NZBS Executive Leadership Team

Sam Cliffe - Chief Executive Officer

As the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Sam leads the Executive Leadership Team and is accountable to the New Zealand Blood Service Board. The CEO has overall responsibility for organisational performance including delivery of both its annual and strategic plans.

The members of the Executive Leadership Team act as partners to the CEO, providing critical advice and support to enable achievement of the organisations objectives and overall performance.

Dr Sarah Morley - Chief Medical Officer

The Chief Medical Officer leads the Clinical Services team which plays a key role in ensuring that clinically appropriate blood products are provided to patients in need, wherever and whenever they are required. Expert transfusion medicine advice is available at all times and is drawn upon in a wide range of situations from selection of donors, to assisting hospital clinicians to provide treatment for complex or urgent clinical transfusion problems.

The clinical function for the organisation is provided by Transfusion Medicine Specialists located in various centres around New Zealand with support from a number of Medical Officers,Transfusion Nurse Specialists and Clinical Scientists.

John Harrison - Director Finance and Corporate Services

The Director Finance and Corporate Services is a key role in ensuring New Zealand Blood Service meets its obligations. The role contributes to the strategic direction and overall performance of the organisation.

John leads and is accountable for the Finance and Corporate Services function to deliver effective financial management, financial strategy, policy development and operational analysis. This includes overseeing the property management functions.

Additionally, John’s role is to drive business improvement and enhanced performance through the use of analytics and business intelligence practices.


Karen Didovich - Director Human Resources and Organisational Development

The Director Human Resources and Organisational Development is responsible for providing strategic human resource leadership ensuring policies, programmes and HR services support a high performing culture supportive of the enduring outcome, vision and values of New Zealand Blood Service.

Working in partnership with members of the Executive Leadership and Senior Management Teams, Karen’s team works towards attracting, selecting, motivating and retaining a highly qualified and diverse workforce; promoting effective leadership and management practices; managing salary and benefits; developing employee recognition programmes; promoting fair and equitable treatment of employees through employee relations services; leading health and safety, inclusive of wellbeing initiatives; and providing training and development.


Justin Scott - Director Planning and Supply Chain

The Director Planning and Supply Chain is accountable for leading, overseeing and providing strategic direction to the Planning and Supply Chain function.

Justin is accountable for managing relationships across the organisation to ensure the Planning and Supply Chain function works with other parts of New Zealand Blood Service to ensure effective collection and distribution of blood and blood products. The role also leads organisational procurement activity and supports manufacturing and collection planning.


Ray Scott - Consultant Director

The Consultant Director supports and guides transition of technical activities and systems by providing expert technical knowledge, advice and mentoring to support the future sustainability of New Zealand Blood Service and development of talent and capability.

The Consultant Director leads and supports technology and fractionation transformation, and defined facilities redevelopments, in consultation and collaboration with respective Executive Directors.


Kelvin Gill (Acting) 

The Director Quality and Regulatory Affairs is responsible for developing, maintaining, managing and leading effective and co-ordinated quality and regulatory compliance processes.

This role ensures that New Zealand Blood Service fully complies with all relevant statutory requirements and achieves high standards of manufacturing and laboratory practice that meet the organisation's objective of providing a safe, timely and high quality service. The Quality team also support continuous business improvement activity within New Zealand Blood Service.


Mandy Suddes - Director Technical Services

The Director Technical Services is accountable for operational service delivery of technical and laboratory services within New Zealand Blood Service, ensuring that the clinical demand for products and services and performance are met in line with clinical requirements.

Mandy is accountable for the supply of blood components to hospitals throughout New Zealand, including blood processing, testing, blood banking, Haematopoietic Progenitor Cells (HPC) processing, tissue banking and the Red Cell Reference Laboratory. Technical Services undertakes compatibility testing for transfusion and transplant patients within New Zealand.


Christine Van Tilburg - Director Business Improvement and Partnerships

The Director Business Improvements and Partnerships develops capability across the organisation in effective project management and business improvement practices.

This key role owns and drives the continuous improvement framework and Process Excellence (PEx) programme to enable a focus on business and system improvement across the organisation, driving productivity improvements.

Leading the development of partnerships with external organisations to create value for New Zealand Blood Service and the wider health sector, it also contributes to building New Zealand Blood Service international relationships to create opportunities for wider learning and improvement.


Doug Gallagher - Director Donor Services

The Director Donor Services leads and is accountable for the Donor Services function from strategy development through to operational service delivery to ensure that collection targets are achieved to ensure clinical demand for products and services are met.

Donor Services functions include donor strategy, planning, marketing, contact centre, donor administration, donor recruitment and collections, training, the Donor and Product Safety (DAPS) team, and therapeutic services.

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