Health workforce board members

Profiles of the members of the Health Workforce New Zealand board.

Des Gorman – executive chair

Professor Des Gorman

Professor Des Gorman is Executive Chair, Health Workforce New Zealand and Professor of Medicine and Associate Dean, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, at the University of Auckland.

He holds a BSc, MBChB and MD from the University of Auckland, as well as a PhD from the University of Sydney. The two doctorates were awarded for in vivo research into brain injuries. Professor Gorman’s primary research and clinical interests are brain injury, diving medicine, occupational medicine and toxicology. His research career includes more than 250 publications.

He is a Member of the Board of Directors of the New Zealand Accident Compensation and Rehabilitation Corporation (ACC), as well as a Member of the National Health Board and the Capital Investment Committee, Ministry of Health.

Professor Gorman is currently overseeing health reforms in a number of different jurisdictions.

He has served in both the Royal Australian Navy and the Royal New Zealand Navy. During his service in the former, he trained as both a submariner and as a diving officer.


Helen Pocknall – deputy chair

Helen Pocknall

Ms Pocknall is Deputy Chair of the Health Workforce New Zealand Board and has been a member since the Board’s inception in 2009. 

She was the Executive Director of Nursing and Midwifery (EDoNM) for Wairarapa and Hutt Valley DHBs from March 2013 through to late October 2016. Following this she was the Interim Director of Nursing for Hutt Valley DHB until March 2017. Prior to these two roles she was the EDoNM for Wairarapa for eleven years. She has recently established her own consultancy.

Other posts include:

  • Chair of the HWNZ Midwifery Taskforce
  • Chair of the DHB Directors of Nursing National group from 2010 – 2016
  • Nurse Executives of New Zealand member from 2002 – 2017
  • Fellow of College of Nurses Aotearoa.

She served on the 2009 Ministerial Task Group on Clinical Leadership and attended the Global Nursing Leadership Institute in Switzerland in 2012.


Gloria Crossley

Mrs Crossley is the Clinical Services Manager, Allied, Scientific and Technical at Taranaki DHB. Other posts include:

  • member of the National Roundtable on Laboratory and Pathology Services
  • member of Midland eSPACE Programme Board.

She is a Registered Medical Laboratory Scientist and has previously served as a member of the National Panel to Review Breast Biopsy Errors and the National Health Committee – EGFR Testing Working Group.

Her involvement with HWNZ includes previous membership on the Health Sciences and Technical Workforce Working Group and currently as a member of the Allied, Scientific & Technical Workforce Taskforce Governance Group.


David Kerr

David Kerr

Dr Kerr has been a GP in Christchurch for more than 35 years with a long-standing interest in health service delivery and aged care provision. Other posts include:

  • chair of Ryman Healthcare Ltd, a provider of aged residential care
  • director of Ngai Tahu Property
  • director of Forte Health (private hospital)
  • chair of EcoCentral Ltd
  • clinical lead of the Canterbury Initiative, Canterbury DHB’s integration programme.

Lance O’Sullivan 

Lance O'SUllivanDr Lance O’Sullivan is a medical and community leader living and working in Kaitaia.  Lance is an accomplished author, national and international public speaker, role model, disruptive leader and innovator.

Harnessing the skills he acquired from his cultural heritage and medical training he and his wife Tracy have established Navilluso Medical, a healthcare company committing to developing innovative ways to ensure appropriate and quality health care reaches the right people at the right time in the right place. 

Navilluso Medical established the MOKO (Manawa Ora, Korokoro Owa, “Healthy Heart, Healthy Throat”) programme in 2012, a school-based service focused on preventing rheumatic fever in mainly Māori children in and around Kaitaia. Moving the programme into the digital era, Navilluso Medical is pioneering the use of disruptive and innovative health technologies to improve access to healthcare for vulnerable communities. Lance’s aim is to support and empower communities with a focus on vulnerable children and young people.

In recognition of his achievements, Lance was named Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year 2014, received a Sir Peter Blake Leadership Award and Public Health Association Public Health Champion Award in 2013 and named TVNZ Māori of the Year 2012.   


Charmeyne Te Nana-Williams

Charmeyne Te Nana-Williams.

Charmeyne Te Nana-Williams is the Director of What Ever it Takes Home Based Rehabilitation and Support Services – U ki te whānau ora.

Charmeyne’s husband, Peter Williams, was the inspiration behind the establishment of What Ever it Takes after he suffered a traumatic brain injury in 2002. At the time of his injury, Peter was an elite athlete and holder of the New Zealand Super Heavyweight title, and father to four young children.

The struggles the family experienced have been the impetus behind the development of a support system that enables families affected by serious disability to live meaningful lives in a way that is determined by them. Support is delivered through a kaupapa Māori model of practice that is values driven and therefore applicable to all families regardless of ethnicity, gender or age.  

With a background in business management, Charmeyne has worked as an export consultant with New Zealand Trade and Enterprise specialising in working with Māori and Pacific businesses. She has also acted as a disability advisor to a number of Ministers and has been involved in a number of Advisory Groups. As a Whānau Ora Champion to then Minister of Disability Issues Dame Tariana Turia, Charmeyne played a significant role in development of an innovative and collaborative service delivery pathway with ACC that has the potential to change the way services are delivered to whānau.

U ki te whānau ora – Nuturing the family.


Tim Wilkinson

Tim Wilkinson

Professor Wilkinson is a consulting geriatrician and associate dean of medical education at the University of Otago, Christchurch and director of the University of Otago's Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) programme

He is a past president of ANZAME - the Australian and New Zealand Association for Health Professional Educators – and held office in the Royal Australasian College of Physicians. His research interests lie in medical education, assessment of competence, workplace learning and geriatric medicine. He has published a number of academic papers on these subjects.

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