Meet the Team

Message from the Editor

Our experienced journalists are passionate and knowledgeable about the North Shore area and are looking forward to serving you. Local papers are a focal point of news for the community, and our team has the expertise to report on issues that affect local families and businesses and break news. For instance, national broadcasters, newspapers and other media regularly follow up stories and features they first came across in our sister paper, The Devonport Flagstaff. Over the years our team has won numerous journalism awards.

The Observer Team

Rob Drent

Managing Editor

Managing Editor Rob Drent, a journalist for 25 years, has been at the helm since October 1997. He has worked in New Zealand and England on community, daily and Sunday newspapers, and magazines, including the Auckland Sun, Dominion Post and Sunday Star-Times.

Peter Wilson


Peter has had extensive experience in online advertising with classified listings sites (jobs and real estate) and built several successful online brands in Asia. He moved to Devonport from Tokyo in 2015 and very soon realised that the number one media in the community was the Devonport Flagstaff. A journalism major from the University of Queensland, Peter is very happy to finally be able to use his credentials.

Christina Persico

Senior reporter

Christina studied journalism at the Waikato Institute of Technology and started working for Stuff, based in Taranaki, in 2017. She has covered education, local government and district and High Court. One highlight was covering a seven-hour district council meeting, via video conference, during the first nation-wide covid lockdown, with the report making it to the following day’s front page. She left Stuff in mid-2021 and moved to Auckland’s North Shore. 


Brendon de Suza


Brendon is an freelance graphic designer and illustrator with decades of experience working with large international ad agencies and brands. Devonport Flagstaff is one of his many “illustrious” set of current clients which also include companies like Hitachi, Blackmores and Lincoln Wines.