At the Nelson Regional Development Agency, our people are our most important asset and bring a wide range of skills and capabilities to the organisation.

Our diverse team is made up of individuals from many different countries, speaking many different languages, uniting in their undying passion for our extraordinary region and their dedication to sharing this with current and potential talent, visitors and investors.  

Fiona Wilson - Chief Executive

Fiona Wilson - Chief Executive

Fiona has moved to Whakatū Nelson from Tasmania, and has extensive experience in regional, economic and tourism development. Originally from Wales, she has international experience in her field and is passionate about improving the wellbeing of local communities through economic development. Fiona’s international career in economic development has included a particular interest in strategic development and innovation. 

Fiona is no stranger to New Zealand – bringing with her a kiwi husband, four kids and economic development experience in Wellington and Palmerston North.

Contact fiona

Gareth Power-Gordon - Manager Regional Strategy and Investment

Gareth Power-Gordon - Manager Regional Strategy and Investment

Gareth has moved to Nelson Tasman from Wellington, where he studied at Victoria University of Wellington. His career has included Central Government, Parliament, and Local Government, with a focus on strategic policy development. Originally from Taranaki, he is passionate about regional New Zealand and ensuring local communities can thrive.

Gareth leads the Regional Strategy and Investment agenda, supporting and enhancing the activities of the NRDA by leading the regional strategy activity proposition and profiling. Gareth also provides oversight and connection throughout the communications, data and insights, education to employment programme and the regional identity.

 CONTACT Gareth

Melissa Munro - Financial & Commercial Manager

Melissa Munro - Financial & Commercial Manager

Melissa has an established commercial and investment banking, risk management, and accounting career. She is a qualified CA and human resources specialist, having worked in both New Zealand and the UK. Melissa was born and raised in Nelson and travelled extensively after completing her studies before choosing to return to Te Tauihu with her family.

Her primary role is to manage the finances of the Nelson Regional Development Agency, supporting the team as they deliver on promoting, positioning, and connecting the region. Melissa is also responsible for various additional duties, including health and safety, IT solutions, compliance, and human resources.

Contact Melissa

Tracee Neilson – Visitor Destination Manager

Tracee Neilson – Visitor Destination Manager

Tracee grew up in Nelson Tasman but left for Otago University where she gained a BCom and DipCom before her big OE. Tracee's professional career has included brand management and retail marketing for Shell Oil. Returning home in 2004 to be close to family and raise her children, Tracee has been part of the Nelson Regional Development Agency (previously Nelson Tasman Tourism) team for over 10 years predominantly in international marketing – trade and media liaison, and more recently Business Events.

Having been to over 50 countries worldwide, Tracee appreciates the region she lives in and promotes – what with three national parks, coastline, sunshine, arts and artisan and outstanding food and beverage , she’s proud to call Te Tauihu home.

Tracee now leads the visitor destination agenda, to guide the recovery and regeneration of the Nelson Tasman visitor sector. Leading industry engagement, capability building, and product development are key parts of her job, working collaboratively to ensure the visitor sector is well understood and that Nelson Tasman’s destination vision and unique selling proposition are aligned.

contact tracee

Mark Maguire - Manager, Innovation and Business Growth

Mark Maguire - Manager, Innovation and Business Growth

Mark relocated to Nelson Tasman after 13 years in Wellington. His strong commercial background includes 15 years of experience in corporate governance, operational design and strategy, product development, change management and succession planning.

Mark manages the delivery of the Regional Business Partner Programme across the top of the south. The RBP programme is focussed on helping businesses to innovate and grow by providing information, independent advice, funding and connections to businesses seeking support in their growth journey.  

