About NZACRes

About Us

The New Zealand Association of Clinical Research (NZACRes) was formed from the clinical research focus group to foster and promote clinical research, and is the professional association for clinical researchers in New Zealand. NZACRes holds regular meetings to bring together members of the clinical research community, to discuss issues and create collaborative solutions for our industry.

NZACRes organises events encouraging networking opportunities amongst our peers within our industry. Currently regional meetings are held in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. NZACRes holds the annual NZACRes Clinical Research Conference where invited speakers from New Zealand and overseas present on topics of interest to researchers.

NZACRes is a non-profit scientific educational organisation. It is run by an elected team of volunteer officers from amongst its members.

Our Goal

Our overarching goal is to promote and support clinical research in New Zealand by:

  • acting as a conduit for networking within the industry;
  • providing information and resources for the industry in New Zealand;
  • educating stakeholders on issues pertinent to clinical research in New Zealand
  • supporting and encouraging training opportunities for our members;
  • promoting New Zealand as a preferred location for clinical research.
Our Members

NZACRes membership is open to all those who have an interest in clinical research. Membership fee for 2016 is set at $75.00 (including GST) or $50.00 for student membership. To become a member please apply to register here.

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Members Include
  • Investigators, Study Coordinators, Physicians, Clinical Research Nurses,¬†University and Hospital based research personnel
  • Clinical Research Managers, Clinical Research Associates, Regulatory Specialists and personnel from research institutes
  • Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Medical Device research personnel
  • Pharmacists and Laboratory personnel
  • Health Economists, Biostatisticians and Data Managers
  • Medical Writers and Industry Consultants

Richard Stubbs

Immediate Past President

Immediate Past President of NZACRes March 2016- Aug 2019

I am a New Zealand trained surgeon who spent seven and half years training in the UK and US, including 18 months fulltime basic research at UCLA to complete my MD (Otago). I was introduced to clinical research while a surgical trainee based at Hammersmith Hospital in London. I have continued with this and basic science research since returning to NZ in 1986 as a consultant surgeon at Wellington Hospital. In 1991 I established the Wakefield Clinic (now Wakefield Gastroenterology Centre) in Wellington and in 1996 the Wakefield Gastroenterology Research Institute. Most of my research through the next 20 years has been investigator led clinical and basic science research but in 2011 I became the Managing Director of P3 Research Ltd which now has three sites in Wellington, Tauranga and Hawkes Bay undertaking sponsored clinical research.
NZACRes is a very important Association of those involved in clinical research in NZ and has achieved a great deal since its inception in 2004. It would be my goal to see it grow through greater involvement of both senior and junior medical staff interested and engaged in clinical research. This would strengthen the Association and broaden its scope to include more investigator led research, while at the same time growing the opportunities for sponsored clinical research in NZ.

Richard Stubbs

Julie Jones


Julie has 17 years of experience across a variety of roles within the clinical research industry and is currently working with MRINZ in quality compliance. She previously established the GMP facility at the Malaghan Institute and spent 7 years within the European pharmaceutical industry; in clinical trial management, strategic development and relationship management positions.
Julie Jones

Jenny Sparks


Initially I studied Molecular Microbiology at Canterbury University and was a Research Scientist in Pathology before moving into Science Communication for the Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Sydney University where I organised Innovation Challenges and Conferences. Coming back to work after having children, I started in regulatory affairs for the medical device industry in Australia and moved into Clinical Trial Co-ordination and Management when I moved back to New Zealand 7 years ago. I have completed the Post Graduate Diploma in Clinical Research from Victoria University and currently work for the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand.
I would like to volunteer for the NZACRes committee as I feel I can contribute skills in co-ordinating events and I would like to help medical professionals who want to do research by finding tools and training resources to support them. It would be great to see New Zealand be attractive to overseas pharmaceutical companies to conduct research trials here by supporting NZ researchers to measure up to international regulatory standards and deliver high quality timely data.
Jenny Sparks

Meghan McIlwain

I am a CRA at ICON Clinical Research. Originally a pharmacist, I completed my PhD in Pharmacy in 2014; my doctoral studies focused on neuroimaging biomarkers of treatment resistant schizophrenia. I published research articles on topics ranging from schizophrenia and bipolar disorder to the endocannabinoid system in addiction and ``party pill`` drug-drug interactions. After a post-doc in California I returned to New Zealand where I now enjoy working in the pharma industry as a CRA and occasional guest lecturer at the School of Pharmacy, University of Auckland.
Meghan McIlwain

Eileen Bisley

I am at present an NZACRes executive committee member and I have held this position since 2016 to 2017. During this time I have also been the convener for the2016 conference and I am convener for our 2017 conference. I enjoy both roles and believe with NZACRes representing clinical trials and researchers across New Zealand, it enhances the clinical trials and research environment. I am also involved in strategies going forward and believe that we can grow the clinical trials industry in New Zealand by networking and encouraging those in the clinical trials industry.
I have over 20 years of experience over the phases of drug development from a clinical trials perspective, clinical trials co-ordination plus Ethics review experience. I work in both the public and the private health sectors and my expertise also includes managing industry sponsored trials. My background includes owning Clinical Trials NZ Ltd (formerly Waikato Clinical Research), employing staff who conduct clinical trials and overseas travel to various conferences where data from our site has been presented at international meetings. I believe in NZACRes and I like to encourage excellence in research, reaching out to our members, the wider public, being involved in organising the NZACRes Conference and going forward encouraging NZACRes regional meetings for 2018.
Eileen Bisley

Valerie Fletcher

After studying both social research and pharmaceutical medicine at university I have been project managing clinical trials for sponsors from the pharmaceutical industry across Europe, Asia Pacific and Australia and New Zealand, and am currently Associate Director at MSD.
I have been disappointed to see a decline in sponsor funded clinical trials in New Zealand and feel passionately about trying to address this.
I am also interested in the recent and planned changes to ICH guidelines and New Zealand regulations.
I am regionally based near Christchurch and feel privileged to be part of NZACRes.
Valerie Fletcher

Julia Mathieson

Julia Mathieson

Zoe Breeze


I have spent the last 20 years in a variety of clinical research roles within the Pharmaceutical and CRO industry, from monitoring local clinical trials to global study lead roles. Over this time I have developed a passion for the quality aspects of clinical research and started my move into this area 10 years ago.
In my current role as Quality Manager (GCP/GVP) for Roche New Zealand, I am able to further expand this interest and passion whilst still remaining close to our clinical trials.
I have previously volunteered and have served as an executive committee member from 2016 to 2017 and in 2019. I believe that through volunteering and committing to NZACRes, we can change and improve the research environment for all.
I am originally from the UK and love to travel. I have been lucky enough to live and work in 4 different countries including, of course New Zealand. Since moving here in 2010, my husband and I have adopted ex-racing greyhounds which keep us busy and ensure we continue to enjoy the great outdoors that New Zealand has to offer.
Zoe Breeze

Michelle Sullivan


My name is Marie-Michelle Sullivan. I have more than 25 years of experience in research administration, having worked overseas and in New Zealand.
I am a member of NZACRes and the Society of Research Administrators International. I am presently employed by the University of Otago, Dunedin School of Medicine, where I hold two half-time positions. I am the research administrator for the Gastroenterology Research Unit and administrative assistant for Health Research South. My work experience allows me to have a broad knowledge of all the processes in implementing research trials. I am a strong believer in the importance of training and supporting all staff involved in clinical trials to strengthen the research environment. Thank you for allowing me to share my vast experience in supporting our association and its membership.
Michelle Sullivan