Member Directory

We are presently working to develop a robust on-line member directory that will  feature each of our more than 200 individual corporate members.

Listed below are our current Executive Committee and Lifetime Members.



Hugh Leersnyder Chairman

Hugh is an Environmental Scientist at Beca with over 30 years in applied resource management. He has an extensive science (biological and physical) and coastal planning background including a detailed knowledge of regional government resource management responsibilities. Hugh has participated in the NZCS since taking the role of manager Coastal Environment for the former Auckland Regional Council from 1993 to 2005. Hugh is an accredited RMA Commissioner and has been involved in a number of resource consent roles representing either the applicant or the regulator. He has a particular interest in the facilitation and coordination of a range of environmental specialists, ensuring integration across a number disciplines. Hugh is a keen sailor, fisherman and diver, spending as much time as he can by the sea!

Tom Shand Deputy Chair

Tom is a senior coastal engineer at Tonkin & Taylor. After graduating from Canterbury with a bachelor of Civil Engineering, Tom worked for T&T in Auckland before undertaking a PhD at the University of New South Wales investigating the effect of wave grouping on wave breaking and surf zone processes.

After a stint working at the Water Research Lab in Sydney, Tom returned to T&T where he now leads a specialist coastal engineering and science team who are involved in a range of consulting and research projects in New Zealand, Australia and across the Pacific.

Tom's research interests include wave breaking and surf zone processes, remote sensing techniques, advanced statistical analysis of environmental data and coastal hazard techniques and he is involved in several conference committees including Coasts & Ports 2017 and ICCE2020. Outside of work (and sometimes during) Tom can be found chasing waves around the North Island.

Eric Verstappen Treasurer

Eric is a Resource Scientist (Rivers & Coast) with the Tasman District Council, a Unitary Authority blessed with wild rivers and superb coastline. Eric has been working in the regional govt sector since 1986, having graduated from the former Ministry of Works and Development.

Eric has specialist interests in river, coastal and flood hazard processes, investigations, assessment and management. He is particularly interested in furthering his knowledge and understanding of river and coastal systems and hazard risk with respect to the impacts and management of projected climate change on development. He champions the sustainable and holistic management of river and coastal environments, particularly with respect to hazard management and mitigation.

Paul Klinac National Regional Coordinator

Paul has been employed within Auckland Council since 2010, and is currently the manager of the Coastal Management Services Team (CMS), comprising specialist coastal scientists and engineers.

Paul’s technical background is in coastal geomorphology and he holds a Master of Science degree (MSc) from the University of Waikato, which also encompassed resource and environmental planning. His current role as a coastal practitioner is multifaceted, drawing on thirteen years of applied experience working with complex coastal management issues. His current role includes region wide assessments and interpretation of coastal processes and hazards, including provision of technical solutions and design support to various Auckland Council asset owners responsible for capital, new and renewal works.

Paul’s role requires an understanding of regulatory and non-regulatory measures to achieve Council obligations in respect of sustainable coastal management, and this extends to his applied knowledge and understanding of the legislation and statutory requirements that relate to the management of the coastal environment within New Zealand. 

Paul currently chairs and leads the Cross-Council Coastal Community of Practice, and facilitates the citizen science initiative “Witness King Tides Auckland”.

Mark Ivamy National Regional Coordinator

I live at Papamoa Beach with my wife Storm and two kids, Siena and Rico. We love getting outdoors and exploring Aotearoa and have recently completed our 3rd Great Walk.

My background is in coastal science and I was lucky to study at both Waikato and Auckland University alongside some amazing people. I now work for Toi Moana (Bay of Plenty Regional Council) as the Natural Hazard Advisor.

I enjoy working with the community to increase our understanding in this area. Building partnerships and collaborating across organisations to capture and communicate this knowledge is a rewarding challenge.

The NZCS supports this challenge by bringing together planners, scientists, engineers and community leaders.

Jose Borrero Director, eCoast Marine Consulting and Research

Jose earned a Ph.D. in Coastal Engineering at the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles in 2002 and worked as a Post-Doc and Research Professor before coming to New Zealand in 2006 to join the team at ASR Ltd. in Raglan. In 2012, Jose transitioned over to a Director role at the newly formed consultancy, 'eCoast Marine Consulting and Research.' Jose's background is in civil and environmental engineering with an emphasis on water resources and specialised in numerical modelling. He is particularly interested in tsunami hydrodynamics and the coastal effects of tsunamis. Other research interests include coastal processes, sediment transport, wave breaking and design of erosion control and beach protection structures and schemes as well as laboratory physical modelling.

Don Neale Coastal News Coordinator

Don is a Technical Advisor in the Department of Conservation Marine Ecosystems Team. He has worked for the Department in Hokitika since 1987, in the fields of marine ecology and coastal management. He has an MSc in Coastal Geography (with some Ecology) from Canterbury University, and has developed a broad interest in the natural environment in general. His works ranges throughout New Zealand with topics as diverse as coastal hazards, estuarine ecology, marine protected areas, whale strandings and seaweed taxonomy. In his spare time, he is a keen advocate for Hokitika and the West Coast, and he gets involved in hockey, drama, art, the great outdoors and huhu grubs.

