Steering group

Our steering group:

Tony Matthews

Tony Matthews

First and foremost, Tony is a dedicated husband and father and has experienced first-hand the impact of mental health issues. He knows only too well that having a historic or ongoing mental health diagnosis can make work challenging and that it’s important to remove the stigmatism around these issues.

He sees how as consultants, we face project activity peaks, workstreams with competing (and often concurrent) priorities, and even menial tasks like the dreaded timesheet all contributing to mental health struggles.

Tony believes that Mindspace will help consultants to prioritise their mental health and wellbeing through tools, resources and shared stories.

Tony strongly believes if we can prioritise mental health support in the workplace, we can not only improve the wellbeing of our employees, but also enhance productivity and job satisfaction.

A project manager at AECOM, Tony has worked in the consulting sector for 18 years.

Emily Afoa - Tektus

Dr Emily Afoa

Emily (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Maniapoto) is Pou Whakarae (Director) of Tektus Consultants and is committed to building and maintaining mental health across the organisation.

Emily knows that our work as professional consultants is complex. We’re interacting with multiple disciplines, and we’re often asked to work to tough deadlines.

Her team works to shape its practice and understand wellbeing using Te Whare Tapa Whā, a Māori model of health characterised as a whare / house. The four walls each represent a dimension of wellbeing and all four walls are needed and must be in balance, for the whare to be strong.

Penny Kneebone

Dr Penny Kneebone

As Chief Executive for Tonkin + Taylor NZ, Penny provides leadership, direction, and management oversight of business strategy, performance and delivery. 

A thriving consultancy is as strong as its people – when our people are happily engaged in purposeful work with a true sense of belonging we fly. 

Penny believes that ACE’s work to enable mentally healthy workplaces is a way for our sector to lead the way as the sector where clever, creative people come together to be their best. 

ACE’s mentally healthy workplaces programme is a bold step toward that future. 

Tony Harrison

Tony Harrison

A big advocate for flexible working, Tony Harrison is Technical Director at Urban Connection based in Hawke’s Bay. With over 30 years of experience, 15+ in management and 20+ in road safety, traffic engineering and project management, he offers a depth of knowledge and skills to every part of his work.

In 2017 Tony decided to share a story about his journey with depression and mental health with the 500 staff where he worked. Since then, Tony has gone on to share his story via Engineering New Zealand, ACE and other forums and is an advocate for removing the stigma around mental health and focusing on wellbeing in the workplace.

The four walls each represent a dimension of wellbeing and all four walls are needed and must be in balance, for the whare to be strong

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