Four mayoral candidates, 25 potential councillors for Marlborough


Pat O'Sullivan, council candidate.

Gerald Hope, council candidate.

Jenny Andrews, council candidate

Alan Straker, council candidate.

Cyril Dawson, council candidate.

Michael Fitzpatrick, council candidate

Cynthia Brooks, council candidate

Diane Ryan, council candidate

Mark Peters, council candidate

Brian Dawson, council candidate

Graham Hill, council candidate.

John Davis, mayoral candidate

Gary Hildyard, council candidate

Peter Chapman, council candidate

Jamie Arbuckle, council candidate

Nadine Taylor, council candidate.

David Oddie, council candidate.

John Leggett, mayoral and council candidate

Terry Sloan, council candidate

Colin King, mayoral candidate

Council candidate Laressa Shenfield.

Laurence Etheredge, council candidate.

Trevor Hook, council candidate

Tim Crawford, council candidate.

Council candidate Priscilla Cuddon.

Council candidate Geoff Evans

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From boatbuilders to accountants, meet the candidates throwing their hats into the ring to sit on the Marlborough District Council:

Mayoral candidates

John Davis

John ran Colonial Real Estate, now Harcourts, from 1984 till 2008, and prior to that had his own building business for 15 years. He was a member of Blenheim Round Table for 14 years, and was a national executive position. His priorities are ensuring Marlborough's townships get clean drinking water, working with primary industry to grow Marlborough, and uniting council and youth development.

John Leggett

Current Blenheim Ward councillor John has said running for mayor is the logical next step for him, and he wants to solve some of the "positive problems" the district has, such as having the social infrastructure in place for people wanting to come to Marlborough to work. He says his leadership style is open to negotiation and robust debate, and he would like to see councillors taking more responsibility in decision-making.

Brian Dawson

Brian, who is also standing for the Blenheim ward, has said attracting new people to the area is one of his priorities. Brian has said he would work with the Marlborough Chamber of Commerce, Federated Farmers and the Marlborough Research Centre in a "matching service" to help skilled people that moved to the region but struggled to find employment.

Colin King

Colin, who served as Kaikoura MP from 2005 to 2014, has said Marlborough deserves a mayor equally attuned to business and central government as they were to the needs of the local community. "We need a mayor who is able to unite council to be ambitious for everyone living in Marlborough, and everyone who would love to live in Marlborough but cannot due to lack of well-paid jobs."

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Council candidates

Marlborough Sounds Ward (three vacancies)

Laurence Etheredge

Laurence has been chairman of the French Pass Residents Association for the past eight years, and has a background in the wine industry, boatbuilding, and working with at-risk children. Etheredge currently runs Steadfast Traditional Sail, a charter sailboat business, and he also assists with the management of the DOC French Pass camping ground.

Trevor Hook

Trevor co-owns Te Mahia Bay Resort in the Marlborough Sounds with his wife, and has been sitting on the council for six years. He initiated the council's Smart and Connected strategy for Marlborough. He is also the chairman of the Sounds Advisory Group, the small townships subcomittee, and the co-chairman of the Picton Regional Forum. Trevor is chairman of the regional planning and development committee, responsible for the Environment Plan.

David Oddie

David, a businessman and current councillor, is co-chairman of the Picton Regional Forum, and is a trustee of the Marlborough Sounds Restoration Trust. He is the chairman of the hearings committee, deputy chairman of the environment committee, and is on the community and finance committee. He is the only Marlborough Sounds councillor based in Picton.

Nadine Taylor

Nadine runs commercial fishing company Legacy Fishing. She helped set up Picton Foodbank, and has been a member of Marlborough Marine Futures. She has also served on her children's early learning and school boards.

Pat O'Sullivan

Pat has sat on the council twice before, in 2004 and in 2007. He is a farmer and is the forestry spokesman for Marlborough Federated Farmers. He has also been the branch president and the meat and fibre chairman, and he is a member of the Tua Marina Waikakaho Residents and Ratepayers' Association. While on the council he was heavily involved in the assets and services committee.

Wairau-Awatere Ward (three vacancies)

Cynthia Brooks

Cynthia has been sitting on the council for three years, and is also a trustee on the Upper Wairau Cemetery Trust. She is a self-employed writer and editor and dedicates most of her time to her work with the council.

Geoff Evans

Geoff, a high country farmer, has been on the council for six years. He has been involved in the Water Allocation Working Group and the Flaxbourne Community Irrigation Scheme Governance Group, as well as being deputy chairman of the council's assets and services committee and regional transport committee. Outside of council, he started a rural advisory group for Wairau-Awatere farmers.

Tim Crawford

Tim is a real estate agent with New Zealand Sotheby's International Realty. He has been president of Garden Marlborough in the past and the chairman of the Marlborough Wine and Food Festival, director of Wine Marlborough, and involved in the Marlborough Marketing and Development Board and Destination Marlborough. He was also involved in the Edwin Fox Society. Prior to becoming a real estate agent he was involved in the wine industry.

