top of page





van Straalen

Hi everyone,


My name is Bronwyn and together with my husband Mike and son Sam we moved to Otorohanga from Cambridge. My family and friends have been farming in this area for many years and we could see it was a great district to be part of. For me, Otorohanga is a rural town with a big heart. A resilient town with a strong community and amazing people who look out for each other. We feel very lucky and privileged to have become part of the

Otorohanga community,

and love everything that

Otorohanga has to offer.

Read More

Kia ora,

My name is Arnold van Straalen I hope you are all enjoying the New Year and have had time to spend with Family & Friends over the  Festive Season. What a wonderful community and part of the world we live in !

My Parents, 3 siblings & I moved onto a town supply dairy farm in Otorohanga June 1972. As the family grew in height & numbers to a total of 9. An orchard and roadside store Waitomo Orchards grew out of the rich fertile land of Otorohanga

and from there

The Big Apple Restaurant

which opened in 1995.

Read More

I have always been passionate about volunteering, with my first volunteering endeavor in form six with the Interact Club (youth version of Rotary) followed by a period with Women’s Refuge during my first year at Waikato University. Over the years I have been fortunate enough to hold many volunteer roles including Treasurer for the Riding for the Disabled (Cambridge), Chair of Volunteering Waikato, Rotary Sunrise, and Treasurer of the Waikato branch of the Human Resource Institute. Having spent 15 years working in the not for profit sector with 10 of these years with New Zealand Red Cross I’ve seen firsthand how important strong, diverse and connected local communities are.  These days, my day job involves working alongside Mike in our automotive workshop in Turongo Street. In my spare time I enjoy trail running, driving my Mini around New Zealand and pottering in my garden. I have been part of the Charitable Trust as a trustee for the past five years. It is immensely rewarding to see the positive way financial grants from the Trust can and have benefited our local communities. I am proud of what the Trust has achieved so far and look forward to the future and the further work that there is to be done.

I attended local schools and married a local girl from Otewa, Kim (nee Jones) & we raised our beautiful children Kendall, Tori & Ashley all in Otorohanga.

Last Monday 28th of January, our family lost my mother-in-law Val Jones, we were fortunate to have her Tangi and Service at our home in Otorohanga, Otorohanga was her home and she loved Otorohanga and Otorohanga loved her, we were blown away by the diverse array of our community who paid respect and attended the celebration of her life.

I am so happy and proud to part of the Otorohanga Community, I have been part of the Otorohanga Charitable Trust as a Trustee since 2015 and are very proud of what has been achieved and what we as a trust are able to give back to the community from the generosity of what others have donated.


Kia ora,

My name is Barbara Jones, and I came to Otorohanga with my husband Tim and three small children in 1992. I was born in Wanganui and have lived –never for more than three years - in many different places; Foxton, Ohakune, Upper Hutt, Palmerston North, Christchurch, Warkworth, Israel, England and Napier.  However there must be something special about Otorohanga, because

I am still here all these years and one child later! 

Tim is a partner

at Osbornes 

Chartered Accountants.

Read More



My name is Kim Ingham and I am the current Chairperson of the Charitable Trust. I became a Trustee in December 2014, and took on the Chair role in June 2016.

My family has been living in Ōtorohanga since 1931 when my great grandfather Claude Hotson became the principal of Ōtorohanga College, when it was a District high School and had a roll of 1100 students.

My husband Robert and I both 

attended Ōtorohanga College, 

as did our two children

Cayley (26y) and Karn (23y).

Read More





Our four children, Dan, Gen, Nick and Sophie attended Otorohanga South School and Otorohanga College, and I have taught at South School in various capacities for many years. Nick and Sophie also had the privilege of attending schools in Canada (Nick) and Belgium (Sophie) for a year as Rotary exchange students.  We have hosted four exchange students in our home over the years - Joaquin and Trini from Chile, Helo from Brazil and Emil from Denmark. We were members of the Methodist Church in Otorohanga until it closed, and since then we have attended Te Awamutu Bible Chapel.  I am passionate about helping the more vulnerable members of our community, particularly children and the elderly. I believe we live in a very special community, and I am excited to be a part of this Trust, which aims to help improve the lives of all who live here.

