Queenstown Trails Trust supremo steps down

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There’s a changing of the guard at the Queenstown Trails Trust.

High-profile chief executive Kaye Parker, who drove last year’s opening of the 100km-plus, $5.4 million Queenstown Trail, is stepping down after four years.

Taking over her job is trust marketing director Mandy Kennedy, who was formerly New Zealand marketing manager of the Accor hotel chain.

New trails trust chairman Tony McQuilkin says Parker’s made a significant impact.

“It is thanks to her professionalism, drive and energy that the Queenstown Trail was opened on time and on budget 12 months ago.

“The trail is widely used by locals and is becoming an important tourism attraction for visitors.

“We respect her decision to take a step back but we are delighted she will continue to work on a range of special projects for the trust.”

Parker – formerly founding chief executive of child health research charity Cure Kids – was named Mountain Scene’s ‘Queenstowner of the Year’ last year.

McQuilkin says he welcomes Kennedy’s appointment, citing her expertise in sales and marketing and business development in both the hospitality and tourism industries.

“Mandy has excellent marketing and event skills and has played an important role as the trust’s marketing director.

“She will undoubtedly provide strong direction for the Queenstown Trails Trust as it moves into its next phase.”