OUR PEOPLE –

KO WAI MĀTOU

We’re experts in bringing our unique New Zealand stories to life to enhance our global reputation.

Team Profiles

Team photos 600px 0012 David Downs
David Downs CEO
Team photos 600px 0012 David Downs

David Downs

CEO

David has held a portfolio of interests across international trade, technology, economic development, and charitable causes. He has held a number of General Management roles in New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, most recently working with the technology sector to help fast growing tech companies grow internationally and New Zealand companies adopt digital commerce channels to market. He has also held leadership roles at NZTE in products and services, customer and corporate services. Prior to this David had an extensive career in leadership roles with Microsoft in New Zealand and Asia Pacific. 

David is a passionate New Zealander and storyteller by nature. He has successfully started businesses, been a comedian, TV and Radio actor, a talented author and semi-finalist for New Zealander of the Year. 

Team photos 600px 0007 Kellie Nathan
Kellie Nathan Marketing Director
Team photos 600px 0007 Kellie Nathan

Kellie Nathan

Marketing Director

Kellie is a senior executive with more than 20 years’ experience across the FMCG, Telecommunications, Digital Media and Retail industries in New Zealand. Kellie has been involved in all facets of marketing including brand management, advertising and communications, market research and product management. More recently Kellie has led broader Business Transformation roles for Yellow and Pumpkin Patch providing longer term strategic business planning and Board engagement. Her most successful marketing campaign was Yellow Treehouse, an innovative approach to a difficult marketing challenge centred on moving Yellow beyond printed directories and into digital media solutions. In 2016, Kellie also led the very successful brand transformation at Mighty River Power; re-branding the company name and brand identity to ‘Mercury’. Outside of work she is ‘Mum’ to her two children. Kellie’s other interests include entertaining friends, running, reading or spending time at the beach.

Team photos 600px 0003 Kristin Carden
Kristin Carden Legal Counsel
Team photos 600px 0003 Kristin Carden

Kristin Carden

Legal Counsel

Kristin is the Legal Advisor/Contract Manager for the New Zealand Story team, with a particular focus on the FernMark Licence Programme. She has considerable legal experience in New Zealand and the United States (Boston and New York) where she worked for a leading global law firm, Ropes & Gray, and a biopharmaceutical company. Before joining New Zealand Story, Kristin worked for New Zealand’s leading commercial law firm, Bell Gully. Kristin is mum to three children and loves spending time with family and friends, travelling, being outdoors, doing crosswords, and keeping fit through mountain biking, running, netball, and walking up hills in Wellington.

Team photos 600px 0010 Savannah Chen v2
Savannah Chen Marketing Coordinator
Team photos 600px 0010 Savannah Chen v2

Savannah Chen

Marketing Coordinator

Savannah is the Marketing Coordinator, providing support to our director and the team. She is a diligent and enthusiastic young professional, with the aspiration for being a better self every day.

Before joining New Zealand Story, she gained experience in various roles across different sectors – Business Analyst at Bank of New Zealand, Teacher at Southern Institute of Technology, and Office Manager at EESL. She also has her own translation and export business on the side. With her diverse industry experience, Savannah brings a proactive and flexible approach to juggling many different priorities within the workplace.

Outside of work, Savannah loves spending time video-chatting with her overseas family in China, hiking and enjoying the lovely sun in Auckland, as well as making dumplings!

Team photos 600px 0004 Jessica Guthrie
Jessica Guthrie FernMark Licence Programme Manager
Team photos 600px 0004 Jessica Guthrie

Jessica Guthrie

FernMark Licence Programme Manager

Jessica is the FernMark Licence Programme Manager. She is particularly interested in helping Kiwi businesses with their international growth strategies. Jessica has strong international experience having worked in China, the UK and Australia as a trademark consultant. Before joining New Zealand Story, she worked for BNZ on the Asia Desk where she was responsible for developing pathways for customers exporting to Asia. 

Jess hails from Queenstown, so naturally loves the outdoors, especially snowboarding, and is partial to a good Central Otago Pinot Noir.

Team photos 600px 0005 Charlotte White
Charlotte White Marketing Communications Manager (currently on Maternity Leave)
Team photos 600px 0005 Charlotte White

Charlotte White

Marketing Communications Manager (currently on Maternity Leave)

Charlotte is an experienced international marketer who has scaled and developed brands across the Asia-Pacific, Europe, and North American markets. Her background spans brand management, strategic planning, and digital marketing in media, broadcast and telecommunication industries. She is passionate about making New Zealand's remarkable stories heard globally to grow our reputation for the collective benefit of our people.

Outside of work, she is a filter coffee enthusiast, a yogi, a sailor, and adores adventures with family and friends.

Team photos 600px 0001 Rhys Lawrence
Rhys Lawrence Marketing Communications Manager
Team photos 600px 0001 Rhys Lawrence

Rhys Lawrence

Marketing Communications Manager
Team photos 600px 0013 Lydia Roseby
Lydia Roseby Marketing Communications Manager
Team photos 600px 0013 Lydia Roseby

Lydia Roseby

Marketing Communications Manager

Lydia is an experienced Marketing and Communications Manager. She has spent the last 10 years in London working for global organisations such as the Red Cross and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). She has strong experience in communications specialising in PR, strategy, planning and partnerships. Lydia is passionate about telling stories that deliver impact and working on campaigns that drive action.

When she’s not at work, Lydia is hunting down a great coffee or cheering on the family’s horses in the tangerine at Ellerslie racecourse. 

Team photos 600px 0014 Jess Allen
Jessica Allen Marketing Assistant
Team photos 600px 0014 Jess Allen

Jessica Allen

Marketing Assistant

Jessica is the Marketing Assistant for the New Zealand Story and the FernMark Licence Programme. Jessica graduated in 2020 from Victoria University of Wellington completing a double degree in Commerce and Arts. Outside of work she’s spending time with family and friends, travelling, or at the beach.

Team photos 600px 0002 Lynette Poulton
Lynette Poulton FernMark Licence Programme Coordinator
Team photos 600px 0002 Lynette Poulton

Lynette Poulton

FernMark Licence Programme Coordinator

Lynette is the FernMark Licence Programme Coordinator. She has previously worked as a graphic designer and as a pastry chef while living in the UK for 12 years and more recently completed a Diploma in Web Development.

Outside of work Lynette enjoys cooking, gardening and being outdoors, coaches junior netball and volunteers for the Community Comms Collective.

Team photos 600px 0011 Lynda Charlton
Lynda Charlton Content Producer
Team photos 600px 0011 Lynda Charlton

Lynda Charlton

Content Producer