytechnic as Dean of Te Puna Wānaka, the new Faculty of Māori in 2006 and now also holds the position of Director of Maori for the institution. Hana was a member of The Maori Language Commission – Te Taura whiri i te Reo Māori from 2003 -2010. The bulk of Hana’s recent publications have been centred on Kāi Tahu tribal stories and histories for rakatahi and also recently published an anthology of Māori poetry, ‘Kupu’ with co-author Charisma Rangipunga.
Susie Ferguson is a journalist and broadcaster, currently co-presenter of New Zealand’s highest rating radio show, RNZ’s Morning Report.
Before moving here, Susie was a war correspondent for 6 years and covered major world events including the 2003 invasion of Iraq. She’s reported and presented from around the world including numerous times from Afghanistan and Iraq, from Lebanon, Sierra Leone, Mozambique and Balkans. She’s also covered the immediate aftermath of disasters including the 2004 Asian tsunami, 2005 Pakistan earthquake and presented rolling coverage on RNZ of the Christchurch and Kaikoura earthquakes.
Susie’s originally from Edinburgh, got her honours degree from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and postgraduate diploma from University of the Arts London.
ENZ welcomed Kirstie James as an ENZ athlete in 2016.
Special Tribute to the late John Doig, Life Trust Board Member, BSc, MBCh, FRCOG, FRNZCOG
John served voluntarily on the ENZ Board as a founding Trustee from January 1994 until his retirement in 2011. His commitment to the organisation was unfaltering until his unexpected passing on July 23rd 2013. ENZ has had tributes from women and families throughout NZ and afar expressing their sadness, loss and sincere gratitude to their much loved and respected doctor, obstetrician and surgeon.
In 2011 John was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal of the RANZCOG for his work in Endometriosis and Advanced Endoscopic Surgery.
John will be remembered by his patients for his deep sense of compassion, hope and life altering treatment and by the medical community worldwide for his outstanding academic and clinical contribution, mentoring and camaraderie. Kua rakatira tenei ao I a koe me āu mahi – You have made this world a better place with the contributions you have made We have lost a dear colleague and friend whose influence will continue to guide and motivate to improve health outcomes for girls, women and their families.
Co Founder and Life Trust Board Member - Company Director, Palmerston North
We would like to pay special tribute to the late Joan Moultrie, Co-Founder and Life Trust Board Member
MBBS, FRANZCOG, Master Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Gynaecologist, Christchurch
Strength through support - mā ta tautoko, ka whai kaha, ka ora