PR People

Our People

Our collective way of thinking, extensive PR experience, diversity and integrity are what makes us uniquely Porter Novelli. 

Our people are a special combination of talent…

Porter Transformer

When you work with us, we don’t just become your trusted advisors, we become an extension of your team.

Porter Transformer

We have deep connections across media, business and the public sector as well as the right skills to nurture partnerships that benefit everyone.

Porter Transformer

We’re a creative bunch of people with a never-ending supply of smart, innovative ideas that reach the right people and outcomes for you.

Porter Transformer

We’re straight-up and gutsy, advocating what’s right over what’s easy. We’re also a calm, experienced set of hands under pressure when you need it. 

Porter Transformer

We also know our way around business and whatever we do, our work is designed to make yours even better – for good.

Porter Transformer

We love what we do and also have a lot of fun along the way.

Let's Talk

Our actions speak even louder than our words. Talk to us today about how we can tell your story - for good.
Louise Wright – Managing Director

Louise Wright is an award-winning senior practitioner with a reputation for providing shrewd strategic advice, as well as offering creative solutions, to help organisations grow and thrive.

She lives and breathes the Porter Novelli values of winning with integrity, being gutsy, having your back, and enjoying the ride.

With extensive leadership experience, she brings a cool head in a crisis, helping clients through some of the most challenging times they have faced. Louise’s career began in news journalism, followed by magazines where she headed the biggest consumer titles in New Zealand, before moving to PR.

She believes great story telling is essential for all compelling PR campaigns and is renowned for inspiring her clients to take this approach. She has an enviable contacts book and prides herself on her connections with journalists, TV producers, editors, lawyers, agents and sports personalities.

Committed to helping the next generation of communications professionals succeed, she’s a Women in MEDIA mentor and also a mentor for PRINZ. She has a BA in English literature and History, and a Diploma in Journalism.

In her spare time, she’s a school netball coach, and fundraiser for kids’ sports and up at 5am in the rowing season driving her daughter’s squad to training. She collects NZ art and loves hanging out with her not-for-profits: James and Millie

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Jane Luscombe – Executive Director

Jane’s varied background in the media, PR, private and public sectors has given her a 360 degree perspective on the issues faced by New Zealand businesses and organisations.

She’s never happier than when she is problem-solving for clients, whether it’s handling a crisis, providing strategic counsel on a thorny issue, or coming up with creative ways to grab attention.

A highly experienced, ex-BBC reporter, she co-leads our media training service, providing inside knowledge of the media industry and its requirements. Her news sense and visual story-telling experience combine to deliver clients unexpected ways to engage.

While an advisor to the Retirement Commissioner, she served on the Commission for Financial Capability’s leadership team, winning the 2017 IPANZ excellence award for public sector engagement.

Outside work, her favourite claims to fame include dining at 10 Downing Street with former Prime Minister Tony Blair, when working as a reporter and, as a music fan, she once danced on stage with Bryan Adams. Don’t judge.

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James Walker – Executive Director, Sustainability Practice

James leads Porter Novelli’s sustainability practice, having previously held sustainability leadership roles in central government and the private sector.

James has worked at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Ministry for the Environment. Between the two, he worked in the high-octane world of retail grocery at Woolworths Group in both Australia and New Zealand.

At Countdown his team led the demise of plastic bags. When he moved to the Ministry for the Environment, he led the work on the government ban too. Today, he lives in fear of being caught at check-out without a reusable.

James has been involved in leading innovative sustainability initiatives and communications programmes – for example, New Zealand’s first workplace transgender transitioning policy, the establishment of an online foodbank, the development of the government’s Plastic Packaging Declaration, the public consultation on the Zero Carbon Bill and the launch of The Aoteaora Circle.

He’s also very resourceful. James has undertaken Antarctic survival training with the Royal New Zealand Air Force and, with no notice, cooked a four-course dinner for Helen Clark in an ambassador’s kitchen when the chef fell ill. She was polite about it.

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Fleur Williamson - Senior Account Director

Fleur has more than nine years’ experience in PR having enjoyed roles in Auckland, Melbourne and London. A passionate and born storyteller, Fleur has a strong understanding of both consumer and corporate communications.

From developing multi-faceted communications strategies and crafting compelling digital content, to leading community engagement programs and providing client counsel, Fleur’s favourite part is working closely and collaboratively with her clients to problem solve and reach their goals.

Prior to joining Porter Novelli, Fleur spent five years at CHE Proximity in Melbourne (Australian Agency of the Year in 2017), as well as in-house roles at Arthritis Research UK and the Food and Drink Federation in London.

Traveling and spending time with her friends and family are Fleur’s other loves, describing herself as a people person. A new mum to baby Sally, she also has a fresh new perspective on the world!

Sophie Coley – Account Director

Originally from the UK, Sophie has worked across consumer, business and corporate communications. She is committed to building long-lasting relationships and achieving exceptional results for her clients.

