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ChristchurchNZ Appoints Former NZTE Regional Director, Europe As Its New Chief Executive

The ChristchurchNZ board has appointed Alison Adams as the new leader of the city’s sustainable economic development agency.

Adams has recently returned to Christchurch after four years as the Regional Director, Europe, for New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, based in London. She spent the previous 15 years in Christchurch, holding significant roles with NZTE, and four years with New Zealand Cricket. Originally from the United Kingdom, she started her business career as a brand manager for Unilever after graduating from Cambridge University with a first-class honours degree in natural science.

Adams said, “This is an exciting time to be taking on the leadership of such a dynamic city agency with the economy humming, Christchurch being recognized as an exciting new event destination with international sailing event SailGP recently announced, and Ōtautahi Christchurch increasingly being seen as a great place to relocate for both people and businesses.”

Chair of the ChristchurchNZ board Therese Arseneau said the role required someone who could oversee a complex set of city priorities. ChristchurchNZ delivers a wide range of activities for Christchurch city, including business attraction, city promotion, business support, urban development, the region’s film office and the Christchurch Antarctic Office.

“We ran a rigorous search that attracted a wide field of local, national, and international applicants. While many were outstanding, Alison stood out for her senior leadership experience in both the public and private sectors, her strategic thinking, a strong track record of delivery and her experience in managing complex stakeholder relationships,” said Arseneau.

“I also want to thank interim CE Laura Dawson and Executive Director Paul Bingham for stepping up to lead, as well as the senior leadership team for their united support to maintain the agency’s momentum in the interim period.”

Adams will begin as the chief executive of ChristchurchNZ on February 8, 2022.

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