Jim Pongrace

Group Health & Safety Manager
(AKL based)


There’s no such thing as a typical day for Jim. Every day brings something different to the man tasked with upholding Camelspace’s enviable safety record.

He is responsible for fostering the company’s continual-improvement safety culture and manages and facilitates health and safety policies, safety audits and compliance requirements.

Jim’s philosophy is that safety is everyone’s responsibility; he provides the team with the tools to ensure they’re equipped for it, delivering a programme of internal and external training and courses across the country. In an industry where risk can’t be avoided, he takes a proactive approach to avoid problems occurring – the better the plan, the better the outcome. He takes great satisfaction from knowing the Camelspace crew are trained as thoroughly as they can be.

An American expat, Jim moved to New Zealand with his wife in 2012. They were in search of warmer climes after living in Russia for several years, where Jim managed the construction of a $1bn green field PVC production facility. Reporting to the Board of Directors for the joint venture, he had overall responsible for safety, project, cost, schedule and quality management; materials and logistics; and was involved in the contract administration.

A highly experienced project manager, Jim has delivered a number of large international construction projects, including six $550m 660MW power plants in India and a $450m nuclear fissile material storage facility in Russia (where incidentally, he worked with Phil).

He also has quite a talent for brewing and is Camelspace’s resident Brewmaster, turning out small batches of the excellent and aptly named Hump Ale. While quality control is definitely Jim’s domain, he does receive willing help from the team.

Outside of work, Jim enjoys getting outdoors to go cross-country cycling and hiking.