Chief Executive appointed – Regional Recovery Agency

Hawke’s Bay’s Regional Recovery Agency has confirmed the appointment of Ross McLeod as its new Chief Executive.
Mr. McLeod was previously the Chief Executive of Hastings District Council – a role he held until 2018 when he resigned to take up the role of General Manager (CEO) of Waverley Council in New South Wales, Australia. Mr. McLeod returned to Hawke’s Bay – and to the Hastings District Council – in 2021 and currently holds the role of Director, Future Growth with the Council.
Blair O’Keeffe, Independent Chair of the Recovery Agency’s Oversight Board, confirmed Mr. McLeod’s appointment to the role, which will take effect from Monday, 29 May.
“On behalf of the Oversight Board, I am very pleased to share the news of Ross McLeod’s appointment to the role of Chief Executive of the Regional Recovery Agency, which comes off the back of a very specific and targeted recruitment process.
“Ross comes to the Regional Recovery Agency with a huge amount of local Government experience from both here in New Zealand and overseas, and brings with him an extensive understanding of, and experience working with, the many key stakeholders from right across the region who will be critical to the delivery of a locally led recovery for Te-Matau-a-Māui Hawke’s Bay.”
Oversight Board member and Chair of Mana Ahuriri, Tania Eden, says Mr. McLeod’s strong connections across Te-Matau-a-Māui Hawke’s Bay will be invaluable in the role.
“Given Ross’ previous experience within Heretaunga/Hastings communities and his strong existing relationships across local Councils, within our communities and with our Māori, Iwi and Hapū partners, we’re confident that Ross’ appointment will enable the progression of this important mahi, helping to deliver certainty for impacted whanau right across the region.”
Mr. O’Keeffe recognised the excellent leadership provided by the Agency’s Interim Recovery Manager, Keriana Brooking, and said the timing is now right for Mr. McLeod to step into the more permanent Chief Executive role.
“Following her appointment to the Interim Recovery Manager role just over two months ago, Ms. Brooking has played a lead role in establishing the Regional Recovery Agency, and in supporting the transition from immediate response to short- and long-term recovery.
“We want to acknowledge Ms. Brooking’s leadership in what has been a highly complex and rapidly evolving situation, and we thank her not only for her tireless effort and hard mahi, but for her calm and inclusive approach to working alongside central and local Government, Māori, Iwi and Hapū, and industry as we work to deliver positive outcomes for the people of Hawke’s Bay.”
Mr. McLeod says he is looking forward to starting in the role, and to continuing the important work required to enable Hawke’s Bay to build back safer, stronger and smarter.
“The Regional Recovery Agency has a critical role to play in the recovery, providing the coordination and assurance required to bring local authorities, Government agencies, mana whenua, business, and community groups together to deliver a better future for Hawke’s Bay, and I look forward to continuing this important mahi in my capacity as Chief Executive.”
Mr. O’Keeffe confirmed a two-week handover period, enabling Ms. Brooking to support Mr. McLeod as he transitions into the role.
“Ross’ appointment is another major step forward for the Agency as it transitions from an interim arrangement with limited resources, to a small, but fully resourced and funded agency which can deliver on its mandate of ensuring there is a clear and comprehensive Regional Recovery Plan for Te-Matau-a-Maūi Hawke’s Bay.
“We are extremely grateful to Ms. Brooking for her ongoing support and advice over this transition period, and the Board and I look forward to working alongside Ross as he settles into the role.”
Click here for more information on the Regional Recovery Agency.
Media Release – 19 May 2023