Whether its strategising, handling a crisis or putting a creative hat on, Sophie loves getting her teeth into new and exciting projects. Since making the move to New Zealand, she has worked with some of the largest Kiwi brands and has broad experience across FMCG, retail, telecommunications, finance, automotive and not-for-profit sectors.

As a keen traveller, Sophie enjoys spending her free time exploring new locations and the beautiful scenery around the country. Most weekends are taken up with a road trip, or even a ferry trip across to Waiheke to sip on some of New Zealand’s best wines.

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Rhiannon Hughes – Account Manager

Rhiannon has several years’ experience in the PR industry, having worked in a handful of Auckland PR agencies.

She’s worked across sustainable lifestyle brands, namely the beauty, health, and food sectors and has helped to successfully launch multiple skincare and cosmetic brands into the New Zealand market.

More recently, she has enjoyed getting stuck in to the corporate and business sectors and developing communications strategies that deliver impactful results. Her PR experience also spans the not-for-profit sectors and how best to deliver impressive results with limited resources.

Over the past few years, she’s made strong connections across lifestyle media and influencers and prides herself on strong written communication. She has a passion for event management and a sound knowledge of social media.

Outside of work, you can find Rhiannon with her family at Papamoa or out socialising with friends. She’s also partial to a cup of earl grey and a thrilling novel.

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Adam Szentes – Senior Account Executive

Adam has a diverse range of communications experience, from premium consumer campaigns to corporate communication and sustainability programmes.

He has worked with organisations across a variety of sectors including finance, government, retail, transport, infrastructure and technology.

A lover of language and storytelling, with a passion for social issues, Adam is skilled at interpreting brand messaging into ideas and content that resonates with a wide range of audiences and media.

He has a drive to use communication for good, creating a positive impact for both his clients and communities. Adam has a keen interest in illuminating issues and stories that have been relatively untold and helping broker meaningful partnerships.

Adam’s love of language extends beyond his professional life. On Tuesday nights, you’ll find him at German classes.

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Esther Dawson – Senior Account Executive

Esther has worked in communications as a social media strategist and in the PR industry, where she brings her digital native know-how to life.

Her experience lies in creating and implementing meaningful community campaigns for organisations in the energy, charity, health and wellbeing sectors. She has also delved into the insurance, engineering, FMCG, and consumer industries, focusing on how to tell stories that both engage audiences and provide a return for businesses.

Nothing drives Esther’s passion like building a real connection between brands and their people. Her love of interpersonal communication translates into her out-of-office activity too – auditioning regularly and starring often in the Auckland musical theatre scene. 

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Adrienne Sutton – Executive Assistant

Adrienne has worked in PR for over 16 years as Executive Assistant at two large agencies to several high-profile CEOs.  She has also worked in events, sales, marketing, recruitment, project management, events and advertising. A skilled project and events management practitioner, from building relocations, environmental and diversity accreditations, business conferences and large events plus the day-to-day running of the office.

She has proven herself as a safe pair of hands from the smallest of details to important confidential client business. Her attention to detail is second-to-none and no stone is left unturned when she is on the team.

Adrienne is a keen volunteer at local clubs and school, plus socialising with friends and family, she enjoys walking the dog and relaxing at home during her downtime.

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Verity McQuade – Finance Director

A qualified Chartered Accountant, Verity has worked in the advertising industry for over 10 years, at both an operational agency level as well as corporate governance and compliance.

Verity has a wealth of experience under her belt having worked for the Clemenger Group for more than a decade. She has a passion for helping agencies thrive and succeed under strong financial management and guidance.

There’s nothing Verity loves more than escaping to her second home in beautiful Rarotonga to read and relax, while soaking up the island air. While in Auckland she spends her weekends enjoying the best coffee the city has to offer, hunting out delicious cafes and spending time with her two rambunctious young boys. 

Simone Bell – Group Account Director

Simone has more than 17 years’ public relations experience in communications consultancy. She has worked with companies in FMCG, health and nutrition, pharmaceutical and primary industry sectors, and on public education campaigns with government and non-government agencies. 

Her passion and expertise lie in work that makes a positive difference to people’s lives and delivers results for her clients. She’s also keen to get involved in issues and crises as part of a team helping organisations to do the right thing.

She loves having a laugh with clients and colleagues and comes to work each day to do a great job and drink peppermint tea.

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Anna-Louise Hoffmann – Senior Account Director

Working at some of the most respected agencies in New Zealand and the UK, Anna-Louise is a jack-of-all trades when it comes to her communications expertise.
Whether it’s managing large-scale consumer campaigns, developing corporate communications strategies, supporting clients through crises, or overseeing creative activations, it’s all in a day’s work. 

Nothing motivates Anna-Louise more than taking on new challenges. Learning about different industries and coming up with strategies and creative solutions to solve problems and help clients succeed is what drives her – though some may argue it’s the endless supply of treats hidden in the Porter Novelli cupboards. 

Not one to sit still for long and always looking for challenges outside the workplace, Anna-Louise is a keen equestrienne – a passion she has followed since she was young.

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