Structure, Board and Senior Management


Incorporated under the Companies Act 1993, Ōtākaro is a Crown-owned company, listed under Schedule 4A of the Public Finance Act 1989 and subject to the Crown Entities Act 2004, the Official Information Act 1982 and the Ombudsman Act 1975. Its shareholders are the Minister of Finance and the Minister Supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration, who each hold 50% of the share capital.

Board of Directors  

The Board is committed to a high standard of corporate governance and regulatory compliance in guiding and monitoring the Company’s activities.

Peter Townsend, CNZM, Director

Peter Townsend is the former Chief Executive of the Canterbury Employers' Chamber of Commerce. He held that position from 1996 to 2017. The Chamber, as the largest business support agency in the South Island, concentrates on assisting members to improve their enterprises; ensuring members can operate in a business friendly environment; and encouraging new levels of business activity.

Peter holds several directorships including Chair of the New Zealand Defence Employer Support Council, Director of Pegasus Health (Charitable) Ltd, Member of Callaghan Innovation Grants Committee and Board Member of the Air Force Museum Trust. He is a Trustee of the Canterbury Youth Development Programme and was a member of the CERA Transitional Advisory Board until December 2015.

Since 4 September 2010, and especially since 22 February 2011, Peter has been actively involved in earthquake recovery issues.

Peter is the Honorary Consul for Chile for the South Island, a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and a Fellow of the Institute of Management. Peter has a BSc (Hons) and a post Graduate Diploma in Business and in May 2014 Lincoln University made Peter an Honorary Doctor of Commerce for his services to business. In 2013 Peter received the Individual Leadership Award at the AUT Business School Excellence in Business Support Awards. In December 2013 Peter was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Miriam Dean CNZM, QC Director

Miriam Dean has 35 years of legal experience as a former partner of law firm Russell McVeagh and is a long-standing member of the independent bar in resolving commercial disputes with an emphasis on competition and consumer laws. She was president of the New Zealand Bar Association from 2011 to 2012.

With 20 years of governance experience, Miriam is also the current chair of both New Zealand on Air and the Banking Ombudsman Scheme, as well as a director of Crown Fibre Limited and the Royal New Zealand Ballet Company. Past directorships include deputy chair of Auckland Council Investments and a member of the Auckland Transition Authority. 

Miriam chaired the Government Inquiry into the Whey Protein Concentrate Contamination Incident (the Fonterra botulism scare).  More recently, Miriam facilitated and reported to the Government on, discussions with engineers for the Church Property Trustees and the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust on engineering options for repair, restoration or replacement of ChristChurch Cathedral

Corinne Haines, CNZM, Director

Corinne Haines, the Managing Director of Trimble Navigation New Zealand Limited, has more than 40 years’ business experience and has been at the helm of Trimble since 2003. Christchurch born, Corinne has a passion for the city and the opportunities and lifestyle it provides for residents. She was named a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to business in 2016 New Year’s Honours. 

senior leadership team  

The Senior Leadership Team supervises and oversees the day-to-day operational activities of the Company:

John Bridgman - Chief Executive

John has over 35 years’ experience in engineering and project management roles across Australasia and Asia. Before joining Ōtākaro in August 2018 John was Industry Director – Civil Infrastructure with AECOM Australia. This position involved leading AECOM’s largest design alliance project globally as part of the A$12bn Melbourne Metro Project. A New Zealander, John was primarily based in Auckland before relocating to Christchurch.

John O’Hagan - General Manager Development

John and his team are responsible for the safe and effective delivery of the Anchor Projects. John has been involved in the Canterbury earthquake recovery from the outset. A chartered professional structural engineer, John flew into Christchurch on an Air Force jet to assess damaged buildings as part of the Civil Defence volunteer response. He left his Wellington-based agency to join CERA as Lead Engineer in the Significant Buildings Group, overseeing the assessment and demolition of major buildings. He went on to be appointed Development Director for vertical anchor projects. John transferred to Ōtākaro in 2016 with his portfolio of projects before being appointed the Director for both vertical and horizontal projects. He became General Manager Development in 2017. 

Keith Beal - General Manager Strategy and Property Opportunities

Keith will be known to many Cantabrians through his work leading the restoration of earthquake damaged buildings in the Catholic Diocese of Christchurch which includes the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament on Barbadoes Street.  He has also worked extensively abroad, delivering projects for the BBC and Disney. Keith will be responsible for fostering collaboration between the private sector, community and the Government during the divestment of surplus Crown land in a way that balances good commercial outcomes with regeneration objectives.

Ruth Keating - General Manager Legal and Risk 
Ruth brings a wealth of experience in commercial law to this important position. A Cantabrian who studied at Canterbury University, Ruth worked at Meridian Energy and several large law firms in New Zealand, the UK and Australia before relocating from Melbourne to join Ōtākaro.
Curtis Mitchell - Chief Financial Officer

Curtis is a finance professional with extensive experience in financial reporting, budgeting and forecasting, taxation and compliance. Curtis spent most of his career in the private sector with the likes of Marriotts Ltd and House of Travel before he joined Ōtākaro in 2016.

Sue Squire - General Manager of People and Capability

With a range of projects at varying stages of completion, the nature of Ōtākaro Limited’s work is constantly evolving. Sue oversees the development, design and delivery of the People and Capability strategy including recruitment and change management within the company to ensure the company is fit for purpose. Sue is also responsible for the Ōtākaro Health Safety and Environment team, which works with both Ōtākaro staff and external contractors on site. Sue had over 20 years’ experience in Human Resources positions with large organisations such as Westpac, Meadow Mushrooms and most recently Lincoln University, before she joined Ōtākaro during its establishment in 2016.

Andrew Trevelyan - General Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Engagement

Andrew has more than 30 years’ experience in business communication, having held management roles at private and public organisations such as Tait Electronics and Landcare Research. Andrew is responsible for the organisation’s external and internal communication, and engagement activities.