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Another top award for NRC emerging leader



thumbnail Kane McElrea copy-363Working alongside Northland communities to tackle the region’s pest management problems has earned a top leadership award for Kane McElrea, the Northland Regional Council’s Biosecurity Manager – Partnerships and Strategy.

McElrea has won the coveted Brookfields Emerging Leader of the Year Award, made by the Society of Local Government Managers (SOLGM) to recognise an emerging leader (under 35 years) whose work has positively influenced community-based pest control initiatives.

It’s not the first time his outstanding leadership qualities have been recognised – last year he won the emerging leader award at the New Zealand Biosecurity Awards. He was recognised for his work in forging sustainable community and iwi-led biosecurity programmes, particularly to help protect Northland’s kiwi.

Kane says being able to support and work with Northlanders in their communities is what he enjoys, because they are the heart of the regional council’s work to restore and protect the region’s shared environment.

“We’re getting really encouraging results in a relatively short time – more kiwi and other native wildlife are returning to places where people are working collectively on pest control. There’s a lot of hard work going on at grass roots level right around the region and it’s great to see the positive results coming through.”

Among the community empowering initiatives he has introduced, or is part of, are Whangarei Predator Free, Kiwi Coast/NRC Partnership, Tiakina Whangarei and Project Pest Control.

Council chair Penny Smart says it’s great to see staff recognised for their work in biosecurity, which is such a vital part of the regional council’s work on behalf of the community.

“We have a very talented team working in this area where a number of national awards have been won for innovative initiatives introduced in recent years,” she says.

Kane McElrea, enjoys the community connection.

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