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Our people in Communications

The team in the Communications Office has a wide variety of skills and experience in media relations, social media, and writing for all types of situations and audiences. We can provide expert knowledge and support across a range of communication initiatives.

Director of Communications


Megan McPherson

Director of Communications

Megan has worked in media and communications since 1993, and started at the University in 2008. Her previous roles have included the Medical Council of New Zealand, British Airways (London) and Presbyterian Support Otago. She has a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Marketing, from the University of Otago. She also has certificates in journalism and public relations from the Wellington Polytechnic School of Journalism.

Tel 03 479 5452
Mob 021 279 5452


Louise Cameron

Executive Assistant and Office Manager

Louise joined the University in 2007 and has worked in the tertiary education sector since 1995. Previous to that, she worked for Radio New Zealand.

Louise enjoys providing support to the Head of Communications and is responsible for the smooth running of Scott/Shand House, where the Communications team is based. Louise also provides departmental meeting support and is Secretary to the Web Advisory Committee.

Tel 03 479 5730
Email or

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Media Engagement Team


Jo Galer

Team Leader Media Engagement

Jo has been with the University since 2009 in a media liaison, communications advisory and writing role. Her background is in journalism and public relations, starting as a newspaper reporter in 1989. Her past positions have included media liaison and adviser for the New Zealand Police, and journalist for publications including the Otago Daily Times, the West Australian and the Taieri Herald. An Otago alumna, Jo has a First Class Honours degree in History, and a Certificate in Journalism from the Wellington Polytechnic School of Journalism.

Tel 03 479 8263
Mob 021 279 8263
Web University media releases

Liane Topham Kindley image

Liane Topham-Kindley

Senior Communications Adviser

Liane is an experienced news journalist having worked for newspapers, magazines and news websites for more than 25 years. She joined the External Engagement Communication team early in 2018 after several years working for the Health Media Limited, which produces the country’s national newspapers and news websites for GPs and pharmacists, New Zealand Doctor and Pharmacy Today. Liane has also worked as a freelance journalist for a variety of publications and as an independent contractor for the University of Otago writing the very first few issues of our e-newsletter, Otago Connection. Liane began her journalism career as a Cadet Reporter at the Otago Daily Times and later graduated with an Advanced Diploma in Journalism from Wellington Polytechnic.

Tel 03 479 9065
Mob 021 279 9065
Web University media releases

Mark Hathaway image

Mark Hathaway

Senior Communications Adviser

Mark joined the University in 2018 as a Communications Adviser, coming from TVNZ where he was the Dunedin-based reporter for One News. Mark has 15 years media experience behind him, ranging from a student TV presenter in Dunedin, radio copywriter in Auckland, sports reporter for TVNZ in Wellington plus various freelance roles across the media spectrum. He holds a National Certificate in TV, Theatre and Radio from Aoraki Polytechnic.

Tel 03 479 5016
Mob 021 279 5016
Web University media releases

Matiu Workman image

Matiu Workman

Kōrero Kaitohutohu Māori | Māori Communications Adviser

He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tāngata, he tāngata, he tāngata!
What is the most important thing in the world? It is the people, it is the people, it is the people!

Of Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa descent, Matiu has spent seven years working as a reporter across a number of print, radio and online platforms. He was previously a radio and video journalist with Newstalk ZB and the New Zealand Herald, and spent time in Rarotonga at Cook Islands News. He has also spent five years as a sports writer. An Otago alumna, he graduated with a Masters in Peace and Conflict Studies (Distinction) from the University in 2016. He also holds a Bachelor of Communications (Journalism) from AUT University.

Tel 03 479 9139
Mob 021 279 9139

Ellie Rowley image

Ellie Rowley

Communications Adviser (part-time)

Ellie has a background in print journalism, having worked four years as a general reporter at the Otago Daily Times and two as an advertising features writer. She has a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Film and Media, from the University of Otago, and a Diploma in Journalism (Print) from Aoraki Polytechnic.

Tel 03 479 8200
Mob 021 278 8200

Samuel White image

Samuel White

Social Media Adviser

Samuel comes from a background in journalism, photography and digital media. Before joining the communications team, he worked at the Otago Daily Times as a regional reporter. He has a Bachelor of Digital Media, Graduate Diploma in Dramatic Arts and a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism. Samuel maintains the University’s main social media accounts and monitors online activity for it.

Tel 03 479 5479
Mob 021 279 5479


Gail Goodger

Communications Projects and Operations Adviser

Gail worked for both newspaper and radio as a journalist and chief reporter for more than 20 years, from 1989. She was also a communications adviser for the Otago District Health Board. Gail has a Bachelor of Arts in English and History from the University of Otago, and a National Certificate in Journalism from Aoraki Polytechnic.

Gail is the key contact for media inquiries about major building projects, accommodation services, health and safety, sustainability, information technology, and student services including cafes and retail outlets. She also provides communications advice to the University's operational departments.

Tel 03 479 8946
Mob 021 279 8946

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Online and print publications


Kim Connelly

Communications Adviser

Kim has worked in marketing and communications in the tertiary education sector since 2006. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Northern British Columbia (Canada) and a diploma in public relations from Kwantlen University College (Canada). She joined the Communications team at Otago in 2013.

Her primary role is to edit Otago Connection, monitor media coverage received by the University, contribute to University publications, maintain the media expertise database and University Writing Style Guide, and respond to media inquiries.

Tel 03 479 5010
Mob 021 279 5010
Web Otago Connection, Media Expertise Database, and Writing Style Guide


Lisa Dick

Otago Bulletin Board Editor

Lisa is an experienced journalist, with a background in television, radio and print. She has worked as a reporter for TV3, Radio New Zealand, Dunedin's Channel 39 and the Otago Daily Times. She has an honours degree in neuroscience and psychology from Otago and a postgraduate diploma in journalism from Canterbury University.

Lisa works part-time, writing stories for and editing the Otago Bulletin Board.

Tel 03 479 4378
Mob 021 279 4378
Web Otago Bulletin Board


Karen Hogg

Editorial Manager

Karen’s journalism career spans a variety of newspaper news editing and feature-writing roles, as well as freelance magazine work. An Otago alumna, she has an Honours degree in Political Studies. She has been working in marketing and communications at the University since 2003.

Karen is responsible for editing key corporate publications, including the Otago Magazine, the multi-award-winning He Kitenga research highlights book and the University’s Annual Report.

Tel 03 479 8679
Web Otago Magazine, He Kitenga and Annual Report


Sam Stevens

Senior Communications Adviser - Alumni

Sam is a University of Otago alumnus, with a BA and postgraduate diploma in Religion. He also has a journalism qualification and has worked as a reporter on a daily newspaper and as a freelance magazine writer. Before joining the Communications Office, Sam was a Marketing and Communications Officer in Otago’s Division of Humanities.

His current role focuses on producing and editing Alumni-related communications and managing the Newsroom.

Tel 03 479 8143
Mob 021 279 8143
Web Alumni news, eConnect and Newsroom

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Administration and Finance

Su White

Finance and Administration Officer

Su joined the University's administration team in 2006. She provides financial, purchasing and administrative support to the Communications Office, the Marketing Office and the Office of Web Services.

Tel 03 479 8515
Email or m&

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