Our Team

The founders

When Anne and Jeremy Salmond first visited Longbush together in 1970 after a family picnic at Longbush Reserve, they were struck by its beauty.

Jeremy Salmond is a conservation architect and founding partner of Salmond Reed Architects in Auckland. He is the author of Old New Zealand Houses 1800-1940 and is a former Chairman of ICOMOS (International Commission of Monuments and Sites) in New Zealand, and has been awarded the Queen’s Service Order and the NZIA Gold Medal.

Dame Anne Salmond is a writer and scholar, and a Distinguished Professor in Maori Studies at the University of Auckland. She is a former Pro Vice-Chancellor at the University and Chairman of the New Zealand Historic Places Trust. She is the winner of the Royal Society’s Rutherford Medal, and was the 2013 New Zealander of the Year.

The trustees

The Trustees of the Longbush Ecological Trust are all long-standing contributors to Longbush Ecosanctuary. They are: Dame Anne Salmond, Chairperson; Jeremy Salmond, Treasurer; Steve Sawyer; Tim Salmond; Abigail Salmond; Jennie Harre-Hindmarsh and Steve Salmond.

Each trustee is responsible for one aspect of the overall project:

  • Dame Anne is the sponsor for Make Longbush Longer, which aims to extend Longbush Reserve along the banks of the Waimata River.
  • Jeremy Salmond is the Chief Designer for the Waikereru Ecosanctuary.
  • Steve Sawyer is the sponsor for the Titi Colony and the Kiwi Haven in the Longbush Ecosanctuary.
  • Tim Salmond is the sponsor for Walk Longbush, creating a network of tracks through the bush.
  • Jennie Harre-Hindmarsh is the sponsor for the Wild Lab educational programme for local children.
  • Abigail Salmond is the ecological advisor for the Waimata River restoration project.
  • Steve Salmond is Webmaster and IT advisor for the Waikereru Ecosanctuary.

Our ecological experts

Steve Sawyer

At the end of 2002, Anne and Jeremy contacted Steve Sawyer, who was about to leave the Department of Conservation to set up his own ecological restoration business, Ecoworks NZ. Steve is a vital part of the Longbush project, bringing vision and expertise to its execution.

Steve coordinates the Kiwi Recovery Programme in the Gisborne-East Coast Region. He is an expert in pest and weed control, and native reptile and seabird restoration. He and his Ecoworks NZ team were the first in the world to successfully use acoustic attraction methods to establish breeding grey faced petrel and fluttering shearwater (at Young Nick’s Head), and a breeding colony of gannets.

Abigail Salmond

Abigail is a senior ecologist, formerly at Auckland Regional Council and Gisborne District Council, who now works for Wildlands Consultancy.

Abi has initiated the Predator-Free Wainui project, and produced a fine report on the ecology of the Waimata River catchment. Abigail has a passion for protecting and restoring wetlands, and an expert knowledge of ecological restoration.

Malcolm Rutherford

Malcolm is the Queen Elizabeth II Trust representative for Tairāwhiti, and a horticulturalist and ecological restoration specialist who trained at the University of Oxford Botanic Gardens.

Malcolm is a skilled photographer and hunter, who keeps finding rare native plants in the hills and bush at Waikereru. We’re very lucky to have him as the part-time Curator of the 1769 Garden.

Graeme Atkins

Graeme is a tohunga taiao, an expert in mātauranga taiao (ancestral knowledge relating to the natural world), and a Biodiversity Ranger for the Department of Conservation.


Graeme has an unrivalled knowledge of Tairāwhiti native plants, animals, fish and reptiles. He’s our go-to-man for rare and endangered species of plants for the 1769 Garden, and advisor on mātauranga taiao for Waikereru Ecosanctuary.

Head Gardener

Gavin Boulter

Gavin was brought up in Southland, and trained in horticulture at Cromwell Polytechnic. He’s also worked in orchards, garden centres and landscaping firms. With ​his Dad David, Gavin is a partner in Ataahua Landscapes.

Gavin looks after the wider landscape at Waikereru, mulching and weeding new plantings, helping to maintain the Orchiston Harakeke collection, the 1769 Garden, the kauri spiral and many of our other specialist plantings, and mowing the grassy areas.​

Kai tiaki, Rene Orchiston Pā Harakeke

​Janine Te Reo

​Janine Te Reo from Ngāti Porou takes care of the Orchiston Pā Harakeke, our collection of more than 60 different named varieties of harakeke (native flax), almost from the time it was planted in 2003. She teaches raranga / weaving at Te Wā​nanga o Aotearoa in Gisborne.

With Meikle McNab, also from Ngāti Porou, formerly the trustee responsible for the Pā, Janine ensures that the bushes are trimmed and cared for according to ancestral tikanga.