Meet the team

Anne Stephenson

BCA CA, Director

"You can only manage what you measure."

My role is the Chief Strategist at Connected Accountants, both for the business and with clients. My principal role is to understand what makes clients tick, and to make sure that we deliver what we say, when we say we will.

​What makes us different is having spent a long time in big firms, it’s great to be able to directly influence the culture and brand of this company. Having company values that are about great people delivering great work.

The super power I would like to have is being able to transport myself anywhere, in the blink of an eye.

If there was one thing I’d change about me it would be 
being taller, climbing onto stools can be a nuisance after a while.

I get a kick out of seeing the whole team grow and develop as we test out new ideas.

When I was younger I wanted to be 
a research chemist. But my last school year included studying the sciences by correspondence when I learned I much prefer being able to talk over issues, rather than reading about them.

I'm currently learning
 how to grow old(er) disgracefully.

Kevin Summerhays

CA, Director

"Make it simple and easy."

My role is to help people find better ways of doing business. By 'better' I mean both within their businesses and beyond to the impact they have on the community and the environment.  

I’ve worked here since June 2019.

What makes us different is whether it's a particular challenge or ambition to grow, we enjoy being a sounding board, batting around ideas and seeing the satisfaction clients get when their plans come to fruition. 

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is at Connected Accountants we are committed to investing in our people. We're all about growing our abilities and encouraging a happy work environment.

The super power I would like to have
 is to be fluent in all languages. 

The three things I would take on a desert island
depends on the island! But I would say a massive slab of marble, some sculpting tools and a hammock!

My current favourite saying is “I'm on the e-bike now."

James White

CA, Director

"Business is challenging, we can be your sounding board."

My role is to help business owners channel their entrepreneurial spirit into success by adopting sound financial management practices and making informed financial decisions.

I’ve worked here (officially) since October 2021.

What makes us different is our people and desire to break free from the stereotype of accountants.

What I’d like to say to someone working with us is that we love working with business owners that are passionate about improving their business and that passion is reciprocated.

The superpower I would like to have is to not require sleep (or to create more hours in the day).

My favourite country to visit is Turkey

Five people (dead or alive) I would invite to a dinner party are Michael Jordan, Eddie Vedder, Warren Buffett, Jerry Seinfeld and Amelia Earhart.

If I wasn’t here I’d be walking the Te Aroroa Trail.

My current favourite quote is "Only when the tide goes out do you discover who has been swimming naked." (Warren Buffett)

Louise White

CA, Consultant

"Don’t overcomplicate things."

My role is to manage accounting and financial requirements for clients to create great outcomes and smooth days.

I’ve worked here since October 2021.

What makes us different is our ability to dive deeper into your business to understand issues and find solutions.

What I’d like to say to someone working with us is that we are a great team of people offering a fresh approach to your accounting requirements.

In my free time I like to run through the amazing trails of Wellington.

The one food I couldn’t live without is Whittakers Dark Ghana.

My favourite country to visit is Fiji (with the kids) Europe (without!).

Jaimi McNeilly

CA, Senior Manager / Associate

"Helping businesses thrive."

My role is Senior Manager / Associate. I look after a group of our clients and love helping businesses owners thrive.

I’ve worked here since December 2017.

What makes us different is the family vibe, where everyone works together to help each other and our clients.  Nothing corporate here!

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is if you would like to work a company that is continually striving to do things better, this is the place. While you're given responsibility pretty early on, it also comes with being held accountable for your actions. 

When I was younger I wanted to be a hairdresser. 

My guilty pleasure is chocolate — lots of it!

If I wasn’t here I’d be travelling the world,  somewhere hot. 

The three things I'd take on a desert island are coffee, wine and a friend.

Mikaela Devitt

CA, Senior Manager/Associate

"We make things easy, so you can focus on your passion."

My role is to support a network of clients achieve their goals. I am passionate about focused board reporting, and process implementation – whatever makes your life easier! 
 
I have worked here since Janurary 2023.

What makes us different is if you are looking for a great work environment, Connected Accountants is for you. We are a team that is focused on building relationships as a team and with our clients.

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is that we are a great team of people offering a fresh approach to your accounting requirements. 

The superpower I would like to have is the ability to teleport.

The one food I couldn't live without is 
Chocolate and Pasta.

If I have time to myself, you will find me at the nearest beach.

