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Waste Advisory Board members

The Waste Advisory Board provides independent advice to the Minister for the Environment on matters relating to the Waste Minimisation Act 2008 and waste minimisation. This page provides information on the current members of the board.

Board members

The current members appointed to the board and their terms of appointment are:


Date of initial appointment

Expiry date of present term

Gareth James (Chair)

13 March 2011

25 June 2017

Cynthia Bowers

21 August 2013

21 August 2016

Harry Burkhardt 4 August 2016 4 August 2019

David Carter

1 February 2010

21 August 2016

Yvette Couch-Lewis 4 August 2016 4 August 2019

John Pask

13 October 2008

4 August 2019

Sheryl Stivens

9 October 2008

25 June 2017

All members were appointed to the board by Cabinet following a public call for nominations. Members have been selected for their knowledge, skills and experience on the Waste Minimisation Act, community waste minimisation projects, business/industry (including the commercial waste industry), local government, and tikanga Māori.

Board members serve for three years, unless a shorter term is stated in his or her notice of appointment.

Waste Advisory Board members' biographies

Gareth James (Chair)

Gareth James is the General Manager of Waste Management in the South Island and is an engineer with over 25 years of experience in the waste industry. Gareth has local government knowledge and long involvement with South Island iwi, having previously worked at the Waimakariri District Council and Rangiora District Council.

Cynthia Bowers

Cynthia Bowers is Deputy Mayor of Hastings District Council. Cynthia has 17 years experience in local government as an elected representative. Cynthia chairs the Hastings District Council / Napier City Council Joint Solid Waste Management Committee. She is also a self-employed chartered accountant.

Harry Burkhardt

Harry Burkhardt is the managing director of Replas Ltd, a manufacturer of recycled plastic products. Harry is involved in a number of governance roles including President of the Packaging Council of New Zealand. Harry is also the current chairman of the Ngāti Kuri Trust Board. 

David Carter

David Carter is the Group Environment and Business Continuity Director for Lion Corporation and has been a member of the Waste Advisory Board since 2010. He is the founding chairman of the Glass Packaging Forum and the Packaging Forum and an engineer of over 30 years.

Yvette Couch-Lewis

Yvette Couch-Lewis is a self-employed consultant and RMA Hearings Commissioner. Yvette has a background in conservation and has over 14 years experience working with Māori organisations and iwi in the areas of conservation and resource management.

John Pask

John Pask is an economist with Business New Zealand – New Zealand's largest business advocacy organisation. In the past he has been the Deputy Policy Director of Federated Farmers of New Zealand and the Policy Manager of New Zealand Employers' Federation. He has extensive knowledge and understanding of business systems and processes.

Sheryl Stivens

Sheryl Stivens is a self-employed contractor delivering waste minimisation education and training services. Sheryl has over 20 years experience in the industry originally founding WasteBusters in Ashburton  and is part of an industry group developing and delivering NZQA training and assessment for the NZ Resource Recovery industry.  Sheryl is a member of the Ashburton Water Zone Committee and has developed Waste Minimisation and Water Conservation Education resources.