Karl Carew BSurv ANZIS
Director / Licensed Cadastral Surveyor

Karl is a Licensed Cadastral Surveyor with significant land development experience. After graduating from the University of Otago with a Bachelor of Surveying degree and spending a couple of years working in the Manawatu, Karl returned home to the Hawkes Bay becoming involved with multi-disciplinary teams on projects both locally and throughout New Zealand. These experiences taught him the importance of surrounding yourself with a good team of people with varying skill sets to provide the best possible service to clients, delivering high quality projects.

Karl’s experience and focus on land development projects includes feasibility assessments, greenfield subdivisions, land development engineering as well as cadastral and spatial surveying.  Karl’s ability to assess the overall project requirements from their inception through until completion provides strong direction for our team.

Karl contributes to the team across all faces of the business and also manages and oversees the day to day running of Development Nous. 

Matthew Holder MNZPI 
Director / Principal Planner

Matthew is a Town Planner with over 20 years of experience in the resource management, environmental and town planning industry.

Matthew’s background retains a particular emphasis on providing advice with respect to Resource Consents, Environmental Impact Assessments, District Plan Policy and sustainable Urban Design. In doing so, he provides strong robust and innovative solutions to Resource Management issues and is well respected in doing so, regularly appearing in Council Hearings and when required the Land Arbitration Court, Environment Court and the High Court as an expert witness. Matthew is a Certified Independent Commissioner for RMA Hearings on Resource Management Act matters. 


Damon Gibson BSocSc
Town Planning Consultant [Resources & Environmental Planning]

Damon is a qualified Town Planner with more than 15 years’ experience in various Planning roles in New Zealand and London. Having graduated with a degree in Resources and Environmental Planning from the University of Waikato in 1999, Damon found employment as a Resource Consents Planner at Matamata-Piako District Council.

His sense of adventure took him to London where he worked for a number of Boroughs over a period of ten years. Initially dealing with basic development control applications, Damon advanced through a number of roles including Senior Planner and Team Leader positions and dealt with the assessment of residential, commercial and industrial applications.

Damon’s other work experience includes jobs as varied as fellmongery factory worker, wool buyer, scrap metal dealer and truck driver/removals specialist. This unique background gives Damon the ability to see development proposals from all angles and work with our clients and Local Authorities to address any potential obstacles.

Damon consults for Development Nous from Sweden.

Gemma Guilford BDes LArch
Landscape Architect

Gemma has 16 years professional experience in Landscape Architecture since graduating from Victoria University of Wellington with a Bachelor of Design. She worked in Brisbane Australia before joining DNL in 2017.

Gemma’s professional experience includes a diverse range of projects including master planning, broad scale residential developments, commercial developments, infrastructure projects and parks and gardens.  Gemma’s design intent is to create solutions that nurture the environment and support a healthy ecology whilst providing engaging and realistic landscape design outcomes.

Since joining DNL’s team Gemma has developed a in depth understanding of multi-disciplinary planning, design and construction practices and the NZ environmental policies and regulatory processes. Gemma is involved in all stages of the planning and design process across the firm, including being a mentor to junior staff and support studio management.

Jason Kaye M Soc Sci (REP)
Senior Planner

A capable and confident planning and regeneration professional, Jason has over 17 years’ experience in a variety of challenging planning roles in the public and private sectors in both New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

Following completion of undergraduate and masters degrees, Jason commenced his planning career with a policy role at Franklin District Council. Seeking the overseas experience, Jason then moved to the United Kingdom where he progressed to a senior level in London planning and was rewarded with roles leading the assessment of strategic scale, mixed use regeneration schemes of multi billion pound development value.

Since returning to New Zealand, Jason has held consenting and consenting team leader roles with Council’s before shifting his career focus to the private sector with Development Nous.  

Lesley Ranford 
Planning Assistant

Lesley is a Planning Assistant at Development Nous Ltd, working closely with Matthew Holder and the planning team. Lesley has worked with Matthew for over 15 years preceding DNL with Cardno, Consult Plus Ltd and Planned Solutions. Lesley has been with DNL since its inception, beginning its life as a Office Administrator. She has also spent time in Australia where she worked as a Legal Secretary to two partners of the firm DLA.

