Council Members




David Hursthouse


Is a Wanganui based Ecological Designer, Facilitator, and Educator. He brings a critical, revolutionary eye to all that he engages with and is resolutely committed to improving senescent human systems via wholesome processes of design. Dave is enthusiastically focused on sowing the seeds of passion and courage among those world-shakers and world-makers dedicated to developing human systems more in tune with wider ecological patterns. He is passionate about transformative learning, forest ecologies, systemic patterns, critical theory, design philosophy, design process, and radically creative change-making. Dave considers the Permaculture Movement to be one of the most potential-laden social movements of all time and is determined to see that potential acted on all around the world with humility, authenticity, and integrity.

Dave studied human systems at Otago University exploring political science, anthropology, sociology, economics, political philosophy, and global food systems. He completed his PDC at Te Moata with Trish Allen and Daniel Tohill in 2014. He has been involved with that course for four years. He has since completed his Permaculture Teacher Training with Finn Mackesy, Dan Palmer, and Robina McCurdy. Dave has taught PDC’s with Earthcare Education and was involved in Permaculture education with Aranya Agricultural Alternatives in India. Dave led the Agriculture Team at IPCIndia 2017, spent two years coordinating the 1acre Papamoa Community Garden, has facilitated the co-design of a number of community projects, and is an active participant in Making Permaculture Stronger. His passions lie in forest systems and social dynamics, employing an awareness of both in dynamic group facilitation. 


Clare Wimmer 

Lives near Raglan and has experience in corporate account management which has progressed into business and organisational management of a small business and not for profit organisations. Her strengths are business acumen, inclusiveness, innovation and creative thinking/processes like Theory U. Facilitative leadership and strategic development is Clare's passions within organisational development. Being nimble and adaptive, she thrives in diverse settings that challenge her and enjoys connections, data, sustainable development and building a community to make a difference for our future. Clare works as business manager for CLIMsystems part-time, a global leader in climate change software and consultancy to the UNDP, UNEP, Asian Development Bank, supporting access to the latest IPCC scientific climate change data for National Communications for Climate Change Adaptation for LDC's. She also works part-time for Wimmer Design, a family business now designing and building tiny homes. During summer months Clare teaches others to create ollas for their garden in her pottery workshop in Waitetuna near Raglan.

Living a permaculture lifestyle with her husband and boys began in 1999 with the move to Raglan, through osmosis with the friends and support systems which this area offers. Clare completed her PDC through Hamilton Permaculture the same year it was in transition to the Waikato Environment Centre in 2015.  The following March she completed the Teacher Training along with Dave and Lillee under Robina, Fin, and Dan Palmer, following this she was employed by WEC to coordinate and develop the same PDC she took the year before towards a more urban-centric delivery and coordinated the Permaculture Educational Hui in Waitetuna at the end of 2016. As far as PiNZ goes, Clare has been the bookkeeper since 2016 working behind the scenes and has now joined the council as treasurer.  With a developing 1 ha property, she pours loads of effort into teaching permaculture to those who stay at La Finca and often boasts: I am changing the world, one WWOOfer at a time.





James Andrews 

Comes from Palmerston North and a long line of gardeners. He studied Parks and Recreation at Lincoln Uni and spent some years working and playing in the mountains and forests of Aotearoa.

Exploring life through a Permaculture lens James’s has completed an internship with the Koanga Institute, gardened at home, started a small market garden, launched a sourdough bread business, worked as a polytech tutor in Horticulture and Rural sustainability, as well as running workshops on permaculture, gardening, seed saving, nutrition, and Holistic Decision Making.

With his wife Pip and kids Lilly and Finn, he is currently settling into life on a small block near Mangawhai Village in Northland.  He started to Thrive Permaculture in early 2015 as a professional permaculture design facilitation service. Permaculture Design work gives James the unique opportunity to get to know people and landscapes and be a part of a process that brings them together in a meaningful way.

 James believes re-integrating humans as a positive force within nature is infinitely complex, interesting, challenging, multifaceted and rewarding work. As a new member of the PINZ Council, he brings Holistic management, enthusiasm, and necessary insight.





Sean Murphy 

Is originally from Cape Town, South Africa. At age 21 he moved to London and worked in the field of advertising. During this time he traveled extensively witnessing people living in different ways to the norm of the cities and after realising that there were other ways to live he decided to ‘live off the land’ in Mozambique.

A friend who had completed a PDC gave him Bill Mollison's Big Black Book and that sparked his Permaculture journey. He built his first home and gardens with permaculture principles. Sean completed the first of three PDC’s in Mozambique. He took these skills and volunteered at many projects from India to the wild coast of Africa.

After a few years of travel and living at the beach, he decided to grow roots and explore eco-village living and moved to a rural eco-village in South Africa where he co-created the Rainbow Homestead, a living and learning Ecoversity based on Permaculture and social justice principles. There he created gardens, food forests, a home from local materials. He also built Yurts that many local and international visitors stayed in.

Several years and much learning later, in 2016, Sean and his family moved to New Zealand attracted by the egalitarian society and a climate similar to South Africa.

