Board Of Trustees

Appointed by the Diocese of Wellington for up to five-year terms, the Wellesley Board of Trustees provides governance for the school.

The Board meets formally once a month during term time and has sub committees on an adhoc basis to ensure appropriate lines of governance are in place to support the running of the school, its staff and students.

Within the group are specific responsibilities for areas such as finance, education and child well-being, health and safety, property, funding and foundation development and marketing and communications. Also attending the meetings are the following key stakeholders: Brendan Pitman, Wellesley’s Principal, Robert Cross, Wellesley’s Business Manager, the Staff Representative, Glen Jorna (Head of Arts), the Chair of the Parents’ Association, Cilla Bennett, and her Deputy, Frances Crombie.

Any parent interested in becoming Board member at Wellesley is invited to email the Chair on chair@wellesley.school.nz. From time to time the Board will also communicate with the Wellesley community to seek potential Board members with knowledge and other qualities to help maintain the relevant diversity and skill set to appropriately govern the school.

Information on Wellesley’s Governance policy can be found here:

Wellesley Governance Policy

Meet our Board Members

Below is some information on each Board member. They were asked to answer the following questions: What is your whakapapa? What are you most passionate about when you are at Wellesley? What are you most passionate about outside of school? Read what they said:

Matthew Allen

Business owner, Wellesley Trustee

Matthew Allen

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I was born in Wellington, with ancestry hailing back to Scotland and England. In the case of Wellesley, I enjoy the obvious shared commitment that all Trustees have to help the school be the best it can so that our boys can thrive and reach their potential.

I have also enjoyed helping with the development of policies for the school. In my spare time I enjoy mountain biking and skiing, travel and reading. I also enjoy my work as the Director of a busy policy consultancy. I like contributing to governance boards where members have a strong desire to make a difference.

Alan Blundell

Property Consultant- Wellesley Trustee and Chair of the Wellesley Master Planning Committee

Alan Blundell

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I was raised in Wainuiomata and am of New Zealand European descent. Growing up I attended zoned public schools, there was never any thought or opportunity to attend a school like Wellesley.

To be able to give that option to my sons, and have them benefit so strongly from it, is great. And now, as a newly appointed Board member, to make a contribution to the school and continue the great legacy that is Wellesley is very important to me. My oldest son, now 23, went to Wellesley and my youngest, 13, has just left.

Dr. David Chinn

Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist, Wellesley Trustee

Dr. David Chinn

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I grew up on the Isle of Man and moved to NZ 15 years ago. I enjoy my role as a Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist. Outside of work, I love spending time with my family and taking advantage of the many outdoor activities available within our local region.

As a newcomer to the Board of Trustees, I’m keen to join the established team, and use any knowledge or expertise I have with child development to best support the future of the school ensuring it is a place which produces the best of young men.

We have two sons currently at Wellesley.  I’m deeply appreciative of the numerous learning opportunities available at the school and the close individual attention that children receive.

Peter Dowell

Entrepreneur, Wellesley Trustee , Wellesley Master Planning Committee

Peter Dowell

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I am married to Christine and have two boys, Jonathan, now a Wellesley Old Boy, and Samuel in Year 7.

As an Old Boy myself, I wanted both my boys to experience and learn what I did as a youngster at Wellesley many years ago.

What made the school fantastic then, still stands today:  The amazing learning environment that the teachers and staff provide in Wellesley’s idyllic location. As a result, both Jonathan and Samuel have enjoyed Wellesley tremendously.

Jeff Healey

Works at Microsoft, Wellesley Trustee

Jeff Healey

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I was born in Huntly and spent my initial years growing up in Hamilton where I attended Saint Peter Chanel Primary School, Marist Intermediate School and Saint John’s College for High School – then onto the University of Waikato to complete a Batchelor of Management Studies.

As a parent I have a keen interest in what our children learn and how they learn – contributing my skills to help Wellesley stay at the forefront of education is something that I am keen to do.

The school has great values and a strong heritage to build a solid foundation for the future on – having a clear plan that charts our path forward across multiple dimensions is a real step forward for the school, the planning prioritisation and execution of the plan will see Wellesley College thrive for generations to come.

John Hughes

Vicar of St Alban’s, Wellesley Trustee and Bishop’s Representative

John Hughes (St Albans Vicar)

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As the Vicar of St Alban’s Church, I support the Wellesley Chaplain. What I find most satisfying is making a positive difference to the spiritual health of the staff and pupils. My calling is to walk alongside people on their spiritual journey. When I am not at school or serving my parish from St Alban’s Church, I love spending time with my family, reading, cooking, doing woodwork and woodturning.

Sharyn Mitchell

Works at Chorus , Wellesley Trustee and Finance Committee

Sharyn Mitchell

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What I am most passionate about in my role as a Wellesley Trustee is ensuring the boys have the best school experience they can and that the special character of Wellesley is recognised, preserved and enriched you future generations. As Trustees, we are in a position to influence the longer term direction and financial security of the school, so future generations are able to enjoy the unique place that Wellesley is.

I sent my son to Wellesley to ensure he had access to the best teachers, resources and leading edge learning methods. All of this, in addition to teaching the boys in a way suited to their gender has meant he has a fabulous grounding to now flourish in the Senior School.

Geof Shirtcliffe

Partner- Chapman Tripp, Chairman of the Board of Trustees

Geof Shirtcliffe (Chair)

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Our son attended Wellesley from 2010 – 2014. As a former parent, there is so much I love about this school: the boys’ enthusiasm, the dedicated staff, the ethos, the environment, the sense of whānau, the history, and the vision for the future.  As Denis Denuto famously said in The Castle, it’s “the vibe”.

Outside of my role as Chair, the most important things in my life are my family, mountain biking, skiing, travel, music (I aspire to play half-decent jazz piano), and reading.

As Chair of the Wellesley Board of Trustees, I value the opportunity to contribute to a wonderful and unique institution filled with talented, passionate, and dedicated staff.

Ruth Lavelle-Treacy

Communications Specialist, Wellesley Trustee

Ruth Lavelle-Treacy

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My roots are in South Africa but after time in the UK, my journey has brought me to New Zealand. I have settled in a beautiful place near the Whakatiki River not far from the Rimutaka Ranges – both of which I am lucky enough to see at the start and finish of each day.

Two of my boys attend Wellesley and one is a Wellesley Old Boy – how lucky are they? From the moment I stepped onto the campus and spoke to the staff, I knew that this school had a special spirit. It is an honour to now serve it as part of the Board.