Media release

ORC General Manager Strategy, Policy and Science to depart for Australia

Wednesday 19 January 2022

Otago Regional Council General Manager Strategy, Policy and Science Gwyneth Elsum is stepping down from her role to return to Australia.

Ms Elsum will be finishing up with the ORC in mid-March.

ORC Chief Executive Sarah Gardner thanked Ms Elsum for her contribution over the last two years.

“Gwyneth has made a huge contribution in her role and we are immensely grateful for her leadership, particularly around the Land and Water Regional Plan and the Regional Policy Statement. She helped ORC to make strides in these complex areas and Otago is better off for her input, but we understand the difficult decision she has made to return overseas.”

Ms Elsum said she made the decision to move back to Australia with mixed feelings.

“It is always very hard to leave a passionate, hard-working group of people like those in the ORC Strategy, Policy and Science Group, but ultimately the pull of family, friends and opportunities back across the ditch – and the current challenges of closed borders – all factored into my decision.

“I am very proud of the progress and momentum we have gained, particularly over the last twelve months, and I’m sad I won’t be able to celebrate further successes with the team in future,” Ms Elsum said.

ORC will begin recruitment for a replacement shortly, and Ms Elsum’s departure is not expected to impact the delivery of the new Land and Water Regional Plan for Otago, due to be notified by December 2023. This work is well underway, with consultation continuing in further parts of Otago from March and April.