It is our people which makes the Trust so special. Our crew not only look after the young people on their voyages, giving them an experience of a lifetime, but also during summer, share their enthusiasm and passion for the work we do with our tourism guests. Behind the scenes there are our Trustees and a small group of people (who are mostly part time) that keep the organisation ticking over. Most of them are multi-skilled, picking up what needs to be done as and when required. All of us are united in our respect for the ship and how she has the ability to change lives.
What is the most important thing in the world?
He tāngata, he tāngata, he tāngata
It is the people, it is the people, it is the people
Ben has 25 years of tallship experience, having sailed across 3 oceans and to many countries on square riggers. Having worked on 6 square riggers and being master on 2 and mate on the others), 3 gaff tops’l schooners and having sailed around the SW pacific and coastal NZ and Australia on a gaff tops’l cutter that he and his wife owned, we welcome his experience that many thousands of sea miles on similar ships gains.
Zeran is a keen young sailor whose background in sailing started through his experiences of Waka Hourua (a traditional Polynesian sailing catamaran). Zeran has also been aboard the “Tucker” for two youth voyages and is currently undertaking the role of cadet where he will complete his training to become a Qualified Deck Hand.
Zeran is a driven young Māori tane who is passionate about learning tikanga and kaupapa Māori as well as embracing the ways of his tupuna.”
Sarianna is a Northland girl, born and bred in Whangarei. She joined the Trust at the end of March 2016, taking her command in June 2016. Sarianna has spent much of her life on the water, attending the Whangarei Young Mariners and then Sea Scouts at a young age. She headed to Tauranga for study but the lure of the sea was too strong, so she spent 2 years as a Cadet on the Spirit of New Zealand where she did her seatime training. She has spent 5 months sailing offshore on board the Robert C Seamans and prior to joining the Trust was working at Fullers in Auckland. She has done 18 months as master in training and is now working at Opua Marina, but is still involved with the occasional voyage and support for our Cadets.
As a child, Chynna was very adventurous- always caught up in her imagination, she spent many days at the beach. She was very in tune with the ocean and grew up doing surf lifesaving club, adventure racing, and many other sports. She even had Moko the dolphin as a swimming companion for many years. He was a huge influence on her career path. In 2014, Chynna took an 8-week trip to Australia, volunteering at the dolphin centre in Bunbury Perth. In 2016 she completed a Marine and Eco-tourism course through Northtec, Kerikeri – this course taught her a lot including how to sail.
In February 2017, she became one of the core crew aboard the R Tucker Thompson. With the knowledge she has accumulated and her training on the R Tucker Thompson, she and her fiancé have recently purchased a 33 foot yacht in the hopes of one day sailing it offshore.
Jess hails from Canada, a French Canadian fluent in French and English. She owned a sea kayak company in Yukon Canada, and was responsible for taking out groups on overnight wilderness experiences making sure that they were operated in a safe environment. In addition, she has formal qualifications in Special Education and has a background of working with young people including teenagers with behaviour disorders. She brings her positive nature and cheerful enthusiasm to every voyage to ensure that all our trainees have amazing experiences on board and works her magic with everyone, making sure that everyone gets involved and gets the most from their time on board.
Peter Deverell was born in Auckland and grew up on a Mid-Northland farm; where he was entirely home educated along with his three siblings. With a love of the ocean Peter was taught to sail from his earliest years and enjoyed Optimist and P-Class and Starling dinghy sailing, and sailing on his parents’ boats and his grandfather’s yacht. Passionate about wildlife and conservation Peter has a wonderful knowledge of New Zealand birds and other fauna. He has worked as a horseman for seven years and has his own Equine Hoof Trimming business. He spent three years in Germany working as a joiner; becoming fluent in the German language; dinghy sailing at every opportunity. On his first sailing yacht Peter sailed extensively around Northland and the Bay of Islands coast, honing his sailing skills. In 2015 Peter bought Waka Irie, a Mariner 32ft classic sailing ketch and has spent the past three years rebuilding and refurbishing her and has become a skilled joiner/boat builder. In 2018 Peter crewed for his cousin on Sea Wolf, a 42ft Beneteau sailboat, sailing around Australia, from Sydney to Perth via Darwin; a 5,000 mile voyage.
