Our Team

Our team comprises educational researchers, previous principals and senior leaders from educational organisations who are committed to improving student outcomes through building leadership expertise.


Meet the Team

Viviane Robinson

Academic Director

Viviane is a Distinguished Professor in the Faculty of Education at The University of Auckland and Academic Director of its Centre for Educational Leadership. She specialises in school improvement, leadership and the relationship between research and the improvement of practice.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 87372

E: vmj.robinson@auckland.ac.nz

Linda Bendikson

Centre Director UACEL

Linda has been the Director for The University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership since 2011. Prior to that, Linda had 17 years’ experience as a primary school principal, and ten years as a regional manager in the New Zealand Ministry of Education.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 48817

E: l.bendikson@auckland.ac.nz

Jacqui Patuawa

Associate Director

Jacqui is the Associate Director of The University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership and within that role she is the Co-Director of the First-time Principals’ Programme. She has been involved with the programme as a Mentor, a regional Lead Mentor and Associate Director since 2005.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 48399

E: j.patuawa@auckland.ac.nz

Colin Donald

General Manager

Colin is the General Manager at the University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership (UACEL). Within this role he supports and delivers the Growing Great Leaders™ course. Colin is also responsible for overseeing marketing activities and takes a lead role in promoting the Centre’s programmes to clients across the globe.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 48879

E: colin.donald@auckland.ac.nz

Donna Kerkmeester

Resource Manager

Donna Kerkmeester has played an integral role within the Centre for Educational Leadership and the First-time Principals’ Programme for the last six years. Donna co-ordinates the First-time Principals’ Programme and leads the organisation of our annual FTP residential and Mentor symposium.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 83095

E: d.kerkmeester@auckland.ac.nz

Romana Puchegger

Expert Partner admin

Romana is a PhD student at the University of Auckland and gives support to the First-time Principals' Programme.
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E: r.puchegger@auckland.ac.nz

Tilla Miranda

Centre Coordinator

Tilla Miranda is the Centre Coordinator at the University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership. At the Centre she is currently in charge of finance, budgets and accounts, managing contracts in New Zealand and overseas and general office administration. She is your first point of contact at the Centre.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 48438

E: t.miranda@auckland.ac.nz

Frauke Meyer


Frauke Meyer is a Research Fellow for the Leadership Research Group at the University of Auckland and is contracted to the First-time Principals’ Programme at the Centre for Educational Leadership. Frauke supports the linkage between the academic research and the professional development work of the Centre.
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T: +64 9 623 8899 ext 48471

E: f.meyer@auckland.ac.nz

Mark Broadwith

Course Development Manager

Mark Broadwith has been a research assistant in the Faculty of Education and also for the Centre for Educational Leadership, where he has also worked on the Starpath Project. Mark is a UACEL accredited OTL™ Facilitator and works on certain contracts for us, particularly presenting implications from his work with Starpath.
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E: m.broadwith@auckland.ac.nz

Richard Newton


Richard has recently joined UACEL as a facilitator. Prior to this he was the principal of St Clair School, an urban, contributing, U5 primary school located in the seaside suburb of St Clair in Dunedin. He has been a principal for over 25 years, leading several schools from small rural through to large urban.
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E: richard.newton@auckland.ac.nz

Bill Hubbard

Aitken Fellow

Bill Hubbard is a current Aitken Fellow, seconded from a Deputy Principal position at Rosehill College in Papakura. He has worked in a range of secondary schools, starting with a focus on Science education but later moving to specialising in Guidance Counselling.
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E: b.hubbard@auckland.ac.nz