IEL - Our Team
We believe our team at IEL is second to none! Individually amazing, and collectively astounding, we are a highly motivated, very committed group of people with a common aim – to lead the way in building technology, partnering with our clients to provide a level of service and source of advice that we would all appreciate but so rarely encounter.
Paul and Nikki Harris started the company in 2007 and remain the sole directors.
Nikki graduated with a degree in psychology and education. She has many years of experience in leading teams, with varied roles in media, business training, and management.
As General Manager of IEL she oversees the day to day running of the business. Her role is varied and includes responsibility for budgets, staff, and marketing (much preferring the latter two). If you ask, she will tell you she wears the hats no-one else wants!
Living and working with your husband can have its challenges. Nevertheless this couple have made it work and still seem to enjoy each other’s company! (“Most of the time” adds Nikki.)
Paul‘s experience with building technology spans many years including time as NZ Sales Manager for Clipsal Integrated Systems.
Paul is known for his ability to “think outside of the box” and enjoys the challenge of providing a solution to solve every challenge.
His advice is sought by consultants, contractors, and clients, and he spends a lot of each day on the phone. When he does manage to un-glue the handset from his ear, he is usually head down, poring over plans to assist the estimating team.
Paul and Nikki have built a house beside a lake a little north of Auckland, and take time out to enjoy walking, gardening, and spending time with their grandchildren.
Rebecca Melton (Bex) is the Operations Manager, but is another wearer of multiple hats!
She is one of our technical wizards and ensures all our engineers are well skilled in all the technologies that we employ. A smart cookie, she recently received the “Highest Award for Achievement” at the “Skills for Success” Dale Carnegie course. She also runs our “IEL Knowledge Centre” and provides seminars for those wanting to know more about building technology.
Rebecca is also part-owner of a local crossfit gym, and an enthusiastic participant in classes at a ridiculously early time most mornings! When not working on the business or on her fitness, Rebecca enjoys socialising with friends, and spending time with family. “Family” includes her son, but also her parents Paul and Nikki Harris! Rebecca is a major part of the “succession plan” for the business.
With a Masters degree in engineering from Auckland University, Mushafiq Bhat enjoys varied responsibilities at IEL including the design and pricing of solutions, attending client meetings, and providing assistance to consultants and clients alike. He loves a challenge and has used his positive mindset and problem-solving abilities to lead numerous projects from conception to completion.
Outside of work, Mushafiq enjoys public speaking and communicating ideas to large audiences. He eagerly anticipates the arrival of summer when he plays cricket for a local club, part of the Auckland Cricket Association.
As Projects Manager, Emma Holgerus does much more than wrangle IEL’s project deadlines. With over 6 years’ experience in managing teams, Emma is a TechIES member of the IESANZ and has a background in spatial and lighting design. After graduating from University of the Arts in London she realised she had a knack for organising tasks, along with a passion for people and client outcomes.
Outside of the office, Emma dreams of the next overseas adventure but currently spends most of her free time outside in nature with her husband and rescue dog Stella.
Photo from a trip to Japan.
Andrew Thompson hails originally from the mighty Manawatu. After an extended stint in Australia, Andy returned to New Zealand joining the IEL Wellington office in the role of Sales Engineer at the start of 2020.
Andy brings 20 years of Lighting Control industry knowledge to the team. He is familiar with all systems on the market and has worked with consultants to design and oversee the delivery of projects throughout Queensland, Victoria, Hobart, and even Papua New Guinea.
A keen sailor and kayaker, if Andy’s not on the water sailing around Mana Island, or paddling around Porirua Harbour, he can be found travelling with wife Bronwyn, reconnecting with New Zealand’s scenery.
Michelle Leach looks after our CAD department and is responsible for producing our lighting control drawings.
Originally from an IT background, she realised her passion for interior design, by completing her studies in this subject with a Commercial Design elective.
Outside of work, Michelle’s recently taken up a brand new hobby by way of sewing, and now it’s just a matter of finding the time to make all the wonderful projects brewing in her head! She also loves spending time with family and watching her little girl grow more every day.
Ian Rose has been working in the lighting controls industry for 15 years, heads our technical team in Wellington and is an invaluable resource for our less senior engineers.
Ian’s background is electrical, but with a Bachelor of Computer Systems. He enjoys the variety of designing, pricing and implementing commercial projects and project-managing them from start to finish.
