Our Team

PATSY BASS
CHIEF EXECUTIVE
patsy@reeftondistillingco.com

Growing up in Reefton, Patsy remembers the simplicity of life on the West Coast, picking fruit in the garden, riding horses, and sipping on milkshakes at the milk bar. Her love of the region has been a constant and decades later when Patsy’s work as a project manager saw her return home, she began to look for ways that she could contribute to the revitalisation of her home town. Having spent her early years living on the site of the Westland Brewery, establishing a distillery was a natural step. 

NICK SECKER
HEAD DISTILLER
nick@reeftondistillingco.com

Nick comes from Blackball on New Zealand’s West Coast. A science graduate from the University of Otago, where he studied Botany, Nick had previously spent 5 years working in dairy, tourism, hospitality, and conservation. This unique mix of experience sees Nick well placed as Head Distiller at Reefton Distilling Co. Cutting short his UK O.E. to join us, Nick spent time in London and Scotland visiting household distillery names such as Glenfiddich and Dewars, where he gained valuable experience that is being put to work here at home.

KIMBERLEY COSTELLOE
FINANCE MANAGER
kimberley@reeftondistillingco.com

Kimberley gained her Bachelor of Commerce, Majoring in Accountancy at Canterbury University, going on to secure her qualification as a Chartered Accountant.  After spending 12 years’ gaining broad experience working in Chartered Accountancy firms in Nelson and Christchurch, Kimberley, a Coaster, has recently returned home to the West Coast.  Making a change from Public Practice Accountancy sees Kimberley strongly committed to the Finance Manager role at Reefton Distilling Co., where she is putting her number crunching experience to good use.

BETH SCOTT
DISTILLER
beth@reeftondistillingco.com

With a Bachelor of Science from the University of Otago (Food Science & Marketing), Beth specialised in food quality, moving from sampling and sensory lab, into chemistry and new product development before a career move into distilling. Beth has been instrumental in reviewing and documenting our processes, and working with Nick to continuously improve our quality management system. From Fox Glacier originally, Beth made the move north to Reefton to join our team, and promotes our products at events around the country.

SOMASHINI ROSE
ADMINISTRATION MANAGER
somashini@reeftondistillingco.com

Having recently moved to Reefton, Somashini is immersing herself in the history and heritage of the region and exploring the great outdoors.  Born in South Africa, Somashini moved to New Zealand with her family at the age of 12.  With a career in administrative management Somashini has amassed a wide range of experience in both the private and public sectors. Her role at Reefton Distilling Co. sees her supporting Patsy in the EA role and leading the administration side of the business.

SHANE THROWER
BRAND AMBASSADOR
shane@reeftondistillingco.com

With over 30 years experience as a Chef and the owner of a successful café/bar, Shane went on to complete his Post-Graduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning (Food Technology and Outdoor Education), and has worked at High Schools in Canterbury and the West Coast, teaching hospitality and food technology. Shane is a NZQA Assessor (Hospitality Service Industry ITO) and holds the Professional Chef City and Guilds qualification. Shane manages our front of house and enjoys entertaining customers to our cellar door.  He also works in production on a regular basis.

LISA DENSEM
PRODUCTION & PROCUREMENT MANAGER
lisa@reeftondistillingco.com

Lisa has a background in Office Management and Health & Safety, having worked in this capacity for large organisations including OceanaGold and more recently as Sales and Operations Planner for Westland Milk.  Lisa is well qualified to oversee production at the distillery and has been instrumental in making efficiencies throughout our production process and supply chain. A Reefton local, Lisa lives on a lifestyle property with her husband and small daughter.

JOE LAING
BRAND AMBASSADOR
joe@reeftondistillingco.com

Joe moved to Reefton with his wife and young daughter in early 2020.  With a successful career in the Christchurch Real Estate market, Joe has recently completed a full renovation on their Reefton home.  Prior to a career in the property market Joe worked in bars and five-star resorts in Canada, Australia and New Zealand and seized the opportunity to take up the role of brand ambassador at Reefton Distilling Co. where he is putting his people skills to good use.  Born in Newcastle, England Joe moved to New Zealand ten years ago, he is a Reefton Distilling Co. shareholder and big football fan.

SHIRLEY WENT
COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER
shirley@reeftondistillingco.com

With over 25 years' experience in PR and Communications, Shirley has developed internal and external Communications strategies for a wide range of industries and across the private and public sectors.  Shirley uses her skills to help tell and share our evolving story, assisting in growing awareness of our business, our products and our people.  Always looking for opportunities to help shine a light on our success, Shirley is looking forward to spreading the word further as we work towards export markets.

NICOLE BASS
SOCIAL MEDIA, EVENTS, MERCHANDISE
nicole@reeftondistillingco.com

Nicole has been creative since she could hold a crayon, with a career spanning graphic design, photography and event management.  Nicole coordinates our presence at  events in New Zealand, and will expand this to overseas as we move to new markets. Engaging with our wider social media customers is something Nicole delights in, and she also manages the sourcing of our quality range of Reefton Distilling Co. merchandise.

STEFFAN AND NIGEL MACKAY
AMBASSADORS AND WATER PROSPECTORS

Steffan and Nigel are very proud of both their Scottish heritage and the culture of their home town. The twin brothers who were born and grew up in Reefton, are authorities on everything there is to know about the area, its people, and its rich history. Their ability as “water prospectors” has enabled them to find the location of local springs, assisting in the establishment of the water sources for the distillery.