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Kelly Mulcahy

Meet new regional support officer Kelly Mulcahy

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Kelly Mulcahy has been in and around clubs and sailing her whole life and that association will continue in her new role as a Yachting New Zealand regional support officer.

Mulcahy this week took over from Ian Darby as the regional support officer for the southern area of the northern region. This essentially covers the territory from south of the Auckland Harbour Bridge down to Waikato and the Bay of Plenty.

She's no stranger to Yachting New Zealand, having previously managed handicapping and boat registration for six years, as well as organising a handful of Volvo Yachting Excellence Awards.

But her association with the sport stretches back much further.

Mulcahy joined the youth training programme at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron as an 18-year-old and went on to win multiple national women's keelboat titles and competed at three world championships in the 1990s.

She also raced extensively offshore, including the 50th Sydney to Hobart Race, Fastnet Race, was part of the crew that broke the monohull trans-Atlantic crossing record and trialled for the all-women's crew on EF Education that competed in the 1996/97 Whitbread Round the World Race.

"I loved the offshore sailing," she said. "I loved the challenge, peacefulness and real sense of achievement when you sail in a great race. And I love the fact sailing offshore takes you to many great places."

The America's Cup took her to Spain, where she lived for six years - she's married to a professional sailor - and she's long been going from regatta to regatta in this country following her two sons.

Mulcahy is excited to be joining the team as a regional support officer and strengthening the relationship between clubs and Yachting New Zealand. One of her priorities will be getting around the clubs in her area to find out what they are doing and where she can offer assistance.

"I've been around clubs and sailing my whole life and wanted to be able to give back and do something I'm passionate about," she said. "As a parent of sailors, I have been to lots of regattas and clubs around the country and have seen what is done well and what possibly needs improving. It would be nice to offer help to clubs who need help and I bring lots of experience.

"I'm really looking forward to meeting with clubs and committees. I like to see positive outcomes from hard work and I would love to see improvements through some of the work I do, whether that's building membership, running a really successful event or giving some guidance strategically."

"I have worked with Yachting New Zealand for a long time but I've also been a member of a club for a long time so I know what it's like to be on both sides. I know what Yachting New Zealand can offer."

Mulcahy isn't the only new appointment at Yachting New Zealand, and Robyn Agnew has taken over as office administrator. 

Beth Orton has moved into a role as sponsor and high performance coordinator.