Alex Walker has been Mayor of Central Hawkes Bay since 2016, where elections delivered a strong mandate for change, including six new Councillors and a new Mayor.
Focussing on long-term success for her small district has meant taking a patient approach when it comes to council business. Her experience in leading major change as Board Chair of her local primary school, backed up by her corporate experience in strategic marketing and product development, has meant she has lead a back-to-basics process starting with strong governance, community engagement, clear strategic direction and high quality executive leadership. In building the council team, a brainstorming session about the values and priorities of the group lead to a "eureka" moment. Trust, Honesty, Respect, Innovation, Valuing people and Excellence spells THRIVE. In the months following the coining of this word as a vision for Central Hawke's Bay, THRIVE is recognised across council and community, and has tapped into the imagination of the people. Building a strategic framework around this vision has allowed Alex's very new council team to focus on the truly transformational issues that her district faces, and ensure that council energy and resource is being spent in the right place – both in terms of time and effort spent at the governance table, and resource spent by staff.