My Story

Born in Germany, raised in Whangamata, and now feeling most at home on a lifestyle block just north of the city while enjoying Hamilton Kirikiriroa for work and play.  

Having entered local government as a first-time councillor in 2019 I have worked tirelessly to learn how the system works and help deliver meaningful changes for the people of the Waikato. 

 

My previous careers in science and environmental management have been supplemented by training as an RMA commissioner and a strong local network of actively engaged citizens who I love to 'create' with.

I'm standing for re-election because I believe that I can add even more value in a second term to help set our community up for success in an ever-more-rapidly changing world; one that's full of significant reforms and cans that have been kicked down the road for way too long.

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As WRC's youngest elected member I have led the first-ever Climate Action Committee and helped bring others along the journey to deliver the foundations to genuinely help address climate change in our region, as well as raise our ambitions for public transport delivery and enhancing our indigenous biodiversity. 

 

Going forward, my sights are now set on tackling the crucial foundations of community connectivity and participation in decision making, and getting our economy to work within environmental limits. 
 

In making decisions, I often trust my gut but also inform myself by engaging with community contacts and experts, as well as looking at what has succeeded elsewhere and to push our Council to think outside the box. 

 

I've always sought to be as approachable as possible to the public and be as helpful as possible to our community. 

Please get in touch if you have suggestions and ideas to share. 

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Key achievements & initiatives I've supported:

  • Brought fresh energy and perspective to Council

  • Lead the Climate Action Committee - integrated into all council's decisions and implementation of the WRC Climate Action Roadmap through Council (including divestment from fossil fuels, inhouse emission reductions, peat soil research, adaptation work with east and west coastal communities)

  • Upgrades of Te Huia train services

  • Updating of the WRC community outcomes

  • Active engagement in the Waikato Plan; co-chairing the climate workstream with Dep Mayor Aksel Bech

  • Leading on climate action in the Waikato Wellbeing Project alongside Go Eco.

  • Driving accountability in the Environmental Performance Committee, putting extra focus on city and district councils wastewater and storm-water compliance and getting more staff for consenting and compliance enforcement. 
  • Active engagement in the Waikato Tainui Raupatu River Trust Co-Governance Committee to strengthen partnership
  • New look rates bill (visual breakdown of what areas council rates are invested in)

  • Raising the ambitions of the Regional Public Transport Plan under review 2022

  • Active engagement in the development of the first Regional Transport Emission Reduction Plan

  • Sustainable Homes Scheme (low interest loans through council for 'green' house upgrades repayable by voluntary targeted rate - can commence once exemption from CCCFA received)
  • Participated in LGNZ Young Elected Members Forum and hosted regular Zoom calls for regional Councillors across NZ who are driving climate action

  • Provided support to the Carbon Response Program (a pilot for organisations to do climate action)

  • Investigating how WRC could collect rates on behalf of other councils to make it easier and more aligned to upgrade public transport routes and services

  • Change in Council Chairperson in 2022 and initiating Te Tiriti o Waitangi training for all Councillors

  • Provided feedback on the Hamilton City Council Climate Change Strategy

  • 0% Rates rise in 2020/21 due to covid pandemic  

  • Hiring of WRC's current CEO

  • Active engagement in submissions to central government (e.g. RMA & local government reform)

  • Increased funding for Te Waka (Regional Economic Development Agency)

  • Jobs for Nature and other 'shovel ready' projects in our region

  • Transfer of functions (Section 33 of RMA) for Iwi to be more engaged in environmental monitoring

  • GoBus drivers to receive the living wage

  • Further investments in tech upgrades (e.g. GIS, IRIS next generation)

  • Allocating Environmental Initiatives Fund (2020) and Natural Heritage Partnership Funding (e.g. Maungatautari Sanctuary, New Chum's beach)

  • Provincial Growth Funding for Sugarloaf wharf upgrade in Whitianga 

  • Support for Enviroschools

  • Establishment of Rangatahi Voices and inspiring another young person to stand for Council in 2022

  • To allow all Councillors to claim child or dependent care expenses as part of their public service duty 

  • Setting up the Waikato University Climate Conversations 

  • Supporting the Go Eco Climate Action Hub

Your feedback is very welcome.