The Otago Conservation Board has 11 members appointed by the Minister of Conservation. Find out more about the current members of the Board.

Tara Druce of Alexandra (Chairperson)

Appointment term: 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2021

Tara has a background in tourism public policy and research, having been a Senior Research Advisor in the Ministry of Tourism. Now living in Alexandra, she is a self-employed planning consultant, working on tourism, community development, recreation and heritage projects at local, regional and national levels. She is seen as holding highly productive and pro-active relationships in the community.

Dr Philippa Agnew of Oamaru

Appointment term: 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2021

Philippa is a research scientist with Tourism Waitaki at the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony. She has a PhD in marine science, specialising in seabirds, and has extensive experience in environmental management, including maintenance, population management, spatial planning and conservation. She has detailed knowledge around protected species and Marine Protected Areas, and was a member of the South East Marine Protection Forum.

Kimberley Collins of Dunedin

Appointment term: 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2021

Kimberley is a science communicator and conservationist who specialises in using digital media to engage people with conservation and the environment. She runs her own business and works part time for the Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition. Having previously worked with Forest & Bird, Zealandia Ecosanctuary, and other conservation organisations, she has a strong understanding of conservation at a local and national level.

Taylor Davies-Colley of Dunedin

Appointment term: 7 July 2020 to 30 June 2023

Taylor is a Master’s student in Science and is involved in various environmental research projects. He has experience working alongside local iwi on conservation projects in Dunedin and University of Otago’s Science Wananga Programme.

Ranui Ellison Collins of Dunedin

Appointment term: 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2023

Ranui is the Ngāi Tahu Representative on the Otago Conservation Board. Ranui grew up in Dunedin, attending Queens High School and recently graduated from Otago University with a Bachelor of Commerce in Economics, a Bachelor of Arts in Indigenous Development and a Diploma of Languages enforced in Mandarin.  Ranui's interests include venturing out to areas and building on her knowledge of indigenous species. 

Dean Fraser of Dunedin

Appointment term: 7 July 2020 to 30 June 2021

Dean is a Ngāi Tahu nominee. He is a General Manager at Silver Ferns Farms. He has previously held a variety of roles both with Ngāi Tahu Development Corporation and as the Chair of Ōtākou Papatipu Rūnaka. He is skilled in strategic direction, operational delivery, and risk management.

Donald Lousley of Wanaka

Appointment term: 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2021

Donald is currently self-employed in several roles, including landscape and wildlife photographer. He has extensive outdoor experience in New Zealand with skills including, bushcraft, avalanche control, mountaineering, and trap installation and monitoring. He was previously employed by the Department of Conservation over summer periods from 2014-2017, looking after huts, tracks and people in Mt Aspiring National Park, and predator control and bird monitoring.

Jen Rodgers of Waitati

Appointment term 7 July 2020 to 30 June 2023

Jen is a Sustainable Practice Advisor at Otago Polytechnic. She is active in working with communities to increase knowledge of biodiversity and climate issues. She has a Bachelor of Science and a Graduate Diploma in Sustainable Practice.

Robyn Shanks of Catlins

Appointment term: 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2022

Robyn is a sheep and beef farmer with 37 years’ experience. She has a direct involvement and interest in the coastal environment and cultural awareness through employment by the Māori Land Trust at the Cathedral Caves. She has knowledge of the impact of tourism and farming on conservation land and the environment.

Dave Vass of Wanaka

Appointment term: 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2023

Dave has been an enthusiastic adventurer for over 30 years, especially as a mountaineer/climber mainly throughout the southern mountain areas of Fiordland and Otago. He is the co-founder of New Zealand’s first canyoning company based in Wanaka and believes that smaller-scale tourism ventures have a particular ability to interact with nature in a meaningful and sustainable way.

Robert Wardle of Alexandra

Appointment term: 7 July 2020 to 30 June 2023

Robert is a self-employed Ecological Contractor and runs a walnut orchard at Galloway. He has excellent understanding of pastoral lease land and tenure review and has built relationships with a wide range of stakeholders, private landowners, and NGO’s. He is a Regional Representative for the QEII National Trust.  


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