Our key people at a national level

Our governance team, called the National Executive Committee (NEC) is elected by DPA members. 

Members of the Committee live in all parts of New Zealand. They have a wealth of experience dealing with disability issues and they play a very active part in our organisation. 

The NEC is led by the President. To ensure the team has a depth of experience, the presidential term is four years, although the actual term as president is for two years: This means that at any one time, there is an elected President and a President-Elect or an Immediate Past-President.

Our national office is located in Wellington.

The National Executive Committee

Joanne Dacombe

President - Kapiti

Joanne is married with two adult children, one of whom is autistic. Joanne is also autistic and hearing impaired. She spent 21 years working at the Reserve Bank and around 9 years working in a local school in admin.

Joanne serves on a number of boards as well as having served on the Ministry of Health Disability Support Services Consumer Consortium. She was active in System Transformation working groups around autism, safeguarding and networking.

Read Joanne Dacombe's bio

Nathan Bond

Immediate Past President - Upper Hutt

Nathan worked as a monitor, data analyst and assistant project coordinator between 2010-2013 for the DPO Coalition and represented NZ at the 2011 Asia-Pacific DRPI training in Thailand helping to train the next wave of monitors.

Nathan has been on the Disability Support Advisory Committee for both the Capital and Coast DHB and Hutt Valley DHB for about 5 years.

Recently Nathan has been involved with My Life My Way a collaborative of disabled people focused on increasing the accessibility of public transport and making events in the Hutt Valley accessible.

Read Nathan Bond's bio


Kera Sherwood-O'Regan


Kera Sherwood-O'Regan (Kāi Tahu) is an Indigenous and disabled climate justice and community advocate from Te Waipounamu.

She is the Co-founder of Activate, an Indigenous and disabled-led social impact agency specialising in ethical campaigning and narratives for social change.

Kera has a background in political science and public health, and is deeply involved in the United Nations climate change and human rights arenas. Attending the UNFCCC Conferences each year, she works within the International Indigenous Peoples’ Forum on Climate Change for better inclusion of Indigenous people and recognition of Indigenous rights; and is a founding member of the SustainedAbility Disability and Climate Network, which facilitates greater inclusion of disabled people and our representative organisations on climate change issues, especially calling for the UNFCCC to recognise a Disability Constituency where we can have our voices heard.

She founded Fibromyalgia Aotearoa NZ, an initiative bringing visibility and support to people living with this chronic illness, and is passionate about Neurodiversity and the rights of tākata hauā and takatāpui - disabled Māori and queer communities.

She hopes to bring her governance, strategic communications, and community engagement experience to DPA to serve our vision of an equitable society where all disabled people can direct our own lives and thrive in community.

Read Kera Sherwood-O'Regan's bio

Henrietta Bollinger


Henrietta (Etta) comes from a new generation of disabled community advocates.

Etta is committed to ensuring DPA’s long history is honoured while bringing a new generation into the kaupapa and listening to their vision for an inclusive future.

They have particular experience in improving the accessibility of education, arts and our democratic process.  
Read Henrietta Bollinger's bio

The National Secretariat

DPA’s operational team is the National Secretariat. Although our national office is in Wellington, our team members are scattered throughout the country from Auckland to Dunedin. 

The National Secretariat team is:

Prudence Walker

Chief Executive

Mojo Mathers

Kairuruku Kaupapa Here | Policy Coordinator

Emily Tilley

Communications and Engagement Manager

Paul Brown

Policy Advisor

Angela Desmarais

Kaitohutohu Whakawhanake | Research and Development

Chris Ford

Regional Policy Advisor

Natalie Brunzel

Kairuruku Papaho | Communications Coordinator

Amy Taylor

Kaitautoko Whakarite | Administration Support

Sharyn McCann

Finance Officer