Our Team

‘The Locals’ team work closely together with a shared vision and common goal to always achieve the best result. You’ll find there is a certain way we operate; we prefer to keep it real... for real people.

Lesley

Lesley Hawes

Sales

At the top of her field for nearly two decades, Lesley’s phenomenal real estate career is an inspiring story.

Joining the industry in the early ‘90s in Wellington she showed a natural talent from the get go, becoming a leading salesperson in the Leaders' office of Lower Hutt. A relocation to Auckland a few years later meant reinventing her real estate career with a new home and new contacts to build. Settling into Western Springs, Lesley decided to go to work in her local ‘patch’ and set her sights on becoming the real estate salesperson of choice in the area.

To say she has achieved this goal is somewhat of an understatement. Over the past 15 years Lesley has become a ‘local landmark’ herself – there are few people in the community who don’t know her name or share a wave with her on a daily basis as she zips around in her yellow Mini. She has had the privilege of selling over 80% of the homes in this area and quite a number have now dealt with her 2 or 3 times.

Lesley developed as market leader in Western Springs and surrounds working as a salesperson from the Ray White Mt Albert office for almost 10 years, and her outstanding performance saw her win numerous accolades over that time. These include 5 consecutive years as Ray White NZ’s No 1 Salesperson and being in the top 3 in the country for the whole decade. She gained international ranking in the company too with her penultimate achievement in 2005 as the No 1 International Salesperson across the entire Ray White network.

Over 20 years into her real estate career, Lesley’s energy and passion are as strong as ever. She sees her role as helping people to fit the pieces of the real estate puzzle together. “I love the challenge it presents and get great satisfaction from the contribution I’m able to make to other people’s lives."
Ruth’s authentic, people-oriented approach gets results. She currently holds Ray White’s top accolade, International Supreme Salesperson – beating a field of 5,000 salespeople from 1,000 offices throughout eight countries to the title. Not bad for a local!

Motivated to deliver the best results for her clients, Ruth’s early career in nursing matched her empathetic drive to make a positive impact on people’s lives. But real estate is in Ruth’s DNA and it wasn’t long before she joined her mother Lesley Hawes at the helm of The Locals sales team.

Always known to go the extra mile to fine tune every detail of a sale, her integrity inspires confidence and a sense of ease with clients. Ruth’s commitment to establishing great relationships and understand clients’ needs, her positive and effective negotiation style and good old-fashioned work ethic are essential to her approach.

With the support of a dedicated team around her, there's no doubt your property decisions are in great hands when you're working with Ruth.
Tim’s friendly, positive personality and background as a teacher make him naturally client-focussed and results-driven. His social, easy-going nature is balanced by a determination to find exactly the right solution for clients – working on the understanding that the quality of his relationships and solid work ethic can make an impact for people at an important transition in their lives.

Growing up in the Hawes family it was perhaps inevitable Tim would join the family trade at some point. His background in the real estate market was established from a young age delivering flyers, answering Lesley’s phone and spending hours in her car listening to Brian Tracy tapes between appointments and to and from school.

Since becoming one of ‘The Locals’ at Ray White 10 years ago, Tim has made his mark on every corner of the business –  having been hands-on in all aspects from property management and marketing to administration and office management.

A valuable member of our sales team, Tim’s accumulated knowledge, positive negotiation style, opportunity focus and open approach to communication ensure clients achieve the results they want and enjoy the journey to the next chapter of their lives.
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Shannara Walker

Property Management

Shannara works with our rental team in the vital role of Team Co-ordinator and Administrator. She helps our Property Managers to make sure that all the i’s get dotted and all the t’s get crossed and no matter how busy she gets she does it all with a smile.

With a background in sales and events management in the hospitality industry Shannara knows just how to juggle priorities to make sure everyone’s varied needs are met and takes pride in making sure all the details are taken care of.

We knew as soon as we met her she was just what The Locals Property Management team needed and her positive and enthusiastic approach to every task makes her a perfect fit!
Char

Char Botha

Property Management

Char’s natural charm and warm personality are obvious from the first meeting and it is immediately apparent that she is driven to provide the best possible experience and outcomes for her clients. An organised, proactive and target oriented approach ensure that she delivers.

Always giving 150% in everything she does Char holds the firm belief that there is no problem that cannot be solved and will look for the solution rather than focus on the problem. This attitude and approach has served her well in her time in the property management sector.

Her exceptional communication and negotiating skills owe a fair amount of credit to her prior roles in the insurance industry where she employed her exceptional communication and customer service skills whilst managing teams working in the legal and debt recovery areas.

With both a law degree and a B.A. in psychology under her belt Char is currently working on completing a Bachelor of Business Studies and when she has some down time she loves spending time with her family and being a great role model for her children, step children and grandchildren.
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Rachel Batchelor

Property Management

With over 9 years experience in Property Management, Rachel brings with her a wealth of experience and knowledge. With an eye for detail, fantastic organisational skills and a calm approach to the many problem solving moments a property manager faces on a daily basis - with Rachel, your property is in good hands. Having worked for The Locals Property Management since 2011 with a bit of a break to become a mum of two she has now rejoined the team permanently and we are very happy to have her warm personality and unflappable manner back in the office!
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April Vaudrey

Property Management

April brings a vast array of skills and experience to the table. She's found her niche in property management over the past few years after a long career in a variety of areas in the real estate industry encompassing sales as well as branch management and staff training and holds both sales and real estate management qualifications. She has also spent time working with her family as General Manager of their boat building business doing everything from managing budgets, staff and customer relationships through to business development, so we imagine her range of experiences will enable her to add some real value to our customers!

