Rotorua's new economic growth agency has announced its chief executive.

Michelle Templer will head the Rotorua Lakes Council's new council controlled organisation (CCO) Rotorua Economic Development Ltd, operating as Destination Rotorua.

The CCO formed on July 1 is an amalgamation of the former economic growth CCO Grow Rotorua and the council's regional tourism organisation Destination Rotorua. The three functional areas of responsibility include business development, investment attraction and tourism growth.

Templer is currently working in Auckland as Coalition and Sector Manager for New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, and previously held positions as regional director and Consul Commercial for Australia and the Pacific and Trade Commissioner for the United Kingdom and Ireland.


Destination Rotorua board chairman Peter Stubbs said in a field of strong candidates Templer stood out because of her breadth of relevant experience.

"We are very pleased to have Michelle come on board. She comes with more than 20 years' experience working in New Zealand, Spain, the United Kingdom and Australia.

"Her roles have provided Michelle the opportunity to collaborate with top international executives and New Zealand companies to develop and implement strategies for business growth and transformation, and help strategic investors realise opportunities here in New Zealand," he said.

Templer's early career was in the travel and tourism sector and she maintains strong connection to farming and Agribusiness.

Templer said she was looking forward to leading the new CCO.

"I'm excited by the opportunity to drive the growth of Rotorua's visitor numbers, investors and businesses, ensuring it is recognised as a vibrant and desirable place to do business, live and visit.

"We also feel that Rotorua is an incredible place to give our children the opportunity to thrive and be part of a community. Over many years we have visited as a family and always found new and different experiences. The best thing is that no matter how far you ride, walk, run or bike you can always sink into the amazing natural hot springs and get up and go again the next day," she said.

Templer is replacing Mark Rawson who held the interim chief executive position for two years before departing in July 2016.


She will take up her appointment on October 31.