Outside of work you will find me cooking, eating and talking about food or searching up new recipes to try.

Danelle Whaanga

CA, Senior Manager/Associate

"Your passionate advocate.”

My role is Senior Manager/Associate

I’ve worked here
since January 2023.

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is
it's the people, culture and mission that make
a difference.

The superpower I would like to have is a pause button.

When I was younger I wanted to be
a pharmacist. I didn't think my 7th form chemistry marks would be good enough, so I never applied. They were, and it was a good lesson for me to not put up barriers!

I get a big kick out of
seeing business owners and those around them succeed. Growing up with parents who were business owners, I I developed an early passion for SMB's.

What gets me out of bed in the morning is
being able to contribute to others achieving their goals. 

My current favourite saying is you can't pour from an empty cup.

Sheree Hobson

Senior Accountant

“Focus on what you can control.”

My role is Senior Accountant.

I’ve worked here
since February 2022.

What makes us different is The people, and the 4-day work week.

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is
the people, the culture and ability to grow. 

The super-power I would like to have is
to turn back time.

The most beautiful place I have ever been to is
Nepal (in the mountains).  

A food I couldn't live without is
Chocolate.

My perfect day would start with
a run and end with a bbq with my family and friends.

My favourite book is
 Magician because its just a fabulous book to read and get lost in a fantasy world. 

Rachel Dickie

Senior Accountant

"Supporting ambitious small business owners."

My role is Senior Accountant.
 
I have worked here since March 2020.

What makes us different is being a small team, we all work together to best meet the needs of our clients!

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is you are in great hands! We are a team that cares about seeing you succeed!

The super power I would like to have is to be able to time travel.

My guilty pleasure is
a good Spotify playlist!

I get a big kick out of pushing myself out of my comfort zone.

The three things I would take on a desert island are a good book, water and sunscreen. 

My favourite saying is
"everything happens for a reason."

Joseph Neil

Accountant

“Always strive and prosper.”

My role is an Accountant, currently in the process of learning the tricks of the trade.

I’ve worked here
since July 2021.

What makes us different is the workplace environment. The entire team is extremely collaborative, easy-going and all boast strong interpersonal skills.

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is
that your personal professional development is highly valued and prioritised.

The super power I would like to have is
the ability to fly.

When I was younger I wanted to be
a rockstar.

I get a big kick out of
taking on and completing new and unique challenges.

The three things I would take on a desert island are
a bottle of whiskey, a guitar and some sunglasses.

Adam Lane

Accountant

“Accounting isn’t just about numbers,
it’s about building relationships.”

My role is an Accountant.

I’ve worked here
since September 2022.

What makes us different
is being a small team, we can adapt more easily to our clients needs. While we take our work seriously, we all believe in having fun and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is
our office is a fun and supportive workplace that values you and your professional development.

My favourite countries to visit are
Switzerland and Vietnam.

Growing up I aspired to be
a famous drummer.

My favourite music genre is anything metal.

The one food I couldn't live without is lemon meringue pie.     

Cassandra Pineda

Accountant

"Connecting beyond the numbers"

My role is Accountant.

I’ve worked here
since October 2021.

What makes us different the incredible team dynamics and client relationships. We give extra care in satisfying our clients accounting needs, while enjoying the process along the way. 

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is
we are a team grounded in a great support system that allows you to grow professionally and still have work-life balance. You’ll learn and have fun at the same time!
 
The Superpower I would like to have is  telekinesis

The best advice I ever received was
"Learn from the past, look to the future, but live in the present. “ 

One of my favourite books is
Le Petit Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry because of its enlightening lessons that are relevant in various stages of life. 

The one food I couldn't live without is Kare-Kare (with bagoong!).     

Darren Canono

Accountant

"If you want the rainbow, you've got to put up with the rain"

My role is Accountant.

I’ve worked here
since May 2022.

What makes us different is being part of a small team you feel everyone’s presence and willingness to help and communicate with each other to fulfil our client's goals.

What I would say to someone thinking of working with us is
you're in great hands, with a team of people who strive to give their best and show care and appreciation to growing businesses. 

The Superpower I would like to have the power to fly - so I can go visit any place on earth. 

The best advice I ever received was
"when you feel like giving up remember why you started and do not lose track of your dreams. “ 

One of my favourite books is
Harry Potter Series because of its adventurous theme and its Wizarding World.   

The most beautiful place I have been is to was Boracay Island.