Badminton: Bay hub for yet another code

Badminton New Zealand will be based in Hawke's Bay, following the appointment of Joe Hitchcock as its new chief executive.

Badminton New Zealand becomes the second national sports organisation (NSO) to relocate to the region and be based at Sports House at the Pettigrew-Green Arena in Taradale.

Sport Hawke's Bay chief executive Colin Stone says although at first it was disappointing to lose a sports administrator of the calibre of Hitchcock as an employee, it's a coup to get another NSO based in the region.

"Joe has been a fantastic operations manager for Sport Hawke's Bay and it's great that he won't be lost to the region and it's an added benefit that Badminton New Zealand's new home will be here," Stone said.

Badminton NZ was previously based in Hamilton but Hitchcock was reluctant to move his young family from the Bay.

Roger Coleman, the first chief executive of the PG Arena has replaced Hitchcock as Sport HB's operations manager.

Coleman joins the Sport HB leadership team after terms as CEO with the Lakes Leisure complex in Queenstown and more recently a four-year stint as general manager of the Hawke's Bay Opera House.

"We are delighted to have secured the services of Roger, who is a highly-respected sport and recreation professional.

"The role of operations manager has a strong focus on quality service delivery across our sport, recreation, education and health programmes and we see Roger's appointment as critical in maintaining our reputation as one of New Zealand's top-performing Regional Sports Trusts," Stone said.

Coleman is thrilled to be part of the Sport HB team.

"It is great to be back in the sports sector again. Sport Hawke's Bay has been producing some amazing results over the past few years in sport and recreation across Hawke's Bay and it is very exciting to join the team.

Sport House is also the base for the New Zealand Pony Club, Sportnet, which is the collective network of 17 regional sports trusts, and is the regional offices for Gymsports NZ, Bike NZ, Surf Lifesaving NZ and Water Safety NZ.

Volleyball Hawke's Bay and the Kiwi Adventure Trust are also at Sports House.

"Sports House is a genuine regional hub for sports administration and offers opportunities to share best practise as well as share overheads.

"As sporting organisational structures change, it has been most noticeable how regional organisations are being replaced by national bodies, whether they are local offices or head offices.

"This is part of the on-going change for sports administration," Stone said.

He hopes the arrival of the Badminton NZ head office to the Bay will enable the sport and the regional sports trust to trial products and services locally, before taking them nationwide.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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