Now in Hamilton and enjoying urban living, Sean is working to create cohousing, community-supported agriculture and is connecting back with permaculture through the PiNZ network bringing systems thinking, efficiency, learning from nature and his life experience to the Permaculture Council of New Zealand to make PINZ stronger. 


Shine Murphy




.Robina McCurdy 

Passions are to bring about significant change in the lives of people, communities, and the environment through community development, permaculture design, education, organic growing, the creation of participatory processes for decision making and collective action.

Robina completed her first PDC in Oratia Auckland, with Max Lindigger and Lee Harrison (from Australia) in 1985. She holds a Diploma in Permaculture, a Diploma in Seed Technology, as well as various teaching qualifications. Robina was also is also the first Aotearoan to be formally recognised as a Permaculture Elder at the Australasian Permaculture Convergence APC13 in Perth 2016.

Over the years Robina has taught 12 Permaculture Design Certificate Courses, 7 Permaculture Teachers Training Courses and about 150 short workshops in specific aspects of permaculture.  She has also trained in the field of Deep Ecology with Joanna Macy, facilitating Deep Ecology experiences in New Zealand.

Robina is co-founder/resident/trustee of Tui Land Trust & Community, the founder/trustee of the Institute for Earthcare Education Aotearoa the originator/coordinator/tutor of Golden Bay's 'PLANET Organic', a year-long vocational training in community-scale sustainable land use design, management & facilitation, as well as SEED (Schools Environmental Education & Development) in South Africa which is now a national-scale permaculture in schools programme. More recently she was co-ordinator/designer/tutor of Victory Villages Community Garden in Nelson, and an educator with Christchurch's Harbour Basin Food Resilience Project.

As an ecovillage designer, she has facilitated development stages of Earthsong Eco-neighbourhood, Otamatea Ecovillage, Turanga Farm Eco-hamlet, Gricklegrass Community, Riverside Community, Tui Community, Atamai Ecovillage and Awaawaroa Ecovillage. Overseas she has worked as a facilitator with Findhorn Community (Scotland), Crystal Waters Ecovillage (Australia), OUR Ecovillage (Canada), Bordatien Ecovillage (Ireland), Good Enough COmmunity (USA), The landless People's Movement communities, (Brazil), Garapaba Ecovillage (Brazil), Tholego and Swellendam Ecovillages (Sth Africa).

Currently, Robina is the director of Earthcare's 'Localising Food Project' and is engaged in documentary production on this theme as well as collaborating to design and develop a new large-scale ecovillage in Aotearoa-NZ. Robina brings a wealth of driving energy, knowledge, experience and connections to the PiNZ Council. 


Hui Liaison, Website & Newsletter

Lillee Star 

Permaculture landed in Lillee’s life with a sudden surprise at age 22, it made so much sense and filled her with excitement for the possibilities of a balanced relationship with Gaia. This led her on many pathways around the world and onto Aotearoa, where she met others who shared a deep sense of love and care for the Earth as a living entity. The land, the people, and the Spirit have all captivated her and she reflects that Aotearoa has become her rock, the foundation of her life.

2014 Lillee joined the NZ permaculture crew at the Hui held in Wellington since then she hasn’t missed the yearly event. 2015 Lillee led the hosting team in Christchurch, and in 2017 become a PiNZ Councillor taking on newsletter editing, website, bioregional co-ordinator, and Hui Liaison representative.

Lillee is a Director at the Canterbury Permaculture Institute: education, design and consultancy support for the local community; and is involved in aiding the expansion of relevant permaculture information within an evolving earthquake-affected city.

Recent positions held… Store & Business Development Manager for the Harbour Co-op; Permaculture Consultant within the creation of the Food Resilience Network. Co-designer and Project Consultant to Otakaro Orchard - a community food forest garden and a hub for the FRN in CBD Christchurch. Land carer of a small off-the-grid house & food production plot, as well as a chicken mother.

Permaculture and the relationship of people are the main focus of Lillee’s future work. She is passionate about art, nature, and the harmonics of space, together with their practical uses. Lillee works creatively to find the balance of all elements involved and enjoys the challenge/adventure of being interconnected in right relationship with her surroundings.






Jenny-Kaye Potaka

Ko Hikurangi te maunga

Ko Waiapu te awa

Ko Ngati Porou te iwi

Gardening was probably in Jenny-Kaye’s genes and growing up in Gisborne with big gardens around her. She followed this interest to Lincoln to study horticulture before working in the industry, running hort training courses for troubled Northland youth. This lead on to community development work with the Community Employment Group in the Far North.

Having completed her PDC with Max Lindegger in Whanganui (1988) she went on to complete  Advanced Diplomas in both Permaculture Design and in Permaculture Teaching in Australia. She went on to teach permaculture short courses as part of the University of Auckland Community Education programme, and worked as a permaculture resource person for the Planning Department, as well as undertaking design work.

Life took several turns (including three children) and Jenny-Kaye found herself in Wellington, where she did campaign work with the Greens at Parliament and later ran a school garden club while filling her suburban garden with a multitude of fruit species.

More recently Jenny-Kaye, along with her partner, have taken on a heritage rose garden and nursery in Otaki which they are slowly turning it towards becoming an organic/permaculture demonstration garden.