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Our executive leadership team

We are led by a group of ten people, who together, form the executive leadership team. They are jointly responsible for progressing our vision (Great Team, Best Central Bank) and for all strategic, financial, legal, operational and reputational matters.

The executive leadership team is focused on how we operate as a whole - across people, systems and processes, policy, and relationship management.

Introducing the team members 

Adrian Orr
Governor
Christian Hawkesby
Deputy Governor /General Manager Financial Stability
Simone Robbers
Assistant Governor /General Manager Strategy, Governance and Sustainability
John McDermott
Assistant Governor /General Manager Digital Solutions and Security
Juliet Tainui-Hernandez
Assistant Governor /General Manager Transformation, Innovation, People and Culture
Kate Kolich
Assistant Governor /General Manager Information, Data, and Analytics
Greg Smith
Assistant Governor /General Manager Finance and Commercial Operations
Sarah Owen
Assistant Governor /General Manager Risk, Compliance and Legal Services
Karen Silk
Assistant Governor/General Manager Economics, Financial Markets and Banking
Nigel Prince
Strategic Adviser

Adrian Orr

Governor

Adrian Orr

Adrian Orr is the Governor of the Reserve Bank. He was first appointed in March 2018 and has been reappointed for a second 5-year term effective from March 2023.

Adrian is New Zealand born and bred, and primarily of Cook Island and Irish descent. He is married to Sue, a novelist, and they have three adult children.

Adrian is a 1983 undergraduate of the University of Waikato (New Zealand) and a 1985 Masters graduate (with Distinction) from the University of Leicester (England).

Following his Masters, Adrian remained in the United Kingdom for three years working as a Research Associate and tutor at the City University Business School, in London.

Adrian returned to New Zealand in 1988 to take up the position of Research Economist at the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research before joining the Economics team at the National Bank of New Zealand the following year.

In 1992 Adrian moved to France to work as an economist at the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

After holding this role for three years, Adrian returned to New Zealand and worked for a short time as a Chief Analyst at The Treasury, before returning to the National Bank as Chief Economist.

Adrian was appointed Chief Manager of the economics team at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand in 1997, providing core economic and policy advice to the Governor.

Between 2000 and 2003 he served as Chief Economist for Westpac Banking Corporation.

This was followed by a four year stint as Deputy Governor and Head of Financial Stability of the Reserve Bank through to 2007.

From 2007 until his appointment as Governor, Adrian held the position of Chief Executive Officer at the Guardians of the New Zealand Superannuation Fund. The Fund has won a variety of international awards for investment, responsible investing, and leadership.

Read Adrian's full bio

Christian Hawkesby

Deputy Governor/General Manager Financial Stability

Christian Hawkesby

Christian has been with Te Putea Matua since 2019. Prior to his appointment as Deputy Governor/General Manager Financial Stability Group, Christian was the Assistant Governor and General Manager of Economics, Financial Markets and Banking.

Christian was also part of the team that established Harbour Asset Management, which was awarded Morningstar New Zealand Fund Manager of the Year in 2014, 2016 and 2017.

Before this, Christian spent nine years at the Bank of England, where he held senior positions including Private Secretary to the Deputy Governor, Chief Manager of Sterling Markets and Head of Market Intelligence.

Christian graduated from the University of Canterbury with a Master of Commerce (Hons) majoring in Economics.

Simone Robbers

Assistant Governor/General Manager Strategy, Governance and Sustainability

Simone Robbers

Simone joined Te Putea Matua in 2019 as the Assistant Governor Governance, Strategy and Corporate Relations before transitioning to her current role in 2022.

Simone has a wealth of experience gained from roles across both the public and private sectors, including banking, wealth management and legal firms. Prior to joining RBNZ Simone held senior leadership roles at the Financial Markets Authority and Securities Commission.

Simone holds a Bachelor of Laws from Otago University.

John McDermott

Assistant Governor/General Manager Digital Solutions and Security

John McDermott

John has been with the Reserve Bank since 2019, prior to this appointment he was the Acting Assistant Governor and General Manager of Business Operations from April 2021.

John has extensive public and private sector experience in digital and cyber security strategy, capability uplift and operational leadership.

Before joining the bank, John held strategic advisory roles at the New Zealand Transport Agency, the New Zealand Fire Service, and Kiwibank.

John graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Physics and Mathematics from Victoria University.

Juliet Tainui-Hernandez

Assistant Governor/General Manager Transformation, Innovation, People and Culture

Juliet Tainui-Hernandez

Juliet joined Te Putea Matua in 2020 to lead our Transformation and People functions. Juliet is of Ngāi Tahu and Whakatohea descent. She has worked with local Iwi and with a large New Zealand law firm before commencing her international career.

