Board members

Our Board sets our strategic direction and monitors our performance. Board members are appointed by the Minister for the Environment.

At least one member must have knowledge and experience of the Treaty of Waitangi and tikanga Māori (Māori customs).

Chair of the EPA Board Julie HardakerJulie Hardaker - Chairperson

Julie Hardaker is a practicing lawyer specialising in public and employment law and providing governance advice. She was the Mayor of Hamilton from 2010-2016, leading the Council through governance and financial restructuring, establishing risk monitoring frameworks and new organisational responsibilities.

She has led a number of review processes, including the Tainui Waikato/Ruakura Board of Inquiry, and has a sound understanding of regulation, financial accountability and the links between the economy and the environment. She has broad knowledge of central and local government issues.

Julie has extensive governance experience, is a fellow of Governance New Zealand and a board member, and she has held Chair positions for the Waikato NZSPCA, McCaw Lewis Chapman and The People's Project. During her time on the Vibrant Hamilton Trust she was accountable for multi-million dollar investment decisions. She is the current Chair of Women on Boards and a member of the Ministry for the Environment Waste Minimisation Fund Panel.

Julie has first class honours degrees in Law and Master of Management. In 2016 she received the Order of Te Arikinui Queen Te Atarangikaahu for services to Māori and has a strong interest in environmental issues and protection.

Deputy Chairperson Stephen (Tīpene) WilsonSteven (Tīpene) Wilson - Deputy Chair

Steven (Tīpene) Wilson was a former Chair of Ngā Kaihautū Tikanga Taiao, the EPA’s Māori Statutory Advisory Committee. In addition to being the current CEO of Maximize Consultancy, an organisation building relationships and value in Māori organisations and working with corporate and government partners, Steven has held a number of governance and leadership positions, and has been recognised for helping develop the EPA's credibility and relationships with iwi and Māori.

He has worked with various iwi on environmental management, helped an iwi Environmental Management Plan team which won a NZ Planning Institute Best Practice award in strategic planning and guidance, and has knowledge of central government and regional council processes. He has facilitated a Māori national network wānanga on hazardous substances.

EPA Board member Gerda KuschelDr Gerda Kuschel

Dr Gerda Kuschel is currently the Director of Emission Impossible, and has previously held management positions at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) and Auckland Regional Council.

From an engineering background, Gerda has technical expertise on air quality, environmental management, climate change and energy along with significant industry experience and knowledge. She has a keen interest in the challenge of balancing sustainable development with sustainable environmental quality, and has acted as Deputy Chair on two EEZ decision-making committees considering applications from the oil and gas industries.


EPA Board member Dayle HuniaDayle Hunia

Dayle has a background in environmental management and Māori economic development. She is currently the Executive Director of Kōtuku Systems Limited – a business, IT and environmental consultancy firm based in Whakatāne.

Dayle currently serves on a range of boards including Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Awa, Omataroa Rangitaiki No 2 Trust, the Rūrima Islands Trust, and the Kawerau Enterprise Agency. She is also an Independent Environmental Commissioner. Dayle brings a range of perspectives to the EPA Board and has a proven track record of implementing positive change across a range of commercial and not-for-profit entities.

EPA Board member Jeroen DouwesProf Jeroen Douwes

Prof Jeroen Douwes is the Director of the Centre for Public Health Research at Massey University and has extensive public health research and committee experience. He is a leading expert in occupational and environmental health and exposure assessment, particularly with respect to pesticides and other hazardous substances.

He serves on the board of the Health Research Council and has collaborated with international organisations such as the World Health Organisation and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).

Through his work Jeroen has gained considerable knowledge of health consequences associated with chemicals and hazardous substances, and will provide the Board with unique insights from a public health and end-use perspective.

EPA Board member Mary-Anne MacleodMary-Anne Macleod

Mary-Anne Macleod is a professional director and also provides strategic advice principally into local and central government agencies. She was the Chief Executive of the Bay of Plenty Regional Council from 2011 to 2018, and has also held senior roles in the Ministry for the Environment and in multi-national environmental and engineering companies. 

She is currently a Director on the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Bay Venues Limited, and House of Science New Zealand, and has previously served on the boards of Quayside Holdings Ltd and Priority 1.

With a background in Earth Sciences she has worked internationally in the field of environmental and strategic management.

EPA Board member Greg Ryder

Dr Greg Ryder

Dr Greg Ryder is a Director and Environmental Scientist at his consultancy, Ryder Environmental which provides advice and services in relation to freshwater, terrestrial and marine ecology and water quality throughout New Zealand. His long career as an environmental consultant and scientist has exposed him to a wide range of environmental issues around the country. Greg is an experienced RMA commissioner and has sat on resource consent and plan change hearings throughout the country.

He is sought after as an independent expert in the field of water quality, aquatic ecology and general ecology. He has previously sat on one significant EPA Exclusive Economic Zone Decision-Making Committee (Chatham Rock Phosphate, 2014-15).

EPA Board member Andrea Byrom profile picture Dr Andrea Byrom

Dr Andrea Byrom has served as a director of the Biological Heritage National Science Challenge since 2015. She is stepping down from this role in December 2020.

Andrea is currently on the governance group for Predator Free Hawke's Bay and the advisory board of the Science Media Centre. She is trained as a scientist in wildlife population ecology and held various science leadership roles at Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research for over 20 years.

Her deep strategic knowledge of the New Zealand science sector and how it connects with regional and central government agencies will be of value to the EPA Board. She values evidence-based decision-making and has a deep understanding of, and commitment to Māori values and tikanga.