Rotorua Trust’s new CEO Blair Gilbert brings ‘a wealth of skills and knowledge’ to new role

Rotorua Trust’s new chief executive officer Blair Gilbert officially takes over the role on October 2. Photo / Supplied

Rotorua Trust’s new chief executive officer Blair Gilbert, who has lived and worked in the area for a number of years, is set to take over the reins next month.

In a written statement trust chairman Stewart Edward said Gilbert, who officially takes over the role on October 2, brings “a wealth of skills and knowledge” to the position.

Edward said Gilbert had strong senior management experience in both government and community sectors and successfully led not-for-profit organisations to achieve both their vision and strategic outcomes.

“Blair has a significant understanding of the role and impact of the trust on our community – understandings which are critical in order for the trust to deliver great outcomes for Rotorua,” he said.

“His background is enormously relevant to the trust and its mahi, including his previous role as CEO of Tautoko Mai, in which he transformed a small not-for-profit organisation into one of New Zealand’s leading sexual harm support services.”

Gilbert had also held key leadership roles at the New Zealand Blind Foundation and Ministry of Youth Development, Edward said.

“Blair has a lifelong connection with Rotorua and its people, and he is passionate about positive community development. He is well poised to advance the strategic direction that has been set by trustees for the future, and we are looking forward to him joining the team.”

In the statement. Gilbert said he was “honoured” to be appointed to the role.

“I have profound respect for the trust and its vision for a vibrant and resilient Rotorua. I have the privilege of being born and bred here, so I relish the opportunity to lead an organisation that has played such a significant role in the community’s development.

“I look forward to working closely with the trustees, team, iwi and community members to support initiatives that enhance the quality and vibrancy of life within the Rotorua community.

“Having started my career at Te Waiariki Purea Trust, I am excited to once again be immersed in my home community, helping to create a healthy and positive place for us all,” Gilbert said.

Gilbert takes over the role from Jackie McCullough who resigned for family reasons. She was appointed the role last year following four years of being the trust’s grants manager. Before McCullough, Tony Gill led the trust until his resignation due to a battle with Motor Neuron Disease. Gill died in April last year.

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