Team

The TSB TOPEC Team is led by Christine ‘Grover’ Worsfold, a Registered Teacher (Otago University School of Physical Education, Outdoor NZ Activity Safety Guidelines contributor, Assessor for Skills Active and NZOIA).

Grover leads an experienced team who are passionate, committed, and competent outdoor enthusiasts.

TOPEC Staff

Christine ‘Grover’ Worsfold

Christine ‘Grover’ Worsfold
Director
A registered Teacher and highly qualified Outdoor Instructor, Grover brings over 25 years in the outdoor teaching profession to TSB TOPEC. She graduated from Otago University School of Physical Education before progressing to teach, manage and develop outdoor programmes at TSB TOPEC, Taranaki Polytechnic, Sport Taranaki, the West Coast’s Tai Poutini Polytechnic and various schools in New Zealand. She has returned ‘home’ to TSB TOPEC.

Grover has also worked as a technical expert for outdoor audits, assisted in writing specific outdoor NZ Activity Safety Guidelines and delivered Tourism Industry Association workshops for OutdoorsMark audits. She also currently assesses for Skills Active and NZOIA. Her extensive knowledge, experience and zest for life are integral to the quality and vitality of the outdoor education programmes at TSB TOPEC.

Claire Allen
Office Manager
Claire joined the team at TOPEC in 2017 as their administrator. She comes with a background in banking and account management through her various roles in the private sector. Claire has also given her time to the wider community, volunteering in various roles in social, school and sporting groups.

Claire, along with husband Terry, are parents of three girls – all of whom attended TOPEC in their high school years. Claire has seen first-hand how the TOPEC experience can benefit and encourage students to push boundaries and enlarge expectations.

Justin Bigwood
Leader of Education
Justin brings over 20 years of teaching and educational leadership to TSB TOPEC. With our status as a PTE and secondary school outdoor education hub, Justin leads our rigorous moderation of assessment and ensures the effectiveness of our delivery of education programmes. His stand-up desk in the office allows him to quickly escape the office and get amongst all that Taranaki offers in the outdoors. In between tramping, mountain biking, running the dogs, and sport coaching, his creaky back struggles away trying to cope with surfing and mastering golf

Josh Kirby
Lead Instructor
Josh came to TOPEC at the beginning of 2016. He arrived with a Diploma in Outdoor Adventure from Whitireia Polytechnic. Josh loves sport, playing basketball and volleyball, and is passionate about rock climbing and being in the bush. He has qualifications in Bush 1 and Rock 1 from NZIOA, PHEC, and is a Grade 3 Raft guide.

Josh is a vibrant, involved member of the community. If you are ever looking for Josh around the TOPEC grounds, he can usually be located by his loud singing voice.

Zoe Avison
Instructor
Zoe completed a Bachelor of Sport and Recreation majoring in Outdoor Education and Sport Management. She then set off to travel Europe and also worked in Norway as a sea kayak guide.

Zoe’s love for the ocean brought her back to New Zealand and eventually back to do what she loves most in her hometown, working with youth in the outdoors. She has qualifications in bush, rock climbing, sea kayaking and white-water raft guiding.


Emma Titchener
Instructor
Titch migrated south from Auckland and has a passion for rock climbing and tramping the tracks of Aotearoa. Level 3 outdoor leadership at high school sparked her into pursuing outdoor instructing as a career pathway.

An avid photographer and snapcatcher, Titch also enjoys creating adventurous videos when being active in the outdoors. She recently discovered mountain biking, and has been eying up the Taranaki surf, so watch out!


Sam McComb
Instructor
Sam returns to Taranaki via Otago University, where he also gained outdoor qualifications from Otago Polytechnic. Sam’s love of the outdoors began at Fitzroy Beach and progressed to the riverways and native bush surrounds of his hometown, New Plymouth. He has NZOIA Bush, Rock and Abseil Leader awards, alongside kayaking and raft guiding awards.


Alan Sarten
Instructor
Alan has been part of the TSB TOPEC operation for a long time. He has a wealth of knowledge and experience in and around Taranaki. He has recently returned from his South Island OE where he showed his mettle in the cold South Island rivers and mountains.

Alan is a Taranaki Dairy Farmer and this comes across in his instructional style – cheesy jokes and a down to earth approach. He is a Grade 3 Raft guide, has Bush 1 and years of rock, and caving experience.

Board of Trustees

Callum Mahy ( Chairperson )
David Grigg ( Deputy Chairperson )
Kirsty Linnell ( Treasurer / Secretary )
Philip Hewlett ( PPTA Rep ) – HoD OE, New Plymouth Boys’ High School
Martin Chamberlain – Principal, Francis Douglas Memorial College
Matt Lash – HoD PE, Francis Douglas Memorial College
Grant Robinson – Teacher, New Plymouth Girls’ High School