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Key Transport Company Directors Named

The people charged with holding the rail assets and improving public passenger transport in the Auckland region have been named.

The four directors of a new company called Auckland Regional Transport Network Ltd are Ross Keenan, who will chair the new company, Adrienne Young-Cooper, Peter Brothers and George Green.

The company will be formed to acquire and develop the rail corridors. The Government has recently taken over the negotiations with TranzRail, but the intention remains for the corridors to be transferred to, and developed by, the company.

When the company is fully operational, two extra directors will be appointed. They are Tony Parsons, and Ross Jewell.

Mr Roger Gower has been appointed to assist with negotiations for the acquisition of TranzRail’s assets on behalf of the new company, and to act as an adviser to the Shareholders’ Representative Group.

He will be appointed a director once the negotiations are complete.

The formation of the company is being overseen by the Shareholders’ Representatives Group, which is made up of representatives from the Auckland City, Waitakere, Manukau, Papakura and Rodney Councils. North Shore City and Franklin are not part of the group.

The Shareholding Councils agreed that the directors should be appointed ahead of the corridor acquisition being completed to take advantage of their expertise and to ensure they have full knowledge of the deal and future financial implications for the company.

Announcing the appointments, the chairman of the Shareholders Representatives Group, Dr Bruce Hucker, said the selection process for directors of the new company had yielded first-class candidates for the positions.

“We are fortunate to have a blend of expertise and significant experience from a range of professions which will be extremely beneficial to the new company,” said Dr Hucker.

The Chairman of the new company, Mr Ross Keenan, said he was delighted to be part of the company that will have a major impact on the greater Auckland region’s integrated transport development.

“The directors are well aware that governance of the company has an important social responsibility element attached across the future requirements of the region,” he said.

“The company has to be run on a commercial basis and our challenge is to do that whilst ensuring a transport system which would meet the needs of the region well into the future.

“It is creditable vision by the ownership Councils.”

Mr Keenan has an extensive background in finance, infrastructure, transport and governance, as well as involvement with central government and iwi issues. He holds several directorships in the public and private sectors including chairmanship of three entities.

Ms Young-Cooper has extensive experience in local government and resource management.

She is a director and principal of Hill, Young Cooper Ltd, a resource management, strategic planning and local government consultancy. She was a member of the Establishment Unit Board and Business Unit Advisory Boards at Waitakere City Council.

Professor Peter Brothers has been the Dean of the School of Engineering at the University of Auckland since 1998. He has previously held senior positions in international companies and is currently a Director of Uniservices Ltd and a Member of the National Commission for UNESCO.

Mr Green has held various senior positions in industry and consultancy, culminating in lead partner, Financial Services Consulting for Price Waterhouse in 1999-2000. He is currently a director of several companies and chairman of two of these.

Mr Parsons has a wealth of experience in engineering and has worked both as an employee and a consultant on many major projects, including a proposal for an overseas light rail system.

Mr Gower is a former Group General Manager with TranzRail, a position he left in 1997 to complete a Master of Philosophy degree at Cambridge University. His management experience has spanned several decades. He is currently self-employed as a management consultant. He has several current and past directorships.

Mr Jewell has wide experience as an economist and financial analyst, has held several past and present directorships including chairmanship of two LATEs for Waitakere City Council and North Shore City Council. He is also currently a director with Jarden Morgan Investments Ltd, providing advice to institutions, trusts and private clients.

ENDS

For further information, please contact:
 Dr Bruce Hucker, Chairman of the Shareholders Representative Group, tel: 373 7599 (Extn 8648), 307-7584, 376 0246 and 025 722 294 or
 Ross Keenan, Chairman Auckland Regional Transport Network Ltd, tel: 021 685 655 and 307 8852.

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