What’s Our Mission?
And Who Are We…


As a community, we can create our future.

It is easy to get caught up in the problems of today without considering where we want to be in the future. By collaboratively working towards a common vision, we can proactively decide what success looks like and how to get there. Our community is only as strong as its voice, we provide an opportunity to shape our district for future generations – our children, grandchildren and beyond.

About Us


We are a group of volunteers who promote and facilitate open discussion and debate to better inform decision making across the Queenstown Lakes District.

Vanessa van Uden, Chair

I was voted in as Mayor in 2010 after serving as a Councillor on QLDC.  During my first term, I led the team that developed Shaping our Future, recognising the value of an independent group to liaise with the community and underrepresented.

Barry Bruce, Deputy Chair, Wanaka Community Board Chair

Having lived in Wanaka for nearly 25 years, I am very conscious of the need to future focus and plan ahead, not react to problems after they occur.

John Glover, Kinloch Wilderness Retreat, Glenorchy

Along with my inspirational wife Toni, I’ve run the historic Kinloch Lodge near Glenorchy for the last 20 years while raising three children.

Julie Perry, Treasurer

I joined Shaping our Future in 2017, spurred by an interest in the opportunities and challenges facing our region and the community.

Guy Hughes

I’m on the board to help ensure the region is in the best possible shape for future generations.

Rachel Rose
Rachel Rose

With a degree in Local Government Politics, I’m a strong believer in the power of the grass roots voice.

Reece Gibson

I am an Engineer who has lived in Queenstown for over 20 years and watched as the Lakes District has grappled with the pressures of its popularity and rapid growth.

Eddie Spearing

I like to research the root of issues or problems and believe from a sound base we can gain true understanding moving forward. I was involved in the earliest stages of Shaping Our Future and since joining the board in 2021 I would like to add to its vision.

Jon Mitchell

I enjoy working with the diverse group of locals on this board towards achieving a sustainable future for our communities, environment, and economy.

Shaping Our Future’s Guiding Principles

Encouraging exceptional solutions to current and future issues
Providing support for enterprising people and ensuring our spectacular environments are protected and enhanced for future generations
Monitoring the outcomes and encouraging other parties to proactively bring about the vision
Working collaboratively with others

Why Do We Do It?

We aim to reach out to as many people in the district as possible so we can present a common vision based on diverse discussions.