Your councillors

Regional councillors are your community voice.  Members of the current council were elected in October 2019, and will remain in office for three years to represent the seven regional council constituencies in Northland - Coastal North, Coastal Central, Whangārei Urban, Coastal South, Te Hiku, Hokianga-Kaikohe and Kaipara.

Although elected by individual constituencies, once sworn in, regional councillors are committed to representing the best interests of the whole of Te Taitokerau.

Get to know your councillor

We've asked our councillors to tell us about a place in Taitokerau that's special to them, and one positive change for Northland they'd like to see in their term as an NRC Councillor (some responses are still to come).

Kaipara

Penny Smart.

 

 

Penny Smart (Chair)

Constituency: Kaipara

Phone: 021 439 735 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
As I travel around Kaipara, I find that I am never far away from the Kaipara Harbour. The mauri (life force) of the Kaipara harbour is breath taking.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
To provide a Northland that is climate change ready in an environmentally sustainable way that as Northlanders we are all motivated to be playing our part in.

Hokianga-Kaikohe

Justin Blaikie.

 

 

Justin Blaikie (Deputy Chair)

Constituency: Hokianga-Kaikohe

Phone: 027 542 2992 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
The Hokianga Harbour, for years I have fished and dived the waters of the harbour and the Tasman Sea when the weather permits. I am always awestruck by the rugged beauty of the landscapes that surround the harbour which include the Warawaras, the Mangamuka Ranges, Puketi Forest and the Waima Ranges.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
I would love to see central government providing greater support for landowners to address environmental issues. Northland has come a long way and there is a galvanized movement to address environmental issues within our communities but in many cases the costs and organisational capabilities are beyond the reach of landowners and communities. As such this will be a key focus point in terms of what I will be striving for over the next three years. Northlanders are incredibly passionate and supportive of environmental sustainability the challenge is to get central government to get on board with our aspirations.

Coastal Central

Amy Macdonald.

 

 

Amy Macdonald

Constituency: Coastal Central

Phone: 027 347 6359 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
Whale Bay beach (Matapouri Coast) - I love the walk through the coastal forest down to the beach (I’m a big fan of nikau palms), it’s seclusion from the road, and when you swim out and look back to the land the view is simply breath-taking. It’s a place I take visiting friends and family to showcase the beauty of Northland, so I have many good memories shared with people I care about.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
In my term I would like to see greater protection of Northland’s natural environment, so what we enjoy today can also be enjoyed in the future. In particular, I am motivated to improve the state of our freshwater ecosystems and to improve the resilience of all-natural systems to the impacts of our changing climate.

Coastal North

Marty Robinson.

 

 

Martin 'Marty' Robinson

Constituency: Coastal North

Phone: 027 347 8048 | Email: [email protected]

Joce Yeoman.

 

Joce Yeoman

Constituency: Coastal North

Phone: 021 163 2836 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
The farm where our family has lived, worked and played for successive generations is the place that I am most connected to. Taitokerau has been home to branches of our family for 200 years and there are so many special places that I feel connected to and cherish.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
Creating a planning framework that determines how our region will evolve for future generations – we’ve come a long way with the Proposed Northland Regional Plan and further changes in this term will set how our natural resources are managed to improve environmental outcomes while enabling people to continue to live, work and play here.

Coastal South

Rick Stolwerk.

 

 

Rick Stolwerk

Constituency: Coastal South

Phone: 021 823 770 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
“Each of us has a piece of New Zealand we regard as ours - not the part of it we occupy but some remote beach or farm, mountain or bush reserve….” C.K.Stead.

My special place is Shelly Beach – Waipu Cove. Stunningly situated, the idyllic Northland beach.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
I would like to see increased and meaningful collaboration between:
- the councils in Northland
- our council and central government, but perhaps most importantly
- our Council with the general public – let’s keep building the ‘Volunteer Army’.

With YOUR help we can achieve a great deal in the next three years, long may the collaboration that we have together nurtured over the past three years continue.

Whangārei Urban

John Bain.

 

 

John Bain

Constituency: Whangārei Urban

Phone: 021 961 894 | Email: [email protected]

Jack Craw.

 

Jack Craw

Constituency: Whangārei Urban

Phone: 021 222 9064 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
The most special place in the world for me is Te Matua Ngahere in Waipoua Forest. This is the oldest kauri and maybe NZ’s oldest living thing.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
I would like to see many positive changes: the growth of Northport and rail upgrade, better preparedness for climate change impacts, more action on kauri dieback and better freshwater quality are at the top of my list.

Te Hiku

Colin 'Toss' Kitchen.

 

 

Colin ‘Toss’ Kitchen, MNZM

Constituency: Te Hiku

Phone: 027 476 2079 | Email: [email protected]

Can you tell us about a place in Taitokerau that’s special to you and why?
Whatuwhiwhi on the Karikari Peninsula in the Far North where I live with my wife. Lovely beaches, great views, beautiful harbour and great fishing. A wonderful place to have quality time with my whānau and especially with my grandchildren.

What is one positive change for Northland you would like to see in your term as an NRC Councillor?
I would like to see all elected members working together and not in isolation for positive results. Collectively we as a governance group can lead positive change within Northland where people want to live and invest.