Advisory groups

Photo showing some of Youth Advisory Group and some of Disability Advisory Group together, from 2020.

Three advisory groups support Council's vision of Whangārei being an inclusive, resilient and sustainable District for all people living here.

  1. Youth Advisory Group
  2. Disability Advisory Group
  3. Positive Ageing Advisory Group

These advisory groups meet regularly to provide advice to Council on:

  • Council policies, plans, strategies, and projects
  • matters of interest to the communities they represent.

To apply to become a member or to learn more about a particular group, click on the respective group below.

Disability Advisory Group

The Disability Advisory Group is a valuable forum for Council to communicate with the disability sector.

The group is made up of members who have experience of disability.


Members of this group have a broad knowledge of accessibility and can advise of the needs of people with impairments.

Issues that arise from the meetings are reported back to the wider disability community by group members.

  • Adam White
  • Akshat Shah
  • Ally Cove-Smith
  • Penny Franklyn
  • Sarah Benikowsky
  • Tania Bissett
  • Tony Mosen
  • Torin Hona
  • Wendy Giffen
  • Will Trusewich

Apply to become a member

Currently there are no vacancies in Disability Advisory Group.

Positive Ageing Advisory Group

The Positive Ageing Advisory Group aims to support overall improvements in the independence, participation, care, self-fulfilment and dignity of the District's older people.


  • Robin Lieffering (Chair)
  • Neil McLeod (Deputy chair)
  • David Baldwin
  • Helen Panayiodou
  • Pauline Hopa
  • Diane Lawson
  • Gail Martin
  • Jenny Wilson
  • Megan Cochrane
  • Pene Ashby
  • Rachael Sullivan
  • Ralph Correa

Apply to become a member

Currently there are no vacancies in Positive Ageing Advisory Group.

Youth Advisory Group

The Youth Advisory Group meets once a month to provide advice on how Council can make Whangārei an even better place for young people to live, learn, earn, play and have their say.


Photo showing the Youth Advisory Group in 2021.

Youth Advisory group 2021 - Back row from left: Fhreya George, Mikayla Lawrence, Zoe Willem-Pritchard, San Dekker, Ataria Sharman and Jacki Cooper (WDC), Jack Finchett, Cr. Nick Connop.
Front row from left: Neil Luna, Anna Jungwin, Rae Dennison, Lucia Daamen-Shanahan, Asher Bassett, Ben Woodgates.
Not pictured: Jayme Christian.

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Also see:

Youth Community Services 

Apply to become a member

Currently there are no vacancies in Youth Advisory Group.

Terms of reference

You can find our more about how the advisory groups are organised, what they are trying to achieve, and how to get involved in the Terms of Reference.

We have one Terms of Reference for all three groups, which includes:

  • purpose and key goals
  • role descriptions
  • meetings
  • terms of appointment
  • operations and other matters
  • remuneration
  • code of conduct. 

Advisory Groups Terms of Reference(PDF, 137KB)