Staff and Board

Ian McDonald
Staff - EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Ian has extensive experience at  Senior Management level in the Not for Profit Sector. He joined Parafed Bay of Plenty in 2016. Ian is a keen Kayaker and can be seen often at the water at Omokoroa.

Cherryl Thompson
Staff - SPORT DEVELOPMENT OFFICER

Cherryl studied in Northland in the 90's where running after school programmes and swim programmes for disabled children proved to be her training ground for what has become her passion.

As a former competitive swimmer and basketballer, Cherryl has taken this, along with her life experience of having 7 children of her own to support families and communities to have better activity choices. 

Cherryl beleives, when disabled people do not succeed in sport, it is NOT because of their imparirment, but more because of their lack of opportunity or lack of it being THEIR choice. " It takes a whole village to raise a whole person"   - A whole person, is anyone who reaises their potential!

Bryce McFall
Board Member - Chairman

Ex farmer, after an accident in 2002 was left as a tetraplegic at the age of 39. He found keeping a level of fitness and finding sporting opportunities near impossible. Bryce has had positions on School Boards and a Disability Trust and saw Parafed as a way to help others in his situation to be involved in sport.  He found that people with physical impairments had very few opportunities to be involved in Sport, and without a provider such as Parafed athletes have no other options.

Amanda Lowry
Board Member - Deputy Chair

Amanda is a physically fit and very active woman. In 2013 she broke her neck diving off her surfboard. Her injury and subsequent tetraplegia dramatically changed how she lived her life. Amanda, while learning the challenges of tetraplegia, realised that sport was something that made life in a wheelchair a little easier. The physical release and fulfilment of swimming, and the intensity and camaraderie of wheelchair rugby, have helped her and her young family begin to create a 'new normal'.  She is now a strong advocate for disabled people to have these opportunities available to them. Focused on bringing positive change she has become a member of various disability boards and committees in the Bay of Plenty.

Neil Cudby
Board Member - Treasurer

Neil was injured at 17 playing rugby, where everything revolved around the sport and achieving at numerous levels.  Being involved in sport post-injury has balanced and enabled Neil’s success in gaining tertiary qualifications, running a business, playing and coaching provincial sport, being a family member and a father.  All of this coming together has taken him to one of the highest points any tetraplegic has been on a hand cycle, cycling 1000 km’s from Lasa, Tibet to Kathmandu, Nepal and to over 5000m above sea level at Everest base camp.  This is what sport and being involved in sport has done for Neil and why he would like others to have these opportunities too.

Stacey Roche
Board Member

An active sportsperson throughout her life, Stacey believes sport is the vehicle for social change. Having cerebral palsy, Stacey has a unique perspective on the world of disability sport, which makes her an important team member within the disability sport community.  She was employed by the Halberg Disability Sport Foundation for 11 years, plus captained New Zealand at the Sydney 2000 Paralympics Boccia team where they placed 4th. She is very passionate about making more sporting opportunities possible for everyone.

Alexia Skipper-Jones
Board Member

Ellie Jones is our 9 year old daughter, and since she started school at 5 years old, she has wanted to do EVERYTHING her peers do, especially in the sports domain. Ellie has ataxia, and it immediately became apparent to me that EVERYTHING was not accessible, inclusive or adapted for Ellie to successfully or safely be involved.
My passion for sport, and teaching experience, has helped me to support Ellie’s inclusion in anything she wants to achieve.  I’m excited to be a Parafed BOP Board member, and I am committed to advocating inclusion in school sport and in our community for all of our children.

John Sligo
Board Member

Despite relentless health issues, Johnny has accomplished so much and has experienced the best health of his life in the last two years; life was looking bright! He studied and worked in the accountancy field, and is now pursuing his passion for sport by completing a Bachelor of Sport and Recreation. 
In the last two years, Johnny has dropped 20 kgs and committed to a rigorous training programme including swimming, weight training and wheelchair sport. He also has a passion for nutrition, living a healthy lifestyle, and an unwavering commitment to his studies.
“Johnny makes a massive contribution as an athlete, advocate and coach, and as a board member of Parafed Bay of Plenty, which develops sporting opportunities for people with physical disabilities,”