Mayors of Waimakariri District

Trevor M Inch 1989-1995

Trevor Milton Inch, a farmer, was a member and then Chairman of the Rangiora County Council before the Borough and County amalgamated in 1986. He was Mayor of the new Rangiora District from the elections in late 1986 until 1989, when the Waimakariri District Council was formed from Rangiora District, Kaiapoi Borough, Oxford and Eyre Counties and part of Hurunui County, as a result of local government re-organisation. Trevor was the first elected Mayor of the new District.  He resigned in 1995 because of ill health and died shortly thereafter.

He is remembered by the Trevor Inch Memorial Library in Rangiora, a facility he worked hard to achieve.

Janice Skurr 1995-2001

Janice A Skurr had a long-standing involvement in North Canterbury local body politics, serving both the Oxford County Council, and after re-organisation, the Waimakariri District Council, a total of 21 years.  As Deputy Mayor in 1995 she took over the Mayoral duties when Trevor Inch resigned.  She won the following two terms until defeated by Jim Gerard in 2001.

When the Waimakariri District Council was established in 1989, as one of the councillors representing Oxford, she fought hard for a new bridge at Ashley Gorge, and was very proud when the bridge was completed. Janice combined a strong determination to see things through with a genuine concern for the welfare of people within the community.

Janice was also involved in many other Oxford societies, including Plunket, Country Girls’ Club, the A & P Association and the Oxford Hospital.[Kaiapoi Advocate 20.9.2008, and David Ayers’ Weblog 2.8.2011]

Janice died in 2008.

Jim Gerard 2001-2007

Richard James Gerard brought a wealth of experience to the Council. A former Member of Parliament for Rangiora, he later served as New Zealand Ambassador in Canada.

As a farmer he had been involved in Federated Farmers. He also served on the Lincoln University Board, the Canterbury Business Board, and had been an Oxford County Councillor.

After losing the Mayoralty to Ron Keating at the 2007 election, he played a major part in the campaign to build the new swimming pool at Dudley Park Rangiora. As Chairman of the Waimakariri Covered Pool Committee he led a very successful fundraising campaign.

Ron Keating 2007-2010

Ronald David Keating was very surprised at the margin of victory over the sitting Mayor Jim Gerard.  He admitted to being speechless when he heard the news, but being humbled by it.

After graduating from Lincoln University with a degree in agricultural science, he worked for three years at the North Canterbury Catchment Board, the forerunner of Environment Canterbury. He then set up a consultancy, specialising initially in agricultural management before moving into land use and resource management.

Keating spent many years working with the mining industry in New Zealand and overseas on land rehabilitation, travelling to study the environmental impact of mining and other industrial activities.

Mr Keating had recently retired, and the idea of running for council or mayor never entered his head.  However, he did not think any mayor should be re-elected unopposed and so tried to talk a number of people into standing. For various reasons they declined but instead asked him to stand. [`Humble winner’ by Geoff Mein, Northern Outlook 20.10.2007]

He was defeated by David Ayers at the 2010 election.

David Ayers  2010-2019

David Lindsay Ayers moved to the Waimakariri in 1976 but his roots go back to his great-great-grandparents settling in Woodend in the 1850s. David, a retired secondary school teacher, and seven-term councillor, is well experienced in local body politics.

He has a long history of public service in the region through such organisations as Rotary, Community Watch, Ashley Rivercare, North Canterbury Radio Trust and the Waimakariri Arts Council.

Dan Gordon 2019-

Dan had been a Councillor for 15 years and therefore had prior in-depth knowledge of local issues. He believes in creating strong connections between all residents, and working within the rural and urban communities to help create positive change.

He was involved with the establishment of the Oxford Art Gallery and was Chair from its inception. Dan is Chairman of the Friends of Rangiora Town Hall, Patron of North Canterbury Musical Society, Deputy Chair of Waitaha Primary Health and until elected Mayor was on the Board of Rangiora Promotions. He helped establish the successful Kaiapoi Art Expo, which he has chaired since its establishment.

With the district’s larger investment projects such as earthquake repairs, the multi-sport stadium and Kaiapoi’s regeneration projects either completed or under way, Dan believes that the years ahead will require a ‘steady as you go’ approach, managing costs to ensure our district continues to thrive.