Our Team

Leonie Freeman


A well-respected industry leader, Leonie has extensive experience in the New Zealand property industry, having held top positions in both the public and private sector. From creating the concept of what is now realestate.co.nz, to buying and transforming her own residential property management business, helping establish the new Auckland Council, and managing asset development for Housing New Zealand, there’s not many areas of property that Leonie has not touched.

In 2011, Leonie was appointed to the board of NZX listed company Goodman Property Trust, and up until her 2018 appointment as Property Council’s Chief Executive, she dedicated her time to leading an independent philanthropic initiative to solve Auckland’s housing crisis.

Leonie holds a Master of Commerce, majoring in valuation and property management and is a life member of the Property Institute of New Zealand, a chartered member of the Institute of Directors, and a member of Global Women. In 2017 she was awarded the Property Institute’s Supreme Property Award, and the Property Council Auckland Property People Judges Choice Award, and in 2020 she received the prestigious Bledisloe Medal from Lincoln University.

Katherine Wilson


As Property Council’s Head of Advocacy, Katherine is tasked with leading our advocacy campaigns at both a regional and national level.

Level-headed and engaging, Katherine has both a law degree from Otago University and an arts degree (majoring in politics) from Auckland University. With solid experience as a policy analyst and advisor in Wellington and Auckland, she has extensive networks and solid analytical skills.

Katherine is hugely dedicated, highly intelligent and committed to ensuring the voice of our members is heard at all levels of governance. She’s also relentlessly positive and enjoys a good chat.

Maryanne Sheehy


Maryanne has been involved in the property industry for over 25 years, joining Harcourts in 1989 and going on to become an agent, manager, business development specialist across 32 Australian offices and, eventually, achieving her dream of becoming a franchise holder.

Throughout her career she has amassed a Diploma in Business Studies and a Masters in Business Administration through Massey University, equipping her with a refined business acumen that complements her easy-going nature and optimistic outlook.

These days she has returned to our shores to be closer to her grandchildren and we are lucky enough to have her share her extensive management and business experience with the Property Council team.

Maryanne has a laugh that’s infectious and is renowned for her hugs (COVID-willing).

Denise Lee


Bringing a fresh perspective and strong political nous, Denise is well-known as the former New Zealand Member of Parliament (MP) for the Maungakiekie electorate and a former Auckland Councillor for Maungakiekie-Tāmaki.

Denise holds a BA in Political Studies and History and a Master of Arts in Public Policy and Theology, with specific skills in engagement and a natural ability to build rapport with stakeholders. Personable and warm, Denise’s exceptional strategic planning, communication and management skills are highly valued by both the Property Council team and its members.

Sara-Jane Evans


With nearly 20 years’ experience across the public, private and not-for profit sectors, Sara-Jane (SJ) has risen through the Property Council ranks over the past ten years to become a focused and passionate manager. She leads her large team of regional managers, event experts and membership support staff with enthusiasm and care.

Prior to joining Property Council, SJ worked in project management and administration, where she sharpened her leadership skills and honed her ability to bring people together to achieve project success.

SJ’s unrivalled understanding of our membership, governance and organisational history make her an asset to the leadership team and the organisation. She is also a prolific networker and joiner of wine clubs.

Roger Grove


We were lucky enough to lure Roger into assisting us with an overhaul of our finances in 2019, a contract role that had such an impact on the business, we simply couldn’t let him go!

An accountant by trade, Roger has had a 40 year management career, including as a Principal Consultant with KPMG and General Manager – Customer Connections with TelstraClear.

In recent years he has semi-retired to beautiful Matakana, where he helps with the grape harvest in between leading our software transformation and supporting Maryanne with balancing the books.

Kelly Taylor


Originally joining Property Council as South Island Branch Manager, Kelly returned in a communications role in 2017 and was then promoted to Head of Communications. Fast forward a couple of years and not much has changed – here she is, telling people’s stories – specifically, the story of New Zealand’s largest industry, property.

Ruthlessly efficient, Kelly has a natural inclination for strategic planning and a gift for project management, attributes that have served her well in her current leadership role. She takes the complex and makes it simple, opens doors for member engagement and positions us as approachable, credible and influential.

Based in Christchurch, Kelly loves telling our members’ stories and has relished the opportunity to wordsmith Property Council’s purpose, redefine our brand and take our communications to new heights.

Rona Miller


A long-standing member of the Property Council team, Rona holds a Bachelor of Business majoring in Management and a Diploma in Health Science. Her conscientious and methodical working style makes her the perfect person to oversee a large portion of Property Council’s internal operations and governance, all the while supporting our Chief Executive in exemplary fashion.

Prior to her current position, Rona was EA to the Chief Executive, a role which saw her manage all manner of projects, from the re-writing of our Constitution and governance structure to managing Property Council’s IT systems. She has a rare ability to take care of fine detail while also keeping one eye on the big picture, making her a valuable contributor to the Leadership Team.

