Sport Performance Innovation Forum




Confirmed speakers to date – this page will be updated as the programme is confirmed in the New Year. 


Keynote Speaker


Brian Russell

Brian was the founder/CEO of Zephyr Technology Corp, a Medical Device company specialising in Remote Vital Sign monitoring. The solution included wearable sensors, radio links and data analysis and dashboards. Customers included US Specail Forces, NASA, Pro Sport Teams, Under Armour and Hospitals. Zephyr raised capital from US Ventures Capital and Strategic's including 3M and Motorola. Zephyr was sold to Medtronic the largest medical technology company in the world.

Brian has recently returned from 7 years in the USA and brings his experience running Zephyr, raising NZ and US capital. Prior experience includes electronic product design and business development experience with; Analog Devices - chip designer and business development, Nokia - optics design engineer and Fisher and Paykel - product design. He has returned to NZ to invest, direct and mentor or be directly involved. . He is available to get involved with various activities on the commercial and government side with respect to commercialisation of science and technology.

Invited Speakers


Jeni Pearce

Dietitian, Performance Nutrition Lead at High Performance Sports NZ

One of the world's leading health and sports Dietitians, Jeni Pearce returned to NZ in 2013 from the UK to Head Performance Nutrition at High Performance Sport NZ. She was the Head of Performance Nutrition at the EIS (English Institute of Sport), the Olympic Nutritionist for Team GB for Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012, England Cricket and McLaren F1. 

Prior to leaving for the UK (2007), Jeni ran her own private nutrition clinics (20+ years) and has been held positions such as President of the International organization PINES (Professionals in Nutrition and Exercise for Sports), the chairperson of the NZ Nutrition Foundation and Executive Officer of Agencies for Nutrition Action. 

She has also authored 12 books, co-authored textbook chapters and research articles and has given countless lectures, and conference addresses in NZ, and internationally. In 2015 she was awarded a MNZM in the Queen's Birthday honors for services to Sports Nutrition.


Andrea Braakhuis

Andrea is a registered dietitian with a research interest in the clinical and health application of dietary antioxidants and phytochemicals. Andrea is currently employed by The University of Auckland lecturing to the Nutrition and Dietetic students. Our research team is currently investigating the effect of the dietary polyphenols on immune function, breast cancer and athletic performance. Andrea is internationally certified in body composition testing (ISAK Level 3). Previously Andrea worked for the United States Olympic Committee, The Australian Institute of Sport and High Performance Sport New Zealand, as a sport Dietitian.


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