Retiring Otago Regional Council chief executive Graeme Martin (left) and chairman Stephen Woodhead at Mr Martin's final council meeting yesterday. Photo by Peter McIntosh
Retiring Otago Regional Council chief executive Graeme
Martin (left) and chairman Stephen Woodhead at Mr Martin's
final council meeting yesterday. Photo by Peter McIntosh
Otago Regional Council's departing chief executive Graeme
Martin's propensity to always be one step ahead has been
highlighted by his final words at his last council meeting.
He left councillors with a "record of the potential need for
the following moves" - development of a new regional policy
statement in direct consultation with district councils,
developing comprehensive river management strategies and
increasing Otago's prosperity by "overtly supporting others".
Mr Martin also said he had learnt a lot from councillors
during his 19 years with the council, including the "art of
He also admitted his style meant people did not "die
wondering" what he thought.
"I make no apology for it, but I appreciate at times I was
relatively head on."
Corporate services director Wayne Scott, who was the
council's next longest-serving staff member, said Mr Martin
cared more about principles than about popularity.
Having a boss who would "stomp over" whoever was in front of
them to pursue his vision for Otago made it easy to work for
No-one would ever know the "paths" Mr Martin had taken to
support his staff, he said.
Cr Duncan Butcher, who was on the council that hired Mr
Martin, said Otago was better for his contribution.
He had learnt over the years from Mr Martin to try to think
Cr David Shepherd said Mr Martin had built a regional council
with "rock solid" foundations and it was up to the council to
maintain his legacy.
Mr Martin finishes at the regional council tomorrow and the
new chief executive begins later this month.