verum group

Meet the Team


Luc Bohyn Chairman

Luc’s background is in trading. His hobbies and interests are wide-ranging from art, nature, photography and aviation. Before moving to New Zealand in 2009, Luc was trading coal, bauxite and magnesite in Europe. He bought an interest in the Roa Mine near Greymouth in 2001 and was a Director of Roa Mining Company and New Zealand Coal and Carbon until April 2019. In April 2019, Luc took over Verum Group Ltd. He has also established Atarau Sanctuary for breeding and re-introduction of great spotted Kiwi and this is an ongoing interest and passion.

Luc Bohyn
Dr James Pope Chief Executive Officer

James is the Chief Executive Officer of Verum Group. He has a PhD in geochemistry and 20 years experience in the minerals and research sectors. Currently, James is involved in research related to mining environmental management, treatment of contaminated water from mining and agriculture as well as geothermal geochemistry. James has expertise in consultancy, expert witness work, chemical analysis of complex materials and mineral resource evaluation. He is a member of the AusIMM, IMWA and NZ Geological Society, is adjunct to the Department of Geological Science at the University of Canterbury as well as the Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research at the University of Windsor. Away from the office, James has a school-aged family and enjoys running, adventure racing, biking, skiing and tramping.

James crop
Barry Bragg Director

Barry joined the Verum Group (formerly CRL) Board in 1996 and was Managing Director from 2013 until 31 March 2019. Barry had a 20-year executive career at Solid Energy and was Chief Operating Officer from 2003 until 2013. Barry is of Ngai Tahu descent and joined the Ngai Tahu Property Board in 2009 and has been Chairman since 2012. His other directorships include being Deputy Chair of the Stevenson Group Limited, a Director of Straterra, Deputy Chair of the Canterbury West Coast Air Rescue Trust and is a CDHB Board Member chairing the Quality, Audit & Risk Committee. He is currently Managing Director of Nuenz Limited an advanced materials start-up company. He is also a Chartered Accountant Fellow and a member of the NZ Institute of Directors. Barry completed the INSEAD International Executive Programme in France and Singapore in 2002.


Alex Aitken Air Quality and Laboratory Analyst

Originally from the UK, Alex has a BSc(Hons) in Environmental Studies and Philosophy from the University of Hertfordshire and a breadth of experience in asbestos consultancy. At Verum Group Alex’s main focus is on emissions testing, but he is also involved in asbestos identification and other lab work.

In his spare time, Alex enjoys cycling and spending time outdoors.

Alex Aitken on a bike
Andy Englefield Air Quality Analyst

Andy coordinates the Air Quality team in Christchurch. He specialises in point source and ambient emissions for industrial and commercial clients, who are looking to fulfil their resource consent requirements. Andy manages the workplace exposure monitoring services that Verum Group provides while upholding quality and best practice procedures. He also has involvement in environmental monitoring, performing site investigations, sampling and reporting for resource consent requirements. Providing high quality and responsive service are Andy’s priorities. Away from work Andy has a young family, enjoys classic cars, barbequing and exploring the outdoors.

Andy at the beach
Ann Herbert Administration Manager

Ann is Verum Group’s Administration Manager. Ann’s responsibilities include the management of administration and financial services plus liaising with IT support. Ann’s extensive knowledge and experience of the Company has enabled her to implement a variety of changes including management systems. Outside of work Ann enjoys spending time with her family and gardening.

Ben Rumsey Research Officer

Ben works in the Verum Group's Gracefield office and coordinates a range of research, analysis and projects both in the laboratory and offsite. In addition to looking after the spontaneous combustion testing and minerals pilot plant at Gracefield, Ben also completes plant audits and participates in numerous research projects. With a strong background in analytical chemistry, electronics, instrumentation and method development Ben aims to produce targeted fit-for-purpose solutions, from small to large projects. Outside work Ben enjoys spending time with his young family and getting out on the water fishing.

Ben D Rumsey
Billy (William) Porter Environmental Scientist

William (Billy) is an Environmental Scientist and Workplace Exposure Analyst with Verum Group's Christchurch based Environmental and workplace monitoring team. Billy’s current work involves environmental monitoring in the fields of water, soil and air and workplace exposure testing. His previous work experience includes agricultural contracting and trucking. He has a BSc in geology with an environmental endorsement. Outside of work Billy enjoys his time golfing, fishing, diving and getting out and about.

