Katie Nimon has been selected as National's candidate in Napier for the 2020 general election.

She will go up against incumbent Napier MP Stuart Nash.

Nimon is currently the general manager of her family's 115-year-old bus company, Nimon Luxury Passenger Transport, based in Hawke's Bay and Taupo.

She has been working in the business since she was 14.


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The National Party said it was thrilled someone like Nimon, who has immense experience in business and regional tourism, has put their hand up.

"I'm incredibly excited to be selected as the National Party's candidate for Napier and I'm looking forward to getting out and earning Napier's trust," Nimon said.

Nimon has an Executive MBA and a bachelor's degree in Design from Massey University, and a Diploma in Performance from Trinity College London.

"I know small businesses and I know our community. Right now it's hurting," she said.

She will come up against current Napier MP and Labour candidate Stuart Nash. Photo / File
She will come up against current Napier MP and Labour candidate Stuart Nash. Photo / File

"But Northern Hawke's Bay is hard working and determined, and National is right there behind you, backing you, and we will get the Bay working again."

Nimon's first career was in advertising in Auckland, attempting to earn her stripes in the prestigious Clemenger Group Graduate Programme.

She returned to the family business in 2015, to take up the position of marketing manager and in 2018 became the general manager.


In the same year she was recognised as an ambassador for tourism in Hawke's Bay at the annual tourism awards.

This is the National Party's fourth different Napier electorate candidate.

Napier's last National MP Chris Tremain (2005-2014) and unsuccessful Wayne Walford (2014) and David Elliot (2017) are understood to have not sought the opportunity again.

Napier is one of the oldest electorates, having retained its name since first contested in 1861, although the boundaries have changed regularly and in 2008 boundaries were extended to include Wairoa.

Of the four electorates in the Hawke's Bay Today's circulation area, National had previously confirmed former Hastings mayor Lawrence Yule as the candidate to seek a second term in the Tukituki electorate since succeeding departing MP Craig Foss in 2017.

Reports in March said three people were seeking the Wairarapa nomination amid the announced retirement from Parliament of current MP Alastair Scott, but the naming of a new candidate is still a few weeks away, a party spokesperson said.

National is again not standing candidates in the Māori electorates, including Ikaroa-Rawhiti where sitting Labour MP Meka Whaitiri is in for re-election, with an expected significant contest with Māori Party candidate, IronMaori founder and Hawke's Bay District Health Board member Heather Te Au Skipworth.

The election is currently set for September 19, and could be delayed by the Covid-19 crisis.


Nominations have not opened yet, but those already confirmed by parties are:

Napier (includes Wairoa): Labour Party, Stuart Nash (current MP); National Party, Katie Nimon; Green Party, James Crow; New Conservative, Deborah Burnside.

Tukituki (includes Hastings, Havelock North, Flaxmere): National Party, Lawrence Yule (current MP); Labour Party, Anna Lorck; Green Party, Chris Perley.

Wairarapa (includes Central Hawke's Bay, Dannevirke): Labour Party, Kieran McAnulty (List MP).

Ikaroa Rawhit (East Coast, Hawke's Bay, Wairarapa): Labour Party, Meka Whaitiri (current MP); Māori Party, Heather Te Au Skipworth; Outdoors Party, Kelly Thurston.