Juliet has since worked in Australia, Hong Kong, and England – in roles ranging from litigation and dispute resolution, risk management and regulatory compliance, strategy, development and delivery of business transformation projects, broad people management roles, and in more recent years many aspects associated with integration, expansion and the combinations of international legal practices.

Juliet is a non-executive director on the board of Ngāi Tahu Holdings.

Juliet is qualified as a Barrister and Solicitor of the New Zealand High Court, admitted as a Solicitor in the Supreme Court of New South Wales Australia, and as a solicitor of England and Wales.

Kate Kolich

Assistant Governor/General Manager Information, Data, and Analytics

Kate Kolich

Kate has an extensive career in digital, data and technology leadership roles across the public and private sectors. Her experience includes almost 20 years in financial services.

At the Bank of New Zealand she held a number of data leadership roles including Head of Enterprise Data and Information Services. In her time at BNZ, Kate led many strategic data initiatives and teams across the bank. Prior to joining the RBNZ, Kate led the Evidence, Insights and Innovation team at EECA (Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority). Prior to that, she was the Director of Data Systems and Analytics at the Social Wellbeing Agency.

As a recognised thought leader on digital and data innovation, Kate is active in promoting women in STEM through her work as a Global Women in Data Science Ambassador.

Kate has a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Information Management in Information Systems from Victoria University of Wellington. She also holds an Executive Certificate in Strategy and Innovation from Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management.

Greg Smith

Assistant Governor/General Manager Finance and Commercial Operations

Greg Smith

Greg has extensive experience in senior finance and corporate services roles. Prior to joining the RBNZ, Greg was Chief Financial Officer and Company Secretary of Steel & Tube Holdings Limited. 

Prior to that, Greg was Chief Financial Officer at Wellington Electricity and held a senior role at Opus International Consultants. He commenced his career with KPMG where he gained experience in the financial services industry.

Greg joined RBNZ in July 2021 as the Acting Head of Risk. He has been involved on bank-wide projects that have risk intersects such as the Reserve Bank Act implementation, the Business Services Improvement Programme, and our response to COVID-19.

Greg is a Chartered Accountant and holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Administration from Victoria University.

Sarah Owen

Assistant Governor/General Manager Risk, Compliance and Legal Services

Sarah Owen

Sarah joins us from the Guardians of NZ Superannuation where she is part of the Senior Leadership Team in the role of General Counsel and General Manager Corporate Strategy, also holding responsibility as the organisation’s Privacy Officer.

She joined the Guardians in 2007, initially as Head of Legal, from a senior legal role at Westpac/BT Funds Management. Sarah has also worked as a Senior Associate at law firms Minter Ellison and DLA Phillips Fox, and at the Commerce Commission.

A Director of Datacom Group between 2018 and 2021, Sarah is a Director of the International Centre for Pension Management.

A graduate of Global Women’s Breakthrough Leaders Programme, Sarah has a BA in History from the University of Otago and a LLB/DipACC from Victoria University.

Karen Silk

Assistant Governor/General Manager Economics, Financial Markets and Banking

Karen Silk

Appointed 27 January 2022, start date 16 May 2022

Announcement of Karen's appointment to the executive leadership team

Karen is a highly experienced financial services executive with a strong track record of building and transforming businesses across both Australia and New Zealand.

Since returning to NZ in 2012 Karen has held a number of Senior Executive roles with Westpac New Zealand including: General Manager Institutional and Business Banking; CEO of Westpac’s NZ Branch covering financial markets and international operations; CEO of Westpac’s insurance arm, Westpac Life; CEO of Westpac Funds Management arm, BTNZ and more recently as General Manager of the Experience Hub leading the design and delivery of products and services for Westpac’s New Zealand customer base.

In addition, Sustainability has been a key focus for Karen since her return to NZ.

Karen co-chaired the Sustainable Finance Forum on behalf of the Aotearoa Circle, a joint business and Government initiative, which publicly released its Roadmap for Action in 2020.

Karen has been a board member of the NZ Sustainable Business Council since 2017 and was appointed Chair in 2019.

Prior to returning to New Zealand in 2012, Karen held a range of senior positions within Westpac Australia, including Managing Director and Global Head of Debt / Debt Capital Markets for Westpac Institutional Bank.

Karen is a graduate of Canterbury University and INSEAD Alumni.

Nigel Prince

Strategic Adviser

Nigel Prince

Nigel has significant leadership, strategy, change and operations management experience in the public and private sectors, having been the executive lead for Corporate Services with MFAT and MPI, Chief Information Officer for NZ Post and held senior executive management roles with Telecom New Zealand.

Nigel joined Te Putea Matua in 2020 as Programme Director Business Service Improvement Programme. He is a Chartered Accountant and holds a Bachelor of Business Studies (Accounting and Finance) from Massey University.