About > Executive Leadership Team

Executive Leadership Team

Hayden Wano (Chief Executive Officer)

Hayden has been the CEO of Tui Ora since 1998. He has over 30 years experience in the health sector in mental health, community and medical services. In that time he’s held a number of senior health management roles including the position of Director of Clinical Services with Taranaki Healthcare Limited. He is a former chairman of the board of Taranaki District Health Board.

He is also a member of the National Health Board. In 2007 he was made a fellow of the Australasian College of Health Service Management.

Hayden aims to establish TOL as a service provider of excellence, judged on its results in the health and social services sectors.

“We want to be innovative in delivering services to our Taranaki people within a challenging environment.

“Better health outcomes spin off into countless other areas of people’s lives. We want to make a difference in those areas whether it is in housing, justice, or education. This is a long-term aspiration for whānau and communities.”

Hayden is of Te Atiawa, Taranaki, and Ngāti Awa iwi descent.

Ruth Smithers (Deputy Chief Executive)

Ruth joined Tui Ora in March 2013 as Executive Leader, Commercial Development with her role evolving to Business Development and Corporate Services. She brings to the organisation a variety of health and business experience and skills.

Her career has encompassed nursing, management of Like Minds in Taranaki, DHB funding and planning and, more recently, consultancy with DHBs and other organisations.

Ruth’s role focuses on the growth and development of Tui Ora. Her responsibilities include strategic, business planning and partnerships as well as finance and other corporate responsibilities. She describes Tui Ora as a unique organisation to work for: “The manaakitanga underpins the way we work with one another and our wider community. Our values and respect for one another is apparent across all levels of the organisation.”

As a former public health nurse, who has worked with high needs populations she identifies closely with the change that Tui Ora is helping bring about for the people it supports: “In the past people felt disempowered and lacked the confidence to access the systems. Some didn’t feel they could freely go to the doctor. Tui Ora’s approach ensures people have information and knowledge to bring about a positive difference in their lives .”

Sonny Murray (Executive Kaumātua)

Sonny has held the role of Executive Kaumātua since August 2016.

His whakapapa encompasses the three waka of the region: Tokomaru, Aotea and Kurahaupō and he has links to Ngā Ruāhine, Ngāti Ruanui, Taranaki and Ngati Mutunga.

He taught at kura kaupapa, Te Pihipihinga Kakano mai i Rangiatea in New Plymouth, for over a decade before starting in the role at Tui Ora.

His job is diverse and sees him working with the organisation's other kaumātua and kuia, supporting staff in their cultural learning as well as helping clients across a range of services: “The role is just about being able to give good advice and being supportive because we walk alongside a lot of different people in Tui Ora.” Reaching a position takes time. You start at the back, in the kitchen, working among others.

“I think with kaumātua it’s about wisdom, it’s not necessarily about age. It’s what they can provide whether it’s karakia, whether it’s taking groups on to a marae, welcoming others, there is a lot to do with manaakitanga.”

Dr Gal Carmi (Clinicial Director)

Gal became clinical director in August 2016. He holds a dual role, working as a GP at Tui Ora Family (TOFH) as well as forming part of the executive leadership team at Tui Ora.

The clinical director role enhances services at TOFH as well as supporting improved integration across Tui Ora service teams. “I believe this will result in better support for the patients and better treatment outcomes. It is a process I truly believe in, am familiar with from my previous experiences, and working to implement.”

Gal moved with his family from Israel in 2015, where he was a family physician. He has enjoyed learning about Māori tikanga and how it influences the relationship between patients and doctors.

“My clinical experience and the ongoing cultural studies and events, which are part of the kaupapa of Tui Ora, helped me gain a better understanding of the culture, the role it plays in my clients' lives, and a better appreciation of the concept of whānau."