Central Government Representative Sarah McRae
Sarah is an RMA Planner at the Department of Conservation with over 25 years' experience in coastal resource management. Sarah's work covers a range areas such as spatial planning, aquaculture, coastal hazards planning and the NZCPS 2010. Sarah has been an expert planning witness before the Environment Court. Sarah joined the NZCS National Committee in 2012. As 'Central Government Representative' Sarah liaises with other central government agencies with an interest in coastal management. Sarah is a keen mountain biker, kayaker and tramper.

Hannah Berger Young Professional Representative

Hannah currently works as an Environmental Scientist/Coastal Geomorphologist at GHD Limited in Auckland. Hannah's technical background is in geology, hazard management, coastal geomorphology and she holds a Master of Science degree (MSc) from the University of Canterbury. Hannah loves to be outdoors. She enjoys walking/ tramping, kayaking, and wakeboarding during the summer.

Hannah is an active member of GHD's Young Professional committee as a sustainability representative. She has also become involved with Futureintech and is excited to promote coastal science in schools.

Hannah enjoys being involved with the NZCS committee and is looking forward to organising student and professional mentoring events around the country.

Renee Coutts Website & Digest Coordinator Administrator & Communications Coordinator

Renee completed her MSc degree at the University of Waikato where her thesis focused on the physical shoreline change and beach rotation of Pauanui and Tairua Beaches, with regards to changes in wave climate due to the presence of offshore islands. Renee's interest in all things coastal has developed from a young age with hobbies including scuba diving, boating and fishing. She joined the Management Committee as coordinator in 2012.

Rebekah Haughey Administrator & Communications Coordinator

Rebekah is currently studying towards completing her MSc at the University of Waikato. Her thesis is focused on developing a numerical model to help understand the sediment/mangrove dynamics in the Firth of Thames. She has a strong passion for the coastal environment and is excited about developing a career in coastal science. Rebekah enjoys being a part of NZCS as it provides great networking opportunities.

Outside of study/work Rebekah loves surfing, snowboarding, tramping and fishing.

Charles Hendtlass Coastal News Editor

Charles has been a copy editor and technical writer for some 30 years, following short stints as a high school teacher and as an energy researcher at Canterbury University. After completing undergraduate degrees in Physics and English, Charles completed a Masters in Resource Management that led (accidentally) to a career in writing and editing. Much of this was spent at the Centre for Advanced Engineering at the University of Canterbury where he ran the Centre's publishing programme, though he has been a freelancer for the past eight years. Charles' involvement in NZCS goes back 20 years, when he first started desktop publishing Coastal News.


John Duder

John Duder deservedly became the first Life Member of the Society at the 2006 Conference held in Kaikoura. This was a fitting tribute, given in recognition of his substantial contribution to the Coastal Society as well as to science and engineering in relation to the New Zealand coast.

John’s specialist fields are water resources and coastal engineering. He was appointed a Director of Tonkin & Taylor in 1982 and retired in 2003 to practice on his own account. After working for a consultancy in London early in his career, he was based in New Zealand and also worked on numerous projects overseas.

As a practicing engineer, John has also provided support to students and peers throughout his career. He has lectured part-time in New Zealand, contributed to over 30 technical papers to various publications, and has delivered lectures and presentations to various seminars and courses, both in New Zealand and overseas.

John’s commitment to the coastal profession has extended throughout his career, through his involvement with the Coastal Society, in his membership of the IPENZ Standing Committee for the Environment and Sustainability, and in his practice of coastal engineering. John was made a Fellow of IPENZ in 1995 and was awarded the IPENZ Professional Commitment Award in 2004 in recognition of his significant contribution to coastal engineering in this country.

Outside the profession John is a keen sailor and has been a trustee as well as servicing as a volunteer deck officer for the Spirit of Adventure Trust. He has been involved with the Trust for over 30 years. John has also been active in local government with several years service as a member of the Devonport Community Board.

John’s role with the Society began with its very inception. It was during the 10th Australasian Conference on Coastal and Ocean Engineering, chaired by John, that a group of New Zealand participants met with representatives of the Australian National Committee on Coastal and Ocean Engineering to discuss establishing a similar organisation in New Zealand. Throuhout 1992, John was part of a small team that included Andrew Laing, Terry Hume, Robin Falconer and John Lumsden, that set about organising the New Zealand Society for Coastal Sciences and Engineering.

The name, of course was later changed to the New Zealand Coastal Society, but the strength of the organistion today is due in no small part to the enthusiasm of people like John and his role in ensuring that the Society was properly established on solid foundations.

John was a member of the NZCS Management Committee from 1992-1999 and chaired the Society during 1994-1997.


John Lumsden

John Lumsden received the Life Membership of the Society at the annual conference dinner held in Tauranga in 2007. John was the second recipient of the award.

