Board and Senior Leaders

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Tony Porter: Chairman

Tony has served as a director of the Airport Company since 1997 and was elected Chairman of Directors in July 2014. He has enjoyed a noteworthy engineering career in structural and bridge design, transportation asset management and business management, specializing over the latter years in asset management and procurement options for managing road networks. Tony has a BE (Hons) in Civil Engineering, is a Fellow of the Institute of Professional Engineers and a Member of the Institute of Directors New Zealand. 

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Sarah Park: Director

Sarah was appointed to the Board of HBAL on 1 July 2014. She has a degree in Economics from the University of Edinburgh and has 15 years experience in the financial services sector in a variety of roles across investment banking, venture capital and business advisory in NZ and overseas.

Sarah has expert knowledge in business model development, project evaluation, valuations, and transaction advisory, financing and capital markets. She has worked for large financial institutions including HSBC and PwC as well as public and private growth companies. 

Sarah's directorships include Pacific Edge, Focus Genetics and Eurogrow, She also sits on the Board of Trustees at Hereworth School.


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Wendie Harvey: Director

Wendie was appointed to the HBAL board in July 2016 following an extensive legal career specialising in employment law and human resource management, Wending brings over 25 year's experience as a lawyer, executive manager, business consultant and professional director.

Wendie's governance career reflects her interests in strategy development, infrastructure management and the promotion of health and safety in the workplace. Her appointments included the Boards of Port of Napier, Centralines Limited, Aurora Energy Ltd, ETCO (Electrical Training Company Ltd) and Fire and Emergency New Zealand. Wendie also serves as a Commissioner on the New Zealand Gambling Commission and is a Council Member of the Eastern Institute of Technology.

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Taine Randell: Director

Following an extensive professional rugby career in New Zealand and United Kingdom, including Captaincy of the All Blacks, Taine pursued a career in finance and commodity markets both offshore and locally. These skills have enabled him to contribute to a number of governance roles in both commercial and social sectors. Taine holds directorships of Kahungunu Asset Holding Company, Fiordland Lobster Company, Kiwigarden, Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) and the U-Turn Trust, an organisation that provides social services in Flaxmere.

Taine was born in Hawke’s Bay and in 2008 together with his wife Jo, and their two sons and one daughter, returned home to enjoy the region they are very passionate about.

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Stuart Ainslie: Chief Executive Officer

Stuart is a Senior Airport Executive with over 18 years’ experience in public and privately-owned international hub and regional airports in the UK, Australia and Papua New Guinea.  A professionally qualified engineer, Stuart is a consummate senior leader with a special focus on, and understanding of, airports and associated infrastructure. He has also run and managed his own aviation consultancy.

Stuart is a director of the New Zealand Airports Association and sits of the board of the Art Deco Trust. 




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Rachel Orchard: Chief Financial Officer

An experienced leader, Rachel's work across a number of industries has seen her lead change and revamp business processes within organisations. She has significant experience as a senior manager, working with all levels to effectively manage an entity's commercial and business performance.

Rachel is a valued member of the Hawke's Bay Airport team, and is regularly involved in strategy discussions. Along with her strong commercial acumen, she brings a laser focus to the bottom line. Rachel is an Associate Chartered Accountant and gained distinction when completing her MBA. 

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Dean Smith: Strategy & Business Development Manager

Dean joined Hawke's Bay Airport in 2016 bringing with him over 15 years of professional experience across the financial services and wine industries in both New Zealand and Mainland China. 

He leads Hawke's Bay Airport's business development, commercial and communications functions as well as holding responsibility for the development and integration of the company's strategic planning process.

Dean holds bachelor’s degrees in both commerce and science from the University of Auckland.



Gareth Mentzer: Operations Manager

Gareth brings over 15 years' experience in diverse operational and business roles to Hawke's Bay Airport. He enjoys the variety of his position with the Airport, learning from other leaders and meeting the challenges of a multi-faceted operational landscape.

Gareth holds a Bachelor of Computing Science and applies his practical and analytical skills daily, within a busy airport environment experiencing both growth and change.

Having a passion for Hawke’s Bay Gareth is thrilled to not only work at the gateway to the region but to be raising his family in the region he has always called home.



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Stephanie Murphy: Airport Planner

Stephanie has devoted her career to commercial planning and infrastructure and has held key roles within electricity, energy and aviation companies. She relishes the challenge of developing new projects from an environmental, commercial and long-term strategic planning perspective, with a career highlight the consenting of Australasia's larges wind farm. Stephanie enjoys seeing sustainable progress take shape and unlocking the potential of Hawke's Bay Airport alongside a highly engaged team.

Stephanie holds a Bachelor of Resource and Environmental Planning.