Governing Collective Members


Jan Henderson, Kate Morrison, Clare Fairbrother, Joanna Simpson, Penny Molnar, Laura Tinnelly

Jan Henderson


Welcome, I’m Jan (née Riggir).

I am so proud to be asked to take up this role for the Nelson Women’s Centre. 


I grew up in Nelson going to Enner Glynn Primary, Nelson Intermediate, and Nelson College for Girls.

My family life was spent in Christchurch and my eyes were opened to the possibilities of ‘women power’ at the National Women's Convention held in Christchurch in the 70’s. It was a turning point for me. The possibilities I could see were endless!


In Christchurch I spent many years in the dental industry plus volunteering for Red Cross, Christchurch Women's Refuge, Christchurch Arts Centre. On relocating to Nelson, Save the Children Committee and Kai Rescue took my interest.


I am a committed mother and grandmother and would like to see Nelson Women's Centre continue to grow to support lives of all women to be brave to face change and to help lighten the tunnel of darkness that many of us feel in our lives at different times.

Kate Morrison

Clare Fairbrother


Kia ora koutou, I'm Clare. I originally hail from Timaru and have lived in sunny Whakatū for the last 10 years. I live with my partner and our several pets. Since learning about feminism in my teens I have been passionate about talking with others about equity and equality. 


I trained as a social worker when I moved here and want to support people to have access to the resources, they need to live fulfilling and meaningful lives. I previously worked for Q-Youth and would love to see a wider range of rainbow folks - particularly trans women, non-binary and takatāpui people feeling like the Women's Centre is a place where they can feel safe and drop in for a cuppa. The Women's Centre offers so many different things and my goal is awhi the centre to continue to grow and be fully utilised within our local community.



Laura Tinnelly


Hello, I’m Laura and I’ve been involved with the NWC since early 2021. I’m a staunch feminist and enjoy supporting this incredible organization focused on bettering the lives of local women and children.  


In my work life, I challenge big corporates to be more human and help make people’s experiences of work, better. My background is in consultancies and creative agencies, working as a brand strategist, a change manager, an internal comms consultant, and an experience designer. I call on this diverse skill set to help boost the reputation of the NWC.


In my personal life, I’m "mum" to two young boys and two squash-faced fur babies. One of my children suffers from a relatively invisible chronic illness, and it’s made me appreciate how we never truly know what’s going on in the lives of others, but small acts of kindness are what keep you going. The NWC team wrap their collective arms around vulnerable women in our community and turn dark days into bright ones. I am proud to make just a small contribution to this. 

Joanna Simpson

Penny Molnar