Our A-Team


Jon Tarr

Creative Director - Graphic Designer

Jon has been in the graphic design industry for 10 years. A Bachelor of Arts and a Diploma in Graphic Design culminated in Jon taking the reins of Activate Design in 2008, or more appropriately for Jon, grabbing the wheel and kicking the accelerator to the floor, with Activate Design gaining speed and momentum ever since.. (not to mention a few speeding tickets).

Jon’s skills in graphic design, including logo, print and website design, leave no doubts as to why he is our esteemed Creative Director, and if the hand is quicker than the eye then he sure gets in that extra practice on our company arcade machine… just don’t ask us who the current champion is because the battle is never over...

Matt Mabley

Digital Director

Matt often arrives at work with coffees, and that’s all we really care about. But for you, Matt is the guy to tell you all about websites, apps and all things digital. Matt has a substantial background in web project management for over 800 successful websites. He will develop and plan digital projects, keep tasks on schedule and manage hosting support for clients. He knows all the latest techniques and is adept in keeping down costs for the client as he has a personal vendetta towards companies over-charging.

Matt is pretty much happy if he is talking about websites. He can, and does, talk about websites all day. Matt also has a young family to manage in his spare time - he probably talks to them about websites as well.


Office Manager

Crystal is our customer services extraordinaire, handling accounts, hosting and domain support, phone enquiries, print distribution, refereeing between staff and The Arcade Machine, and generally ensuring the lines of communication are always open... and friendly. Crystal also has a way with words some might call 'vegete'.

She enjoys being overly clever with colloquy, using her skills with writing and language to work with clients in producing keyword-rich content for websites, brochures and newsletters. She is also the friendly voice on the phone with an excellent sense of humour, helping you out with any issues or perhaps a timely payment reminder. "If you think nobody cares, try missing a couple of payments."


Hosting Support and Server Technician

Chevonne is our new James, less manic than James, but just as capable and just as fun. Chevonne is here to support you with all your technical issues. Unlike most IT support people, we actually trust Chevonne completely to interact with our customers on a personal basis, and so far she’s been a hit. (We know this because we can hear the laughter in support conversations from the other side of the room.)

With a background in accounting, Chevonne understands the pressure in keeping all aspects of a business running smoothly, and this includes your emails and website functionality, so you’re sure to have a dedicated specialist on the case.


Website Programmer

Robert is our website programmer. He is a 30-something white man with an irrelevant degree in Chemistry and a slightly relevant Diploma in e-Business support. He drives a Prius. Rob works with the standard array of PHP, HTML, CSS, Javascript and MySQL. He hasn't touched Flash in a long time and intends it to stay that way.

In his spare time Rob enjoys playing TRPGs (Tabletop Roleplaying Games with real dice, paper, people and imagination). So it turns out that programmers do have an imagination!


Web Engineer

Callum is our programmer with a Bachelor of Science, Computer Science that is, black gold, PHP. (That was a Hillbillies reference in case you missed it.) Constantly updating his skills in jQuery, XHTML, CSS, PHP, Javascript, MySQL and more, to keep ahead of the industry in web development and mobile applications. With Callum on the team we can assure our customers that if they want it - we can do it! It's just a matter of how long and how complicated the process may be to get there.

Callum is an undervalued, overachieving part of our enthusiastic Activate team. From his dark, cobwebby corner comes quality programming, smart remarks, and a quick answer for everything. His hobbies include video games, reading, Sci/Fi & Fantasy, and making fun of James.


Website Developer

Sarah is our superpowered secret weapon, she’s the girl with the PHP-Rocket-Launcher backing us up. She has a degree in computer science and can code smartphone apps as well as websites.

Sarah is a whizz at video games and likes anything to do with computer programming.

I also hear from reliable sources that she maintains strong opinions about the superiority of subbed anime to dubbed…


Web Designer

Dan has a Bachelors Degree in Graphic Design and we reluctantly admit that he designs very smart, modern looking websites that we don’t want him getting a big head about. He has worked for award winning web design companies around the world, none of which we know about so we’ll believe it when we have the evidence.

He has created well over 1,500 websites in his 18 years of experience and several have won the iBest (Oscar of the Brazilian Internet), which sounds like bikini-clad brazilian beauties handing out mock awards but is actually quite legit. Dans creative talent certainly doesn't stop at websites, he is also an amazing sculptor, illustrator, and painter... and he would like to draw you, wearing that.


Digital Marketing Guru

Chris is the inhouse digital marketing guru. Once the websites are built, Chris is the go-to guy for getting your site swamped with potential leads.

Chris specialises in SEO, Google AdWords and overall digital marketing strategy and has worked with many leading New Zealand and international brands.

Some trivia - Chris loves cats... However his girlfriend is as terrified of them as she is allergic to them... Therefore Chris no longer has cats. This makes him sad, but so long as he can bury his head in the latest digital marketing news, he'll be ok.

Activate Design is a compact, specialised group of individuals with unique skills and strange hairdo’s… much like the original A-Team. Our rag-tag Activate team includes our gung-ho designers, our slightly mad yet enthusiastic programmers, and our planning braniacs to ensure that every website design or project we undertake is completed to the highest specfications and to our client’s complete satisfaction.

Each member of our team has something special to offer, whether it be project planning and problem solving, copywriting, graphic and logo design, branding and website design, software development for websites and smartphone applications, search-engine-optimisation to increase website rankings and traffic or juggling print schedules so you get those business cards you have run out of.

So we are not a crack commando unit delving into International espionage and wanted by the Government, but we are a slick website design company delving into all aspects of website creation, online marketing, design and development and wanted by you, our clients.