Terry grew up in Wellington, learning to sail in extreme conditions and spending his formative years in the Sea Scouts rowing around on pitch black nights playing Smugglers and sinking the enemy, and has never lost the love of just “playing around in boats”. He moved to the Bay of Islands in his twenties and purchased the classic gaff cutter Aorere. It was also the start of many years cruising the Bay of Islands, the Northland coast and offshore voyages to the Pacific.
In 1990 he started Great Escape Yacht Charters and Sailing School teaching to provide affordable sailing options in the Bay. Over the years he operated a fleet of 14 yachts, passing on his enthusiasm and love of sailing to kiwis and international visitors alike.
After he and his wife Cindy sold Great Escape, he joined R Tucker Thompson as a relief skipper and he is a welcome addition for our youth voyages and day sails alike.
Sales & Operations Manager
Kyra hails originally from France but is a Canadian citizen who is now a New Zealand resident. She and her husband sailed away from Canada in 2011. After spending 16 months in Mexico, they crossed the Pacific on board their 62 year old strip-planked yacht Nyon and arrived in New Zealand in November 2013. They continue to live aboard and spend as much time as possible sailing in the Bay. Like most of us, Kyra is capable of turning her hand to most tasks, she is a “Jill of all Trades”, an asset when working for small not-for-profit organisations back in Canada and now in New Zealand. She joined the Tucker in 2015 and is the Sales and Operations Manager for the Trust. She’s a creative individual, artist and writer as well as an avid sailor. Her hashtag is #lifeonasmallboat.
Ethan has been involved with the Trust since 2015. At the age of 15, he became a trainee on one of the youth development voyages. He discovered a passion for the ocean and sailing. Shortly after his voyage, he applied to volunteer aboard during the summer tourist season. He was a volunteer crew from 2015 to 2017. Ethan was then offered a cadetship and on-going training for 1 year to work towards his skipper’s ticket. This was fully funded by the Trust. In October 2018, he attended his final examinations and gained his SRL Skipper’s ticket. He is now working as a skipper for another company but remains as relief crew with the Tucker after spending a year as a member of the core Tucker crew.
Michelle is our latest Cadet. She ienjoys outdoor activities and sports, loves sea kayaking, skiing and netball, rock climbing (abseiling) and badminton. She loves camping and tramping (when there are no “stairs”! She’s athletic, adaptable and a team player who can learn sports easily. She likes to spend time with genuine people who she can learn from, and of course spending time with friends and whanau. Michelle is building her sea time both on day sails and youth voyages while she is studying for her Skippers Restricted License certificate, which she will sit for at the end of her Cadetship.
Bronwyn is of Te Rarawa, Ngapuhi and Te Roroa descent. She is the Area Manager for Bay of Islands, Department of Conservation. Previously she was the Principal Advisor, Strategy & Policy with Te Runanga o Te Rarawa, primarily responsible for Treaty Settlement claims, environmental matters, Iwi and Hapu planning. Community positions include Director with CBEC, and previously on the board of Reconnecting Northland. An avid gardener and keen sailor Bronwyn is also a proud nana to three grandchildren.
Experienced company director/trustee. Chair of Northland Youth Development Trust and former Deputy Chair of Top Energy. Former Executive Director Fullers Bay of Islands, member NZ Tourism Board, ‘member of NZ Conservation Authority, Chair of Enterprise Northland and Destination Northland. Kerikeri resident.
Tim has spent his entire working life within the marine industry. His first working experiences were on motor ships and and as a deckhand on board the R. Tucker Thompson. From there, Tim was the Operation Manager of Marine Contractors Limited for eight years, based in the Bay of Islands. Tim then spent two years as Construction Manager for Northland Piling and Contracting (based in Opua). This company is wholly owned by Total Marine Services Limited and now trades as Total Marine Services Limited. Tim can attest to extensive experience in salvage work and construction knowledge.