Top Oz editor takes on Bay role

DOUG LAING
The new editor of Hawke's Bay Today comes with all the right credentials, including a love affair with the region before she even starts the job.
She's 42-year-old Natalie Gauld, currently based in Ipswich, near Brisbane, as editor-in-chief of Queensland Times Metropolitan Group.
Like Hawke's Bay Today, it is owned by APN.
Ms Gauld is APN Australia's 2008 Editor of the Year.
She replaces Louis Pierard, editor since 2001 and veteran of 32 years in the newspaper industry in Hawke's Bay.
The new appointment was announced to staff by APN New Zealand group executive editor Rick Neville and Hawke's Bay Newspapers general manager Matthew Sherry.
She was introduced to staff in Hastings yesterday, during three days in Hawke's Bay looking for a new home and scoping high-school opportunities for daughter Laura.
Ms Gauld formally takes up the position on October 16, and will be joined in Hawke's Bay by partner Stephen, an enrolled nurse, who will also be seeking a job in the region.
It was the family's effusive response to a holiday visit to Hawke's Bay last October which led to her appointment.
Having fallen for New Zealand on her first visit in 2005, taking in Taupo, Waitomo and Rotorua, she came back to see Hawke's Bay and made no secret of the fact that she would love to live in the area.
"Each time we've been here," she said, "we've said we could live here.
"I can't see why anybody would not want to live here. It's such a beautiful part of the world."
She was not put off at the time by the nationwide, fever-pitch analysis of New Zealand's demise at the Rugby World Cup.
It was balanced by seeing the Kangaroos walloping the Kiwis at rugby league in her "introduction to The Cake Tin" in Wellington before flying home.
A keen netballer, although no longer playing, the October visit was also an introduction to New Zealand's passion for rugby and sports generally.
That would suit Ms Gauld's partner whom she described as a "sports fanatic", especially if there was an AFL or rugby league match on the screen.
It is a history-making appointment.
Ms Gauld is the first woman editor in more than 150 years of daily newspapers in the Napier-Hastings area.
She will be the third editor of Hawke's Bay Today, which was formed by the merger of Napier's Daily Telegraph and Hastings' Hawke's Bay Herald Tribune in May 1999.
All of her 22 years in the newspaper industry have been on publications with a heavy local focus.
Ms Gauld started her career in 1986 as a cadet reporter at the Townsville Bulletin.

She had senior roles at the Morning Bulletin in Rockhampton, the Toowoomba Chronicle, and the Warwick Daily News before becoming editor of the Queensland Times.
Mr Sherry, who has worked for APN Australia, said her contribution to newspapers was best highlighted by the positive turnaround in circulation at the Queensland Times in 2007 and 2008.
"We are delighted to attract a person with such a strong newspaper background," he said.
"We are looking forward to her putting her stamp on Hawke's Bay Today," Mr Sherry said.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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