Our Team

Our Board

Hamilton & Waikato Tourism is a subsidiary of the Waikato Regional Airport Limited (WRAL) and has an independent skills based board of directors including:

  • Annabel Cotton (Chair)
  • Steve Gow
  • Richard Leggat
  • Simon Douglas
  • Mark Morgan (Representative of WRAL)
  • Karleen Turner Puriri

Meet the team

Jason Dawson
Chief Executive

Jason oversees the day-to-day running of Hamilton & Waikato Tourism and manages the key relationships with funders, tourism operators, local communities, local government and national agencies for the organisation. He is available for presentations and tourism updates on behalf of the sector.

What is your number 1 insider tip for the region? Enjoy some of the great foodie experiences our region has to offer! The Waikato is bursting with artisan food producers, coffee roasters, growers markets, roadside stalls, craft breweries and unique café experiences. Hamilton is also home to some of this country’s most-awarded restaurants which are just exceptional.
What is your favourite hidden gem in the region? Not really a hidden gem, but watching the wild west coast in action at the top of Wainui Reserve in Raglan is pretty spectacular. Whether it be during a storm or full sunshine, there is something invigorating about getting sea air into your lungs while watching the swell roll in.
What do you love most about your job? Promoting our wonderful region with our talented and passionate operators! People create memorable experiences and our hosts and guides are some of the best in the country.

Rebecca Evans
Marketing Manager

Rebecca leads Hamilton & Waikato Tourism's leisure marketing team, working closely with travel trade, media and industry partners on various campaigns and initiatives to promote the region to domestic and international visitors.

What is your number 1 insider tip for the region? Make sure you spend some time around our waterways while you are here - whether it’s the mighty Waikato River, one of our many picturesque lakes or waterfalls or out on Raglan’s black sand beaches.
What is your favourite hidden gem in the region? There are so many to choose from but I’d definitely recommend stopping for a giant ice-cream at Pokeno.
What do you love most about your job? The people! We’re really lucky to work within such a vibrant industry filled with passionate and interesting people.

Nicola Greenwell
Development Manager

Nicola is our Development Manager – she provides support to existing operators to further develop their visitor proposition; and support to new visitor products developing in the region.

What is your number 1 insider tip for the region? When visiting our region – give yourself PLENTY of time to explore – guarantee you will find much more to see and do than you expected!
What do you love most about your job? The enthusiasm of our people and being able to be out and about hearing about new and innovative ideas! We have great people in our region (and our office!) who are passionate about sharing the beauty of our region.
If you could do one job for a week – what would it be? Photographer! I enjoy being creative with a camera (with varying degrees of success) – would love to be PAID to take photos – particularly in our own region.

Amanda Graham
Convention Bureau Manager

Amanda oversees the conference & business events arm of the organisation. Amanda sees her team as destination leaders connecting event organisers with venues and suppliers.

What is your favourite hidden gem in the region? Fish & Chips (you can take the girl out of England) at the end of the wharf in Raglan, especially when there is live music.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Cycling the awesome trails and going for long walks.
If you could do one job for a week – what would it be? Easy, that would be helping during the Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival.

Amber Doughty
Administration & Marketing Assistant

Amber manages media liaison and famil coordination working alongside Tourism New Zealand and our local industry to promote the region via media channels, as well as managing the day to day administrative tasks of the organisation and providing marketing support to the entire HWT team.

What is your favourite hidden gem in the region? Te Toto Gorge Raglan – stunning views of the west coast.
What do you love most about your job? There is something new to learn every day, no two days are the same.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? I love getting out and exploring all the natural wonders our region has to offer.

Rachael Bish
Trade Marketing Coordinator

Rachael works closely with travel trade to promote the region to domestic and international visitors, and works with the rest of the marketing team on domestic campaigns. 

What is your favourite hidden gem in the region? Probably not so hidden anymore - the Hakarimata summit track. It’s the perfect way to get some steps in while enjoying spectacular panoramic views of the Waikato. 
What do you love most about your job? Sharing the diversity of my home with its visitors and residents.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Practicing yoga and frequenting the amazing cafés in our region.

Harriet Beattie
Business Events Administrator

Harriet works with Amanda in the Business Events team helping to co-ordinate conferences, meetings and business events in the region.

What do you love most about your job? The people we work with! Everyone in this industry is so genuine and passionate about our region.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Getting outdoors and exploring the natural beauty of our region and country. We are lucky to have so many beautiful places on our doorstep.
If you could do one job for a week – what would it be? A wedding planner and stylist! I love weddings, flowers, décor, to-do lists etc.

Becky Wright
Digital Marketing Executive

Becky is our online guru looking after all things digital marketing (website, social media, communications, marketing campaigns) as well working with the wider team on our domestic marketing campaigns and other activities.

What is your favourite hidden gem in the region? The Blue Spring is amazing and a must do. Even on a grey day the colour of the water is surreal and it is a lovely walk too. Just don’t forget your camera!
What do you love most about your job? It is a real pleasure working alongside such passionate people and being a part of promoting our beautiful region.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Having moved from the UK, I am embracing the NZ outdoor lifestyle spending my evenings and weekends walking and cycling the many trails we have here.