Meet the board members


The Vegan Society of Aotearoa New Zealand currently has 6 board members.

Amanda Sorrenson

Amanda is from Auckland has been a board member and the national coordinator since 2011. She has been vegetarian since childhood and vegan since 2003. As a board member she’d like to ensure that the vegan society continues to increase its resourcing and building of the vegan community so that we can help people become and remain vegan in New Zealand.

Hannah Lessells

Originally from the UK, moved to Wellington in 2005 and now living on the West Coast, Hannah joined the board in 2011. She has been vegetarian from birth and vegan since 2008. She originally got involved with the Vegan Society through creating a vegan community on facebook for Wellington and finding other vegans in the area for support and friendships.

Claire Insley

Claire became vegan in 2000, having been vegetarian since she was 15. She has been a board member since February 2015. Her passion for our planet and all who live on her has led her to work with the Society as a media spokesperson. Improving the visibility of veganism in mainstream media is part of her mission. Claire is on the working group committee for the ISO draft standard of foods suitable for vegans, ensuring globally that vegan food is actually vegan. She currently lives a low carbon lifestyle on the West Coast in Buller, teaching tai chi and offering holistic healing.

Helen Fletcher

Helen transitioned from vegetarian to vegan almost instantly in 2015. This worked well for her and it really was the best decision she had ever made. She has a finance background covering numerous industries and organisations including the SPCA. Helen enjoys educating people on saving animals through the vegan lifestyle. On the Board she will help to ensure that the Society is financially compliant and maintains financial stability going into future.

Adrian Hatwell

An Auckland-based journalist and communications expert, Adrian has a passion for using his professional experience to advocate on behalf of the animals. He has lent his skills to many animal rights initiatives over the past decade, including contributing to the Vegan Society magazine. He has been vegan since 2010 and joined the board in 2018.

Mark Fitzpatrick

Mark has been involved in animal rights since a teenager, initially in Ireland's embryonic movement and later in the much more developed UK movement. A hunt saboteur for many years, Mark has been vegan since 1989 and got involved with the nz vegan society via his vegan outreach Inititive called "vegan living Auckland". He is currently helping raise two beautiful plant-based children and has a background in mental health nursing.