William Porter
Cameron McCabe Project Geologist

Cameron is based out of the Christchurch office. His role at Verum covers exploration and permit management, GIS analysis and geological fieldwork and reporting across a verity of commodities in the mining industry.

Cam has a BSc is Geology and Physical Geography. With over 8 years’ experience in the New Zealand minerals industry, he has worked for New Zealand Petroleum & Minerals and as a mine geologist and is a full member of the AusIMM.

Away the from office and hanging out with rocks, Cam enjoys hiking, getting out into the wilderness and playing the guitar poorly.

Cam Website photo2
Dr Carol Bedoya Data Scientist

Carol is Verum Group’s data scientist. Born in Medellín (Colombia), Carol has a background in Electronic Engineering (BSc, MSc) and Biological Sciences (PhD). At our company, Carol develops artificial intelligence techniques to address research questions in biology and geology. His areas of research include clustering algorithms, unsupervised deep learning, and animal communication. In his free time, Carol enjoys playing the violin and practising martial arts.

Carol 2 cropped
Craig Fraser XRF Laboratory Manager

Craig is Verum Group's XRF Laboratory Manager based in Wellington. Craig has 30 years of experience working in the field of X-ray Fluorescence analysis and soil chemistry. With an NZCS (Chemistry) gained working for DSIR Soil Bureau and then Manaaki Whenua-Landcare Research he was involved in the end of the country's soil mapping program, and the beginning of the commercialisation of analytical work by X-ray fluorescence. After a 4 year stint in the UK working in the Environmental Laboratory of Laing Technology Group, he returned to join SpectraChem Analytical Ltd in 1998, which became part of CRL Energy in 2008.

While the XRF Laboratory completes a great deal of routine environmental, mining, and quality control analysis Craig particularly enjoys helping solve the vast array of mysterious miscellaneous "problem" samples that are sent our way.

Outside of work, Craig enjoys the outdoors (tramping, mountain biking & road cycling), and Toastmasters. He also has a passion for Military History and Cinema.

Craig and machine
Dave Trumm Senior Scientist

Dave Trumm is an environmental scientist and geologist for Verum Group in Christchurch. Dave has over 20 years of experience in commercial geoscience and geological research and an MSc in geology. His current work involves research and consulting on environmental impacts from coal and gold mining in New Zealand, with a focus on Acid Mine Drainage. He also has expertise in managing and remediating sites contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons. Away from work, Dave has a young family, is a keen mountain biker and holds several New Zealand speed skating national records.

Dr Hannah Christenson Research Scientist

Hana is a research scientist and geochemist at Verum Group in Christchurch. Her background is in chemistry, and she completed her PhD on phosphorus biogeochemistry at the University of Canterbury in 2015. Hana has experience working on the distribution and mobility of contaminants and nutrients in aquatic systems in New Zealand and Antarctica. Hana has worked on water treatment and long-term trends in mine drainage chemistry as part of the New Zealand Mine Environment Life Cycle research program and continues to do consulting work in this field. Hana helped to develop the acid-base accounting standard reference materials. Hana’s current research projects include studying the application of infrared analytical technology to different materials and enhanced passive treatment systems, of which the nitrate removing bioreactor trials in Springston is an exciting development. Away from work, she enjoys exploring the outdoors, gardening and is a member of the national women’s ultimate frisbee team.

Hannah christenson
Hugh Stephen Environmental Technician

Hugh is an environmental technician for Verum Group based in Greymouth on the West Coast. Growing up in Australia, he completed a Bachelor of Environmental Science in Canberra, working in the Southeast of NSW before moving to New Zealand at the start of 2020. Hugh has a background in natural resource management, ecology, and agriculture. In his spare time, he enjoys the outdoors and exploring the West Coast.

Jacob Hamill Environmental Officer

Jacob is originally from Taranaki. He moved to Australia for a couple of years before settling in Hamilton to complete his master’s degree in environmental science.

Jacob recently integrated into Verum Group's Hamilton-based emission and environmental testing team where his focus is on emission testing and water sampling for a wide range of industrial businesses.

During his spare time, Jacob enjoys going tramping.

Jacob Hamill Picture
John Cameron Fuels Chemist

As Verum Group's Fuels Chemist, John provides petroleum and coal testing services as required. With a BSc in chemistry, John brings a wide range of skills to the group. His experience spans from quality assurance systems, Health & Safety and management in the petroleum and manufacturing industries, to supply chain logistics and continuous improvement activities. Outside of work John enjoys skiing and other outdoor pursuits, travel, board gaming, trivia quizzing, and keeping up with friends and family.

