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 Associate Minister of Finance and the Minister for Land Information, 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.

Corinne Haines, CNZM, Chairperson

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. She is a fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand.

Christchurch born, Corinne has a passion for the city and the opportunities and lifestyle it provides for residents. She was awarded a special commendation at the 2014 Champion Canterbury Awards for her outstanding contribution to the Canterbury Community.

In 2015 she was a member of an Independent Panel which advised the Minister of Defence on the Defence White Paper 2015.

Corinne was named a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to business in the 2016 New Year’s Honours.

Peter Townsend, CNZM, Director

Peter is a former chief executive officer of The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce, a position he held for 21 years.

He is currently committed to governance roles, which are predominantly based in Christchurch.

He is an inaugural board member of Ōtākaro Limited and chairs the Audit and Risk Committee.

Peter is chair of Pegasus Health (Charitable) Limited and chair of Te Papa Hauora, The Health Precinct. He is also a board member of Warbirds over Wanaka Limited, and a member of the Royal New Zealand Air Force Museum Trust Board. He serves on the Callaghan Innovation Grants Committee.

He is a fellow of The Institute of Directors, a life member of The Otago University Students‘ Association, and a life member of The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce.

Peter is the Honorary Consul of Chile, for the South Island.

He has a BSc (Hons) and a Post Graduate Diploma of Business from Otago University. In 2014 Lincoln University awarded him an Honorary Doctorate of Commerce, in recognition of his services to the business community.

In 2013 Peter was made a Companion of The New Zealand Order of Merit.

Miriam Dean, CNZM QC, Director

Miriam Dean has 38 years of legal experience as a former partner of law firm Russell McVeagh and is a long-standing member of the independent bar. She was president of the New Zealand Bar Association from 2011 to 2012. She has conducted a number of inquiries and reviews, including chairing the Government’s Electricity Price Review from 2018 to 2019 and Auckland Council’s review of its council-controlled organisations in 2020.

With 25 years of governance experience, Miriam is the current chair of the Banking Ombudsman Scheme, as well as a director of the Real Institute of New Zealand. Past directorships include chair of NZ on Air, director of Crown Infrastructure Partners Limited, deputy chair of Auckland Council Investments and a member of the Auckland Transition Authority. 

Miriam facilitated and reported to the Government on discussions with engineers on options for the repair, restoration or replacement of ChristChurch Cathedral in 2017. She is also chair and a member, respectively, of the Legal Advisory Board and the Advisory Committee of the Greater Christchurch Earthquake Claims Resolution Service.

Miriam was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business and law in 2013.

Paul Blackler, Director

Paul Blackler is the New Zealand construction manager at Ryman Healthcare and has 38 years’ experience in the construction industry.

He was deputy chairman of the Building Practitioners Board from 2005 to 2012. The Board played a key role in shaping the licensing system for building practitioners, and hears appeals against licensing decisions and complaints against Licensed Building Practitioners.

Paul has been actively involved in the post-quake regeneration of Christchurch. He joined Citycare in 2013 to manage the Building Construction division, before taking up the leadership of Citycare Civil in 2015.

He was Chairman of the Citycare JFC Joint Venture which has delivered many of the city’s most significant civil projects and was a board member of SCIRT (Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team) from mid 2017 to early 2019.

Rod Carr, Director

Dr Carr has extensive experience in both public and private sector governance and leadership. He served as chair and non-executive director of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, having previously served as deputy governor and, for a time, acting governor of the Bank. Rod was the founding chair of the National Infrastructure Advisory Board and for over a decade was a non-executive director of the Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce.

He led the University of Canterbury as vice chancellor for ten years before retiring in February 2019, having substantially completed the recovery from the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011.

Rod is currently the chair of the Climate Change Commission and a director of ASB Bank Limited, as well as a trustee of the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust and of the Arts Centre of Christchurch.

Rod holds a PhD in insurance and risk management, an MA in applied economics and managerial science, an MBA in money and finance, and honours degrees in law and in economics.

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, with responsibility for AECOM’s involvement in several of Australia’s largest infrastructure projects. Prior roles had included MD of AECOM New Zealand, and leadership and governance roles on major infrastructure projects in New Zealand, Australia, Asia and the UK.

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 – Te Pae Operations

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.

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.

Sarah Fields - Acting General Manager Legal and Risk 

Sarah has over 20 years’ legal experience in both the UK and New Zealand. In London,  Sarah worked for Devonshires Solicitors LLP where she acted for social housing providers as well as large banks and financial institutions. On moving to Christchurch in 2005, she initially worked in private practice before moving in house and joining the legal team at Ōtākaro in August 2016. Since then Sarah has played a key role in leading the former Property and Operations team and now the Legal & Risk team which incorporates land divestment..