Lesley's experience as a Planning Assistant has involved her in a variety of projects working alongside the company Directors preparing resource consents, contracts, accounts and invoicing, making her an invaluable member of the team.

Lisa Poynton BRP (Hons), NZPI Int.

Lisa joins Development Nous in a Senior Planning role where she will be involved in all facets of planning, providing a key mentor for junior staff members and the broader Development Nous team. 

She has 18 years professional experience in both the public and private sectors within the Manawatu and Hawkes Bay area’s giving her extensive local industry knowledge. Her years spent in the profession has offered her a passion to specialise in subdivision applications.

While in the private sector she has worked on numerous land and property development projects throughout New Zealand including preparation of large scale residential and industrial subdivision applications.

Lisa’s years in the public sector has provided her with experience from the other side of the profession where she processed complex land use consent applications and subdivision applications, along with providing assistance to the policy teams at the various Councils she has worked at to identify improvements to their District Plans.

She has been an expert witness at many planning hearings and represented clients in a number of Environment Court mediations. 

Pip Pearse BBS (VPM)

Pip is a Registered Valuer with 16-year professional experience in the Hawkes Bay District, having undertaken valuations of a wide range of property types including residential, commercial and industrial for finance, insurance, rent reviews and financial reporting for both the public and private sector.

Pip’s most recent role included liaison with local authorities and rate payers, roll maintenance for four territorial authorities and three yearly revaluations and market valuations for finance and financial reporting.

Pip joins the Development Nous team as a Land Development Consultant to share her wealth of knowledge and expertise in the industry to help undertake resource consent applications, feasibility planning and project management.


Danash Sookdev Pr.Eng CEng CMEngNZ
Senior Civil/ Structural Engineer

Danash joins Development Nous Ltd with 23 years post graduate experience working in his home country of South Africa. His most recent role was as director of Sookdev Consulting Limited which was established in January 2008. Danash has emigrated to New Zealand to work with Development Nous as Senior Civil Engineer.

Danash’s professional experience includes work in all sectors of civil and structural engineering including road infrastructure, drainage and structural design, having worked on a broad range of projects including, but not limited to, commercial, residential and health care developments.

Danash’s responsibilities with DNL will include overseeing all aspect of the engineering team including strategic and project planning and feasibility, design, documentation and project management. He will liaise directly with local authority and key consultants to ensure projects are delivered efficiently and on time.    

Josh Kaifa BEngTech

Josh has recently graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering from Unitech Auckland and has joined the Development Nous Engineering team where he provides support for senior staff helping to prepare reports and documentation for Council applications and approvals, as well as a project management site engineering role.

Josh’s working background has provided him with a diverse range of skills and experiences; having worked overseas and locally Josh has experience in labouring, sales and marketing, customer service and still enjoys a career in professional Rugby.

Before joining Development Nous Josh most recently had a role as Cadet Engineer with Downer NZ. 

JJ Pretorius MengNZ
Civil Design Engineer

JJ has recently relocated to New Zealand from South Africa to join Development Nous’ Engineering team as a Civil Design Engineer. JJ graduated from the Tshwane University of Technology in 2010 and holds a Bachelor of Technology in Civil Engineering. 

He has over 10 years of experience in Civil and Structural Engineering design, construction and project management for infrastructure projects in the mining, municipal and private infrastructure sectors.

Throughout his career JJ has been a part of many successful developments including structural and infrastructure projects completing design, documentation, project management as well as reparation of reports and calculations. 

Mitchell Pal BEng
Civil Engineer

Mitchell joins Development Nous as a Civil Engineer with 4 years professional experience. Beginning his career in Brisbane Australia, Mitchell has been part of a range of interdisciplinary projects including residential subdivision, commercial and residential buildings, industrial developments, rail and road infrastructure projects, master planning and state and local healthcare and educational projects.

Mitchell has focused the beginning of his career developing knowledge in stormwater and flood engineering aspects of the built environment. In his most recent role, Mitchell has been responsible for preparing stormwater and flood management plans and strategies for a wide variety of greenfield and brownfield projects, progressing to a position of leadership, taking on roles as both a Project Engineer and Project Manager over several projects.

