Our new Director of Communications and Engagement
03 February 2020
We’re incredibly lucky here at the NZGBC to work alongside some awesome people. We’re really excited to welcome Jennifer Whittle as our new Director of Communications and Engagement.
No doubt many of you will work alongside her in the coming months but to help break the ice we thought we’d sit down and invite Jen to introduce herself.
Tell us a bit about yourself
I was raised in North Queensland with a healthy diet of netball, touch football, gymnastics and sailing. I started out as a chartered accountant before working for a company specialising in land fill gas power generation which then also allowed me to transfer to London and use my British passport to stay for the next 10 years.
While I was there I developed a passion for brand and marketing working for Orange and France Telecom with responsibility for brand launches across Eastern and Western Europe. On returning to Sydney, I was offered the opportunity to join John Holland and then the Barangaroo Delivery Authority. It was there that I developed a healthy respect for engineers and their belief in building a legacy for the future – whether it was roads, rail, tunneling, building or construction.
I recently moved from Sydney to Auckland to join my husband. We live on a lifestyle block where I enjoy landscaping, trekking and mountain biking. We recently celebrated our wedding anniversary with a four day trek of the Abel Tasman which has sparked my interest in doing more of the Great Walks. In my spare time, I chase our three girls around schools, netball and water polo which has been a great way to meet other kiwi families.
Sounds like a busy time, what were you doing in Sydney?
My last role in Sydney was looking after External Communications at Sydney Water, leading the campaign to build awareness of the drought and the need to be waterwise across Greater Sydney. The campaign had to include multi-cultural communities so we were working in five languages. It’s with a heavy heart that I’m watching the impact of the drought, the ramping up of water restrictions, and the impact of the bush fires across Australia.
I wanted to join an organisation of like-minded people, driven by and focused on our purpose while also partnering with members focused on building a positive legacy for the future. The Zero Carbon Road Map by the NZGBC, and the recent introduction of the Zero Carbon Act present interesting opportunities and significant challenges for the building and construction industry. I’m excited to be a part of the journey.
Any fun facts we should know?
I recently made my magazine cover debut. After a four day walk of the Three Capes in Tasmania as a fundraiser for dental health, I made the cover of Victorian Dental Monthly with two friends. It helped that my teeth were on show for the shot.