The canterbury tech team in fancy dress


The Board is elected annually, usually at the end of each year.  We are unashamedly a group of volunteers trying to make things happen in our tech community. While we have great support from our team, the board all still have day jobs, so the more ideas, volunteers and feedback we get, the better. The 2024 Board members are listed below.

Our Board

Elected Board Members

Séku Skandan


Founder, tech consultant, immersive-tech creator & speaker who works in the intersections of the future of storytelling, culture, learning & technology. 

As a student migrant and entrepreneur who moved to Christchurch six years ago leaving his creative and tech businesses in India & South East Asia, he wholeheartedly has embraced the city, proudly calling Ōtautahi his home. His primary vision as a chair and as a Cantabrian is to enhance Canterbury Tech as the most vibrant, diverse, engaging, valuable, welcoming & enjoyable tech community in Oceania – benefiting both its members and the Board. He also would like to contribute to the uplifting of Ōtautahi as one of the most innovative and collaborative cities in the world with partnerships, all while honoring Te Tiriti o Waitangi and supporting & nurturing Canterbury Tech members’ ambitions. 

He enjoys bringing his tech generalist skill sets to tech businesses and is currently working on his AI/XR micro-learning platform. His drive is fuelled by his belief and application of ‘technology as an equaliser’ among disadvantaged communities.

Kahn Mitchell

Deputy Chair

Michelle Shirtcliffe

Board Member, Treasurer

As the Co-Founder and CEO of Publica, a thought-led brand and digital agency based in Ōtautahi, Michelle is dedicated to positioning Ōtautahi as a cornerstone in New Zealand’s tech landscape, attracting top talent to its vibrant community. Over the past 15 years, Michelle has led a dedicated team of 25 professionals at Publica, overseeing diverse projects in branding, website and app development, strategic marketing, and digital communications.

With a background in finance and accounting, combined with a passion for innovation, Michelle has shaped a leadership style that prioritizes people and fosters a collaborative environment. She believes that meaningful connections and understanding clients’ unique stories are essential for success. Constantly exploring emerging trends, particularly in the rapidly evolving fields of crypto and blockchain, Michelle ensures that Publica stays ahead of the curve.

Michelle’s leadership approach centers on building a community of professionals who are not only delivering solutions but also contributing to the narrative of their clients’ success. Guided by the belief that numbers tell stories, she is dedicated to helping clients articulate their achievements through meaningful relationships and impactful storytelling.

Danielle Jones

Board Member

Newly elected 2024 Board member

After a decade abroad in England and Sweden, Danielle and young family found their way to Christchurch in 2010, witnessing the city’s resilience, growth and transformation. Her journey spans diverse experiences in nascent technologies, FMCG, and lived farming experience – accumulating almost two decades of international expertise in business and partnerships.

Danielle’s tech background includes hardware and software development for mobile networks, devices, protocol stacks, and applications like gaming, e-learning, and e-commerce. Currently immersed in SaaS tools for e-learning and VC funding pitch work, she is passionate about the Board creating an environment that supports and inspires the healthy growth of Canterbury Tech community.

Danielle believes in leveraging our unique qualities of care, creativity, and resilience forged in the aftermath of the Canterbury earthquakes to elevate the technology sector and contribute positively to Ōtautahi/Christchurch’s entire society.

Andy Masters

Board Member

Newly elected 2024 Board member.

Bringing over 25 years of rich experience in the tech industry, Andy has a background in AI, and Agritech. In 2011 he moved to Christchurch from Edinburgh (where he studied AI in the 90s). He has been contributed to the local tech landscape at companies like Jade Software and Onside and is currently Solutions Architect at Alliance Group. Andy is known for passionate communication skills, evident in his public speaking and active involvement in the tech community. Andy enjoys coaching, exploring new tech and acting as a bridge between technical and non-technical folks.
In his free time, Andy plays competitive chess and poker, and is sometimes funny when performing stand-up comedy.

Our Board

Appointed Board Members

Lisa Donning

Board Member

As a Business Analyst, Lisa is a detail-oriented person with a fun, enthusiastic energy. She’s happiest while bringing people together and has a way of getting to the heart of things in a way that allows people to feel heard and appreciated. She runs the local Salesforce user group and is heavily involved with Deloitte’s BA Community of Practice and Women in Tech group. So as you can tell, she really enjoys getting involved in her local communities and making an impact wherever she can.Outside of work, you’ll find Lisa rock climbing, hiking in the mountains, or volunteering at/attending local events.