Benn Jeffries

Editorial assistant

Benn is a writer, photographer and Capital's Editorial Assistant. A lover of all things outdoors – you’ll find him on the water with his rod and reel or in the bush scribbling down god-awful poetry. 

Shalee Fitzsimmons

Art Director

Shalee (Ngāti Tūwharetoa) blew in on the wind from up north many years ago and couldn't figure how to get back. She's our resident Art Director, stylist & designer. Obscure music enthusiast and sav-guzzling misfit, Shalee puts the it into Capital.

Anna Briggs


Anna is a young freelance photographer. She has a love for photographing her surroundings showcasing their natural beauty in a stylish and tasteful way. You can check out her work at

Luke Browne


Luke is a Capital designer by day and owner of skateboard brand Daylight, by night. Originally from Hastings, England, he immigrated to Hastings, New Zealand as a wee lad. He now lives in Lyall Bay with his girlfriend and cat Chewy.

Sanne Van Ginkel


Originally from the Netherlands, Sanne moved to Wellington to study for her Masters in Design, majoring in Photography at Massey Uni. She also runs her own company, In the Flash Photography.

Melody Thomas


Melody is a writer, columnist and producer for radio who uses her work to offset terrible FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out. Writing for Capital provides just the excuse she needs to pry, consider and explore the world vicariously, all from her little window desk in Island Bay. Catch up with Melody between issues on Twitter @WriteByMelody.

Chevron Hassett


Chevron (Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Rongomaiwahine ki Kahungunu)  is a multidisciplinary artist from Naenae whose interests include cultural identity, whakapapa and urbanisation. In 2017, he was awarded the Nga Manu Pirere Award from Te Waka Toi and Creative New Zealand.

Bex McGill


Bex has just completed her final year of study at Massey University, majoring in Photography. She loves fashion, cats and large amounts of chocolate.

Francesca Emms

Staff writer

Francesca is a Wellington-born, Wairarapa-raised writer. The things she writes vary in content and length. Sometimes people say the things she writes aloud and other times they read them silently. She enjoys tap dancing, avoids the sun and gets carsick really easily.

Sarah Lang


Sarah, Capital's books and culture writer, lives in Mt Cook with coffee-geek husband Michael and son Theo. She works from Toi Poneke Arts Centre, but often pops into Capital HQ with baking. She also runs the Wellington Classic Literature Meetup group.

Matthew Plummer


Matthew is in the buildings team at Beca. In his spare time he runs the Old Wellington twitter account (@oldwgtn), and is slowly renovating a 1900s house in Mount Cook. He’s a seventh generation Wellingtonian and isn’t a fan of the Water Whirler.

Deirdre Tarrant


Deirdre, mother of three boys, founder of the former Footnote Dance Company and teacher of dance to generations of Wellingtonians will sort out your troubles as our Agony Aunt.

David James


David, aka Marlborough Lights, is a photographer from Marlborough - though he calls Wellington his spiritual home. He regularly shoots fashion for retail and labels like Lela Jacobs and The Service Depot. Emotional images come first for David, who prefers a fun, energetic and low-fuss aesthetic.

Hanahiva Rose


Hanahiva is an art historian and writer from the islands of Ra’iātea and Huahine and the people of Te Atiawa and Ngāi Tahu. She has been widely published for her work on Māori and Pacific art practices in Aotearoa.

Nicola Young


Nicola is a writer and city councillor. Her career began at The Evening Post, followed by an extended (20 year) OE in England. She’s a born ‘n bred Wellingtonian; for the past 14 years she’s been part of Te Aro’s population boom.

Rachel Helyer Donaldson


Originally from Te Waipounamu, Rachel spent 16 years in London. In 2014 she sensibly settled in Wellington to set set up as a freelance feature writer and filmmaker. Taking part in her first-ever Round the Bays in February made her feel like a true Wellingtonian.

Emily Wakeling

Campaign coordinator

Emily is a keen coffee drinker, online shopper and traveller who found her way to Wellington as a young student, then never left. As Capital’s campaign coordinator, you’ll find her around the city with the latest Capital issue and always ready for a chat.  

Fairooz Samy


Fairooz is a Wellington writer, researcher, and pop-culture fiend. When she isn’t writing, she analyses the internet as part of a media studies doctorate. She enjoys social commentary, buffets, intellectualising reality television, and Oxford commas.

Sarah Catherall


Sarah is an award-winning journalist who loves writing about the city she has called home for more than two decades. When she's not writing stories, Sarah loves running around Wellington's tracks and soaking up the city's restaurants, cafes and art life.

John Bishop


John is a veteran journalist and longtime Wellingtonian whose writing career covers politics, economics, business and tourism and travel. Apart from journalism he’s worked in PR and marketing and for the last seven years he has been a business mentor for startups and “from home” businesses. He wants to own a dog but doesn’t have time to walk one.

Jess Scott 


Jess is a writer, eternal student and shopping fanatic. In her high school leaver's quote, she said her aspiration was to be a trophy wife with a PhD. Six years and ⅔ of a Master's degree later, she still thinks this is funny. Her boyfriend does not.

