Alzheimers NZ Board

Ngaire DixonNgaire Dixon


Dr. Ngaire Dixon joined Alzheimers NZ as an independent director in March 2015 after both her father-in-law and mother-in-law were diagnosed with dementia.

Prior to her governance career Ngaire was the CEO of Pets n Vets Ltd, a veterinary business with the concept of total care, which she formed and expanded from to be part of a national organisation. She is highly experienced in all aspects of operational business management practices, in particular HR and corporate culture.

Ngaire has a strong appetite and understanding of philanthropic organisations and has extensive international experience, frequently doing business in Asia.

She is involved in leadership training and mentoring with a number of different organisations.

Ngaire is a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, the Veterinary Council of NZ, the Institute of Directors and Global Women.



Joanne Rowe


Joanne Rowe trained as a Registered Nurse, working in the UK and NZ across many specialities. Since 2003 she has held a variety of leadership nursing roles, moving into senior management in 2008. Working in this capacity across DHB’s and Primary Care, Joanne has exceptional knowledge of the health sector, its mechanisms and funding capabilities, recently gaining both a Master of Health Science and Master of Management.

Joanne’s interest in Alzheimer's is inspired by her journey with her mother who was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's 15 years ago. 

Becoming vice-chair of Alzheimers Otago in 2017, Joanne joined the Alzheimers NZ board in May 2019 with a desire to use her skills in furthering the needs and highlighting the cause of those experiencing dementia and those involved in their care.

Alister Robertson

Board Member

Alister resides in Napier with his wife Charlene. Alister was diagnosed with younger onset Alzheimer’s in 2014, aged 60. Alister cared for his father who was also diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in his 60’s.

Alister graduated from Lincoln University, in 1978 with Bachelor Agricultural Commerce. Spent the following 30+ years in rural finance providing financial services to the primary sector. He also enjoyed many years advocating and promoting primary industry management within the Waikato and nationally. He was a Board member and awarded Life Membership of NZ Institute of Primary Industry Management.

After retiring from banking, Alister owned a Motel business in Taupo for 4 years and retail business in Napier for 4 years, which has since been relinquished.

Following Alister’s diagnosis he is fortunate enough to attend a day programme run by Dementia Hawkes Bay, two days a week.

Alister has become an active member and advocate for raising awareness and living well with Dementia. Alister was invited to join the Advisory Group for Alzheimers New Zealand in 2017.

Alister joined Dementia Alliance International (DAI) in 2016 and was elected as Chair in 2021. Alister joined the DAI and Alzheimers NZ boards in 2018.

Alister is well supported by his wife and two sons, both living in Napier. His eldest son is married with two daughters.

Clare Hynd

Board Member

Clare has been the Chair of Alzheimers Manawatu for the past 6 years and on the Board for 9 years. In her role as a community pharmacist she has helped many older people with their medication, health and wellbeing. This passion and commitment extends to wanting to support people with dementia and their families. Clare is Deputy Chair of the THINK Hauora (PHO) Board, on the THINK Hauora Clinical Board, and on the Takaro Rotary Club Board. Clare is on the Alzheimers NZ National Donor Programme Committee. She is a past member of the National Executive of the Pharmaceutical Society of New Zealand and was made a Fellow of the Society in 2019 for services to the profession.

David King

Board Member

David King has more than 28 years' experience in journalism, public relations and corporate communications in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.David’s grandmother and father both lived with dementia, and his mother is currently in specialist dementia care. His family has benefited from the kindness of many kind volunteers over many years, which is why he joined Alzheimers NZ.  Originally from Hamilton, David lives in Christchurch with his wife Natalie and four teenage children, and Alfie, the family schnauzer. Alfie is a registered therapy dog who works with his mum. David is a member of the Institute of Directors.

Dianne Stokes

Board Member

Di Stokes was appointed to the Board in 2014 after more than 10 years involvement with the organisation as president of Alzheimers Taranaki.

Born and bred in Taranaki, she has worked as a community geriatrician in New Plymouth for more years than she cares to remember. During that time she has also owned and run a cafe and bookshop for 5 years, and completed a masters degree in sociology. Her clinical interests are in movement disorders, ethics and advance care planning.

As a geriatrician, she is well aware of the large numbers of New Zealanders who are affected by dementia and of the need for caring and inclusive communities to support them. 

Kathy Webb

Board Member

After 10 very rewarding years working in the community development world for local government my focus has now veered slightly to that of building community organisations. Community organisations build huge benefit for our communities, but are undervalued and largely fly under the radar. The work they do for their clients is valued but the fact that they contribute to the economy and build wider social well being is rarely stated. As one of the founders of SociaLink Tauranga Moana my current role with that organisation is around capability building and communicating with the social sector in the western Bay of Plenty.

Alongside this work, and as the Chair of Western BoP Neighbourhood Support I work hard to revive that organisation so we can build resilient and safe communities in the moana.

As the former Chair and now deputy Chair of Alzheimers Tauranga (WBOP) we are working hard to build a dementia friendly New Zealand. Families that live with dementia are on the increase as our population ages and no real cure or treatment is currently in sight. While not at the coal face, the knowledge that is required to help our families lends itself well to input into future planning for our communities.
And of course, there is my family – 1 husband, 1 son and daugter-in-law, 4 grandchildren, 1 great-grandson, 1 cat

Linda Holman

Board Member

Linda elected on the Alzheimers NZ Board in May 2019, having been involved in the Northland Alzheimers Society as a Board Member between 2009 to 2014, and now continues on the Northland Alzheimers Trust from 2016.

 Linda was a Registered Psychiatric Nurse from 1980 to 1995, when she moved into Health Management in Northland DHB, then was employed in the private sector as a Manager of a local Aged Care residential facility until now in the last 10 years working to support General Practice in Manaia Health PHO.

 While born in the Manawatu, Linda was raised in Whangarei, only leaving for 6 years to complete her psychiatric nursing training and experience.  She is supported by her husband, Greg, and father in Whangarei, with two girls, Amie and Nicole who are living and working out of Whangarei.

Sheryl Smail

Board Member

Sheryl’s career has frequently involved working with older people in some way. This has included supporting people with dementia in all its stages.  As a teenager she worked in two Auckland rest homes before training as a nurse.

Sheryl’s current competencies are underpinned by a broader than usual range of governance and management roles in regional, national and international organisations. She has a depth of health and disability sector experience and expertise, including Chief Nurse, General Manager and Chief Executive roles. Sheryl is a chartered member of the Institute of Directors and an ICF Associate Certified Coach. She has a Master of Business Administration, Diploma of Health Administration, as well as certificates in Te Reo Māori and Māori Studies.

Sheryl’s governance roles have spanned government, not-for-profit, professional, private sector and charitable entities. Since 2014, she has chaired Beetham Healthcare, an independent age-related care service in Gisborne. Her own company, Pivotal, specialises in executive coaching and independent facilitation of group decision-making. Sheryl has two children and lives in Mangawhai with her husband.