About Us

Climate Navigator is on a mission to combat climate change by working together find pathways to success through bold climate action.  This mission is our foundation and underpins everything we do.

  • We are a purpose-driven consultancy business.

  • We are a social enterprise, committed to putting our money where our mouth, including by allocating a significant share of our profit to support climate action.

  • We aim to make our services accessible and affordable for any organisation committed to bold climate action.

  • We aim to be climate positive by offsetting at least 120% of our emissions through ecologically-beneficial forests.

  • We believe that collaboration is critical, and seek to create an ecosystem of organisations working together to enable bold climate action.

If you are on a similar mission, say hello and let's explore how we might work together to grow our impact.

 

Meet Our Team

Sam Elder

Founder & Director

Rachel Montejo

Managing Director

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Sam is a systems thinker who thrives when working with others to address the major challenges and opportunities we face as a society.  She started out in the 1990s working on some of the world's highest-risk space programmes, including an early mission to measure sea surface temperature and so detect climate change. 

 

Since moving to NZ in 2005 her eclectic career has included:

  • Coordinating NZ's largest Outcomes Based Investment science research programme at Plant & Food Research.

  • Creating industry-leading insight and analytics capability as the Retail Insight Manager at Meridian Energy.

  • Building capacity in social enterprise, innovation and impact as Southern Director of the Akina Foundation.

  • Managing the Hazards, Risk & Resilience and Transport & Urban Development portfolios as a Senior Strategy Manager at the Canterbury Regional Council, including the development of a first of its kind 'Climate Change Integration' programme and membership of the Leadership Group for the Southshore & South New Brighton Regeneration (Adaptation) Project.

Along the way Sam has gained a BEng (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering; qualified as a UK Chartered Engineer and a Project Management Professional; and gained an MSc in Architecture (Advanced Environmental and Energy Studies) and GARP's Sustainability & Climate Risk (SCR) certification.

In 2020 she chose to focus in on society's ultimate complex challenge - the urgent, must-win fight to combat climate change, and so Climate Navigator was born.

LinkedIn    /    sam.elder@climatenavigator.co.nz   /   +64 (0)21 245 8945

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Rachel has been a sustainability proponent throughout her 25 year career.  She began as a chemical engineer for Dupont, working on ozone depletion reduction projects.  From there she began to focus on pan-organisational, Six Sigma initiatives and received her Black Belt certification through programmes that reduced waste and increased organisational efficacy. 

 

On moving to New Zealand, Rachel’s career turned towards innovation in the energy efficiency sector.  Working for organisations such as Energy Mad, Meridian Energy and the University of Canterbury, she has led technical, continuous improvement, product strategy  and various other project/programme teams.  Rachel has worked for/with organisations as small as fledgling social enterprises through to some of the largest New Zealand businesses and multi-national corporations. 

 

Rachel currently consults for and provides governance advisory support for several business-for-good organisations in Christchurch.  She is working towards certifications in climate-related financial disclosures and climate governance.  

LinkedIn    /   rachel.montejo@climatenavigator.co.nz

Scott Willis

Director

Rich Little 

Director

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Scott Willis is an independent consultant, owner of Willis Advisory, and member of the Climate Navigators associate team. Scott was at the frontline of community action, leading the development of a wide range of climate solutions as Manager of the Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust for 12 years.

With a record of successful projects and community engagement Scott is well versed in climate programmes and the creation of solutions. Scott is also Chair of the Otago Chamber of Commerce's Energy Committee, a Trustee on the Cosy Homes Trust, and a member of the Innovation and Participation Advisory Group at the Electricity Authority. Previous roles he has held include General Manager of Blueskin Energy Ltd and Director of the Otago Chamber of Commerce.

Scott has led climate change adaptation planning for Waitati; led 'Our City, Our Climate' workshops for Dunedin stakeholders in 2018; and was responsible for the concept, development and build of NZ's first Climate Safe House in 2019 – 2020. He is passionate about community, collaborative effort and confronting the great challenge of climate change. Scott has rich and extensive networks and relationships with government, business, academic and NGO sectors.

LinkedIn  /   scott.willis@climatenavigator.co.nz  / +64 (0)27 488 8314

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Rich’s core talent lies in his ability to take complex matters and communicate them in a manner that is engaging and creative, while remaining faithful to the content.  With some 30 years’ experience in C-suite roles in both private and public sectors, Rich is confident to challenge the status quo in a respectful and constructive manner, to declutter complex narrative, and create a compelling ‘big picture’ story to enable a clear call to action.  

