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EDOR Advisory Board

Edgar Diabetes and Obesity Research (EDOR) has an advisory board made up of representatives from consumer groups, researchers, health agencies, tertiary institutions and tangata whenua.  Our chair is Sir Eion Edgar, founding benefactor of EDOR.

EDOR advisory board members:

Sir Eion Edgar
Mr Mark Brunton
Professor Tim Cundy
Dr Ofa Dewes
Professor Boyd Swinburn
Dr Jinny Willis

Board Member Profiles:

Sir Eion Edgar 186

Sir Eion Edgar - Chair

The founding benefactor of EDOR, Sir Eion has a long association with the University of Otago including serving as Chancellor from 1999-2003. Sir Eion brings a wealth of governance experience to the EDOR advisory board, having formerly been Chairman of the New Zealand Stock Exchange and a Director of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand. Sir Eion has served on many other organisations, just some of which include the Foundation for Youth Development (formerly Project K), a trustee of the Halberg Disability Foundation, and as President of the New Zealand Olympic Committee.

Mr Mark Brunton

Mark Brunton 186Mark Brunton (Ngāi Tahu, Kati Mamoe, Waitaha) is the Research Manager Māori for the University of Otago. His current role in the Office of Māori Development at the University of Otago involves ensuring effective facilitation of the consultation process between researchers at the University and Ngāi Tahu through the Ngāi Tahu Research Consultation Committee. Mark has a personal interest in Diabetes, and research into Diabetes and outcomes for at-risk populations. Diabetes is of very significant concern for Māori and new developments in medication, technology and lifestyle adjustment are all topics of importance and interest. Along with colleagues in the Office, Mark is also responsible for delivery or a number of strategic initiatives that are developed as part of the Māori Strategic Framework. Mark has a role in formal cultural functions within the University including mihi whakatau for various events.

Professor Tim Cundy

Tim Cundy, Professor of Medicine at the University of Auckland, is known internationally for his original contributions in the area of metabolic bone disease. He first described the effects of the contraceptive Depo Provera on bone density, documented trends in the incidence of Paget’s disease and contributed to elucidation of the genetic basis of osteoporosis, pseudoglioma syndrome and idiopathic hyperphosphatasia. His work spans the range from molecular to applied clinical studies and involves leadership of large international collaborative networks. Tim has published extensively on pregnancy in women with type 2 diabetes – which is now emerging as a major medical and obstetric issue.

Dr Ofa Dewes

Ofa_Dewes 186Ofa Dewes has a health science, public administration and business management background and has worked in the public, private and international sectors. She has strong personal and professional links with a number of Pacific countries and people which have influenced the direction of her mixed methods ethnic-specific research into diabetes and obesity prevention, treatment and management. As a Pacific health researcher at the University of Auckland, Dr Dewes led the Pacific consultations on the development of the clinical guidelines for weight management in New Zealand children, young people and adults, and a randomised controlled trial on weight management for Pacific children.

Professor Boyd Swinburn

Boyd Swinburn 186Boyd Swinburn is the Professor of Population Nutrition and Global Health at the University of Auckland and Alfred Deakin Professor and Director of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Obesity Prevention at Deakin University in Melbourne. He trained as a specialist endocrinologist and has conducted research in metabolic, clinical and public health aspects of obesity. His major research interests are centred on community and policy actions to prevent childhood and adolescent obesity, and reduce, what he has coined, the ‘obesogenic’ food environment. He has contributed to over 30 WHO consultations and reports on obesity, authored over 300 publications and given over 400 presentations. Through these efforts he is significantly contributing to national and global efforts to reduce the obesity epidemic.

Dr Jinny Willis

Jinny Willis 186Jinny Willis is a clinical scientist in the Lipid and Diabetes Research Group based at Christchurch Hospital. Her research interests include the epidemiology, immunology of type 1 diabetes and the genetic basis of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Jinny maintains the incidence register for type 1 diabetes in Canterbury children and adolescents, recording all new presentations of the disease in individuals under 20 years of age from 1970 to the present day. She is also co-ordinating the Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet studies in New Zealand. Jinny is an executive member of the National Clinical Network for Children and Young People with Diabetes.