Tony Hetherington, our Acting Chief Operating Officer, leads the Operations leadership team.
Tony Hetherington - Acting Chief Operating Officer
Tony is currently Acting Chief Operating Officer. He joined WorkSafe in August 2018 as Head of High Hazards, Energy and Public Safety.
Tony leads day-to-day operations across WorkSafe - including High Hazards, Energy and Public Safety, Health and Safety Innovation, Operational Excellence, General Inspectorate, Specialist Interventions, and Health and Technical Services.
Tony’s an experienced regulator. He spent the first nine years of his career working on air and noise pollution in London. He then joined the Health and Safety Executive (Great Britain’s equivalent to WorkSafe) as an inspector. During his 30 years with HSE he worked with a wide range of industries from construction to health services. His roles have covered investigation of accidents and managing legal proceedings. He’s also been responsible for inspector training and development and leading HSE’s liaison with local authorities. Tony’s last job with HSE was Head of Energy Division covering offshore oil and gas, onshore mining and gas importation, transmission and distribution.
Simon Humphries – Head of Specialist Interventions
Coming from the Environmental Protection Authority, Simon joined WorkSafe in 2014 – with a career of over 19 years in public sector and regulatory practice experience (including New Zealand Police and Department of Internal Affairs).
During his nearly five years with WorkSafe, Simon has been responsible for a number of workstreams (Certifications, Approvals and Registration, and Technical Programmes and Support). He is currently the Head of Specialist Interventions in Operations.
Simon is passionate about health and safety, ensuring that he contributes to enabling New Zealand to provide a safe and evolving environment for workers. He believes that health and safety by design is an important cog in the pursuit of organisational excellence, and is committed to working with upstream designers, manufacturers, and workplaces to identify and mitigate critical health-and-safety risks, making our workplaces healthier and safer.
Jo Pugh – Head of General Inspectorate
Based in Wellington, Jo has worked in health and safety regulation for more than 16 years – as Health and Safety Inspector, Service Manager, and Chief Inspector for the Central Region. Nationally, she has focused on forestry and agriculture, as well as Occupational Health.
As Head of General Inspectorate in Operations, Jo is responsible for the workforce of about 180 people who perform proactive workplace assessments targeting our most vulnerable sectors, i.e. agriculture, construction, forestry, and manufacturing. General Inspectorate focuses on activities with the long-term impact, aiming at achieving 25% reduction in injuries and fatalities by 2020.
Catherine Epps - Head of Health and Technical Services
Catherine has held senior leadership roles in public and private health organisations for over a decade. Before starting at WorkSafe in November 2018, she was Executive Director Allied Health, Scientific and Technical at Capital and Coast District Health Board where her responsibilities included chairing, and contributing to, a number of national and regional programmes.
Catherine has a Master’s Degree in Human Communication and Deaf Studies, and is a Fellow of the Australasian College of Health Service Managers. She also has clinical expertise as a Speech Language Therapist specialising in neuro-rehabilitation, including supporting those with brain injuries to return to work.
Daniel Hummerdal - Chief Advisor Health and Safety Innovation
Daniel Hummerdal, Chief Advisor Health and Safety Innovation, has worked in a range of innovation roles in safety-critical industries (such as mining, construction, and aviation) in Europe and Australia.
Having started his career as a commercial pilot, Daniel later retrained to graduate as a Psychologist in 2008. His goal is to assist organisations in realising their innovative and creative potential.
Emma Brookes - Head of Operational Excellence
Emma has operational leadership responsibilities across our public enquiries and notifications functions – including the Response team and the outsourced MBIE call centre. Emma’s central responsibilities across Operations include business planning, finance, and performance reporting.
Most importantly, Emma is building a team which enables Operations to make a larger impact, by focusing on outcomes that make it possible for more New Zealanders to go home healthy and safe.
Emma describes her role as a broad mix of opportunities to help build the organisational capability and maturity of WorkSafe: "I’m really pleased to be part of the team at this time when I know our teams in Operations are poised for the next evolution of our journey towards a world class modern regulator."
Shannon Dobson - Executive Officer
Shannon oversees complex programmes of work and activities that cut right across all functions in Operations. She joined Worksafe following a career spanning ten years in a variety of frontline and corporate public sector roles. Most recently, she helped lead the establishment of the Government Health and Safety Lead domiciled in the Department of Corrections.
In 2018, Shannon was awarded Master’s Degree of Public Management, with a research paper on professionalising health and safety workforce in New Zealand public sector. This research was supplemented with creating all-of-government Health-and-Safety Summer Intern Programme as a means of encouraging young workers into a career in health and safety.