Meet Us

Our Board

Alastair Duhs

Alastair Duhs

Board Chairperson

Alastair Duhs is a counsellor in private practice who has worked in Stopping Violence programmes since 1992.

Alastair has previously been the Men’s Programme Manager, Clinical Manager and Manager of RESPECT, as well as working in a number of other community and non-profit agencies.

Alastair has been a member of RESPECT since 1998 and a member of NZAC since 2000. He remains committed to working with men, women and children to promote safe, respectful and non-violent relationships.

Ruby Manukia-Schaumkel

Ruby Manukia-Schaumkel

Board Member

Ruby Manukia-Schaumkel is a Lawyer, qualified Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand.

Ruby has over 19 years of experience in Governance, Law & Policy and Foreign Relations in New Zealand, Tonga and the United States of America. She is as former elected member of Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) and is currently studying towards her PhD in Law.

Ruby sits of various boards and contributes to the community. She was awarded a New Zealander of the Year Local Hero Award for community involvement in 2014. Ruby’s interests are in sports, writing (Author of ‘Like a Dove’ book/publication) and enjoy spending time with her family.

Rowena Manning

Rowena Manning

Board Member

Rowena Manning is a registered psychotherapist and counsellor who has been counselling and facilitating groups at RESPECT for the past twenty years.

Rowena is a previous Manager of New Zealand Institute of Professional Counselling and has worked for five years at Massey University, Albany Campus, on the Human Ethics Committee. Rowena currently works for The Blind Foundation as a counsellor and Child and Family Social Worker and has a private Supervision practice.

Rowena is passionate about helping people live a life free from violence and abuse.  Healthy relationships, excellent ethical practice, accountability, integrity and good governance are important to Rowena.

Our Staff

Michael Cooney

Michael Cooney

Men's Programme Manager

Michael Cooney is a Psychosynthesis counsellor with many years experience working with men in Stopping Violence programmes. He has also worked in the alcohol and drug field as a counsellor.

For the last 15 years Michael has worked at RESPECT. In this time he has facilitated men’s groups, conducted intake interviews and 1:1 programmes and currently works in the men’s programme manager role.

Outside of work Michael is a keen golfer and a grandfather to two children.

Gwendoline Cooney

Gwendoline Cooney

Women's Programme Manager

Gwendoline Cooney is a qualified counsellor and has a violence and trauma studies diploma.

Gwendoline has worked in the domestic violence/addiction field for over 28 years. She has had years of experience in governance and currently the Women’s Programme manager at RESPECT.

Gwendoline is committed to working with men, women and children to promote safe healthy home environment where families have respectful relationships.

Lynda Coombe

Lynda Coombe


Lynda is the administrator for RESPECT.

She comes from a background of administration having worked for small businesses in the recruitment, architecture and customer service fields.

Outside of work she enjoys being creative in the form of painting and art journaling. She also enjoys walking and travelling.

Our Contractors

We use a team of qualified counsellors and facilitators to deliver our group and individual programmes. All our counsellors and facilitators are highly trained in the dynamics of domestic violence and very experienced in group and 1:1 work.

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