Come behind the scenes and into the jobs, the challenges, the highlights, and the personalities of the people who work at the Department of Conservation (DOC).
Today we profile Fenella Christian, Partnerships Ranger on Great Barrier Island.
Some things I do in my job include:
I manage the administration of the DOC office on Great Barrier Island. This means I liaise with the public and look after staff.
In my partnership role, I support my colleague Rebecca Gibson with processing concessions and organising programmes with schools like the cockle counts, environmental schools programme and events in Conservation Week and Seaweek.
This helps achieve DOC’s vision by:
Being as accessible as possible to the public and being visible as a DOC ranger.
The best bit about my job is:
Working with an incredible team of dedicated and skilled people and learning new skills every day.
The awesome-est DOC moment I’ve had so far is:
Sitting on the cliffs at Whalers Lookout at the southern end of Great Barrier Island, with a dolphin expert and a turtle expert, looking out to sea and imagining what life must have been like for the whalers who used to sit there waiting for the whales to come down the coast.
The DOC (or previous DOC) employee that inspires or enthuses me most is:
On a personal note…
Most people don’t know that:
I am an artist and have exhibited at the Aotea Centre alongside the Wallace Collection and 500 Japanese artists, and at the Mairangi Arts Centre Palmers Rose awards.
If I could be any New Zealand native species I’d be:
A nīkau palm.
My secret indulgence is:
Swimming at Whangapoua Beach as often as I can.
Before working at DOC:
I was the office manager for an environmental group and a local primary school.
My hero is:
Deep and meaningful…
My favourite quote is:
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given is:
“Don’t put anything in writing in anger without leaving it at least one day before sending.”
In work and life I am motivated by:
How excited I am feeling about a particular project.
My conservation advice to New Zealanders is:
Trust those who are doing the conservation work to do the best they can. It is their world as well.
Question of the week…
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be famous!