Agnes Delerue 3

A love of surfing and the outdoors brought her to Taranaki, and a passion for the sea and helping people succeed enticed her to Port Taranaki. It’s no surprise Agnes Delerue says she’s in her happy place.

Originally from Grenoble, in the south-east of France, Port Taranaki’s project management office manager grew up surrounded by mountains and spent many hours skiing, hiking and mountaineering.

“I’m not a big city girl. The outdoors is really important to me, so having the mountain and the sea here is like the ultimate dream.”

With a master’s degree in mechanical engineering, Agnes worked first in the ski industry in France, then the building industry in New Caledonia, where a few business trips to New Zealand and Australia whetted her appetite for a shift to Aotearoa.

A mechanical engineer role for Beca in Auckland ensued, then a much-wanted transfer to New Plymouth – “It was always the goal to move to New Plymouth because of the outdoor lifestyle.”

Six years working on Beca projects for the likes of Methanex, Fonterra, Shell and the New Plymouth District Council (NPDC) as a mechanical engineer then as project manager was followed by a stint at Shell as project team lead, and four years at NPDC as portfolio manager. Agnes joined Port Taranaki last December.

With a blended family of four children aged nine to 15, life is busy, but Agnes still finds time for some of her favourite pastimes.

“As a family we surf and spend a lot of time at the beach. I’m also a member of the Taranaki Alpine Club, so do a lot of hiking, rock climbing, mountaineering and backcountry snowboarding.”

What does your role involve?

I lead the project management office team of 10, which is responsible for delivering capital and operational projects across all areas of the port. Recent projects have included the seawall upgrade on the Newton King Tanker Terminal (NKTT), the move and upgrade of the communications and security centre, and the upgrade of the firefighting water system.

What do you like about the role?

I like the busy-ness of the port, and I really enjoy leading and motivating a team of people. I’m passionate about driving continuous improvement and excellence in project management. We’ve got a great group of people who love to collaborate, share knowledge and work together – they’re really inspiring.

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