After eight and a half years at the helm Northlander Graeme Ramsey will step down as CEO of the Problem Gambling Foundation in January to run a charity in Ghana with his wife.

Mr Ramsey announced earlier this year that he would not be seeking re-election as Kaipara's representative on the Northland Regional Council at October's local body elections and he has now resigned from his role at the head of Problem Gambling Foundation (PGF).

He and wife Josie will be leaving the country in January for 12 months to run an English charity in Ghana - - returning to New Zealand in February 2018.

"This has been a momentous but also deeply satisfying role. It has been an honour to lead a team so dedicated to building healthier communities and prepared to challenge the power of the gambling industry," Mr Ramsey said.


"It is time for new energy leading PGF and a new adventure for me. I am pleased to be leaving PGF in such a strong position and with exciting possibilities ahead."

The PGF board will launch a national and international search for a successor in August aiming to have a new CEO in place later this year. The PGF board thanked Mr Ramsey - a former mayor of the Kaipara - for his leadership and contribution to communities.

Board chairman Richard Northey said Mr Ramsey would be greatly missed.