John Lumsden is principal consultant in a Christchurch based consultancy and has over forty years professional engineering experience, with specialist skills in coastal engineering and resource management.He also has twelve years experience working as a hearings commissioner on a variety of resource consent proposals. His work has featured integration of coastal and ocean sciences into coastal zone decisions. He has authored or co-authored over 60 reports and technical papers.

John helped establish the New Zealand Coastal Society in 1992 and was founding chairman. John remained on the NZCS Executive Committee until 2007, with only a couple of years off the committee during that time, applying his extensive knowledge to progress the Society and overseeing the production of Coastal News. John is truly a foundation stone of the Society who was instrumental in progressing the Society to where it is today.

Indeed, when the NZCS Executive Committee put in place the requirements for Life Member in 2006, it was John who drafted those and who sought that it only apply to those persons who had retired from work. The Committee saw fit to tweak the requirements knowing that John would be a worthy recipient.

After graduating as a civil engineer from the University of Canterbury John worked as a structural engineer in Canada for several years, returning in 1974 to join and become a director of Christchurch-based Morris & Wilson. Here he specialised in coastal and ocean engineering before becoming Project Director at the Centre for Advanced Engineering at the University of Canterbury in 1989, where he has worked on risk management, waste minimisation, energy efficiency, oceans and lifelines projects. John has achieved as much in these areas as he has in the coastal engineering field.

John has extended a comprehensive career in coastal engineering and resource management by establishing his own consultancy in 2004 and is far from retired just yet. However John has more recently found the time to take regular skiing holidays to Canada and to visit his children in Christchurch, Vancouver, and Perth.

John was Conference Chairman for the Pacific Coasts & Ports ’97 conference attended by some 340 delegates from around the Pacific. The conference was the combined 13th Australasian Coastal and Ocean Engineering Conference and 6th Australasian Port and Harbour Conference, held in Christchurch on 7-11 September 1997.

John has been on the organising committees of many other conferences, seminars and workshops, including the 2000 Our Oceans conference, and the 2006 NZCS Annual Conference held in Kaikoura.

John Lumsden was elected a Fellow of IPENZ in 2004 for his contribution to the advancement of engineering practice; specifically recognising his leadership in the development of coastal engineering practice in New Zealand. He was one of the first coastal engineers to recognise the need to go under water, and a feature of his work has been the integration of coastal and ocean sciences into engineering decisions concerning the coastal zone. His service to the New Zealand Coastal Society and IPENZ has been exemplary.


Terry Hume

Terry Hume became the fourth ever member to receive the Society’s Life Membership. Terry was presented with the award at the Society’s annual conference held in Auckland during 2012, where the New Zealand Coastal Society was celebrating its 20th anniversary.

With over 35 years experience as a marine geologist and coastal oceanographer, NIWA Principal Scientist Dr Terry Hume has been at the forefront of research on New Zealand’s Coastal Environment. He’s one of a handful of coastal scientists working in New Zealand who in the truest sense wrote the book on our coastal environments. For example, in the late 1980s Terry and Ed (CE) Herdendorf classified estuaries into 16 geomorphological types. This work developed into a rule-based GIS classification in 2007 and is used throughout the world to assist in the management of estuaries.

More recently he has been involved with research looking at the effects of catchment runoff on sedimentation in estuaries. The research has increased our knowledge of Holocene sedimentation and rates of sedimentation and the effects that forestry and land clearance for agriculture and urbanisation have on estuaries.

Terry led the initiative to develop Coastal Explorer, a web-based database that provides basic information on the open coast shoreline and estuaries. The government-funded web tool is used by councils, Surf Life Saving New Zealand, and the public to help them better understand environmental change and coastal hazards.

At the local level, he has worked with councils, communities and schools to develop local adaptation strategies to climate change, and to identify ways to incorporate those strategies in coastal planning documents. He’s also been involved in research projects to determine societal planning for natural hazards, and has been involved in initiatives such as the development of Cam-Era video monitoring that supports councils in monitoring and managing their coastal environments.

Terry earned his BSc in Geology at the University of Auckland and went onto complete his MSc and PhD in earth sciences at the University of Waikato. After graduating, Terry became a scientist for the ministry of Works’ Water and Soil Division.

In 1988 he became Group Leader – Coastal of the Marine and Freshwater Division of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR), a role he continued in when DSIR transitioned to NIWA. As a Principal Scientist, he went on to lead NIWAs programmes on Coastal adaptation to climate change and coastal movement and sediment storage. He’s also held a number of management roles within NIWA, including his current position as National Projects Manager.

Terry’s commitment to sharing ideas and knowledge about our coastal environment is legendary. He was one of the early supporters of NZCS and a member of its management committee from 1993 to 1994, and again from 1999 to 2004 as Editor of the Coastal News. Since 1993 he’s taught at the tertiary level for both the University of Waikato and the University of Auckland. He’s been a certified RMA Hearings Commissioner since 2006.