Drawing on the resources via MBIE and Callaghan Innovation this covers a range of R&D grants, specialist research & technical expertise, innovation skills-building programmes, management capability funding, access to Business Mentors and connections across the local and national business ecosystem. In 2020 the government increased its support of this programme to enable our team to assist over 1,500 more businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic utilising the resources available via the Regional Business Partner Programme.

contact mark

Lesley McQue - Economic Developments Projects & Insights Programme Manager

Lesley McQue - Economic Developments Projects & Insights Programme Manager

Originally from the UK, Lesley and her husband migrated to Nelson Tasman in 2004. With a background in production management, project management and research work, Lesley enjoyed a variety of roles before joining the Nelson Regional Development Agency in 2013 to deliver Economic Development projects and Economic data and reports.

Lesley has spent the last 18 months helping to develop the Te Tauihu Intergenerational Strategy, an ambitious project led by Wakatū Incorporation in collaboration with NRDA, Nelson City Council, Tasman District Council and Marlborough District Council.  Lesley’s role at the Nelson Regional Development Agency is now focused on the development of the Project Kōkiri Recovery and Regeneration Plan, a 5 year economic strategy for Nelson Tasman.

contact lesley

Toni Power - Innovation Programme Lead

Toni Power - Innovation Programme Lead

Toni is a born and bred Nelsonian and returned to nelson after living in Australia and Christchurch. She has a finance and commercial background with a passion for innovation and supporting businesses to achieve.

Toni leads the Innovation Programmes for the organisation with an objective to support local innovators to succeed, increase capability and capacity within businesses and in doing so create positive economic development and wellbeing impacts for our community. Nelson Tasman needs to embrace innovative ways to tackle our regions challenges and turn these into opportunities to lift the regions low productivity.

contact toni

Rebecca Leach - Events Lead

Rebecca Leach - Events Lead

Rebecca completed a BSc and BCapS at Otago University, before beginning her career in Account Management and Space Planning in the FMCG industry whilst studying marketing at Massey University. Rebecca first moved with her family to Nelson Tasman in 2006, but spent 3 years living and working in Abu Dhabi before securing her role as Events Liaison at the Nelson Regional Development Agency.

Rebecca's role includes marketing events through various media channels, co-ordinating the 3 NCC Event Sponsorship Funds and assisting in the smooth delivery of major events and city activations by connecting people in the events and related industries. This is for the benefit of our communities, increasing social cohesion and bringing positive commercial outcomes for local business.

contact rebecca

Rita Merriman - Business Events Lead

Rita Merriman - Business Events Lead

Rita, a native of Canada, met her kiwi husband in Whistler and moved to New Zealand in 2004. For ten years she managed conferences in Canada and New Zealand. She then transitioned to managing sporting events in Nelson for ten years including the South Island Masters Games that were hosted in Nelson biannually from 2011 – 2017.

An adventure seeker, she enjoys hiking, skiing, kayaking and anything that gives her an adrenaline rush. She loves exploring other cultures and has visited 58 countries so far. 

Rita works as Business Events Lead, positioning Nelson as a desirable place to host conferences and events.

CONTACT RITA

Ruth Seabright – Conservation and Tourism Programme Lead

Ruth Seabright – Conservation and Tourism Programme Lead

Originally from Waikato, Ruth moved to Nelson with her family because of her love of the outdoors. Ruth is passionate about the conservation of the environment and enjoys getting out and about in the beautiful Nelson Tasman landscape.

With a degree in Community Psychology and a master’s degree in Business Administration, Ruth has worked in various sectors, including education, recruitment and conservation. Ruth enjoys project management, startups and social enterprise models and has established several sustainability programmes, including food rescue services, e-waste recycling initiatives, and second-hand/reuse stores. 

At NRDA, Ruth will develop a work programme to support the retention of skills within the region. Initially, she will focus on creating integrated conservation and tourism employment pathways.

Contact Ruth

Donna Adlam – International Marketing Lead

Donna Adlam – International Marketing Lead

Originally from Palmerston North, Donna has lived, worked and travelled around New Zealand and other parts of the world, including her big ‘O.E’ to the UK and USA.  Donna’s passion for the tourism industry, particularly in New Zealand, was inspired by her work as a Scuba Diving Instructor at Dive! Tutukaka in Northland.

