The Team


WorkWell National Coordination Office at Toi Te Ora –  Public Health Service

WorkWell is available for workplaces in various regions throughout New Zealand as part of a national approach to workplace wellbeing. 
WorkWell was developed by Toi Te Ora – Public Health Service (Toi Te Ora) who have been recognised by the Ministry of Health as leaders in workplace wellbeing.  Toi Te Ora are supported by the Ministry to co-ordinate the delivery of WorkWell across New Zealand.
Toi Te Ora offers comprehensive training and ongoing mentoring to other Public Health Units to enable them to deliver WorkWell in their region.  As a result, there are now many trained WorkWell advisors right across New Zealand.
Support to workplaces in the Bay of Plenty and Lakes regions is still provided by Toi Te Ora.  For information on the delivery of WorkWell in other regions go to the WorkWell Regions section. 
The WorkWell National Coordination Office is located at Toi Te Ora’s Tauranga office.

Dave Wood, Senior Health Improvement Advisor 

Dave has worked in public health for over eight years.  He is the Senior Health Improvement Advisor for the WorkWell team at Toi Te Ora – Public Health Service and while supporting a number of workplaces through the WorkWell process, he is also responsible for looking after the day to day running of the team.  Dave leads the national approach to wellbeing and can often be seen training and supporting other district health board and public health staff in the successful delivery of the WorkWell programme.

Having worked in a variety of occupations from large government departments to engineering workshops, Dave brings a wealth of experience to the role helping him  relate to the wide variety of needs and realities of each workplace.  Dave says, “Regardless of the industry or size of your organisation, with WorkWell you can achieve optimum workplace wellbeing step by logical step.”

Karen Cruikshank, WorkWell Advisor


Karen hails from Scotland where she brings with her over ten years of health improvement experience from the Scottish public sector. She has worked across various topics, settings, and life-stages at both a national and local level. Karen has successfully completed an MSc in Public Health Nutrition.

Karen started with Toi Te Ora – Public Health Service in 2012 and has just recently returned from parental leave.  Karen’s time is currently spilt across the Workplace and Early Childhood Education setting.  Within the workplaces team, Karen is leading the evaluation of the WorkWell programme.  "I am very excited to be involved in the overall evaluation of our programme.  It is great to see so many businesses implementing WorkWell and motivating sustainable change in their organisation.  I am looking forward to reporting on the extent WorkWell is functioning in workplaces across our region.”



Alice Walker, WorkWell Advisor

Alice originally hails from our neighbouring country, Australia, and has previously worked in migrant health, cancer screening and dietetics.  She also worked for Healthy Together Victoria where she supported over 30 businesses to develop health and wellbeing programmes very similar to WorkWell. She has experience working with a variety of industries including production and manufacturing, transport, professional and health sector to implement programmes to support staff health.    

"The culture and environment of the workplace can have a huge impact on individuals health and wellbeing.  It's great to see how making positive changes in the workplace can influence staff and their families to be happier and healthier."

Alice has a Masters in Nutrition & Dietetics (Research),  Bachelor of Public Health (Health Promotion) and a Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety.   She has also completed a research dissertation on antenatal and postnatal nutrition.

Hannah Kelly, WorkWell Advisor

Hannah moved to Tauranga from Queenstown, swapping the mountains for the beach. Hannah is passionate about creating healthy workplaces where staff can thrive, inside and outside the workplace. “Workplace wellbeing just makes sense” says Hannah. “Most of us spend a lot of time at work, so a healthy supportive workplace supports us to have to a healthy balanced lifestyle in all aspects of life."

Hannah has experience in health promotion, project management, alcohol harm reduction, and community health programme delivery. Hannah has a Bachelor of Health Science (Population Health) and Bachelor of Arts (Sociology).




Joel Barr, WorkWell Advisor

Having previously worked for several years as a regional high performance tennis coach before transitioning into public health, Joel is “passionate about helping people reach their health and wellbeing goals.”

Joel brings with him a Bachelor of Health Science and has extensive experience in the service industry, coaching, and sports team management.  Joel grew up in the Eastern Bay of Plenty and has whakapapa connections with Whakatohea and Ngati Awa.  

Joel believes the unique environment of performance coaching and business management will assist him to work alongside businesses implementing WorkWell.  “The WorkWell programme enables workplaces to create a culture of wellbeing that is nurtured through a step by step process.  I am excited to help workplaces work better through wellbeing.”


Kylee Christie, WorkWell Advisor

Kylee is extremely passionate about workplace health and wellbeing and thrives off supporting workplaces to create healthy environments and policies to improve staff wellbeing.  Kylee believes the health of New Zealanders is a growing concern, and, given the amount of time Kiwi’s generally spend at work, workplaces can play a significant role in addressing the health and wellbeing of their staff.

“There is a very clear connection between the impact of work on health, and health on work”, says Kylee.  “A positive, supportive work environment which considers the influence its environment has on staff makes good business sense.”

In addition to WorkWell, Kylee works with early childhood education services and leads the Breastfeeding Friendly Spaces project.

Kylee Christie is a born and bred in Rotorua and has a Bachelor of Sport and Exercise and a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health.


Sharon Muru, Health Improvement Manager

“It is now well recognised that successful workplaces support the health and wellbeing of their staff,” says Sharon Kennedy-Muru, Health Improvement Manager.
Sharon has worked for Toi Te Ora - Public Health Service for a number of years in a variety of roles and was part of the initial development of WorkWell.  Qualified in public health and education, Sharon has expertise in population health, health promotion, policy development, communication and organisational development and management.

“As Health Improvement Manager, I have responsibility for leading and managing all of Toi Te Ora’s health improvement programmes and I have full confidence in the WorkWell programme and team.  WorkWell is based on best practice and encourages workplaces to follow a step-by-step process of continuous quality improvement in staff wellbeing.”

“The workplace is an ideal setting to improve health and wellbeing, with the workplace benefiting from this also, through the likes of increased productivity and staff engagement.  Creating a supportive workplace makes the healthy choice the easy choice and normalises healthy behaviours.”


Dr Phil Shoemack, Medical Officer of Health

WorkWell is backed by the support of Dr Phil Shoemack, a specialist in public health medicine. 'Dr Phil' is available to the WorkWell Advisors to answer any questions from businesses on their WorkWell journey.

"Making a difference to your staff health can be really straightforward," says Phil. "As a business considering WorkWell, you are already on the right track, in being interested in the health of your staff and building health into your business planning."

Phil believes it’s important that the workplace is used as an opportunity to improve the health of staff, their families and whanau, as well as being a positive influence for the health of the wider community.


Page updated 15 May 2017
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