Outside of work he enjoys time spent with his family, and mountain biking (when not too busy with house renovations and gardening).
Yinan He is our longest serving engineer and is therefore familiar with a large number of the projects IEL has been involved with. This knowledge is invaluable when a service visit is required. Customers comment often on Yinan’s friendly manner and the effort he puts into resolving their issue.
Yinan studied at Otago for his networking degree but settled in Auckland after university. Now living with his wife and young daughter on the North Shore, he enjoys taking his family on trips to explore the rest of the country. Their latest trip was in a campervan – “fun” Yinan says, “but not very restful.”
With primary responsibility for accounts & payroll, Debbie Rabl makes sure that suppliers and employees get paid on time, and that our customers pay us! She insists that with “far too many years’ experience to put in print”, she has worked in this type of role in a range of industries in New Zealand, Australia and the UK.
Away from the office, Debbie’s time is spent reading and pottering in her “artfully unkempt garden”. She lives with her husband, three grown children, dog Zia and goat Clifford in a beautiful coastal village in the Waitakere Ranges. Her passion is overseas travel and her photo shows her enjoying escargot and supping Pinot Gris from a typically green-stemmed Alsace glass.
Manu Bhagwanji was born and bred in Auckland, and graduated from Auckand Uni with a BSc/BTech. He also holds a number of qualifications in IT having worked in that industry for over 15 years both as an engineer and project manager. He implemented numerous education and commercial projects including a number as part of the Christchurch rebuild.
He moved from IT into the controls industry, and has lead numerous IEL projects to successful completion, including one of our largest projects, Commercial Bay.
Manu’s interests outside of work include sport, music and photography. His photography is obviously not of himself, as it was a challenge obtaining a photo to post here!
Carolyn Morgan is the Logistics Coordinator at Intelligent Environments, with experience in a wide range of procurement & production projects.
With a love of processes, systems and all things organisational, Carolyn takes pride in providing the best turnaround times possible for all the materials we need for a project, maintains our complex inventory, and deals with all incoming product orders.
Outside of the office, Carolyn & her husband have three children, two dogs and a cat so life is fairly hectic. In the little free time she has, Carolyn is active in the ice skating community as a senior figure skating judge.
If you’ve met Jie Qin you will know he “stands above the crowd” in numerous ways, and it’s not surprising he enjoys playing basketball in his spare time!
Jie enthusiastically embraces all technology and in his role of Controls Engineer, he is passionate about creating solutions to meet our clients’ needs. He is also completing his Master of Engineering Management degree part time at Auckland University, undertaking a study to investigate how IP can best be recorded and retained on technology projects for ease of maintenance later.
He and his partner enjoy the “great outdoors” and discovering walking tracks around New Zealand. Jie has also joined “Toastmasters” and is learning more about public speaking.
Sanjiv Gounder is the youngest member of our “IEL family”! Our team and clients alike appreciate his enthusiasm and beaming smile, which is seldom absent from his face.
His role as controls engineer sees him involved in projects at all stages from pre-programming to on-site commissioning. He graduated as an electrical engineer from Auckland University where he won an award for the best final year project – a solar-powered irrigation system that he designed and built. Sanjiv has a great understanding of control systems and enjoys troubleshooting and coming up with creative solutions.
Weekends find Sanjiv working on his “project car”, playing sport, or spending time with friends and family.
Bel Arevalo grew up in Chile but with a passion for excitement, travel and snowboarding, ended up in Canada for eight years, never using her degree in Commercial Aviation!
Having moved to NZ, she is using her technical skills in an Operations Support role with IEL, learning about the building technologies we employ and ensuring projects are delivered to the highest standard. Tackling every task with good humour and enthusiasm Bel enjoys life, and her positivity is contagious!
In her free time, Bel and her partner have been discovering all that New Zealand has to offer, taking advantage to see as much of our beautiful country as possible. Photo taken in Vegas, while passenger in an aerobatic plane.
Shoaib Manzoor recently joined the IEL team and is spending time with engineers on site, and with our administration team in the office preparing him for the role of Service Coordinator.
He will be managing our service portal and allocating resources to service jobs as needed. He will also be able to provide remote support for many of our clients. With a master of engineering degree in mechatronics and a graduate diploma in operations management, Shoaib also has practical experience in customer service.
When not at work Shoaib enjoys playing cricket and soccer at club level and travelling around New Zealand.