Delivering the best in customer service is a key driver for April and she will go out of her way to deliver excellence to all her clients.
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Tui Thorn

Marketing & Administration

Tui joined The Locals team as a customer service manager and receptionist in 2010 after graduating with a Visual Arts degree and she has been with us ever since…. thank goodness! Her charming and unflappable approach saw her excel in the office’s ‘first impressions’ role and her excellent interpersonal skills quickly made her an invaluable asset to the team.

We have been delighted to see her take on new challenges every year and be able to put her creative talents to use as our go to girl for all things marketing. From property brochures and screen displays to our expanding social media, website and marketing endeavours, Tui’s natural flair for design combined with a Gen Y technological adeptness makes her the ideal person to take the lead on this increasingly important aspect of our business.

Her willingness to take things on and go the extra mile along with the dedication and care Tui puts into everything she does is a true reflection of the values we hold dear here at The Locals.
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Vanesa Kuga-Djordjevic

Marketing & Administration

Vanesa will be the one to greet you when you call or come to The Locals Kingsland office and we know her ready smile and professional manner will make you feel very welcome and well looked after! With an eye for detail she takes great pleasure in getting things done right no matter the size of the task.

Vanesa has experience in the advertising industry having worked as a production assistant - she is passionate about photography and her skills working with creative software adds huge value to our team with her help in perfecting our marketing material and advertising.

Her first introduction to the real estate industry was as a tenant liaison officer followed by an administration role then a promotion to a Business Development Manager and Project Manager. As project manager she was responsible for auditing and tracking performance of rental portfolio over different sectors. She also spent time working as a Property Manager with responsibility for a portfolio of rental properties before she joined our team.

When we met Vanesa, she was looking for a new challenge but wanting to stay in the real estate sector and we knew straight away she was the perfect fit for us!
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Chris Hawes

Management

After a long career as an aircraft technician with the Royal Air Force, Chris, Lesley and family moved to New Zealand in 1977. Chris put away his toolbox in 1978 and joined the then Civil Aviation Division of MOT as an Airworthiness Surveyor. A minor mid life crisis in 1986 saw the family purchase a motel business from which they escaped in 1990. This was good training for customer service and finding ways to meet people's needs.

Chris returned to Aviation with the new Civil Aviation Authority in Wellington, until the call of the sea became too strong and in 1994 the family returned to Auckland where one can sail in comfort. Chris worked at Air NZ Flight Operations until 1999 and during this time was pressed into service to assist with Lesley’s blossoming real estate career. Chris then joined Lesley full time as PA/Office Manager/Sign man and gained his Real Estate Salespersons certificate the same year. He helped to provide the organisational detail which has allowed Lesley to consistently perform.

In 2006 Chris and Lesley opened the Ray White Kingsland office. Chris was made an Associate of the Real Estate Institute and obtained Agent Licensee status in 2007, when he became Principal and Manager of the successful Locals team serving Kingsland, Western Springs, Morningside and Eden Terrace.  He is very proud of the success of the office where Lesley and Ruth both achieved Number 1 Salesperson Awards for Ray White NZ in 2011 and Ruth went on to win International Supreme Salesperson for Ray White in 2013.

Chris is a family person and enjoys the challenge of working with Lesley and their three children Ruth, Rachel and Tim. When not at work Chris enjoys sailing in the Hauraki Gulf and with succession planning in full swing he is enjoying having more time to venture further afield.
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Rachel Hawes

Management

Hugely capable and extremely efficient (with two capital Es!) Rachel was an integral part of setting up the family business at Ray White Kingsland in 2006. “Borrowed” from a very successful job in Wellington she originally had intentions of returning to her excellent government department job – but blood is thicker than pretty much anything as they say, and thank goodness we still have her here.

Rachel's diverse array of skills comes from a wide and varied career ranging from hospitality management, HR and payroll through to IT auditing and corporate finance. Her superb attention to detail and a logical approach to problem solving (and getting things done!) add a fabulous dimension to The Locals management team.

Initially on board to set up the internal systems and administration for the office when we opened Rachel then took on the responsibility of starting up The Locals Property Management Division in 2007. In this hugely important arm of the business we now have a team of 5 and close to 300 properties in our care and we’re proud to see it going from strength to strength. Rachel also works closely with the sales team supporting Ruth and Tim and is becoming an integral part of this side of the business as well. She can be seen often hosting open homes, coordinating photo shoots, at auction nights and anywhere she is needed!

Always on top of her game and usually moving at speed, Rachel is totally committed to providing outstanding customer service and her many happy clients will tell you that ‘going the extra mile’ is something she does each and every day.

Sales

Lesley

Lesley Hawes

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Ruth Hawes

Ruth personal
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Tim Hawes

Property Management

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Shannara Walker

Char

Char Botha

Rachel D Clear Cut

Rachel Batchelor

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April Vaudrey

Marketing & Administration

Tui Clear Cut

Tui Thorn

Tui
Vanesa web

Vanesa Kuga-Djordjevic

Management

Chris Clear cut

Chris Hawes

Chris
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Rachel Hawes

Rachel