Meet The Team

Sue Merriman BBS(Acc); CA; IOD Partner


Westpower Group - Local Power Lines Company

NZCA Limited - Chairperson


I was born and grew up in Greymouth.  Dad was an electrician and later a mine manager.   Mum had various office roles including at Grey High School. The Coast is a great place to grow up and as a result values such as hard work, self reliance and integrity are part of who I am. I had some time in Waikato and Southland and eventually returned home  to the West Coast with my husband and family.  I love the West Coast and the opportunities we have here.

I graduated with a BBS (Acc) and am a Chartered Accountant.  At the time I was working for Marshall & Heaphy and the opportunity arose to purchase the business from the original partners.  The business was then employing two people and I have enjoyed the journey of growing the team to now a much larger and skilled team  whilst working with clients to grow and develop their businesses.  I love learning and this is reflected in both the growth of Marshall & Heaphy and the training we do with our team.  It is a big part of how I work  for the organisations I am involved with.

I have been a Director on many Companies and am currently a Director of the Westpower (Lines Business) Group and NZ CA of which I am Chair.  NZ CA is a national group of 30 independent Chartered Accounting  firms throughout New Zealand.  This organisation has benefitted Marshall & Heaphy and our clients by the support, sharing and comradeship it provides. Before business I worked in many different industries including retail, freighting, contracting, minerals, hospitality, tourism and legal.  This experience provides the basis of many varied discussions with clients and often I am told I am not like most accountants.

As well as having an interest in the above industries, I have a few other specialties I deal with. I love working with clients on strategic and growth opportunities and work hard to minimise tax as a result of their success.  I love a good challenge.

My husband, Wayne, is a project manager with a passion for rugby.  Our children, Kirsty, Karl and Antony, like myself, have all left the Coast for varied reasons and are now more than happy to have returned being proud to call this their home.

My mantra is continuous improvement.  I challenge myself and clients to think about this. Personally, I believe in strong, honest relationships and shared experiences.  I love to travel with family and friends and have recently been to Everest Base Camp. I am always on the look out for new ideas to bring home. Life is precious and a balance is important.  I enjoy getting outdoors and the making the most of our wonderful West Coast scenery. I look forward to working with you all to ensure you and your businesses are even more successful.


Telephone: 03 768 7186 Extn:205

Mobile: 021 942 022

Business specialisations: tourism, hospitality, professional services, contractors.

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Fergal O'Gara BA; ACMA; CA


Born and bred on the West Coast of Ireland, I am the youngest of four boys. My mother was hoping for a girl but it wasn't to be.  My parents were self employed, together Mum and Dad owned and operated a small supermarket and butcher shop, they also owned their own farm which was used to supply the business. Needless to say there was no shortage of food in our house.

Honesty and hard work were values ingrained from an early age as my brothers and I spent weekends and holidays working in the business.  When we had time to play, I could be found on the local Gaelic football pitch.

I attended secondary school at Cistercian College Roscrea where I met life long mates and got involved with as much as I could.  Rugby turned out to be my sport of choice and I was lucky enough to play representative rugby for Connacht up to under 20.

In 1992 I attended the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology and graduated with a BA in Hotel and Catering Management.  I then moved to London and was accepted on a graduate management programme for the Holiday Inn hotel chain.  As part of the programme I studied to be an Accountant and qualified in 2002 while working as a financial controller. 

While living in London, I met my Hokitika born wife Wendy. We came out to NZ in 2002 to get married  and I knew then that I would come back here to live.

A stint working with Gillette convinced me that I'd rather not work for large corporates and instead we looked for opportunities of our own. In 2004 we moved to the West Coast and I managed and later purchased a manufacturing business based in Hokitika, Arnold Products.

In 2008, following a strategic planning session with my Accountant and Business Advisor (Sue), I took the opportunity to join the team at Marshall & Heaphy and sold Arnold Products.  I am fortunate to have been a client of Marshall & Heaphy as I witnessed first hand how hard the team worked for us and how our business flourished with them in our corner.

I believe in giving things a go and fully support business owners in trying to achieve their goals.  We are privileged to be able to work with awesome business owners and be a part of their success.

Telephone: 03 768 7186 Extn:203

Mobile: 021 062 7858

Business specialisations: rural, business advisory, compliance.

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Phil Dittmer

I was drawn to the West Coast by my wife, Kirsty, a 5th generation coaster. I have found it to be a great place to work, live and raise a family.

I grew up in Woodville, a rural town in the Wairarapa on a small farm. We had cattle, sheep, pigs, goats and chickens - and I have 3 siblings, so there was always something going on! I went to Tararua College in Pahiatua and played soccer and cricket, and was a member of the smallbore rifle club.

When I was 19 I left the nest and enlisted in the Royal New Zealand Air Force. I worked all around the country and in Australia in various administrative and logistics roles while I studied an accountancy degree with Massey University. After having a daughter, Kirsty and I decided to settle down and we moved to Greymouth in 2012.

Outside of work, I have always had a passion for everything with two wheels. I enjoy riding on the awesome cycle trails the West Coast has and I travel to motorcycle races in Nelson and Christchurch whenever I can. I have done the Lake Taupo Challenge and have participated in 24 hour mountain biking events in Canberra.

The West Coast has a lot of opportunity for development. One of the most rewarding parts of my role is supporting clients to define their goals, achieve these and then see the positive results in their business.

Telephone 03 768 7186 Extn:221

Business specialisations:


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Business Services


Specialist Services


Tax Services


Meet The Team

Sue Merriman
Fergal O'Gara
Phil Dittmer
Senior Accountant

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