Team

Meet Our Team

Cheryl is a passionate, energetic, creative entrepreneur, business leader and strategic philanthropist with extensive environmental and community leadership experience. She was the founding chief executive at Momentum Waikato, one of New Zealand’s largest community foundations. Prior to that, she was the founding chief executive at SODA Inc, Waikato’s entrepreneurship hub, and more recently, she was the chief executive at Raglan’s Xtreme Zero Waste. She has also founded 10 other startups and has led a multinational technology company.

Never one to rest, Cheryl is an artist who loves to create, a stargazer who loves to contemplate the universe, and with a post graduate diploma in Business Management and a Masters in Fine Art, she’s a servant leader who is motivated to help drive and support urgently needed systems change for the benefit of our beautiful planet.

 

Chief Executive 

Cheryl Reynolds

Cheryl is a passionate, energetic, creative entrepreneur, business leader and strategic philanthropist with extensive environmental and community leadership experience.

ESFNZ Cheryl Reynolds, Inaugural Chief Executive, Endangered Species Foundation of New Zea

Mike Thorsen is one of New Zealand’s leading experts in managing biodiversity, botany and ecology with over 20 years’ experience in ecology, conservation biology and the management of invasive species worldwide. Mike enjoys assisting a diversity of groups to realise their biodiversity ambitions using his wide-ranging experience and enjoys the challenges of working in the interface between the conservation and use of natural resources with the aim of producing good outcomes that are both environmentally sound and pragmatic. A developing interest is in using human-generated landforms as surrogates for native flora and fauna communities.

Mike also runs a small nursery specialising in growing endangered plants (despite the challenges of a young daughter who loves pulling out labels and watering everything in sight) and is a keen photographer (photos here). Mike holds a PhD from the University of Otago (2010).

Chief Science Advisor

Dr Mike Thorsen

Mike Thorsen is one of New Zealand’s leading experts in managing biodiversity, botany and ecology with over 20 years’ experience in ecology, conservation biology and the management of invasive species worldwide. 

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Pekaira holds a pivotal role for Mana Whenua within Te Upoko o te Ika (Wellington) where she maintains Cultural Advisory & support positions for Edmund Hillary Fellowship, Philanthropy NZ, Education Council & Office of treaty Settlements at the Ministry of Justice and Te Muka Rau (formerly called Think Tank Charitable Trust). 

Education her passion, Taranaki history her flair, she connects and reconnects descendants to their unique Taranakitanga at her local Marae Te Tatau o Te Pō, she also teaches Te Reo Māori at Wellington Water. Born and raised under her Mounga Taranaki she often reflects on the solid foundation gifted by those she remembers.

Pekaira’s interests include martial arts, iwi support work, her children and grandchildren.

Cultural Advisor

Pekaira Rei

Pekaira holds a pivotal role for Mana Whenua within Te Upoko o te Ika (Wellington) where she maintains cultural advisory and support positions. 

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Christie enjoys creating simplicity from chaos. She helps organise, document and generally lighten the administration load to allow people to focus on the important matters.

As a virtual assistant Christie feels privileged to be able to work for organisations such as the Endangered Species Foundation as it gives a feeling of helping those who are making a difference, and allows opportunities to further grow and learn.

Working rurally in Aotearoa provides a wonderful setting to enjoy the birdlife and peace that nature provides, while balancing work and family.

Administrator

Christie Goodwin

Christie enjoys creating simplicity from chaos. She helps organise, document and generally lighten the administration load to allow people to focus on the important matters.

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Natalie is passionate about using communications to increase awareness of important issues and causes, and the actions people can take to create real change.
 

With over twenty years experience in developing and executing marketing and communications plans within the for-purpose sector, she puts her expertise to use where it is needed most.

With a love for our native wildlife here in Aotearoa, Natalie feels very privileged to work for the Endangered Species Foundation and to deliver mahi to help our most vulnerable habitats and species.
 

Natalie has a first class honours business degree majoring in Marketing, and a Graduate Diploma in Design from the University of Otago. She believes strongly that upholding Te Tiriti o Waitangi and an understanding of Te Ao Māori is crucial to looking after the land and all beings that depend on it. 

Communications and Fundraising Manager

Natalie Jessup

Natalie is passionate about using communications to increase awareness of important issues and causes, and the actions people can take to create real change.

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Rachael Hayton is the Chief Financial Officer for the Endangered Species Foundation.

Chief Financial Officer

Rachael Hayton

Rachael Hayton is the Chief Financial Officer for the Endangered Species Foundation.

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