While seemingly quiet and reserved, Rona secretly runs the show, with even Leonie referring to her as “the boss”.

Tasch Dodson


Impeccably organised with strong people skills, Tasch is a rare breed; being both a stickler for detail and calm under pressure. She has a background in recruitment and event management, but it’s her ability to build rapport with members and stakeholders that make her a true gem.

Approachable, reliable and always one to welcome guests with a smile, Tasch is cherished by her peers and local members. She is also probably one of the only Property Council staff members you’ll find sober at an event (but only because she’ll be running it!).

Sarah Rundstrom


Sarah is an experienced event manager and business owner with an extensive background in hospitality. She delivers local events and supports the needs of the wider Central region, encompassing the Bay of Plenty and Waikato. Easy-going and personable, but with an eye for detail, Sarah is (quite rightly) highly respected by her local members.

She also leads our team of Regional Managers, helping onboard and train new recruits and guide the way for our remote team members.

With her welcoming smile and great sense of humor, Sarah is a well-loved member of the Property Council whanau. She also manages to completely out-class us all in water sports, choosing to spend her weekends on the lake, in her happy place.

Sandra Brown


A ray of sunshine in the Wellington office, Sandra skillfully manages our events, webinars and the Wellington region with ease.

She has a background in event management and zoology, which may explain why she’s as at home calming stakeholders as she is pouring them a cold Waitoa beer (another little sideline project of hers).

Down-to-earth, reliable and always the first to make members feel at home, Sandra is a rare breed, truly valued by her colleagues and our members.

Aleisha Hogarth


Highly efficient and personable, Aleisha has a background in event management and administration.

She took the reins of the South Island region in late 2021 and has already proven her ability to adapt, planning and re-planning several regional events.

While she is very much enjoying delivering in-person gatherings once again post-COVID, she has relished this time getting to know our members and planning for the months ahead.

Sandamali Ambepitiya


Sandamali arrived at Property Council with a Bachelor of Arts and Law, and experience as an advisor with the Employers & Manufacturers Association.

Conscientious and detailed, Sandamali leads our advocacy in the South Island and Wellington regions. She is also leading our work on the reform of the resource management and building systems and sustainability / seismic strengthening.

An excellent listener, Sandamali is in her element when facilitating stakeholders and members to develop our advocacy positions.

Kayne Franich


Kayne is an experienced membership manager, having previously led the member services, customer experience and engagement strategies for the Employers and Manufacturers Association (EMA). 

Prior to this, Kayne had studied a Bachelor of Physical Education at Otago University as well as a Graduate Diploma of Business Studies and a Master of Professional Business Studies at Auckland University of Technology.

Kayne is based in our Auckland office and works alongside our Head of Membership & Commercial Services, Sara-Jane Evans, to develop and manage Property Council’s membership and sponsorship programme.

Naomi Wilson


A boomerang employee, having previously been Property Council’s Office and Events Coordinator from 2015-2019, Naomi returned in 2022 with a host of new skills in a newly-created role.  

She has a Bachelor of Business, majoring in Marketing from Massey University and has previously worked in the property industry across all manner of brand and marketing projects.

Naomi is based in our Auckland office and works alongside our Head of Communications, Kelly Taylor, to deliver valuable, timely communications to members.

Logan Rainey


Fresh from a Bachelor of Arts majoring in economics and politics, Logan joined us in early 2022 as he studied towards his Master of Public Policy at the University of Auckland.

Highly personable and enthusiastic, Logan is particularly good at keeping his cool under pressure and articulating our advocacy position in plain English.

A welcome addition to the team, Logan looks forward to getting to know our members over the coming months.

Louise Cooksey


Louise has a background in event management and administration, including a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Event Management and Tourism. 

Prior to joining Property Council, she spent several years working overseas and is now happy to be back on New Zealand shores.

Make sure you say hello when you see her at our next Auckland event!

Catie Harris


Catie delivers all of our major events, including the Property Council New Zealand Rider Levett Bucknall Property Industry Awards, Residential Development Summit, Retail Conference and The Property Conference.

Prior to joining Property Council, Catie had held event management positions in London, Australian and locally, with her most recent roles at the New Zealand Law Society and New Zealand Green Building Council.

A natural communicator with strong project management skills and a commitment to ongoing improvement, Catie is an asset to the team and a pleasure to work with.

Away from work, Catie also co-runs a not-for-profit organisation that supports both artists and local charities called Do Good Tees.

Emma Porritt


With a background in event coordination and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in event management, Emma is well equipped to play a key role in supporting Property Council’s national events.

Energetic and enthusiastic, Emma assists our National Events Manager with the delivery of our national events programme, including the Property Industry Awards, Property Conference, Retail Conference, Residential Development Summit and Offset|Reset.

Make sure you say hello to Emma at our next event.

Nikki Livesey