Meet the kaiārahi


Our kaiārahi (coaches and mentors) have a range of experience. Meet them below to find out who could be the best match for you.


Sarah Whiting


Amira Aman


Anne Kenneally


Ara Simmons


Darran Ingram

Darran Ingram

Darran Ingram has a wealth of leadership experience, from a previous career in the New Zealand Airforce leading teams all over the world, such as the tsunami relief work in Indonesia and supply work in Antarctica. He has also led teams in the start up of two brand new innovative learning environments in New Zealand and so has expertise on building a cohesive culture and leading innovative teaching and learning.

Darran will work with you on a personal level, supporting you to develop from within, to lead with confidence, reach your goals and develop holistically.



Gae Thawley


Glenda Albon


Greg Carroll

Greg Carroll

Greg Carroll has worked in a range of mentoring and coaching contexts over recent years. He has nearly 30 years experience as a principal and leader of high performing teams in school settings, and as a leader of large PLD programmes. This means he brings a depth of knowledge and understanding of change and leadership to his mahi as a coach and mentor.

He uses 'Learning Talk' (Dalton and Anderson) and other models and processes in his work with individuals and teams. He likes to bring different perspectives to his mahi and build on the strengths of others. He says that one of the most rewarding parts of being a coach and mentor is building on the strengths people already have and seeing them fly in ways they never thought they could.

Greg has experience successfully supporting improvement initiatives with leadership teams, Kāhui Ako, and individuals. Recently he has also worked with the New Pedagogies for Deep Learning programme alongside Michael Fullan and his team and this has enabled him to bring expertise in this approach to his mahi for schools who are part of the NPDL programme.


Jamie Taylor


Kathryn O'Connell-Sutherland

Kathryn OConnell Sutherland

Kathryn O'Connell-Sutherland is the Early Years Manager at CORE Education, and has 25 years’ experience in teaching, lecturing, leading and management in the early years sector. She is a strong advocate for the early years and is committed to culturally responsive and authentic bicultural practices, personalised learning pathways, and thoughtful relational leadership practices.

Kathryn is focused on building leadership and evaluative capability across the early years and is part of a new model that is re-thinking professional learning through collaboration, networks and a 'teachers teaching teachers' approach.


Madeline Campbell


Nick Major

Nick Major

Nick Major has been working as a coach and mentor for nine years, following 21 years as a school principal. From 2011-16, he was a kaiārahi (coach) for the National Aspiring Principals’ programme, and has completed formal study in professional coaching.

Nick draws upon the wide range of experiences and skills he has acquired to inspire you to be and do the best you can at whatever you want to accomplish, either personally or professionally.

His clients have acknowledged Nick’s respectful, empathetic yet growth-oriented approach, his ability to ask the questions that matter, and skill in helping to shift routine ways of thinking to more adaptive ways that lead to new insights and possibilities for action.


Rahera Ormsby


Rosalie Reiri


Phoebe Davis

Phoebe Davis

Phoebe Davis has been a mentor and coach for the past six years at CORE. She has mentored individuals and teams online and face-to-face. Her experiences range from mentoring leaders of rohe, to emerging team leaders and middle/senior leaders to develop their team, and their own leadership capability.

Whether it be leadership, communication or navigating through difficult and challenging circumstances, Phoebe will help you to do these things while also helping you to first understand and then practice in culturally responsive ways. She can offer support if you’re working with iwi or whānau, especially in traversing through hapū or iwi dynamics. Her approach focuses on the importance of good communication, making connections and supporting you in your journey. She will help you to take on your role with confidence.

Phoebe’s clients describe her as someone who helps people to find their voice, perhaps where they feel ignored or disempowered. She does this by helping people to embrace and own their culture, to find the best ways to support others around them. Phoebe loves building confidence and self worth in others. People say they are grateful they are now able to own their role with confidence after working with her. Phoebe is passionate about helping Māori to find themselves as Māori – embracing their Māoriness and developing clarity about who they are in their work. She promotes vulnerability in confidence – supporting people to work through struggles.


Rachel McNamara

Rachel McNamara

Rachel McNamara has had over 13 years coaching and mentoring. In her roles as Deputy Principal and Curriculum Design leader and then during her time at CORE, she has mentored leaders, teachers, individuals and groups. She moves seamlessly from facilitation to mentoring as the need arises.

A real strength of Rachel’s is her ability to identify where people are at, and gently support individuals to grow and realise their potential. She ensures she listens openly and responds positively to those she works with. She assists people to see perspective by looking at things differently. She will summarise what she hears and checks for clarity during conversation. Rachel ensures to ask permission to move from the role of mentor to facilitator, as conversations may change.

People who work with Rachel describe her as empathetic, purpose-driven, organised and a good listener. She has a warmth in discussions, which creates a connection where people feel open to share their thoughts and feelings. She helps people to make sense of their world, by asking open and pertinent questions.


Rebbecca Sweeney

Rebbecca Sweeney

Rebbecca Sweeney has been a mentor and coach for the past seven years at CORE. She has mentored individuals and teams at CORE and externally online and face-to-face. Her experiences range from mentoring groups of team leaders and middle/senior leaders to develop their team, and their own leadership capability, to mentoring individual business owners or leaders in understanding and developing their leadership style using research, tools and resources as well as the mentee’s own knowledge and experience.

Whether it be leadership, communication, teamwork, managing your workload or setting and achieving personal and professional goals, Rebbecca supports you to navigate your own way through using reflective questions, tools and resources that are selected specifically for your needs. She uses warm and supportive ways to help you to be the best you can be. Rebbecca thrives on being able to make a positive difference in the lives of others.

Her clients describe her as being non-judgmental, challenging (in a good way!) and someone who can help you to make sense of all the balls you may be juggling so that you feel in control of your work and life.


Suzi Gould

Suzi Gould

Over the years Suzi Gould has worked with a range of individual mentees, teams and leaders from varied contexts such as startup companies, digital storytellers and teacher researchers. Suzi shows deep respect for her clients and where they come from. She is a skilled listener and questioner who is responsive to people’s learning styles, cultures and needs.

Suzi is known for helping people to not just think about the what, but the how and why of things from a range of different perspectives. She can help move from lists of jobs and to-do lists into considering how your actions can align with your values and hopes.

Whether it be learning to work more cohesively, decluttering and deepening thinking, or simplifying processes and leading effective teams, Suzi supports you using an appreciative inquiry approach to make sense of varied situations and develop strategies to navigate them. Her clients describe her as motivating, non-judgmental, genuine and kind.