27 February 2023
KiwiRail Chair David McLean has today announced former CentrePort CEO Liz Ward will be joining the KiwiRail Board on 1 May. Her appointment follows that of Rob Jager and Ed Sims who joined the Board earlier this year.
Welcoming the three new directors, Mr McLean noted the commercial acumen, operational expertise and strong governance experience that the three will bring to KiwiRail.
Rob Jager has a wealth of executive, industry and board experience, following a career of more than 43 years with Shell. There he served in a variety of executive roles, including Chairman and Vice President of the Shell Companies in New Zealand.
Amongst other directorships, Rob served as an independent non-executive director of Air New Zealand for nearly nine years, including as chair of the Board health, safety and security committee. Rob was awarded an Officer of New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) for his services to business and health and safety, holds a BE Mechanical Engineering (Hons), MBA (distinction), MAICD, and is a CMinstD, and FENZ.
Ed Sims brings almost 40 years' experience across a range of industries including aviation, logistics and transportation. He was CEO of New Zealand’s air traffic controller, Airways, as well as Canadian airline WestJet.
Ed holds BA/MA degrees from Oxford University and over the past decade, his board and governance experience has included organisations such as New Zealand Police, the office of the NZ Auditor General, the Canadian Business Council and as Global Chair of CANSO, the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation.
Liz Ward has extensive operational, contracting and commercial expertise gained across a diverse range of industries including large-scale infrastructure, transport, fisheries and telecommunications. She has more than 30 years’ experience as a CEO, senior executive and strategic advisor across these sectors.
Liz has held CEO roles with Gough Group, Kennards Hire and CentrePort Ltd and is an experienced company director gained across government, privately owned and regulated entities such as NSW Telco Authority and Moana (formerly Aotearoa Fisheries Ltd). She has an MBA and is currently a non-executive director of Service Stream Ltd, Ritchies Transport Holdings Ltd and Guide Dogs NSW/ACT.
“KiwiRail is undergoing a generational transformation,” says Mr McLean, “driven by an $8.6 billion investment to build network resilience and improve capacity for freight and passenger services. This will support customer growth and a lower carbon transport industry, delivering better outcomes for our people, our customers and our country.
“It’s fantastic to have directors of this calibre joining us at KiwiRail. I am confident that Rob, Ed and Liz will provide valuable insight and governance to KiwiRail as it delivers on its purpose to build stronger connections for a better New Zealand.”
Rob and Ed’s appointments are already in place, with Liz joining the Board on 1 May.