Who am I?

In my practice as a psychologist, I have brought together a unique skill set established through years of study, training, education, qualifications and work.

These include psychology (educational and behavioural focus) and addictions training, alongside vast experience working within primary, intermediate and high schools. I have worked as a teacher, a Resource Teacher of Learning and Behaviour (RTLB), and an educational psychologist for the Ministry of Education.

I supported children, adolescents and older youth in these educational roles, with a particular focus on the behaviour of male students in secondary schools. I worked alongside families and whanau to help children and adolescents with challenging behaviours, neurodisabilities or mental health concerns to engage with school and peers, manage challenges, and feel more positive about themselves.

In working with you, I draw upon my three key fields of knowledge: psychology, education, and addictions, along with my own life and work experiences. I work collaboratively with you to overcome concerns and create a better way forward.

Whakapapa and background

Born on the west coast of Aotearoa, I was the eldest of five children. We lived in Westport, the Coromandel and Tai Tokerau. My adolescent years were spent in the tiny township of Hikurangi outside of Whangarei. I currently live in Upper Hutt with my husband, whom I met in 1983, and we have an adult daughter.

As a young woman, I worked doing physical labour on factory floors, hospital laundries and construction sites in Aotearoa and Australia. Every job gave me increased insight into the unique skills, experiences and knowledge of the people around me. I also worked with youth as a community worker, and in other organisations such as the Women’s Refuge as an advocate.

My teaching career began upon our return from Australia. My husband and I raised drystock on a farm in the Hokianga while I taught in a wide range of schools at all levels, including bilingual kura and very low decile schools. In 2006, I left teaching to train as a Resource Teacher of Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) and I worked in secondary and highschools in the Wellington region. I also trained in Addiction Studies in 2012 at Wellington Institute of Technology, and used this training to support and motivate students struggling with drug dependence or other addictive behaviours.

My strengths are in understanding complex behaviours, conditions and patterns impacting on individuals. In 2015, I became a psychologist through Victoria University. As an educational psychologist, I was employed initially by the Ministry of Education throughout the Hutt Valley. I have been in private practice since late 2020, where I have supported both individuals and families with a wide range of concerns.

I believe that the best solutions to a client’s problems come from using their own existing strengths, skills and knowledge alongside the specialist knowledge, expertise and therapeutic tools a psychologist can offer. Together, we will find strategies and interventions that are sustainable for everyone in order to achieve success. There is always a way forward.

Professional Qualifications

2019 - Post Graduate Diploma in Educational Psychology
Victoria University of Wellington

2018 - Masters in Educational Psychology (with Distinction)
Victoria University of Wellington

2012 - Graduate Diploma in Addiction Studies (Level 8)
Wellington Institute of Technology

2009 - Post Graduate Diploma in Education and Professional Development
Victoria University of Wellington

1998 - Graduate Diploma Teaching (Secondary)
Northland Polytechnic

1984 - Bachelor of Arts
University of Waikato

Professional Registration

Dapaanz Registration No.: 2083
Psychologist registered, current practicing certificate No.: 90-06835

Training

A practicing Educational Psychologist will have undergone a minimum of six years of university education and training. Psychologists implement and use a full range of psychological assessments and strategies.

As a psychologist, I am registered with the New Zealand Psychologists Board and hold a current Practising Certificate, and I am listed on the New Zealand Psychologists Board Register of Psychologists. Like all psychologists, I undergo regular clinical supervision and follow the Code of Ethics, relevant legislation, and the professional guidelines outlined by the New Zealand Psychologists Board. I also take part in ongoing education and training and clinical supervision to keep my knowledge and skills up to date.