 

Rich completed a master’s degree in Science (Engineering Geology) from Canterbury  University in 1991 and has spent most of his career as a consultant scientist specialising in water, energy, and communications.  Rich’s career highlights include creating and leading a large water resources team at a multinational consultancy, consenting of ten renewable energy projects for Meridian Energy, and running business change initiatives at Meridian.

 

Rich is also the owner of Threesides Limited, a technical communications company that has clear synergies with Climate Navigator.  Threesides’  ethos reflects Rich’s personal values, specifically that trust underpins everything we do with our people and clients.

 

Rich jumped at the chance to join Climate Navigator as a Director from the outset as the importance of succeeding is simply too important.  And to be fair, the company founder in full flight does present an extraordinary case for bold change.

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Jamie Silk

Associate

Dr Chrys Horn

Associate

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Jamie is a strategic advisor bringing commercial innovation, financial and business case and specialist sector skills to the low carbon transition. His capability is founded in a deep analytical ability to understand and simplify complexity, detail and emerging trends to road-map, validate and deliver new solutions.

Jamie’s career has spanned:

  • Heading product management and development steering a leading global banks clearing products and business through the transformation of the Euro and Europe’s financial scene;

  • Working with multiple start ups spanning environmental science, smart grid, P2P & community energy, social justice and clean transport;

  • Leading multiple future thinking smart network projects including fringe of grid integration of solar, battery and demand side changes; smart home and network integration projects; smart sensors (IOT)/ data and infrastructure optimisation trials;

  • Low carbon transition advisory projects and pilots – with a particular focus on organisational and consumer behaviour change – covering energy, waste, cleaner transport, governance and organisational/ human dynamics and transition roadmaps across multiple sectors;

  • Deploying tools and techniques that have equipped teams from start-ups to global businesses to deliver innovation award winning transformation.

 

On his hikoi, Jamie qualified from the London School of Economics (BSc Economics and Econometrics), as a Chartered Accountant (ICAEW, UK) and Transition Engineer (GATE). Jamie is owner of Silk Advisory, a sustainable transitions consultancy, and is enthused by the synergies with the Climate Navigator framework and depth of team in enriching the opportunities for businesses to accelerate their low carbon programmes.

LinkedIn

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As a systems scientist, Chrys is interested in how we work with the uncertainty inherent in a system with myriad unexpected connections and across our political, cultural and professional differences to achieve the results we want.  She is passionate about the “why” and the “how” of things, because, while human beings seem pretty good at coming up with what to do, they often miss the “why” and the “how” of doing that. 

Chrys spent eight years at Landcare Research working with people in a range of contexts (community groups, local government, central government, business) on everything from catchment management, biodiversity and pest management, to climate change.  The work used adaptive management techniques and an in-depth understanding of human behaviour and behaviour change principles to help communities address their issues, by integrating science knowledge with knowledge from their own mixed contexts. 

Since leaving Manaaki Whenua at the end of 2008, she has worked as an independent contractor in science communication, social research and evaluation, and community development where she has put a lot of her research learnings into practice to bring about change. 

LinkedIn

Sea Rotmann
Associate

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Dr. Sea Rotmann has a PhD in marine ecology and environmental studies, but has focused on sustainability implementation in policy, practice, and research, since 2005. In late 2011, she started

her own consultancy called SEA - Sustainable Energy Advice Ltd, focusing on turning behaviour change theory into (global) best practice. She ran Task 24, the first global research collaboration

on behaviour change in demand-side management (DSM) for the DSM Technology Collaboration Programme (TCP) by the International Energy Agency (IEA) from 2012 to 2018. She has been researching hard-to-reach energy users in the residential and commercial sectors for the IEA’s Users TCP since 2019.

She has researched and utilised storytelling and narratives in her work since 2010 and has developed a BEST (Behaviour, Energy and Sustainability Training) Programme for Energy Managers with her research partners at the Californian See Change Institute. She’s also been a 3-time Green Party candidate, Co-Chair of the Guardians of the Bays (fighting the Wellington Airport runway extension) and coordinated XRANZ’s 2019 week of action.

Sea and her fiancé Karl have recently bought 35ha of land in paradise in Mohua / Golden Bay. They’re planning to turn it into an eco-community, with wetland and forest restoration projects and a regenerative farm.

WHAT PEOPLE SAY ABOUT SAM

Sam has an impressive intellect and the capacity to anchor multiple, diverse portfolios simultaneously. She is exceptionally skilled at synthesizing big, complex issues into solid cohesive policy or strategic advice, and communicating this simply and succinctly to a governance audience.

Sam was the driving force behind progress across her three portfolios over a 3-year period, including designing an integrated approach to incorporating climate change across Council's work and decisions.

PETER SCOTT
Deputy Chairman of the Canterbury Regional Council