Executive Leadership Team

Catherine Byrne - Chief Executive/Registrar

Catherine Byrne is the Council's Chief Executive and Registrar. Catherine is responsible for the executive leadership and the regulatory functions of the organisation. 

Catherine joined the organisation in February 2019 and has over 30 years' experience in the health sector. Catherine joined the Council from Taranaki District Health Board where she was the Executive Director of Nursing. While there Catherine drove a number of successful projects to shape and support the professionalism of nurses and setting standards of care to protect the safety of the public.

Prior to this Catherine has held a variety of leadership, management and clinical roles in Auckland and overseas. Catherine is a highly respected and experienced nursing leader. Her strong leadership and connection to the nursing workforce fosters a practice reality to the setting of professional nursing standards to protect public safety.

Pam Doole - Director Strategic Programmes

Pam Doole has worked for the Council in a variety of roles including professional standards manager where she was responsible for the approval of PDRP programmes, the recertification audit and competence review. In her present role her strategic policy work has included the review of the Code of Conduct for nurses, the development of registered nurses prescribing and review of the nurse practitioner scope of practice. Before joining the Council she was Director of Nursing at Hutt Valley DHB and the professional development and recognition programme coordinator. She has also worked as a nurse in various clinical areas at Wellington Hospital. Pam has a bachelor of arts in history, a diploma in nursing and a master's in philosophy (nursing) (with distinction).

Lindsay Hiener - Director: Business Innovation

Lindsay Hiener worked in finance prior to joining the Nursing Council in 2007. She brings experience in local government management, business, finances, human resources and project management.  She has studied business administration and project management, developed executive leadership programmes, consulted extensively on change management, championed ethical behaviour and provided mentoring.

Clare Prendergast - Deputy Registrar/Senior Legal Advisor

Clare Prendergast manages the legal team and provides general legal advice to the Council. Clare registered as a nurse in 1977 after completing the Wellington Hospital programme. She completed a law degree while continuing to work part time at Wellington Hospital. Clare commenced work as a legal editor for Brookers in 1992 and has worked at the Nursing Council since 1995. She is a contributing author to Health Care and the Law and the Fundamentals of Nursing 3e on the Evolve website. She has managed the Health and Conduct areas since 2012.

Nick Davis - Deputy Registrar/Senior Legal Advisor

Nick Davis is the Deputy Registrar for the Council and oversees the fitness to practise functions for the Council (including the conduct, competence and health processes). Nick also provides policy and general legal advice to the Council. Nick was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in 2007 and has worked in private legal practice specialising in civil, criminal and family litigation before joining the Nursing Council in 2015. He provides legal advice to the Professional Conduct Committees, Health and Competence Committees as well as the Registrant Quality Committee.

Hikitia Ropata - Director Responsiveness to Māori

Hikitia is of Ngāti Toa, Te Ati Awa, Ngāti Raukawa and Ngāti Porou decent. Hikitia has worked across a number of sectors including health, education, child protection, youth justice, local government and the environmental sector. Hikitia specialises in supporting organisations to meet their Te Tiriti o Waitangi obligations, responsibilities and commitments and has worked with the Nursing Council and Governing Board in the development of a Responsiveness to Māori Action Plan for the organisation.

Dr Annette Huntington - Director of Registrant Quality

Annette as Director of Registrant Quality has responsibility for nursing education and registration. Annette has extensive experience nationally and internationally in the areas of nursing education and workforce development. She was previously the Head of the School of Nursing at Massey University, which she established, and was the first nursing academic to receive a Queens Honour for services to nursing research in recognition of her expertise in, and commitment to, research into the nursing workforce. She has held statutory positions as Chair of the Nursing Council of New Zealand and as a Tribunal member of the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal. Internationally she held the position of Deputy Chair of the Australia and New Zealand Council of Deans of Nursing and Midwifery. Annette has held international positions such as being a member of the International Nursing and Midwifery Advisory Board, Qatar, adjunct positions at universities in Australia and has undertaken research and education development with international partners.