I was born a southern girl, growing up on my parents’ 20 acre lifestyle block just north of Invercargill. As a young person, I was passionate about my chosen sport, ice-skating. I won various national titles and represented New Zealand many times internationally. I moved to Canterbury, twenty-eight years ago, after the end of my competitive skating career and worked as a professional ice-skating coach for ten years. Following that, I spent twelve years in the social service sector, mostly in community mental health and it was from there that I trained as a counsellor. I have been in my private counselling practice now for eight years and consider it a privilege to be invited into peoples’ lives, just for a season, while they need support.

I am married, with three married adult children who have given me three wonderful grandsons and three delightful granddaughters. Four years ago, my husband and I became residence of Whitecliffs, a small rural village 15 minutes’ drive inland from Darfield towards the Southern Alps. As my husband had also grown up rurally, this realised our desire to be more connected to rural New Zealand again.

I am deeply passionate about the history of Aotearoa New Zealand and where our personal histories fit within this story. For me, this now includes the local history of Whitecliffs and the wider Selwyn District that I am now a part of. In counselling terms, I believe for us to live and relate well today, we need to acknowledge and validate our personal histories, our stories, so we can move more freely into our futures, being all we can be.