Andy Watson – Rangitikei Mayor

Andy Watson will be a Keynote Speaker at ACCS/ACBF— New Zealand and Pacific Island countries Promotion Session: .

Andy Watson moved to the Rangitikei, coming from Horopito at a very young age. He then moved away to attend University and complete a degree in Agriculture, managed a series of agricultural development properties before returning back to Marton to set up local businesses.

Andy is married to Beth (a local girl) and has three children – Julia, Mark and Simon.

Andy has had an extensive history in serving his community having been on three different Boards of Trustees and a number of local organizations.

He went into local government in 2004 and served 9 years as a Councilor before being elected as Mayor in October 2013.

His business background is in education, agriculture and tourism. He is currently involved in tourism through companies that his daughter, Julia now manages.

Rangitikei Summary

The Rangitikei District lifestyle centers on the small service towns of Bulls, Marton, Hunterville and Taihape, the icons of rural New Zealand.

The Rangitikei River runs through the district and provides some of the finest white water rafting in New Zealand, it offers great water activities, both for leisure and sport.

Horticulture is thriving and the area is appealing to all kinds of business ventures. There are excellent transport links, a good labor pool and opportunities for significant growth and capital gain.

The District is enriched by the Maori culture of four distinct tribal collectives. There is also a growing population of immigrants from Samoa taking up residency in the District, particularly in Marton.

Rangitikei has some of the finest schools in the country. All levels of education, including some with boarding facilities, are catered for as well as a variety of excellent day-care facilities. Schools work closely together to provide the best learning opportunities for students. Academic, sporting and cultural opportunities are highly valued and achieved.

Housing across the District is very affordable with people from the larger metropolitan areas choosing to move here and enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle.

The District, arguably, is one of the largest red meat production areas in New Zealand. While the Rangitikei economy is based on agriculture it includes a variety of successful innovative industries which make the most of the strategic location. Businesses are expanding which means together with the growing primary industry processing operations there are a wide variety of employment opportunities offered in the District.