Heather McDonald

Board Chair

headshot of heather mcdonald

Heather has been involved in the sexual violence sector for forty years; as a volunteer, establishing Rape Crisis services, as a National Co-ordinator, and as a policy advisor.   

She began her working life in biological sciences, but moved into the NGO sector and from there to government. She has spent much of the last three decades working on issues of social and gender justice, in roles ranging from senior policy advisor to management. This includes in the Ministry for Women, the Office of the Commissioner for Children, Parliament, and the Department of Labour. She also brings leadership experience from nearly a decade of establishing and running a research and policy business. She completed a Masters in Social Policy in 2017. Her thesis focused on why we have made so little progress in addressing sexual violence in Aotearoa. 

Heather has returned to the Board after a break during 2017-2020. She is passionate about contributing to the creation of an effective and community driven sexual violence prevention culture in Aotearoa.