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Carol: Who is the greatest personal influence as you embark on this election campaign?

Rehette: I don’t have to think twice – its my Mum and Dad. From my Mum, who was a stay-at home Mother of 4 kids and very involved in our community, I learned about hard work. “Whatever you decide to do – do it well or don’t even start.”

And my Dad had the best attitude to life – he used to say “Life can give you a cactus, but you don’t have to sit on it!”. He also taught me “bloom where you are planted” – for me this is Gisborne.

 Carol: Tell me something about yourself that might surprise other people.

Rehette: I have run four marathons. Whilst I’m not what you’d call handy in the kitchen, I do make a mean cheesecake.  Its ironic that I have ended up living on the other side of the world from my family: as a child I was a real home body and what you’d call clingy.

Carol: Name one person, dead or alive, that you’d like to walk on the beach and have a korero/conversation with.

Rehette:There are 3 people and 3 different conversations. Barrack Obama – I love his humbleness. Nelson Mandela – a unique leader and so gracious despite what he suffered. Dame Whina Cooper – Her wise words “Take care of our children. Take care of what they hear: take care of what they feel. For how the children grow, so will be the shape of Aotearoa”  really resonate with me.

Carol: What is the trait you most dislike in yourself?

Rehette: I am a night owl and I always have been. I have tried many times to turn the light out at 10.30, and get up early but it just never works. I end up looking like a corpse and reverting to my old ways.

 Carol:  How do you relax?

Rehette: I love to run – usually with my husband Deon. As a family, we all love to read although I must say with all the reading that comes with being on the council, my pleasure-reading is much less these days. I am equally happy with a quiet time at home or having coffee with girlfriends.

Carol: Young people are becoming more vocal with their concerns about the future impact of climate change. Do you think the council has a role in responding to them?

Rehette: Absolutely – in three areas.

(i) We find ourselves on the one hand, working to reduce the carbon footprint at a local level, and on the other hand contributing to the carbon footprint when we build roads from fossil- based fuel products when we have no sustainable alternative at this time. We must keep talking and learning so a balance is achieved.

(ii) Small leadership stuff at an operational level – for example moving to an electric vehicle fleet, ensuring that we are operating our business from insulated buildings.

(iii) Planning  – developing a spatial plan around new neighbourhoods avoiding ocean-side developments; futureproofing assets and infrastructure especially against storm damage and; modernising the district plan with a climate change lens.

Carol:  Your task is to write the Job Description for Mayor of Gisborne. What are your 3 most important Key Performance Indicators and how could their delivery be measured?

Rehette:

KPI 1: With the Councillors and residents, set the strategic direction for the region.

Measurement: Feedback from the community via the annual community meetings, via front desk encounters and emails to the council website, and via direct encounters lets us know that residents believe council is doing what they said they would, on time and on budget.

KPI 2: Lead the Council

Measurement: Councillors are clear about the shared/agreed values of the council and the direction being followed. There is positive publicity in the local paper that the job is being well done. Council performance lifts. Councillor performance is excellent.

KPI 3: Advocate for people in our region.

Carol: Who is the greatest personal influence as you embark on this election campaign?

Rehette: I don’t have to think twice – its my Mum and Dad. From my Mum, who was a stay-at home Mother of 4 kids and very involved in our community, I learned about hard work. “Whatever you decide to do – do it well or don’t even start.”

And my Dad had the best attitude to life – he used to say “Life can give you a cactus, but you don’t have to sit on it!”. He also taught me “bloom where you are planted” – for me this is Gisborne.

 Carol: Tell me something about yourself that might surprise other people.

Rehette: I have run four marathons. Whilst I’m not what you’d call handy in the kitchen, I do make a mean cheesecake.  Its ironic that I have ended up living on the other side of the world from my family: as a child I was a real home body and what you’d call clingy.

Carol: Name one person, dead or alive, that you’d like to walk on the beach and have a korero/conversation with.

Rehette:There are 3 people and 3 different conversations. Barrack Obama – I love his humbleness. Nelson Mandela – a unique leader and so gracious despite what he suffered. Dame Whina Cooper – Her wise words “Take care of our children. Take care of what they hear: take care of what they feel. For how the children grow, so will be the shape of Aotearoa”  really resonate with me.

Carol: What is the trait you most dislike in yourself?

Rehette: I am a night owl and I always have been. I have tried many times to turn the light out at 10.30, and get up early but it just never works. I end up looking like a corpse and reverting to my old ways.

 Carol:  How do you relax?

Rehette: I love to run – usually with my husband Deon. As a family, we all love to read although I must say with all the reading that comes with being on the council, my pleasure-reading is much less these days. I am equally happy with a quiet time at home or having coffee with girlfriends.

Carol: Young people are becoming more vocal with their concerns about the future impact of climate change. Do you think the council has a role in responding to them?

Rehette: Absolutely – in three areas.

(i) We find ourselves on the one hand, working to reduce the carbon footprint at a local level, and on the other hand contributing to the carbon footprint when we build roads from fossil- based fuel products when we have no sustainable alternative at this time. We must keep talking and learning so a balance is achieved.

(ii) Small leadership stuff at an operational level – for example moving to an electric vehicle fleet, ensuring that we are operating our business from insulated buildings.

(iii) Planning  – developing a spatial plan around new neighbourhoods avoiding ocean-side developments; futureproofing assets and infrastructure especially against storm damage and; modernising the district plan with a climate change lens.

Carol:  Your task is to write the Job Description for Mayor of Gisborne. What are your 3 most important Key Performance Indicators and how could their delivery be measured?

Rehette:

KPI 1: With the Councillors and residents, set the strategic direction for the region.

Measurement: Feedback from the community via the annual community meetings, via front desk encounters and emails to the council website, and via direct encounters lets us know that residents believe council is doing what they said they would, on time and on budget.

KPI 2: Lead the Council

Measurement: Councillors are clear about the shared/agreed values of the council and the direction being followed. There is positive publicity in the local paper that the job is being well done. Council performance lifts. Councillor performance is excellent.

KPI 3: Advocate for people in our region.

Measurement: In regard to matters that are not under direct control of council yet influence progress here (eg the rail) the council voice in advocacy is heard. Feedback from the community is that people are aware of the role council is playing in advocating for us with central government and other external organisations.

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