John’s vast experience in radio, telecommunications, and infrastructure means he brings valuable knowledge to leading the RCG Team to deliver on our ambitious targets. John has considerable experience in all aspects of senior management, spearheading substantial telecommunications projects over the past 25 years including CEO of Telecom Cooks Islands where he was” hands-on” in all aspects of the network and was responsible for 200 staff. More recently, John has held senior roles in NZ working for Spark, The Warehouse Group and 2Degrees where he has proven his ability in making the big decisions, managing resources and operations and his skill in deftly managing communication between the Board, the Shareholders and corporate operations.
The RCG is delighted to have secured John as its CEO with his passion for motivating and leading teams, whilst setting up an environment of collaboration with a ‘make it happen’ attitude. The big task of leading the RCG will draw on all of John’s skills to push the team to deliver successfully on the Rural Broadband Initiative 2, Mobile Black Spots Fund and Expansion programs.
Head of Finance
Krishna’s business leadership expertise extends to more than 25 years’ in the telecommunications industry across diverse global markets. He has been a key contributor to major growth ventures, including acquisitions and innovative start-ups here in New Zealand and around the world.
As a finance professional Krishna brings a wealth of commercial nous to his day-job where he is responsible for RCG’s financial management, innovative systems, operational development and enabling good governance – essential in the careful management of a publicly funded rollout programme such as the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI2).
Krishna’s experience in telecommunications is impressive. He has held many roles with global telecommunications giant Ericsson in Asia, the USA and here in New Zealand responsible for regional financial management, business development, strategic partnerships, acquisition integration and operations.
Head of Communications and Engagement
Caitlin joined the RCG at ‘kick off’ bringing her unbridled energy and enthusiasm to the big job of supporting rural communities, landowners, district councils, Iwi and countless other groups and individuals, through the process of livening mobile broadband services locally.
Having led the stakeholder engagement and communications across most of the big-name national infrastructure rollouts during the last ten years, Caitlin’s mission is to make sure customer and community stay front-and-centre during complex technical build operations.
She cut her teeth with Telecom (now Spark), Vodafone and Chorus with senior strategic roles in project management, business change management, communications, community and stakeholder relations management. In recent years she has been a core leader in supporting the smooth running of the government’s Rural Broadband Initiative first phase (RBI1) and getting the Tasman Access Cable connected.
Head of Procurement and Commercial
Richard has worked within the Telecommunications industry in either operational, commercial or procurement roles for the last 19 years.
At RCG, he oversees the procurement strategy and process for RCG, establishing sustainable relationships with our commercial partners to ensure that the build programme is delivered on-time and within-budget while ensuring the operating model is based on a low cost to operate resilient network. It’s a critical component in making sure that the rollout reaches each and every community we have committed to bringing mobile broadband services to over the next few years.
Prior to joining RCG, Richards’s predominant focus was sharpening his network procurement skills for both Spark and Vodafone on large scale fixed and mobile telecommunications networks.
Head of Acquisition and Planning
In just 12 months, Brad’s leadership of the Property Acquisition Programme has secured the sign-on of more than 120 properties to host new mobile cell towers around the country, significantly improving the mobile services available to rural communities. Brad is passionate about the RCG programme and the tangible benefits the new network will deliver to rural New Zealanders.
Brad is expertly placed to balance the expectations of landowners while overseeing the detailed RMA consenting process. Brad applied this expertise to many large projects in the telecommunications and infrastructure sectors, including being involved in landmark nationwide broadband and mobile network rollouts for New Zealand, and was also involved in RCG’s predecessor project – RBI1.
RCG Head of Design
Ian’s 30-year career in the telecommunication industry means he brings to the RCG an extensive and highly specialised skill set in network design and operations technology.
Having held various senior leadership roles at Vodafone New Zealand over the last 2 decades, Ian has proven his ability to adapt to large, complex and fast changing technical environments. He led teams to design and manage the increasing demands placed upon the technology component and capacity requirements of telecommunication infrastructure.
As RCG’s ‘Head of Design’, Ian leads a team of expert ‘network configuration’ designers to use innovative and creative methods to simplify and standardise cell site solutions, creating ‘best practice’ design to achieve greater efficiency for RCG’s brand new network. Ian is proud to be an integral part of this ‘world first’ project and is committed to designing innovative cell site infrastructure that meets the unique nature of this Kiwi rural network.
RCG is honoured to welcome Ian to the Leadership Team. His wealth of design and technology expertise will enable the successful delivery of the Rural Broadband Initiative 2, Mobile Black Spots Fund and Expansion programmes.
RCG Head of Delivery (Build)
Paul’s illustrious career in the telecommunication industry spans over 30 years and he brings to the RCG an unrivalled understanding of mobile network deployment.
Paul joins the RCG from Spark where he held various senior roles focused on deployment of the Radio Access Network (RAN) including site acquisition, design and build, through to operational handover and most recently Paul led the implementation of the next generation of technology.
As RCG’s Head of Delivery (Build) Paul is responsible for driving efficiencies into the build of our new rural network, ensuring our infrastructure is fit for purpose and deployed cost effectively and on time. Working closely with RCG’s build partners Paul will ensure the ambitious build programme nationwide delivers rural New Zealand quality wireless broadband and mobile service.
RCG is privileged to welcome Paul to the leadership team and we acknowledge the high regard in which he is held by his peers within the telecommunications industry. It is an honour to be able to draw upon Paul’s broad and deep understanding of all aspects of the industry to ensure the successful delivery of the Rural Broadband Initiative 2, Mobile Black Spots Fund and Expansion programmes.
Operations Manager at The Rural Connectivity Group
After holding a range of engineering, critical service management, and project management roles, both here and overseas, she spent several years in the USA and Europe helping large telecommunications organizations build their wireless technologies up for the future – including developing one of the world’s first 4G networks. Closer to home, she led Spark’s world-class customer experience, overseeing a daily cross-functional forum dedicated to faultless mobile service.
RCG Board Members
- Tony Baird, Vodafone
- Mark Beder, Spark
- Paul Mathewson, 2 degrees
The Rural Connectivity Group is jointly and equally owned by Vodafone, 2degrees and Spark.