Colin King

Colin was the National MP for Kaikoura between 2005 and 2014, and is chairman of the Marlborough Rural Advisory Group and patron of the Pelorus Area Health Trust. He is also part of St Mark's Charitable Foundation, and on the Picton Seaport Trust. He is a foundation member of the Percy Street support house for people with mental illness. He has also served on the NZ Meat Board. While in Parliament he was chairman of two select committees.

Gerald Hope

Gerald was Marlborough mayor for three years, between 1998 and 2001. He was also on the council from 2004 to 2010. He is currently chief executive at the Marlborough Research Centre and is an elected member of the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board. Other community associations Gerald has been involved in include the Rarangi Residents Association, and the Tua Marina school committee.

Blenheim Ward (seven vacancies)

Jenny Andrews

Jenny has sat on the council for more than 10 years, and was deputy mayor for a number of years. She works as a bereavement counsellor with Geoffrey T Sowman Funeral Directors and Monumental Masons, and is also a marriage celebrant and a Justice of the Peace. She is involved in local organisations including the Marlborough Historical Society. Jenny is chairwoman of the grants sub-committee.

Jamie Arbuckle

Jamie, an orchardist, is running for re-election after sitting on the council for two terms. Jamie grew up in Marlborough on an orchard in Rapaura. He is involved in coaching his children's sports teams but most of his time is devoted to the council. He is the chairman of the animal control committee.

Peter Chapman

Peter, who has lived in Marlborough for 10 years, is self-employed and has more than 35 years' experience in the corporate world. He has a background in sales, marketing, product and brand development, contract management and strategic planning.  He was chairman of Lifeline Marlborough and on the interim Board of Lifeline New Zealand.

Priscilla Cuddon

Priscilla has worked for Selmes Garden Centre for more than six years. She was secretary for the Central JAB Rugby Club for eight or nine years and is a member of the Spring Creek Ratepayer's Association. She was also community spokeswoman for the Grovetown and Spring Creek sewerage scheme, and has been involved in Parent Teacher Associations.

Brian Dawson

Brian is a current councillor, first elected in 2013. He was the general manager of the Marlborough Chamber of Commerce for three years, and worked in banking for 22 years. He runs Gist Communication Services Ltd with his wife, and is also a part-time electricity broker. He is on the Marlborough Life Education Trust and is a past president of the Blenheim Rotary Club.

Cyril Dawson

Cyril was on the Board of Trustees at Blenheim School for 5 years as property manager, and is currently president of the Clubs of Marlborough golf section. He has lived in Blenheim for 43 years.

Michael Fitzpatrick

A Blenheim Business Association committee member, Michael has owned and operated an electrical applicance store in Marlborough for the last 28 years. He has also owned two local preschools and has been a director of the Appliance Network Society, and a committee member of Central Rugby Club and Marlborough JAB rugby.

Gary Hildyard

Gary retired as Redwoodtown School principal at the end of last year. He has also taught at Marlborough schools Bohally Intermediate and Renwick School, and was principal at schools in Southland and Canterbury. He has worked in the education sector since the 1970s. He is a member of the Marlborough Singers, and is involved in golf, and the secretary for the Nelson Marlborough Eagles golf club.

Graham Hill

Graham is a self-employed barrister and solicitor, originally from Christchurch. He practised commercial law in Wellington for 10 years before moving to Marlborough with his family.

John Leggett

John is a partner at Wisheart McNab and Partners law firm, where he has worked for 30 years. He has sat on the council for two terms and is head of the community and finance committee. John is honorary solicitor at the Marlborough Historical Society, and a member of the Marlborough Tennis Club. He has worked as a lawyer in other centres around the South Island. He describes running for the mayoralty as the next step for him.

Mark Peters

Mark is a consultant at Peters Doig Chartered Accountants, and was a senior partner in the firm for 30 years. He was on the New Zealand Rugby Union board for eight years as their financial director, and has also been on the Highlanders board. He was involved with Grove Mill Winery, now Foley Family Wines, for 17 years, and he has been national and international president of the Round Table association.

Diane Ryan

Diane was financial and risk management auditor for Auckland Council, and describes herself as an experienced businesswoman with a finance, audits, and compliance background. She currently works as an accounts manager for a Marlborough-based trust. She has worked at Auckland University and Housing New Zealand in finance roles in the past.

Laressa Shenfield

Laressa has been sitting on the council for three years, and sits on the community and finance committee. She sits on the Youth Council and is a certified Resource Management Act commissioner. Laressa is chair of the Dillons Point Community Playgroup and a member of the Marlborough Violence Intervention Programme. She is also involved in Positive Aging. She has a background in marketing and relationship management.

Terry Sloan

Terry is the current deputy mayor, and has sat on the council for two terms. He owns Biddy Kate's Irish Bar and Backpackers. Terry is chairman of the assets and services committee,and chairman of the regional transport committee, and sits on the regional planning and development committee. Terry is also chairman of Bike Walk Marlborough.

Alan Straker

Alan, who retired from Whitney Street School last year, was an executive for the Marlborough Principals' Association for 28 years and involved with the Marlborough Primary School Sports Association for 30 years. In his spare time he coaches rugby referees.

 - The Marlborough Express


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