Claire Orchard


Claire was born in Wainuiomata, grew up in Hutt Valley, and now lives in Wellington. Her poetry has been published in various literary journals, including in her 2016 book Cold Water Cure (VUP). When not occupied with wrangling her own poems she enjoys reading and thinking about works by other poets.

Evangeline Davis


Evangeline is a film photographer from New Zealand, now based in Toronto, Canada. Her practice explores aspects of girlhood, self-expression and desire. With compassion, she captures the female form in order to challenge homogeneity and embrace a continuum.   

Mia Gaudin 


Mia is a writer, lawyer and arts advocate. Her work has been published by Radio NZ, Turbine, Hue & Cry, Mimicry, and The Pantograph Punch. She’s currently working on a novel and a travel memoir. Find her on Instagram @ am_i_mia

Chris Tse 


Chris is the author of two collections of poetry published by Auckland University Press: How to be Dead in a Year of Snakes (winner of the Jessie Mackay Award for Best First Book of Poetry) and HE'S SO MASC. Chris and Emma Barnes are currently co-editing an anthology of contemporary LGBTQIA+ Aotearoa New Zealand writers.

Emma Steer


Born and raised in Wellington, Emma is the owner of Steer Illustrations. She works full time at Iko Iko selling her art work and creating exciting window displays each week. 

Nikki & Jordan Shearer 

Food columnists 

Nikki and Jordan began their cooking journey on MasterChef NZ. Their Kiwi food philosophy is based on sharing, and cooking from the land using local, seasonal produce. As busy mums and businesswomen, they strive to serve up no-fuss meals to feed the whānau. 

Harriet  Palmer 


Harriet is a keen Wellingtonian who grew up in Lyall Bay and now lives on the side of a hill in Mornington. She’s come out of reporting retirement to write about her city. 

Tod Harfield


Head of our accounts department of one, Tod has been at Capital since its inception. As well as balancing spreadsheets, he enjoys dark beer and walking up steep hills – a handy hobby in Wellington.

David Cohen


David is a Wellington-based journalist who's written for numerous publications including New York Times, the Guardian and National Business Review. He doubles as an author and has written a range of books including memoirs, anthologies, and a food book

Roger Walker 

Car columnist  

If there were a university for car designers in New Zealand, Roger, a successful Wellington architect, would have studied there. Over the years he’s owned more than 30 cars, written about some of them, driven a few slightly too fast (but, of course, not any more), and spent two seasons as a co-presenter on the AA Torque Show.

Freya  Daly Sadgrove


Freya is a writer, performer and theatre-maker from Pōneke. She has a Master of Arts from the International Institute of Modern Letters, and her work has appeared in various publications in Aotearoa, Australia and the US. Her first book, Head Girl, was published in February 2020.

Laura Pitcher


Laura is a writer, editor, and designer based in New York. Contributing to the Guardian, Teen Vogue, i-d, Dazed, Paper, Highsnobiety, Marie Claire, and more, Laura has created content spanning from fashion, culture and beauty, to social and environmental justice issues.

Piripi Walker 

Te Reo Translator 

Piripi (Ngati Raukawa) was manager of Te Upoko o Te Ika, Wellington city’s Maori language radio station from 1987 to 1991 and remains trustee and deputy chair of the station’s trust board in 2019. He lives with his wife Heather, in Silverstream, and is a hands-on Koro to his seven mokopuna.

Brittany Harrison 


Britt uses her studies in design at Vic to dabble in whatever is chucked her way. Taking photos of food is a happy accident generated by two passions of hers. You can catch her hanging out wherever the coffee is good.

Maddie Tait-Jamieson


Maddie completed a fine arts degree at Beaux Arts de Montpellier in France. She is currently based in Wellington, probing the in-betweens of contemporary art, and under the handle Madshrew, the wry world of comics.

Suzanne Lustig 


Suzanne was born and raised in the heart of the Netherlands. Her sense of adventure brought her to New Zealand about four years ago. Suzanne has a brain that never stops creating – she works as a graphic designer by day, and by night turns into an illustrator, pattern maker, screen printer, and experimental artist. 

Victoria Birkinshaw 


Victoria is a photographer who has worked editorially, commercially and on self-directed documentary stories for publication and exhibition. She has worked extensively in New Zealand, the Pacific and the UK, where she was based for seven years. She now lives in Wellington.

Beth Rose  


Beth loves writing about people and issues. Relocating from London in 2011, she now spends most of the year writing in Wellington and the rest of the time travelling the country in a six-metre converted bus, finding out lots of interesting stuff from the boltholes of NZ.

Sharon Stephenson


There's not much Sharon won’t do for a story, including getting married in Vegas! From her Mt Victoria home, she writes for a number of national publications. After five years in London and another two in Bristol, this staunch Wellingtonian is happy to be home.

Joelle Thomson 

Wine columnist 

Joelle was bitten by the big buttery chardonnay bug at Aro Street Café in the late 1980s and has never looked back. She has written 16 books and now comments on wine for RNZ National. Check her out at  

Ava Gerard

Campaign coordinator

After a four year stint overseas, Ava has returned to her favourite city and joined the Capital team as a campaign coordinator. Ava is an avid art collector, seasoned traveller, radio DJ “extrordinare”, and fashion stylist.


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