Melissa Easther

Senior Consultant | Kaiwhiriwhiri Matua
Wellington Office - on parental leave

Melissa is a clear and impactful communicator, with a collaborative approach that focusses on solutions and results

A seasoned policy professional, Melissa is adept at building rapport with clients and stakeholders as a foundation for developing consensus. She understands how to achieve results in challenging, uncertain environments and she has a proven record of providing high-quality advice that responds directly to her client’s needs. 

Melissa has developed in-depth knowledge across a range of policy areas through her work with various government agencies – this includes Te Tūāpapa Kura Kāinga | Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, the Ministry of Transport, and the Ministry of Health.  

She is also a former Private Secretary. This experience liaising between a home department and the Minister’s office added further to Melissa’s deep understanding of how central government operates. 

Melissa thrives under pressure. In the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic she worked on fast-paced legislative change and led others to complete significant policy pieces. 

Examples of Melissa's work

  • Legislative change Melissa has extensive experience in legislative policy, including a range of long-term reform projects as well as fast-paced, reactive legislative change. She led law changes around emergency and transitional housing, and also helped shape significant reforms to the Unit Titles Act and the Residential Tenancies Act.   

  • A relationship builder In developing an occupational regulation regime for the residential property management industry, Melissa led extensive engagement with that industry, as well as public consultation and cross-government collaboration. 

  • A thought leader As a senior team member Melissa has shaped reforms to a number of legislative regimes. She also developed a strategic narrative for MBIE’s Energy and Resource Markets branch, and a plan for New Zealand’s transition to a lower-emissions transport sector. 

Melissa's qualifications

Melissa has an Masters in International Studies (Distinction) and a BA in Political Science from the University of Otago. She also has a BA (First Class Honours) in Diplomacy and International Relations from the University of Canterbury.