Goodbye SFO, hello Queenstown council


Queenstown’s new council chief executive Adam Feeley has arrived and indicates he plans to have an open-door approach. 

“It’s very important that everyone in council is accessible to the public and I hope I’m no exception,” Feeley says, hours after settling into his new downtown Queenstown office. 

“If you compare [Queenstown’s council] to big city councils, the staff seem to know the public here very well.” 

Feeley, on a five-year contract, has swapped his high-profile fraud-busting role for the local body gig and has plunged head-first into the detail of community affairs. 

His first task this morning was to attend a council community services committee meeting where the problem of willow roots was discussed, whilst the hot topic at the afternoon infrastructure committee meeting discussed the finer details of sludge. 

However, Feeley says his first day at council has been a major contrast to his arrival at SFO – and in a good way. 

“Your first impression is not about subject matter. I’ve lost count of the number of people who have said ‘Welcome to Queenstown’, ‘Welcome to council’ and ‘Welcome to Arrowtown’. It’s really nice to move into such an upbeat, positive place.” 

Feeley, who has moved south from Auckland’s Waiheke Island with his wife and young son, has bought in Arrowtown and says he hopes to enter Queenstown’s famous Peak to Peak race – when he finds the time to fit some training in.