Kerry at the mine
Kelly Lamers Office Administrator/Accounts Payable

Born in Canada, Kelly is Verum Group’s Office Administrator/Accounts Payable person based in Christchurch. She has a Business and Administration Certificate from SenecaCollege with a Major in Human Resource Management and has a Bookkeeping Certificate from Durham College. Before coming to New Zealand, Kelly worked in management but also in recruitment and office administration. Kelly brought her broad experience to Verum Group in March 2020. Outside of work, Kelly enjoys travelling and experiencing the great kiwi outdoors, kayaking, snowboarding, scuba diving, and practising martial arts.

Kerry Gordon Consultancy & Business Development Manager

Kerry is Verum Group's Consultancy & Business Development Manager. He is a Senior Geologist with a MSc in Natural Hazards and over 14 years' experience in the fields of energy and mining.

At Verum Group, Kerry is responsible for environmental monitoring, resource proving and modelling, and management of exploration projects.

Kerry has worked in diverse areas on exploration and operational projects. These include conventional oil and gas, coal seam gas, underground coal gasification, underground and opencast coal mining.

Before commencing a career in the consultancy industry, Kerry developed excellent communication and leadership skills as a Senior Glacier Guide, where he gained valuable experience in management and decision-making skills in unforgiving environments.

In his spare time, Kerry enjoys taking his kids into the outdoors.

Kerry at the mine
Khurram Waqas Malik Laboratory Analyst

Khurram is Verum Group's lab analyst for XRF sample analysis and coal testing. He has MSc in Biochemistry and having more than 16 years of laboratory experience in the field of coal, minerals, and water analytical services. Outside of work, Khurram enjoys his time with his young family, reading, home improvements, and gardening.

Mike Young Christchurch Laboratory Manager

Mike is the manager of Verum Group's Christchurch laboratory. He established the asbestos laboratory and leads the team testing solid fuels including domestic and export coal and all sorts of biomass.

He has an MSc in chemistry and in previous jobs he has been involved in quality control of petroleum products, development of horticultural fertilisers, compliance with hazardous substance regulations and raw material purchasing.

Mike enjoys DIY and hates throwing anything out that he can fix. He has two teenage children and his spare time is spent on a bike, tramping or at church activities.

Mike in the lab cropped
Dr Laura Molles Senior Ecologist

Laura is a behavioural ecologist with a particular interest in animal communication. Originally from California, she worked on several field-based projects around the US and in Costa Rica before moving to New Zealand in 2000. Here in New Zealand she has studied kōkako, kakapo, little blue penguins, bellbirds, tūī, and great spotted kiwi, including working on reintroductions and other projects that integrate behaviour and conservation biology.

Laura Molles in the field 2
Nathan Frost Hamilton Air Quality Manager

Nathan was born and bred in Hamilton. He first started with Verum Group as part of his Bachelor Degree in Environmental Science completed at the Waikato University. He then moved onto a permanent role leading him to the coordination of Emission Testing and Environmental Testing for the Hamilton area. During his spare time, Nathan enjoys the outdoors and playing hockey.

Nathan Frost Pic
Phyllis Shi Laboratory Analyst

Phyllis is our Laboratory Analyst for the Christchurch Lab. After studying chemistry and getting a bachelor degree in science in China and working as a teacher, Phyllis moved to New Zealand 24 years ago. She started at Verum Group as a casual lab analyst in our Lower Hutt lab with a focus on coal. She then moved to Christchurch as an environmental analyst working for Solid Energy. Phyllis became a permanent member of Verum Group Christchurch as a Laboratory analyst in 2012, focus on coal analysis and also undertake some testing for environmental projects. When Verum Group moved its coal lab from the North Island to Christchurch in 2019, her focus moved onto solid fuels (coal, wood and oil) analysis. On her free time, Phyllis enjoys spending time at the gym, especially in the Zumba class.

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Rachel Skews Environmental Chemist

Rachel is an environmental chemist at Verum Group in Christchurch. Since finishing her Bachelor degrees in Science (Hons) and Arts at The University of Auckland, she has been working in water and wastewater treatment, chemical manufacturing, and health and safety training/consulting. Rachel is currently completing a Master of Water Resource Management at The University of Canterbury while working on environmental and analytical research projects at Verum Group. Outside of work you’re likely to see her swing dancing, but she also loves walking, reading and sewing.

