|Jacob Wolt (Chairman)
Jacob Wolt joined the Board as a trustee in 2017 and was asked to take on the role of Chair in mid 2018. As the leader of Cambridge Partners Institutional Advice division, Jacob works with organisations to design, implement, and manage risk appropriate investment portfolios. He has been advising and managing investments for institutions since 2005. With a background in education and governance Jacob has a particular interest in advising and educating boards, committees and trustees in the institutional and not-for-profit space.
|Dr Richard Gearry (Vice Chairman)
Richard is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Otago, Christchurch and Consultant Gastroenterologist in the Department of Gastroenterology, Christchurch Hospital. He completed his Medical Degree in 1995 and Specialist training in Gastroenterology in 2004. He undertook a PhD in inflammatory bowel diseases in Christchurch between 2003 and 2005 before spending time undertaking further Fellowships in Melbourne and London. He is also a Trustee of Crohn’s and Colitis New Zealand and Medical Director of the New Zealand Nutrition Foundation. Richard is passionate about optimising gastrointestinal health through research and improvements in expertise and equipment for people in Canterbury. He regularly speaks to patient and public groups on gastrointestinal health and is a proud Trustee of the Gut Foundation.
|Dr Andrew Day
Associate Professor Andrew Day is a Paediatric gastroenterologist based at the University of Otago (Christchurch) and Christchurch Hospital. Andrew has focused interests in problems affecting the bowel and liver, particularly in infants, children and adolescents. His special research activities in the areas of Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Coeliac disease are recognised regionally and internationally. Andrew has returned home to New Zealand after many years overseas, and is working to improve the gastrointestinal health of children in Canterbury and New Zealand.
Dr Catherine Wall
Catherine joined the board in 2023 to provide support and expertise on food and nutrition related aspects of the Gut Foundation’s mahi. Catherine is a New Zealand Registered Dietitian and undertook a PhD in nutrition therapy for adults with Crohn’s disease in Christchurch between 2013 and 2016. Catherine completed a fellowship in London, UK before returning to Christchurch in 2019. Catherine currently works as a specialist inflammatory bowel disease dietitian at Christchurch Hospital, Te Whatu Ora Waitaha. Catherine is also a research fellow at University of Otago Christchurch and undertakes and supervises gastroenterology nutrition related research.
|Edward Mactier Ferguson
Mac has a long history of community service. Firstly as Chair of Pitcairn Crescent Kindergarten followed by Waimairi P T A. During this time he was also involved in the Jaycee movement which saw many local and national projects completed. One of his highlights would have been the 1974 Commonwealth Games where he was responsible for reception and recreation in the Games Village. His Jaycee involvement resulted in being awarded a Life Membership of Jaycee International. His membership of the Christchurch Football Club renewed his friendship with Tom George. His subsequent involvement meant he served in all facets of the Clubs structure from Junior Boys’ division to managing many teams and many years as Vice President. At present he is a Trustee of the Clubs Foundation Fund. Mac is married with 3 Children and 11 Grandchildren.
Mark is a property and commercial lawyer with more than 20 years’ experience in New Zealand and overseas. He has advised on property investments, developments, buying and selling of businesses, financing and structuring; for private parties, multi-nationals, banks, liquidators and government departments. Mark cares about giving his clients clear communication and pragmatic and commercial advice. Mark enjoys the Canterbury lifestyle with his family and their golden retriever.
|Graeme Rhodes (Treasurer)
Graeme Rhodes has worked in the accountancy profession since 1995, and became a director of Moore Stephens Markhams Christchurch in 2002. Outside of work his interests include most sports, with a particular interest in motorsports where he races an RX-7 with fellow director Paul Rickerby. Regularly involved in volunteer work, he is the treasurer for the Christ’s College Old Boys Association. Married to Kim, he has two sons.
|Chief Executive – Alice Fitzgerald
Alice completed an International Business degree and an Arts degree at La Trobe University in Australia. Whilst studying she began her career in the corporate sector, with a position as Customer Services Manager and then General Manger of a logistics company. Moving to work in corporate real estate, Alice built profitable businesses in Melbourne before being offered a role in Singapore. She ran a business there for 2 years prior to the pandemic, whilst also assisting with management training and development in the SEA region. After 2 years in Singapore, Alice relocated back to New Zealand to pursue further studies through an MBA at Otago University, which she completed with distinction, at the University of Economics & Business in Vienna, Austria. Alice joined the Gut Foundation as Head of Sponsorship and Events in 2021 before moving into the position of General Manager and then into the role of CEO.
|Head of Sponsorship & Events – Leana Butler
Leana joined the Gut Foundation in August 2023, having come from the role of Managing Director in the Construction Industry in Christchurch. Leana has a strong background in sales, a wealth of creativity and drive when it comes to organising and executing incredible events and is passionate about creating positive changes for Gut Health in New Zealand. Leana was a loyal and dedicated volunteer of the Gut Foundation for many years before officially joining the team and one of her favourite quotes that she lives by is “It is in your hands to create a better world for all who live in it” – Nelson Mandela