Board & management

  • Toby Stevenson – Chairman

    Toby Stevenson is chairman of KCE. He is also an independent energy consultant with international economics consultancy Sapere Research Group.

    His area of expertise is electricity risk management, trading and market design. Toby was General Manager Electricity Trading with Contact Energy (1996 – 2003) and was the Chairman of the NZEM Rules Committee prior.

    Toby was a member of the Electricity Technical Advisory Group that completed a Ministerial Review of the Electricity Industry in 2009.

  • Robert Carter – Director

    Chairman of the King Country Electric Power Trust, Robert operates a farming, forestry and contracting business in partnership with his wife Suzanne and son Travis.

    A registered electrician, Robert has had a long career in the electrical field, prior to commencing his full-time farming career. He formerly worked for both the former Taumarunui Borough Electricity department and the King Country Electric Power Board.

    Robert has also operated an electrical contracting business as well as a tourism enterprise, based on the Whanganui river.

    Robert has held many leadership positions in agriculture, education and local body spheres, both locally and nationally.

  • Vince Hawksworth – Director

    Vince Hawksworth joined Trustpower in 2010 as Chief Executive. Originally from the UK where he worked for British Coal, Vince moved to New Zealand with his family in 1993.

    Vince was Production Manager at Huntly Power Station before roles as General Manager Generation and General Manger Retail with Genesis Energy.  Prior to joining TrustPower Vince was appointed CEO for Hydro Tasmania in 2006.

    Vince studied mining engineering at Trent Polytechnic in Nottingham, UK and has an MBA from Waikato University.  He is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers Australia and a member of the Institute of Directors.

  • Brian Needham – Director

    Brian Needham is a chartered accountant. He was previously chief financial officer of the Dalgety Group and New Zealand Post where he was part of a small team responsible for taking a loss making government department and turning it into a profitable world class postal organisation.

    Brian has also provided consultancy services to a number of postal services around the world since retiring from New Zealand Post.

  • Paul Ridley-Smith – Director

    Paul Ridley-Smith is a senior executive at Morrison & Co, the manager of Infratil, Trustpower’s largest shareholder. Paul first joined Morrison & Co in 1998, rejoining in 2015 after 4 years as general counsel at Contact Energy.

    He has been a director of various Infratil group companies, including Wellington International Airport and iSite Media. He is currently an independent director of listed resthome operator, Arvida Group.

    Paul has a Bachelor of Laws from Victoria University and a Masters of Business Administration from Columbia University.

  • Linda Robertson – Director

    Linda Robertson is a professional director with over 30 years’ experience in the New Zealand finance sector. In the corporate environment she has worked predominately in the energy sector and has held various senior management roles encompassing; treasury, credit management, audit, risk management and insurance. She was most recently Group Manager Treasury and Procurement at Meridian Energy Ltd.

    Linda also has extensive governance experience serving on boards and Audit and Risk Committees including previous roles on the Board of New Zealand Post, Kiwi Bank, Speirs Group and the Earthquake Commission. She was also a member of Audit and Risk Committee of Inland Revenue and Chaired the Audit & Risk Committee of Statistics New Zealand.

    Linda has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree and a Diploma in Banking.

  • Rob Foster – Chief Executive Officer

    Rob Foster was appointed CEO in August 2009. He has over twenty years of senior executive experience and has worked in the energy industry for TransAlta New Zealand and Mercury Energy, as well as advising a number of other Australasian energy companies.

    Rob’s career includes seven years with investment bank Macquarie New Zealand and two years with ABN AMRO New Zealand advising corporate clients in the energy, utilities and property sectors.

    Rob is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors and has completed executive education programmes at Macquarie Bank and INSEAD.

  • Chris Fincham – Energy Supply Manager

    Chris has been with KCE since 2002 and is responsible for the company’s wholesale energy supply, business development initiatives and delivery of major projects.

    Chris is a Chartered Electrical Engineer with 22 years’ experience in the electricity industry working in various capacities.

  • Alex Polaschek – General Manager Sales & Marketing

    Alex joined KCE in 2014 and is responsible for the overall customer experience from service delivery and retention to sales and marketing.

    He has extensive executive experience with a strong background in the energy and professional services sectors. His previous energy sector experience includes roles with ECNZ, Capital Power, Trans Alta and Meridian Energy.