I have been involved in a volunteer capacity in the community for the past 25 years and have had positions on the Plunket, Kindergarten, and Primary school PTA committees, and 9 years as a Board of Trustee member for Ōtorohanga South School and Ōtorohanga College.

I also coached netball locally and regionally for more than 15 years, and am still delivering meals on wheels for Red Cross after 25 years.

It has been an incredible time of growth for the Trust over the past 2 years, with the building of the new Otorohanga Health Centre and the successful OTO100 Project. The trustees are hugely grateful to our community for financially supporting our vision and giving us this opportunity. The community can only be strengthened by having both these projects realised.

We will now begin the task to upgrade our processes and systems, an important and challenging time, which will allow us to deliver the hugely increased funding that will be available to our community.

I have been inspired by our community throughout this Trust journey, and am proud to be involved with the Ōtorohanga Charitable Trust.


Kia Ora,


My name is Andrea Pye and I have lived in Ōtorohanga since 1999 with my husband Nathan Pye. We have two teenage children, Dion and Jorja. I came from a small town community in Whitianga on the Coromandel Peninsula where I enjoyed living for my first 20 years. I've really enjoyed the whānau/family vibe that Ōtorohanga people give out to residents and other people in our area. I have over the years been involved with different

committees such as plunket,

play centre, Ōtorohanga

Athletics Club.

Read More

Kia Ora,

My name is Daniel Ormsby.

I was born and grew up in Otorohanga. I currently live in Hangatiki and work in Waitomo. I am Ngati Maniapoto and belong to Ngati Maniapoto hapu.

I have been an artist since about 2000, specialising in maori arts. Primarily woodcarving and Moko. I have met many people with these art forms and feel a great sense of pride and responsibility

maintaining the purposes

and integrity of the traditions

pertaining to them.

Read More





I was forever involved and supported my children's schools where I could, and am currently a ‘champion’ for Ōtorohanga helping to promote "its okay to ask for help" the family violence campaign. I have been a teacher in the early childhood sector for the past 15 years and qualifying in this field with a degree in 2010. I joined the Ōtorohanga Charitable Trust board as a trustee member about 3 and a bit years ago, and love what we do for our community. I am very excited to be involved again with helping others in our community and enjoy working alongside others with a similar passion as myself.I was forever involved and supported my children's schools where I could, and am currently a ‘champion’ for Ōtorohanga helping to promote "its okay to ask for help" the family violence campaign. I have been a teacher in the early childhood sector since 2005 and qualified in this field with a degree in 2010.  I joined the Ōtorohanga Charitable Trust board as a trustee member in 2016, and love what we do for our community. I am very excited to be involved again with helping others in our community and enjoy working alongside others with a similar passion as myself.

I also love the freedom of paint. Particularly abstract

which challenges logical thinking. I have been involved in teaching and coaching again since 2000, also with great success. My strengths here are the ability to gain respect and trust and to inspire and provoke deeper thought and insight. No matter what I teach or coach my goals are always the same, to promote high standards, to be mindful and respectful of others, to communicate, to empathize and to approach situations with a positive attitude whenever possible.

Thanks for reading!




Robert (Bob) Strawbridge has been a Trustee of Otorohanga Charitable Trust since 2013. Bob grew up on a dairy farm in Otorohanga, before moving away to study Business Management at Waikato University. He returned to Otorohanga in 2000, joining a local accounting practice, and becoming a Partner in McKenzie Strawbridge, Chartered Accountants. Bob brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the board. Bob is also a Trustee of the Beattie Community Trust Inc. and a member of the Otorohanga District Development Board. In his spare time he enjoys playing bridge with family and friends.

bottom of page