• Sean Lewis

    Board Chair

    Sean is a Chartered Professional Engineer, currently working for Transpower New Zealand Limited as an Engineering Manager. He was a member of the Woodstock School Board of Trustees for the last 7 ½ years (with the last three as Chairperson). Sean has two daughters who swim competitively for Fairfield Swimming Club and when needed, he assists at Regional Swim Meets as an IOT and more recently, a Starter. Sean and his family have enjoyed their involvement with swimming in the Waikato, meeting new people and making new friendships as part of this participation. Sean is keen to use his governance skills to support the development and growth of swimmers in the Waikato Region.

    Sean joined the Board of Swimming Waikato in August 2016.

  • Alison Fitch

    Board Member

    Alison (Aly) was voted onto the Board of Swimming Waikato at its 2015 Annual General Meeting and brings with her a wealth of knowledge about swimming.  Aly represented New Zealand in the pool at two Olympic Games (1996 and 2004) and won a bronze medal in the 4 x 200m freestyle relay at the 2006 Commonwealth Games.  A former Board Member of Swimming New Zealand, Aly is currently a member of the NZ Olympic Committee’s Athletes Commission and a member of the NZ Olympic Committee’s Integrity Commission.

    Aly joined the Board of Swimming Waikato in August 2015.

  • Julie Richards


    I feel extremely fortunate to have combined my passion for sport with a finance and accounting role, working for the past 15 months as Finance Manager for Cycling NZ

    My husband Murray & I have 3 grown up daughters and over the years have been heavily involved in many sports with the girls competing to national level in cycling, swimming, triathlon and multisport. Coming from swimming backgrounds we continued to be involved in the sport by taking on coaching and administration positions within a local club. Guiding swimmers to medal at National level was a highlight of my time as competitive squad coach as was building lifelong friendships within the swimming community.

    Working within a National Sporting Organisation has given me further insight into the challenges and opportunities both athletes and supporting organisations are faced with on their pathway to sporting success – at both community and high performance level. It has also highlighted the incredible widespread benefits that involvement in sports has on us all.

    Julie joined the Board of Swimming Waikato in October 2015.

  • Gavin Ion

    Board Member

    Gavin has been involved with swimming for the past 11 years.  He has been a member of Swimming Waikato’s Technical Panel since 2009 and is also a member of the Swimming New Zealand Technical Advisory Committee.

    Outside of swimming, Gavin is Chief Executive of the Waikato District Council.  He has had numerous previous Board appointments and currently sits as Chair of the Local Authority Shared Services.

    Gavin’s governance objective is to be an active contributor, applying good governance practices, maintaining a clear focus on shareholder/stakeholder value, being prepared to ask the hard questions and taking a strategic view of the organisation and its opportunities. Gavin is passionate about the sport and would like to bring his governance and management experience to benefit a sport that is going through challenging times.  Gavin gets immense satisfaction from helping the development of the sport at a regional, national and international level as an official.

    Gavin joined the Board of Swimming Waikato in August 2017.

  • Susan Barriball

    Board member

    Susan and her husband run a 110 ha dairy farm in Waitakaruru, milking 360-380 cows each day.  Susan plays a hands on role on the farm when she’s not running her five children to their activities which include swimming.

    Susan is employed in a number of part time roles for not-for-profits in the Thames area.  In addition, she holds a number of volunteer roles in the region including Treasurer on the Board of Waitakaruru School and Treasurer for the Thames Swimming Club.  Susan is a qualified IOT, is learning the Recorder role and is also involved with the Thames Valley Swimming Academy.

    Susan feels she can add value to the Board of Swimming Waikato by being from a club outside of Hamilton and being able to bring some country perspective, an open minded approach and a willingness to learn and is looking forward to having the opportunity to support our Waikato swimmers on the right path into the future.

    Susan joined the Board of Swimming Waikato in August 2016.

  • Craig Thomas

    Board Member

    A keen supporter of Swimming Waikato’s Regional Development Pathway, Craig believes that the discipline of swimming and training competitively will impact positively on our swimmers and the adults they become – whether they achieve at the highest level or not.  Craig is also a believer that swimming should always be fun at the junior level, with less emphasis on driving junior performance and more emphasis on supporting and retaining our older swimmers in the sport.

    Craig supports the concept of ‘team’ at both club and regional level and is really enjoying watching his son and his teammates develop as swimmers and young adults.  Craig also carries out the role of AOD at many Swimming Waikato meets. An ex swimmer himself, Craig held multiple NZ Age Group titles and has held National Records.   He was a multiple NZ Opens medallist and made at A final at the Pan Pacific Games.

    Craig holds a management position at Fonterra Farm Source in a role that requires a strong focus on compliance and inter agency regulatory work.  Prior to that, Craig had a 17 year career with the New Zealand Police.

    Craig joined the Board of Swimming Waikato in August 2017.