Karl Carew

Director/ Licensed Cadastral Surveyor

Karl is a Senior Licensed Cadastral Surveyor for Development Nous Ltd, where he is a Director and manages the surveying and civil engineering teams. Karl has 14 years professional experience in surveying since graduating from the University of Otago with a Bachelor of Surveying degree in 2004.

Karl’s experience covers various land and property development projects and major infrastructure upgrades which require topographic surveying, spatial data capture (including 3d terrestrial scanning and unmanned aerial surveys), civil and building construction setout, cadastral surveying, BOMA assessments as well as client and local authority management and liaison.

Karl maintains his involvement in the Hawkes Bay Branch of the NZIS holding the role of Branch Secretary from 2010 - 2012 as well as being the Hawkes Bay Young Surveyors Representative from 2009 - 2012. Karl also held the role of Branch Secretary for the Manawatu/Wanganui branch for 2 terms.

Matthew Holder

Director/ Principal Planner

Matthew is a Town Planner with over 23 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. 

His experience includes: expert evidence for the Crown Law office, involvement in land development matters throughout New Zealand, Commercial and Industrial greenfield and brownfield development (including wind farms, wineries, meat processing plants, large format retailing, and tourism activities) coastal development matters (i.e/ Coastal Erosion and the NZ Coastal Policy Statement considerations), rural and residential subdivision, air discharges and wastewater discharges. This experience also encompasses District and Regional Plan Policy formation, network utility designations under both the Resource Management Act and Local Government Act, cultural impacts assessments and applications for sites of significance (i.e./ waahi tapu, and historic buildings) under the NZ Historic Places Heritage Act and National Policy Statements (NES- Soil Contamination and NZ Coastal Policy Statement).  


Damon Gibson

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.

Rachael Hobman
Bsc Tech (REP) Msc

Senior Planner

Coming from a surveying family, Rachael has been involved in land development from a young age, and regularly found herself assisting her father on construction sites during weekends and school holidays. A sustainability and fresh water ecology masters led to graduate work in resource management policy before a shift to consenting roles. Across ten years working for Councils in London, Rachael gained extensive experience in the achievement of residential density within medium and large scale development while securing high quality design and living conditions. These roles progressed to opportunities leading on the assessment and facilitation of urban housing estate regeneration schemes, achieving great affordable housing outcomes for future residents and the Council.

Returning to New Zealand, a role with Napier City Council as the Council’s Project Lead for the 2015 Cricket World Cup games hosted at McLean Park provided an opportunity to apply planning related project management and relationship skills to a challenging context. This work was followed by an even more challenging role as the mother of a bossy toddler mixed with part time planning work, including consent processing for a Council. 

Jason Kaye
M Soc Sci (REP)

Senior Planner

A capable and confident planning and regeneration professional, Jason has over 19 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 Councils 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.
Senior Planner

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 19 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 have resulted in her specialising 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.

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

Pip Pearse

Land Development Consultant

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.


Dylan Lewis

Graduate Landscape Architect

Dylan has recently joined Development Nous having graduated in 2021 with a Master of Landscape Architecture from Victoria University of Wellington.  He joins the team in a graduate role working closely with the Landscape Architecture and Civil Engineering teams.

Dylan’s university studies have explored projects regarding to landscape design, city planning, urban design, cultural landscapes, residential landscaping and planting. Intending to improve the relationship people have with the urban and natural environment, through landscape design and planning.

Furthering his qualifications, he is working towards becoming a fully registered Landscape Architect through the experience gained from joining DNL’s multi-disciplinary team.  

Gemma Guilford
BLA (Hons), NZILA Member
Senior Landscape Architect

Gemma has 14 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.

Lesly Tatler

Graduate Landscape Architect

Lesly has recently joined Development Nous having graduated in 2019 with a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from Lincoln University. She joins the team in a graduate role working closely with the Landscape Architecture and Civil Engineering teams. She has 8 years of professional experience in the Building Services Industry in New Zealand, where she has become proficient in civil and structural drafting. Lesly’s also has a Bachelor of Architecture and Urbanism which she attained in her home country of Peru. Lesly was employed for 8 year in Lima where she worked in housing design and refurbishment before immigrating to New Zealand.

Lesly is a member of the NZ Ecological Society and the Canterbury Horticultural Society and holds a national certificate in Horticulture. As a strong advocate for ecology and the natural environment Lesly spent her summers while studying working in a local nursery and is currently undertaking a course in Apiculture.


Danash Sookdev 
BSc (Hons). Int PE (NZ), CPEng (Civil), 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.    

JJ Pretorius 
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. 

Josh Kaifa


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. 

