Current EVANZ Executive

NELITA BYRNE: (2015 - 2017) President

Venues Manager New Plymouth District Council - TSB Stadium, Yarrow Stadium and TSB Bowl of Brooklands

Formerly manager of TSB Showplace, a two theatre and conference venue in New Plymouth.  I started in the industry in 2004 as Manager of Venues for New Plymouth District Council which included the TSB Showplace, TSB Stadium, Yarrow Stadium and TSB Bowl of Brooklands.
I transferred with the TSB Showplace to Taranaki Arts Festival Trust (TAFT) when they took over the management contract of the venue. I am part of the senior management team of TAFT who produce the Taranaki International Arts Festival, WOMAD, Sounds Aotearoa and The Powerco Garden Festival and I am a graduate of PVMS.

The TSB Showplace is part of the Central North Island Consortium with Hamilton City Theatres and Hawkes Bay Opera House who are funded under the Creative NZ Regional Distribution strategy, so I have a strong interest in theatres to be active in programming work and encouraging a network of venues to create viable touring opportunities.  EVANZ can be a valuable resource to both NZ and international promoters and event organizers to research venues with required resources and determine a feasible touring route.

EVANZ can also be a key communication tool for suppliers, potential clients and government agencies to contact and provide information to or about members.

As part of the EVANZ executive I wish to continue the fantastic work EVANZ has done to develop formal industry best practice and training framework, providing quality Conference and Mid Year meetings with learning opportunities, networking and sharing of ideas and initiatives.  I believe it is important that all sectors of venues are represented at EVANZ.  With my experience working in stadia, conference and theatre, we do share similar challenges and practices and EVANZ continually provides benefits to all its members. 

ADAM LYNCH: (2015 - 2017)

I am currently Head of Operations and Logistics at Positively Wellington Venues.  Prior to this role I was Operations Manager for Auckland’s Vector Arena.  In this role I had overall responsibility for the planning and delivery of all events at the arena, working with hirers, suppliers and internal teams to ensure all expectations, both customer and client, are exceeded at every step.

Previous to this role, I worked on the Rugby World Cup in a ticketing management role, was the Operations Manager for Vbase venues prior to the earthquake and held ticketing roles in Wellington.

I have held senior event and hospitality industry roles in both Europe and New Zealand, and I bring this international exposure to my work. My major focus and passion is around Customer Experience, and I continue to focus my work on enhancing the customer journey, whilst raising the profile of New Zealand events.

New Zealand is fortunate to have some highly experienced and knowledgeable venue operators. I am a firm believer in information and knowledge sharing amongst peers, and I look forward to furthering EVANZ work in this area, through the Operations Forums we have established, their online support networks, advocacy and networking.

JOELENE ELLIOTT: Vice President (2016 - 2018)

Born and raised in a small eastern bay town, Joelene moved to Rotorua after finishing high school to study Tourism at Waiariki Polytechnic, which led to employment with Tourism Rotorua Marketing as a Marketing Assistant. 

An opportunity arose to work at the Rotorua Convention Centre where she completed a Diploma in Tourism Industry Management, graduated from Public Venue Managers School and was promoted to Operations Manager for the Rotorua Convention Centre, Civic Theatre, Soundshell and Tea House.

With her background and experience (spanning over 15 years so far) she continues to work in the industry managing Rotorua’s  premier facility, the Energy Events Centre.  Also in 2013 she completed the Accredited Venue Manager (AVM) programme designed to recognise extensive venue management experience, contribution and qualifications for middle to senior managers.

Joelene has served 3 years on the Executive (one year as a co-opted member)


GARETH WALLIS: (2015 - 2017)

I have a background in major events, having worked as the Auckland Operations Manager for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in 2008, and then on Rugby World Cup 2011 as the Auckland Leverage and Legacy Programme Manager. After Rugby World Cup 2011, I returned to my first love, the performing arts.

I started my performing arts career over 20 years ago as a musician, live sound engineer and then production manager.  I currently work as the Manager, Business Development for Auckland Live and as part of this role I am responsible for managing Auckland Live’s Production Fund and the organisation’s investment in buy-in and joint venture productions. I am also responsible for negotiating and contracting all of the non-sporting events in the stadiums that Regional Facilities Auckland owns and operates, including in the last 18 months' concerts by Bruce Springsteen, the Eagles, the Foo Fighters, The Rolling Stones and Fleetwood Mac.

In my spare time I am the proud father of two awesome kids and I am the Chief Fire Officer of my local volunteer fire brigade. I am also the owner/director of two companies; a small film production company and a company that provides firefighting services to the film and television industry.

KEITH PARKER: (2016 - 2018) 

I have been in the Event Industry for over 20 years and very proud of being able to say I started in the industry as a chair stacker making my way up to my current position.
I worked in Rotorua leaving there as the Stadium Manager then onto Waikato Stadium and Seddon Park in Hamilton leaving there as the Venue Manager and now at Eden Park in Auckland as the Operations Manager. I also spent some time in Christchurch working with the V Base team assisting with the opening of their temp stadium. I have previously served a three year term on the EVANZ Executive; I am a current VMA member and a PVMS Graduate.
My passion is assisting and improving our venue delivery to our clients and work daily with other venues and their staff assisting and helping where I can with advice or at least being able to point them in the right direction. 
I have had 2 terms on the EVANZ Executive.  In addition to this I have set up the annual Eden Park Event Scholarship, work experience programmes and organised ops forums for EVANZ member venues’ staff.