Donna is the International Marketing Lead and works closely with Tourism New Zealand to promote Nelson Tasman to travel agents all around the world. Donna also provides business support to Mark Maguire to help deliver the Regional Business Partner Programme, a programme designed to enable local businesses to innovate and grow.  

contact donna

Charlotte Lang – Marketing & Communications Lead

Charlotte Lang – Marketing & Communications Lead

A born and bred Nelsonian Charlotte skipped across the ditch to Melbourne after studying a Bachelor of Design (Hons) at Massey University to kick off her career in Marketing. Working across varying roles in Media, Event, Design and Advertising during her 8 years overseas, Charlotte returned home in 2018 for a role as a Marketing Executive at World of WearableArt.

Charlotte joined the NRDA team in 2020 and is responsible for strategically leading and coordinating the Marketing and Communications functions for NRDA to ensure a strategic approach and alignment. Charlotte is currently on maternity leave, returning in July 23.

Madeleine Melin - Marketing & Communications Executive

Madeleine Melin - Marketing & Communications Executive

Originally from Sweden, Madeleine recently arrived in New Zealand, joining her partner in Nelson. After studying a Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia in Hawaii, she has worked with corporate communications in large organizations in Stockholm and has joined NRDA as a Marketing Coordinator.

Madeleine has spent many years abroad for travel and study and enjoys exploring new things and places. Besides her love of travel, she has an interest in pottery and ceramic artwork, and enjoys getting creative herself.

Madeleine will navigate our day-to-day communication activities and will assist the Marketing and Communications Lead with campaigns and projects.

CONTACT MADELEINE

Rosa Friend - Marketing Campaigns Executive

Rosa Friend - Marketing Campaigns Executive

Rosa grew up in the Tasman region before studying a bachelor of Visual Communication Design in Wellington, then heading off to Melbourne to work as a graphic designer and illustrator. After various adventures abroad for work and play, Rosa returned to Aotearoa.

She joins our team as the Marketing Campaigns Executive and is responsible for running our campaign activity across the agency, and managing media partnerships. Rosa is a talented creative and brings her passion for visual art and creative expertise to the role.

 

CONTACT ROSA

 

Laura Duquemin - Digital Media & Content Executive

Laura Duquemin - Digital Media & Content Executive

Originally from Guernsey in the Channel Islands, Laura and her family moved to Nelson Tasman in 2003. After spending her gap year travelling, she completed a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Management and Marketing here at NMIT, engaging in marketing internships and contract work throughout.

Laura's role involves managing the content across a range of our digital platforms, including our regional website and social media channels. Laura is currently on maternity leave until January 2023.

contact laura

Ange Campbell - Vocational Coordinator

Ange Campbell - Vocational Coordinator

Ange has travelled extensively in NZ and overseas and after falling in love with the Nelson Tasman region decided to make our region her permanent home in 2016. She has worked in a wide variety of roles and industries over the years and brings strong project coordination, relationship management and organisational skills to the team – she is extremely driven and loves to make stuff happen!

As our Vocational Coordinator, Ange's role is to help strengthen connections between local employers, schools, and students to achieve greater engagement in vocational education and employment, with the aim of supporting sustainable careers for youth and regional economic prosperity and establish programmes and systems in order to help retain and attract youth employment in our region. 

CONTACT ANGE

Anjali Puri – Business & Project Support

Anjali Puri – Business & Project Support

Originally from New Delhi, Anjali moved with her family to Nelson in 2018 where she studied a Post Graduate Diploma in Applied Business at Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology before joining their Quality Enhancement team.

Anjali has a long experience in corporate banking and has been running her own Corporate Gifting business for 10 years in India, where she also studied a master’s degree in Commerce.

As Business and Project Support, Anjali provides support to NRDA's Business and Project leads. She also assists the Chief Executive and the team with internal administrative functions and project coordination.

Contact Anjali

Nelson Tasman Visitor Information Centre Teams

Nelson Tasman Visitor Information Centre Teams

In addition, we are very proud to have dedicated teams at our Visitor Information Centres. 

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