• New Zealand Tourism Mavericks

Over the past 5 years we’ve been fortunate to work with some of NZ’s most inspiring and visionary Tourism professionals. People who go the extra mile, spearhead brave changes around business strategy and direction, and who really embrace digital and the positive growth that comes with it for their company or employer.

They’re New Zealand Tourism’s Mavericks, and, like us, they’re not afraid to do things a little differently. To celebrate our fifth birthday, we wanted to recognize eight tourism professionals really pushing the boat out for our industry.

Anna Rodgers, ZORB

Curious and not afraid to ask the hard questions, Anna’s depth of tourism industry knowledge across the board has helped her to stay true to OGO / ZORB’s unique positioning in the market. Post-acquisition, her commitment and drive to make ZORB into a total tourism powerhouse is invigorating.

Lily Craig, Hobbiton

Lily’s commitment to growth for Hobbiton on a long-term scale means she’s constantly thinking about various market conditions, distribution trends and unique opportunities for the brand to leverage. We love her holistic, detailed approach to marketing and customer delight from beginning to end – plus, she’s never afraid to push the boundaries of what’s possible in digital.

Holly Hatzilamprou, Trust Tairawhiti, Gisborne

Working with Holly means total attention to detail and commitment to doing a job incredibly well. Holly’s belief in new media and deep passion for helping to grow and develop operator skill and capability in the Gisborne region means she leaves no stone un-turned. She’s a force to be reckoned with and one of the key movers and shakers in tourism development.

Madeleine Peacock, Destination Fiordland

Being brave, embracing change and moving in a direction that hasn’t been explored before is something that has been handed down through generations. Madeleine recently embarked on an insight-driven brand positioning project for Fiordland – which is a completely new space for the small RTO – and the beginning of a new direction for Fiordland, which will have huge impact on the wider tourism community.

Lady Saifiti, Tamaki Maori Village

Setting the standard in cultural storytelling is what gets Lady up in the morning, and her unrelenting dedication to deepening the guest experience – at every touchpoint possible – is seriously inspiring. We love her appetite for new, cutting edge digital activations and the passion she has for ensuring Tamaki has a positive and long-lasting impact on the wider community.

Tony Boot, BTM

Tony’s passion and knowledge for NZ’s non-English speaking visitor markets – both domestic and international – is infectious, and unique. He’s a treasure trove of insights on a large chunk of our core visitor source market, and Tony is currently pushing the boundaries of what best practice looks like around digital marketing and visitor experience for these audiences.

Lou Baddiley, Whakarewarewa - The Living Maori Village*

Industry trends, unique positioning and new media for tourism are the things that get Lou excited. Her open mindedness and appetite for knowledge means any collaboration with Lou is full of energy and commitment to ROI. Lou spearheaded Whakarewarewa’s digital transformation – convincing key stakeholders to embrace best practice in the online space – and its this bravery and love for shaking up the status quo that makes her a Maverick in our eyes.

*Lou now works as Business Development Manager – International Markets for Destination Rotorua

Dylan Rushbrook, Tourism Talent

Not only has Dylan co-founded NZ’s first tourism-specialty recruitment company, but he’s also systematically changing the way that our industry attracts and recruits talented staff, and has become a thought leader around creating and growing happy, hardworking tourism teams. Dylan is making our industry think differently about team culture and human resources.