Patrons         Team         Board 


Dame Kate Harcourt

Taika Waititi (Y&H alumni) 


Jan Bergquist (Programme Administrator)

Email: [email protected] 
Phone: 04 385 8227 

Jan has returned to Young and Hungry, after having worked here a few years ago, on a part-time basis. Jan is passionate about youth development in theatre and dance and developing opportunities to grow involvement and audiences. While most of her arts work has been with dance it has usually involved working with youth. 


Deirdre O’Sullivan (Chair)

Deirdre is the Chief Executive for Parkinson’s New Zealand and comes to the Young and Hungry Board with strong experience across not-for-profit and government organisations.  She has a proven track record developing strategic and creative initiatives and her key areas of expertise are marketing and fundraising, financial management, strategic planning and policy and procedures amongst many others. Deirdre has three young children and is co-owner of Gymbaroo Wellington childcare centre.  She has a great interest in the arts and in supporting young people.                                          

Vicki Cooksley (Trustee)

Vicki has spent the last 18 years working as an Event, Project, Production, Stage, Company and Venue Manager for councils, companies and festivals including the Hutt City Council, Auckland Writers Festival, Auckland Arts Festival, WOW and the Royal New Zealand Ballet.  Since 2011 Vicki has been co-owner of Entertainment Production Services through which she contracts these services within the event and entertainment community.  Vicki is currently President of Entertainment Technology NZ (ETNZ).  Vicki is also a member of the sector reference group that has developed and launched new NZQA Event and Entertainment Technology Qualifications over the last seven years.

Diana McAlpine (Trustee) 

Diana currently works at Z Energy Ltd as their Head of Organisational Development. Her background in performing arts is as an enthusiastic amateur regularly attending theatre and live performance.  She was drawn to Y&H as she is passionate about providing young people with opportunities to engage in the performing arts after being heavily involved herself when younger, where she gained skills that have served her well through her life.   She still keeps her toe in the water with singing when she’s not being run off her feet as a busy mum.

Hilaire Carmody (Trustee)

Hilaire currently works for NZ On Air. She was previously EA to the CE and Secretary to the Board at Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School. Her background is in performing arts and festival management having worked for organisations such as the Royal New Zealand Ballet, The NZ Fringe Festival and the New Zealand International Comedy Festival. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Theatre and Film Studies as we as a Graduate Diploma in Event Management.

Paula Granger (Trustee) 

Paula Granger is the Director of Ipsum Group, a storytelling agency that manages content and  outreach projects. Paula has strong strategic planning and relationship management skills, honed through roles in the arts, culture and heritage sector including for the New Zealand Festival, Canterbury Museum, Antarctic Heritage Trust and the Imperial War Museum, London. With a love of the performing arts, Paula has a genuine interest in putting creativity centre stage, contributing to the Young and Hungry team and New Zealand’s cultural vibrancy.

Brendan Sweeney (Trustee) 

Brendan has an accountancy degree and is an experienced finance professional and consultant who specializes in financial management and reporting and operational efficiencies. Placements have included management consultant positions at Bank of New Zealand and Placemakers, analysis work for BBC London and an extended role as Finance Manager for the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand.  Brendan has a passion for enabling opportunities for young adults and supporting entities in the Not-for-Profit sector.