Siobhan Hartwell

Company: GHD

Job title: Regional General Manager NZPac 

About Siobhan 

I am a Chartered Civil Engineer with more than 30 years' experience as a consulting engineer. I have worked for a small consultancy and large global enterprises and I currently lead the GHD New Zealand Pacific business as Regional General Manager. Over my career I have worked across the UK, New Zealand, Australia and the United States in roles including site engineer, designer, team lead, group manager and major projects manager, which have given me a broad base of operational and delivery experience.

My technical background is primarily in water infrastructure across a range of industries, including integrated holistic solutions for all waters. I was deeply involved in developing technical reports for the DIA in support of water reform and an adviser on associated transformation opportunities. I have been a director of the GHD NZ Limited Subsidiary Board for two years and was a member of the GHD Global Board Risk Committee for five years (2018-2024). My board experience of member organisations includes board positions with Straterra (2017-2022) and Water New Zealand (2004-2008). I am a member of the Institute of Directors, a Fellow of Engineering New Zealand and past president of Water New Zealand.

Pepeha or whakapapa/family history

Tēnā koutou katoa
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Ko Mt Leinster te maunga
Ko Slaney Te awa
Ko Hartwell tōku whanau ingoa
Ko Siobhan tōku ingoa
Kei Ōtautahi kainga ināianei
Ko au te Kaiwhakahaere i Aotearoa me Te Moana nui ki GHD.
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What is your strategic vision for ACE New Zealand?

My vision for ACE is to have the organisation recognised as the voice and advocate for consultants and engineers. I’d also like to see it as the primary source of guidance on emerging issues and challenges, with a key role being to draw on and share the knowledge and intelligence of its members. With a multitude of emerging opportunities and risks for members, I see ACE playing a central role in bringing ideas and approaches together, thereby uplifting the whole membership.

If elected, I am committed to being a proactive Board member who will bring challenges and ideas to the table. ACE has been on a clear path of transformation over the last five years, which has been signalled through both branding and a broader focus on challenges for consultants. As part of a global organisation, I am able to contribute intelligence on global approaches to current and emerging challenges. Alongside promoting collective step-ups that the professional consulting industry as a whole needs to make, particularly in Te Ao Māori and climate change response, I am also motivated to lift ACE’s response to common emerging areas of risk such as digital impacts, including cyber risks.

What strengths would you bring to the ACE Board?

My broad industry experience, both locally and globally, prior governance roles and senior management experience are strengths that I would bring to the ACE New Zealand Board.
More specifically:

  • Risk – I served on the Global GHD Risk committee, which reports to the GHD Global board, for five years. The committee reviews and examines emerging risks and this has provided me with a depth of understanding in external risk management.
  • Strategy development and implementation – my current role is to provide leadership to the New Zealand Pacific region enabling it to meet GHD’s overall objectives in terms of financial performance, risk management, strategic development, and having regard for GHD’s core values.
  • CE/senior management experience – I frequently interact with GHD leaders from around the globe and this connection outside of the New Zealand market is a strength I will bring to the ACE Board. I have also represented GHD on a number of professional services panels that are relevant to the work of ACE.
  • Climate and sustainability – my technical background gives me a strong grounding in consideration of climate change impacts and sustainability.

What does diversity and inclusion mean to you?

Inclusion occurs when people feel a sense of belonging and valued for what they contribute to their workplace, regardless of their background or beliefs. Inclusion allows people to reach their full potential. Diversity is in the uniqueness of an individual based not only on what might be seen (for example, race or disability), but also what is not seen (for example, personality or neurodiversity). There have been significant shifts in many areas of diversity and inclusion since I started my career, however there are still many areas where understanding and acceptance needs to change.

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