Olli Boaler PGDip Eng Geol
MENGNZ (Member of Engineering New Zealand)

Geotechnical Engineer / Project Manager

Olli is a qualified Geotechnical Engineer having graduated from the University of Canterbury in 2011. Olli started his career in 2010 as a Student Geologist during his last year of University. He now has over 10 years professional experience working locally and overseas.

Since his employment with Development Nous Olli has been responsible for the geotechnical designs, analysis and overall management of geotechnical studies for the land development projects. He also provides a project and contract management role.

Olli has extensive experience as a building labourer and is an avid outdoorsman, sportsman and traveller which provides a diverse perspective to his professional role.

Riandor Swart 
Civil Draughtsman

Riandor has recently relocated to New Zealand from South Africa to join Development Nous’ Engineering team as a Civil Draughtsman. 

Riandor has a background in private and commercial design, draughting, and manufacturing. His most recent role was as a Civil and Structural draughtsman at CED Holdings where he gained knowledge of civil engineering consulting. Further to this, Riandor has an extensive background in the automotive industry where he gained expertise in mechanical, automotive and electrical theory and practice. Riandor holds a CBMT (Competency Based Modular Training) Level 1 certificate as an Automotive Technician.

Riandor joins Development Nous’ Engineering team where he will provide technical support to senior staff helping to prepare documentation for projects from resource consent stage through to construction completion.


Bo Robertson
Land Development Technician

Bo is a Land Development Technician for Development Nous Ltd, where he assists in surveying, geo-technical and detailed site investigations.

Bo’s graduated with a Diploma in Information and Communication Technology from EIT and worked as an IT Consultant before joining Development Nous in 2016.

Reuben Vowden BSurv

Reuben has recently joined Development Nous as a Surveyor. Reuben has worked professionally as a Surveyor in Auckland since graduating in 2015 with a Bachelor of Surveying from the University of Otago.

Reuben’s experience covers a diverse range of survey activities including in office tasks such as handling digital datasets, parcel and vector capture, pre-validation and plan generation, LT and setout calculations, topographical drafting, as-built calculations, and small-scale design projects.

His fieldwork background has included 3 years’ experience with Sokkia and Topcon GNSS, total station and robotic total station equipment, client and authority liaison and project site inspections.  

Michael Vanderpeet BSurv

Michael is a Land Surveyor for Development Nous Ltd with 8 years professional experience. Michael spent his university and graduate years working out of Wellington for Adamsonshaw Surveying and Zorn Surveying Ltd in Napier. He graduated from Otago University with a Bachelor of Surveying in 2016.  

During his time in the industry Michael has acquired a firm knowledge in GPS, Total Station work and data processing, as well as developing skills in client and Authority liaison. Michael role in the DNL Surveying team is to assist with Cadastral Surveying, Topographical Surveying, and Engineering Surveying.

Michael is currently working towards becoming a licensed surveyor.

Simon Jones BSurv

Simon is a Land Surveyor for Development Nous Ltd, where he is part of the surveying and geospatial team. Simon has 9 years professional experience in surveying since graduating from the University of Otago in 2015 with a Bachelor of Surveying.

Simon’s experience covers various land and property development projects topographic surveying, spatial data capture (including 3D terrestrial scanning and unmanned aerial surveys), civil and building construction setout, and cadastral surveying under the supervision of a Licenced Cadastral Surveyor.


Emily Wheatley 
Office Administrator / Accounts

Emily is the Office Administrator for Development Nous Ltd, where she looks after general administrative duties, accounts payable and receivable, invoicing, payroll and is a PA to both directors.

Emily has worked in banking for 8 years throughout NZ and Australia as well as working in administration for the past 5 years.

She joined the Development Nous team in 2017.

She has completed her Certificate IV in Banking Services as well as Branch Team Leader Certificate.

Sarah Shanley
Office Administrator/ Accounts

Sarah works with Emily as an Office Administrator for Development Nous where she looks after general administrative duties, accounts payable and receivable, invoicing, payroll and assists both directors.

Sarah and her family relocated back to Hawkes Bay after having spent the past 15 years in Australia. Sarah has a diverse and interesting working background making her a valued and energetic member of the Development Nous team.

Sarah joined the DNL team in 2018