NZNO board election results brings a mix of new and returning directors

September 12, 2022

The NZNO 2022 board election results bring mixture of current, former and new board members.

Wellington mental health nurse Grant Brookes, Palmerston North mental health charge nurse Saju Cherian, Wellington perioperative nurse Simon Auty, Wairarapa emergency nurse practitioner Lucy McLaren, Waikato practice nurse Tracey Morgan, Tairawhiti clinical nurse manager Anamaria Watene and Te Tai Tokerau primary health nurse practitioner Margret Hand have been elected to the NZNO board.


Hand, Auty and Watene have been directors since 2019 and were re-elected. Morgan has previously been NZNO vice-president (2020–2021) and Brookes is a former NZNO president (2015–2020).


McLaren and Cherian are both new directors. Cherian — who migrated from India — has described himself as a voice for migrant nurses. He has said his vision for NZNO was for it to become a union “all members feel is their own, irrespective of where they work or their ethnicity or any other differences”.

McLaren has stated it is a time for nurses to be “more vocal” and for NZNO to be “more open and transparent”.

Hand has said she wants to see the Māori nursing workforce grow and nurses be rewarded “equitably for the care we provide, no matter where we work”.


Auty has said he wants to ensure the NZNO constitutional review continues, and reflects union values rather than the current “corporate model”.

Morgan has expressed commitment to “equity across systems” and “culturally responsive practices”.

Brookes has said he promotes “transparency, integrity and genuine partnerships under Te Tiriti o Waitangi” as well as a stronger migrant nurse voice.

Watene has spoken of the need to keep the nursing workforce safe, across all sectors.

Returning officer Warwick Lampp, of, declared the results on Friday, September 9. There were 3492 votes received from 55,326 eligible voters —  a turnout of 6.31 per cent. The vast majority of those who did vote — 97.16 per cent — voted online, with just 2.84 per cent votes received by post.

The vote tallies were as follows:

Grant BROOKES: 1798
Saju CHERIAN: 1531
Simon AUTY: 1502
Lucy MCLAREN: 1461
Tracey MORGAN: 1366
Anamaria WATENE: 1325
Margret HAND: 1289


Unsuccessful candidates

Lizzy KEPA-HENRY: 1272
Karen NAYLOR: 1252
Diane MCCULLOCH: 1150
Jade POWER: 1115
Geraldine KIRKWOOD: 1018

Voting closed on Friday September 9 at noon. Voting on three member remits also closed at noon on September 9, and results will be announced at the NZNO annual general meeting on Tuesday September 13.