The Te Araroa Trail Trust has a new chief executive, former Canoe Racing NZ CEO Mark Weatherall.
The position had been vacant since inaugural chief executive Rob Wakelin stepped down in June last year after five years in the role.
Weatherall was CEO of Canoe Racing NZ for four years and has over 20 years of experience in the not-for-profit sector, with management roles in Surf Life Saving NZ and Poverty Bay Rugby.
After resigning, Wakelin said it was a privilege to be part of the Te Araroa. He said his biggest achievements in the role was seeing two new tracks built for the TA; the Puhoi Track and the Paekakariki Escarpment Track.
His advice to the new CEO?
“Spend as much time as you can on the ground, getting to know the people on the trail and the landowners involved.”
It comes as the TA experiences growing pains, with reports of a number of overflowing huts on the trail. Earlier this year, a farm manager whose land is crossed by the trail trespassed two walkers after becoming frustrated with the behaviour of TA walkers.