Board of Directors

Managing an outstanding company


Auckland Airport’s board of directors and executive team focus on ensuring the company is managed at the highest strategic level. They work to realise the company’s long-term corporate objectives, as it continuously strives to become the world’s most outstanding and welcoming airport.

As New Zealand’s busiest airport, we are one of our country’s largest infrastructure assets and one of the biggest employers in the Greater Auckland region.

Meet our board of directors


Dr Patrick Strange

Chair, BE, PhD, Dist FIPENZ

Patrick Strange was appointed a director of the company in 2015 and became chair of the company in 2018.

He has spent 35 years working principally in the New Zealand and international electricity and infrastructure sectors.

Patrick completed a doctorate in civil engineering at the University of Auckland, and then spent 13 years in Europe and North America. He was appointed Chief Executive of Mercury Energy in 1998 and went on to build the network unit into a successful standalone business as Vector. Patrick recently retired as Chief Executive of Transpower, New Zealand’s transmission owner and operator. During his tenure, Transpower successfully completed a major, multi-billion dollar reinvestment in the grid.

Patrick is currently Chair of Chorus Limited and a director of Mercury NZ Limited and Essential Energy.

He was appointed a Distinguished Fellow of IPENZ in March 2014.

Mark Binns

Director, LLB

Mark Binns was appointed a director of the company in 2018.

His successful career has seen him closely involved in many of New Zealand’s largest infrastructure projects, including the Wiri Prison public-private partnership, Waterview Connection, Eden Park, SKYCITY, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa and the Manapōuri tunnel. For 22 years, Mark worked at Fletcher Building and its predecessor, Fletcher Challenge Limited. During that period he was responsible for operations in Australia, South East Asia, India, South America, the United States and the South Pacific, as well as in New Zealand.

Mark also brings to this governance role the experience of being a Chief Executive. He was Chief Executive of Meridian from 2012 to 2017, during which he prepared the company for New Zealand’s largest IPO and delivered strong shareholder returns. He is also a former Chief Executive of the Infrastructure Division of Fletcher Building Limited, the company’s largest division.

By training, Mark is a qualified lawyer. He is a former partner of Simpson Grierson in Auckland.

Brett Godfrey

Director, BCom, ACA

Brett Godfrey was appointed a director of the company in 2010.

He is a chartered accountant and has had a 20-year career in airlines, holding senior finance positions which culminated in conceptualising and writing the business plan for what is now Virgin Australia Limited. He was the airline’s founding chief executive and led the company until 2010.

Today he maintains his connection to the industry as a director of Canada’s publicly listed second-largest airline, WestJet.

His keen interest and experience in marketing is channelled into his position on the board of Tourism Australia.

He has been awarded the Australian Centenary Medal for his service to tourism and aviation, and was recognised as the Australian Chief Executive of the Year by the Customer Service Institute of Australia and the Outstanding Chartered Accountant in Business by the Australian Institute of Chartered Accountants.

Dean Hamilton

Director, BCA

Dean comes to Auckland Airport with significant CEO and financial markets experience. Most recently he was CEO of Silver Fern Farms Limited where he successfully led the business through a period of significant change and improvement in financial performance, health & safety, staff and supplier engagement, sustainability and consumer trust in the brand.

Dean’s career includes 12 years at global investment bank Deutsche Bank, working in both Australia and New Zealand, where he advised a wide range of companies on M&A, capital management, corporate restructuring and capital raising.

Prior to Deutsche Bank, Dean held CEO roles in manufacturing and general management in retail.

Dean brings experience at running a large organisation with a wide range of stakeholders as well as a deep understanding in finance and capital markets.

Dean is also a director of Fulton Hogan and Tappenden Holdings.

Julia Hoare

Director, BCom, FCA, CMInstD

Julia Hoare was appointed a director of the company in 2017.

Prior to her governance career, Julia had extensive chartered accounting experience in Australia, the United Kingdom and New Zealand and was a partner with PwC New Zealand for 20 years until 2012. Her expertise spans finance, commercial, tax, regulatory, sustainability and climate change.

Through both her professional experience and board roles, Julia is knowledgeable across a diverse range of sectors including transport and logistics, infrastructure and international FMCG marketing. She is familiar with high-growth businesses operating globally as well as those facing disruptive challenges and opportunities in the new digital age.

Julia is a qualified chartered accountant and a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand. She is the deputy chair of both The a2 Milk Company Limited and Watercare Services Limited, and a director of Port of Tauranga Limited, New Zealand Post Limited and AWF Madison Group Limited. Julia is also a member of the New Zealand External Reporting Advisory Panel and the New Zealand Institute of Directors’ National Council.

Justine Smyth

Justine Smyth

Director, BCom, CA

Justine Smyth was appointed a director of the company in 2012. She is the Chair of Auckland Airport's people and capability committee.

Justine is currently Chair of Spark New Zealand Limited and chairs both of Spark's Audit and Risk and Human Resources board sub-committees. She is also Chair of The New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation. Previous directorships include being a board member of the Financial Markets Authority and deputy chair of New Zealand Post Limited.

Justine's background includes being the Group finance director of Lion Nathan Limited and a partner of Deloitte.

Through her roles, Justine has strong experience in retail, governance, mergers and acquisitions, taxation and financial performance of large corporate enterprises, and the acquisition, ownership, management and sale of small and medium-sized enterprises.

Tania Simpson

Director, BA

Tania Simpson was appointed a director of the company in 2018.

Tania is currently a director of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, Ngai Tahu Tourism, Tainui Group Holdings Ltd, Moko Club NZ and Deep South Challenge.

Tania is also a Board member of Global Women NZ and a member of the Waitangi Tribunal.

She is a Trustee of the Waitangi National Trust and Chair of Radio Maniapoto.

Tania’s background includes 14 years as a director of Mighty River Power from its beginnings as a State Owned Enterprise through to its successful listing in 2013.

Tania is known for her work with Maori communities. Her experience includes time spent as a Maori Advisor Officer for the Housing Corporation of NZ before moving into central government as a Senior Policy Analyst on housing policies. She has also helped negotiate agreements for Maori communities through her time at Treasury Group Ltd and has worked on a number of Treaty settlements.

Christine Spring

Director, BE, MSc Eng, MBA

Christine Spring was appointed a director of the company in 2014.

Christine is a civil engineer and has approximately 20 years' experience in aviation infrastructure development and strategic planning roles in New Zealand, Australia, United Arab Emirates, Asia and the Pacific Islands.

During her career to date, Christine's experience has been focused in strategy, stakeholder management and the planning of significant capital development projects in the aviation industry. Also, she was an executive of Auckland Airport before heading overseas to broaden her experience in 2002.

Christine's experience in aviation infrastructure and executive management is serving Auckland Airport well as it implements its 30-year vision for the airport of the future.

Christine is also a director of Western Sydney Airport Limited, Unison Networks Limited and Unison Contracting Services Limited.