Track Zero is an independent, not-for-profit creative enterprise founded by Sarah Meads. The enterprise is a registered charity under the New Zealand Charities Act 2005 with tax deductible status. Track Zero was incorporated under the New Zealand Charitable Trusts Act 1957 in April 2018. Track Zero is governed by a Board, and operated and managed by Trustee Manager, Sarah Meads, based in Wellington, New Zealand.
Board of Trustees
Professor Shaun Hendy MNZM
Shaun Hendy is Chief Scientist at Toha, a data company that he co-founded in 2019. He was formerly the founding Director of Te Pūnaha Matatini, a New Zealand Centre of Research Excellence hosted by the University of Auckland. Shaun is best known for leading New Zealand’s award-winning modelling team during the COVID-19 pandemic, for which he was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2021. He is also well known as a science communicator and writer. His first book, Get Off the Grass, co-authored with the late Sir Paul Callaghan, was published in August 2013. His second book, Silencing Science, was published in 2016, and his most recent book, #NoFly, was released in October 2019.
Sarah has many years of experience working at senior levels on sustainable development, climate change, and international affairs and is former Senior Policy Advisor to Oxfam New Zealand. Her focus is on working with others to design creative solutions and inter-generational frameworks that promote a low emissions future and social justice.
Sarah is passionate about engaging people on a visceral level to understand the impact of climate on people and the planet – harnessing the power of the arts to inspire climate action. A former mixed media artist and former Trustee of the Wellington Sculpture Trust, Sarah holds post graduate degrees in science, business and international development.
Professor James Renwick
James is the recipient of the prestigious Prime Minister’s Science Communication Prize 2018 in recognition of the way he communicates climate science, and was also part of the team that won the 2019 Prime Minister’s Science Prize. His was awarded the prestigious Companion of the Royal Society Te Āparangi 2021 for his outstanding contribution to promoting (climate) science and public engagement.
He is Victoria University Professor at the School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences. He is a Commissioner on the NZ Climate Change Commission responsible for providing independent, evidence-based advice to government to help Aotearoa transition to a low emissions and climate-resilient future.
James has many years of experience in weather and climate research. His field is large-scale climate variability and climate change, including such things as El Niño and the mid-latitude westerly winds, and the impacts of climate variability and change on New Zealand and the Antarctic. James has worked as a lead author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Reports, and is Co-chair of the WCRP CliC (Climate and Cryosphere) project. He is passionate about science communication and about harnessing the arts to tell science stories.
Dr Carla van Zon ONZM
Carla has been the Artistic Director of New Zealand’s two major arts festivals; the New Zealand Festival in Wellington and the Auckland Arts Festival. She recently retired from the Auckland Festival after co-leading the transition to an annual Festival, bringing increased cultural and artistic diversity to Programme and championing Maori & Pacific work.
Prior to this Carla was International Manager for the Arts Council of NZ Toi Aotearoa, developing the International strategy and assisting New Zealand artists to achieve international success. Carla was involved in the New Zealand Festival from 1989, as Executive Director from 1994 and Artistic Director from 2000 - 2006.
Tanea Heke MNZM
Once Tanea Heke completed her primary teacher training and conduit degree at Victoria University, she went on to train at Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School. That was over 20 years ago and she has been working in the arts sector ever since.
As well as acting, directing and producing, Tanea has organised exhibitions at Te Papa, sent New Zealand visual artists to the Venice Biennale, curated New Zealand’s cultural programme as Country of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair and organised Aotearoa’s delegation at the Festival of Pacific Arts in Guahan. Her film credits include Waru, Belief: The Possession of Janet Moses and No 2. Her career has also seen her acting in roles for government agencies, which she finds as challenging as theatre with much longer seasons.
Tanea is Director of Toi Whakaari. She is thrilled to join the Track Zero Board.
Lisa McLaren QSM
Lisa is originally a farm girl from the Wairarapa. She did Masters in Environmental Studies at VUW with a focus on climate change education. She then worked in local government for four years in sea level rise policy and emergency management.
Lisa is a currently a PhD student at the Joint Centre for Disaster Research. Her thesis is on how citizen science can be used to build community resilience to hazards. She is interested in how to build trust and knowledge in climate change issues through community participation in science. And in her spare time she has volunteered for the last three years as the National Convenor of the Zero Carbon Act campaign for Generation Zero.
Dr Bronwyn Hayward MNZM
Dr Bronwyn Hayward is Professor in Political Science and International Relations, University of Canterbury, New Zealand. A Lead Author for the IPCC special report 1.5 Degrees, she is also lead coordinating author for the 2021 IPCC Assessment Report 6 on Climate Cities and Infrastructure. She leads a 7 city study of children and young people’s life styles with CUSP: Centre for Understanding Sustainable Prosperity, a UK ESRC funded research group and her most recent book is Sea Change: Climate Politics and New Zealand with Bridget Williams Books.
Bronwyn was named Supreme Winner at the Women of Influence awards 2022. On top of the award she won the environment category for her internationally recognised mahi tackling climate change.
The Board of Trustees is grateful to our invited network of great scientific and creative minds who we meet with regularly for informal kōrero (conversation) sharing knowledge and expertise across sectors and cultures – helping to shape our Track Zero Programme for greater impact.