Lehan Brits
Civil Draughtsman

Lehan joins the Development Nous team’s South African office as a Civil Draughtsman. Lehan will be working with our Engineering department where he will provide technical support to senior staff helping to prepare documentation for projects from resource consent stage through to construction completion.

Lehan’s experience as a draughtsman includes working directly with Architects to produce construction drawings and participating in site surveys and set out. Lehan’s internal auditing background ensures that he is aware of project quality assurance and risk management and delivering projects on time and within budget.

Lehan is also familiar in basic Te Reo Maori and is a trained Barista.

Matt McKee
Civil Draughtsman

Matt joins the Development Nous engineering and design team with almost 20 years Draughting experience working across multiple disciplines but focused on HVAC/Building Services where he undertook a range of projects from civil services to pre-stressed cement design. During his career Matt has developed a suite of custom CAD tools related to the production of drawing sets and incorporating tools and procedures to speed up and streamline the drafting and documentation process.

Matt will work with the engineering team to undertake construction and as-built CAD documentation, create and maintain tool sets and assist the wider business with IT, CAD and drafting software as required.

Mitchell Pal

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)

Project Engineer

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 Engineering Designer

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

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 and design support to senior staff helping to prepare documentation for projects from resource consent stage through to construction completion.

Ruhan Rykaart
Civil Design Engineer

Ruhan joins the Development Nous Engineering team as a Civil Design Engineer. Ruhan holds a Diploma in Electrical Engineering from the University of South Africa and brings 6 years of Engineering expertise to the team. He has spent his career involved in projects in the civil, electrical, and mechanical disciplines in South Africa.

Ruhan will join two fellow Engineers working remotely from our South African office where he will assist in civil design and documentation, 3D modelling, quantities and feasibility and reporting. 


Adrian Branescu
Cadastral Surveyor

Adrian has joined Development Nous’ survey team where will undertake both field work and cadastral documentation, working closely with the DNL Engineering and Survey teams.

Adrian started his survey career in his home country of Romania and immigrated to New Zealand with his family in 2018. He has worked professionally in both Auckland and Hawkes Bay for the past 3 years until joining Development Nous.

Adrian has extensive technical knowledge in the Survey field including proficiency with Leica and Trimble, South GPS and Leica Robotic Total Stations, DNA Accurate Level and other Dumpy Levels as well as 12d Surveying software.

Amon Pearse
Land Development Technician

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

Amon’s graduated with a Diploma in Screen Production and worked for a non-profit organisation and in manufacturing before joining Development Nous in 2020.

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.

Don Belliss

Don has more than 40 years’ experience across the full range of surveying disciplines. He has been previously employed as the District Surveyor for the Tasman District Council and as Staff Surveyor for the former Lands and Survey Department in Gisborne as well as senior project/development manager for private development projects nationwide, and as a consultant surveyor.

Dons’ roles have involved a range of tasks including monitoring surveys, cadastral and engineering surveying, and project/ development management roles.

He has developed skill and proficiency with surveying software and equipment including software such as TBC, TrimMap and Liscad and using Trimble GPS and electronic survey equipment as well as 12d Surveying software.

Don will be working closely with the DNL Engineering and Survey teams assisting in survey fieldwork and data processing and reporting.

Ken Davis
Land Development Technician

Ken has more than 30 years’ experience in various roles within the Civil Engineering and Surveying disciplines working as a Site engineer and Project Surveyor on substantial projects throughout New Zealand and the Pacific. His most recent role before joining Development Nous included design and construction of 10 Individual Water Treatment plants in Rarotonga.

Ken has extensive technical knowledge in the Survey and Engineering with field. His skill include proficiency with Leica and Trimble GPS, Sokkia and Leica Robotic Total Stations, DNA Accurate Level and other Dumpy Levels as well as 12da Surveying software.

Ken works closely with the DNL Engineering and Survey teams assisting in survey fieldwork and data processing, reporting and feasibility, tendering, and construction administration and Project Management.

Michael Vanderpeet

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.

Noel Ford

Noel joins the Development Nous Survey team where he works closely with both the Survey and Civil Engineering teams.

Noel has an extensive engineering and surveying background having worked in the industry for over 38 years. He has worked in both the public and private sectors for local council and private practices, most notably Noel worked for Horizons Regional Council in Palmerston North for 13 years as an Engineering Surveyor and his most recently role was as both a Design Engineer and Engineering Surveyor for 9 years at the Napier City Council.

Noel brings expert working knowledge of Trimble Total Station surveying equipment, Leica GPS equipment, 12d surveying and design applications, CAD Microstation draughting package, and Microsoft Word and Excel applications.


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

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.


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