Governance and leadership

Find out how Red Cross is structured, meet our senior leadership team and Board members

Governance Documents

Board charter (PDF)
Code of conduct for members and volunteers (PDF)
New Zealand Red Cross Constitution (2013) (PDF)


Members make up our local branches and groups. Members also come together to form our area councils. Area councils from each region have representatives at National Council. The National Council elects our National Board, which governs our organisation.


Along with governance, the National Board also appoints our Secretary General. Our Secretary General appoints staff, who support members as they volunteer, deliver services, raise money and promote the work we do. Our National Youth Panel represent a youth perspective at a governance level.

Board members:

  • Kerry Nickels, National President
  • Pip Stewart, National Vice President
  • Sarita Aldred, Youth Representative
  • John Dyer
  • Warren Johnstone
  • Sue Ineson
  • Wendy Lau 
  • Scott Tambisari
  • Patrick Cummings

Executive Leadership Team:

  • Sarah Stuart-Black - Secretary General
  • Anne Smith - GM Commercial and Shared Services
  • Vivienne Euini - GM International (Acting)
  • Rachel O'Connor - GM Migration (Acting)
  • Angela Sutherland - GM Disaster Risk Management
  • Shane Chisholm - GM Communications, Marketing, Fundraising 

Meet our Secretary General

We are very pleased to have Sarah (Norm) Stuart-Black join us as our new Secretary General, replacing Niamh Lawless who moved to a new role at the International Federation of the Red Cross in Geneva in October 2020. Prior to joining New Zealand Red Cross, Sarah was Deputy Chief Executive and Director Civil Defence Emergency Management in the New Zealand Government's National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) advising the Minister of Civil Defence. 

Sarah played a significant role in New Zealand’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as other major emergency responses and she has provided leadership during a transition process within NEMA. 

As well as bringing this significant and relevant experience to New Zealand Red Cross, Sarah has extensive experience at an executive level nationally and internationally. Sarah has had a diverse range of experience within New Zealand and England, as well as Ethiopia, Niue and the Solomon Islands. She was a member of the United Nations Disaster Assessment & Coordination Team for nine years and has represented New Zealand at a variety of international forums, bilateral, regional and global meetings, exercises and forums. Sarah has published a number of papers in international journals and has co-edited three books.

Sarah Stuart-Black, Secretary General of New Zealand Red Cross

Meet our President

Kerry Nickels became our President in November 2018

Kerry Nickels is a lawyer who has held legal, governance and commercial roles in retail, utilities and financial businesses. She joined the New Zealand Red Cross National Board in November 2015 and was voted in as President in November 2018.

“As the call to assist vulnerable people here and overseas increases, it is encouraging to see the dedication and generosity of our Red Cross people. Further opportunities and challenges will arise as the world changes, but I am sure we will still be assisting vulnerable people in the next century.”

Kerry Nickels, President of New Zealand Red Cross