Chief Executive & Chamber Board

Helen Garner – Chief Executive

As Chief Executive of the Whanganui Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Helen is passionate about supporting businesses to thrive.

Helen has built her professional career in a diverse range of environments and has first hand experience of the differing cultures of small business, large corporates, local government and not-for-profit organisations. She has held roles within Economic Development Agencies, Chamber, Māori business networks, and Business Mentors NZ. Helen believes strong relationships support business growth and help to promote a sustainable business community.

Contact Helen:


Behind the scenes is the fabulous Anita – our accounts & administrative manager.  Anita helps Helen provide the Chamber with a seamless service to keep our members up to date and with relevant information.

Glenda Brown – Chair

Glenda Brown is a director of eHaus – a national design & build Company specialising in Passive Housing and high performing energy efficient homes.

She is an accredited Mentor of Business Mentors Ltd, a member of the NZ Institute of Directors and also a trustee on a local community based trust that supports various ministries that serve Whanganui.   With 12 years governance experience in the school sector, Glenda is a positive and proactive contributor to the growth of the Whanganui Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Glenda is passionate about Whanganui and believes strong relationships between business entities are vital for the future of economic growth in our area. Glenda can be contacted:

Joamari van der Walt – vice Chair

Joamari is a Legal Advisor at Horsley Christie Lawyers and specialises in Immigration, Property and Commercial Law.

She is an admitted South African lawyer with further admittance in Singapore.  She obtained her double Bachelor’s degree in Commerce and Law from the University of Stellenbosch and the University of South Africa. She practiced with various law firms in South Africa, owned her own law firm for 7 years, worked as commercial lawyer in Singapore and has been working as Legal Advisor in New Zealand for 3 years.

Joamari is a high energy individual who has deeply rooted herself in the Whanganui community.  She is passionate about the future economic growth of Whanganui and looks forward to the exciting opportunities and relationships to be formed through her involvement with the Chamber.

Craig McKinnon – Treasurer

Craig McKinnon is one of four partners in Balance Chartered Accountants.

Craig completed his bachelor of commerce at Victoria University of Wellington and worked for Finance New Zealand as a senior tax analyst before returning to Whanganui with his wife and two children.

He brings a high level of financial expertise to the Chamber Board as well as  a fresh look at how the Chamber works. Craig succeeds his father Rex on the Chamber Board.

Brendon Bartley

Brendon is the Managing Director of Bartley Group of Companies.

Married with three children, Brendon has lived in Whanganui most of his life and is very passionate about the growth and prosperity of local Business’s.

Bartley Group of Companies is made up of 11 local companies which cover a broad range of services, from Real Estate to manufacturing bull bars, warehousing and logistics.

Brendon’s view of the Chamber is to link businesses and help create a positive, strong and effective business community for our region.

Natalie Sara

Natalie was born and raised in Whanganui but left the region to pursue her career in Banking. 30 years on she has returned home to be closer to family and to enjoy the lifestyle that Whanganui offers.

Natalie’s dedication to relationship building and excellent customer service has been honed over more than three decades’ experience in the banking industry where she has worked across multiple frontline sales, Commercial, Institutional Banking positions. Natalie’s primary focus is client interactions and supporting and guiding Business and personal customers through all stages of their life cycle and help them achieve their financial dreams.

Natalie is passionate about the Whanganui Region and see this opportunity being involved on the Chamber board as an opportunity to give back to the community.

Stuart Hylton

After many years working across various activities in Local Government, Stuart manages his own consultancy firm specialising in Business Planning, Strategic Planning, Change Management, Policy Development, Waste Minimisation, Facilitation and Commissioner work.

Stuart is an appointed District Licensing (Alcohol) Commissioner for Whanganui and Rangitikei District Council’s and is currently an elected member and Deputy Chair of the Whanganui District Health Board following being an appointed member in 2014.

He serves on a number of not for profit entities including being Chair of the Waimarie Operating Trust, Immediate Past President of Whanganui Rotary and Executive Member of both the Whanganui and Central Districts Cancer Society.

Stuart is passionate about the District he raised his four children in. He sees Whanganui strategically well positioned to work smarter and more collegially to build business prosperity and community growth and welcomes the opportunity to make a difference around the Board table.

Sam Monaghan

Sam is the proud owner of Monaghans Barbershop in Whanganui.  Sam’s goals of changing men’s grooming in New Zealand has begun with the shop in the Avenue. Innovative thinking and long term strategy has given Sam the opportunity of creating his own national brand of men’s grooming products soon to be released. Sam is looking forward to being part of the Whanganui Chamber of Commerce which is a new area of governance he is eager to be involved in. He is passionate about business success in Whanganui and building strong relationships in the community.

Jordan Davis

Jordan is a progress-focused working professional and is committed to contributing towards a thriving Whanganui business network and economy.  Having been born and raised in the region, his regional whakapapa and connection to the whenua are his key drivers in supporting and contributing to Whanganui and the Chamber, assisting in a brighter future for this generation and the generations to follow. Jordan is passionate about the business future of Whanganui and is looking forward to assisting this through his involvement with the Chamber.