Rachel Skews in the field
Trevor Dine National Laboratory & Quality Manager

Trevor is Verum Groups National Laboratory and Quality Manager. Trevor brings a broad experience gained both in New Zealand and Europe over the past 40 years from wastewater surface water and potable waters, in both microbiology and chemistry. In 2001, Trevor joined Verum Group (then CRL Energy) initially to set up the water testing laboratory, then manage the fuel lab and emissions testing crew, before taking over the management and quality of all Verum Group’s laboratories. Outside of work, Trevor is a keen tennis player.

Trevor in the boat
Yukinori Iwasaki Research Officer

Yukinori is a Research Officer in the Gracefield Office. Before, moving to New Zealand, Yukinori graduated with an MSc in Material Science in Japan and worked at research department in Babcock Hitachi (now Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems) powerplant manufacture. At Verum Group, Yukinori performs X-ray fluorescence analysis, inorganic materials analysis and reports elemental contents. Away from work he enjoys playing with his young sons and playing tennis.

YI tennis
Dr Ziyin (Simon) Zhang Research Scientist

Ziyin (Simon) Zhang is a research scientist at Verum Group in Wellington. He completed his PhD on chemical and process engineering at the University of Canterbury in 2017. His background is in combustion, gasification and renewable energy. As part of his PhD, Simon has done research work on the biomass gasification, which converts biomass into combustible gases including H2, CO, CO2 and CH4. The gas product can be further applied for heat, electricity or chemical synthesis.

Simon currently works in the R&D department, his research includes carbon foam materials science, and zero CO2 metal production and coal or biomass fuel efficiency testing. Outside of work, Simon enjoys time with his young family and sport actives.

Simon bio pic landscaped


Chris Nelson Associate Geologist

Chris, now a consultant for Verum Group, has led the coal seam gas (CSG) group at Verum Group. He has an MSc in engineering geology and worked for seven years in engineering geology and mineral exploration before joining Verum Group. He has been involved in the development of methods for CSG determination since 2001. During the past decade, he has worked extensively on exploration programmes for CSG in New Zealand and Asia. He has been the project manager for all of the international CSG programmes, enjoying the challenges of remote field locations and cross-cultural client liaison. Recently Chris’ focus has turned to coal mine gas content and developing robust methods for assessing this. Along the way at Verum Group, Chris has accumulated over seven years of experience in air quality analysis and monitoring and has now climbed, and sampled, many industrial stacks throughout New Zealand. Chris is interested in practical problem solving with no particular emphasis on the field. Away from the office, Chris enjoys tramping, surfing, mountain biking, skiing, and snowboarding.

Dr Nigel Newman Associate Senior Geologist

Nigel Newman has trained in geology, geochemistry, and coal science. Nigel has a PhD in geochemistry and 20+ years experience in geological science from academia to exploration. He currently works in the fields of exploration, applied geology, coal quality, coal and environmental chemistry, petroleum chemistry, and marine surveying. Away from the office Nigel has a mature family, and enjoys tramping, beekeeping, and fixing stuff.

Nigel Bio pic
Dr Trevor Matheson Associate Scientist

Trevor Matheson is a former General Manager Operations and Deputy Chief Executive of Verum Group. He has a BSc (Hons) in chemistry and a PhD in Organometallic chemistry. Before joining Verum Group as Senior Scientist, he carried out research at Cambridge University, the Australian Research School of Chemistry, and the CSIRO Division of Materials Science.

Wayne Hennessy Associate Senior Scientist

Wayne is Verum Group’s specialist in greenhouse gas accounting. He has a BSc (Hons) and an MSc in Chemistry from the University of Canterbury. Wayne brings 4O years of experience to Verum Group. His current research work is assessing synthetic greenhouse gas emissions for the Ministry for the Environment's national inventory, with particular expertise in the refrigeration industry. He has undertaken other studies on emission reduction in relation to energy efficiency and renewable energy utilisation in the industry. Wayne enjoys spending much of his spare time bird and pest monitoring at Nelson's Brook Waimarama Sanctuary. He is excited at the prospect of re-introduction of kiwi, tuatara, carnivorous snails and other rare species.

Wayne Hennessy at the Waterfall cropped