DQ incumbents hold off B&B owner’s challenge

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Destination Queenstown incumbents Mark Simpson and Steve McLean have held off a challenge to retain their board seats. 

The challenge came from Arrowtown B&B owner Henry Crawford who put his hat in the ring for one of the two general seats on the board. 

At the DQ AGM (Thursday night) Crawford – who was absent overseas – got a statement read on his behalf, saying he believed Queenstown “is in need of a brand makeover”.

After a ballot of DQ members, Simpson – a shareholder in property firm Colliers International and McLean – a shareholder in Rilean Construction – both retained their spots on the board. 

DQ board chairman Mark Quickfall – boss of Totally Tourism – was relected unopposed, as were other board members Russell Gray, Erna Spijkerbosch and Lynne McVicar. 

At the AGM, special presentations were made to David Kennedy, who after a 10-year reign as DQ chief executive returned to the board last year but stood down at the AGM. 

Former Queenstown Lakes District Council chief executive Duncan Field also received special acknowledgement as did mayor Clive Geddes who is not standing for a fourth term during this month’s local body election. 

In a special video highlighting the 25-year history of DQ, chief executive Tony Everitt said him and his team looked forward to continuing the legacy of those who started and sustained the promotional body.