Chris Donnelly Builders - Chris Donnelly

Chris Donnelly - Director

 Hi there, I'm Chris and my story starts in beautiful sunny Nelson were i was born and grew up, now with my beautiful wife Juanita we are raising our young family Levani and Griffin here too. 

I had a pretty typical kiwi childhood, building things in the garage, being outside until bedtime, bike rides up the Brook valley, and plenty of hikes up the Grampians with my brother and friends exploring our 'backyard'.


During my secondary school years at Nelson Boys College, I got the oppurtunity to work afterschool for some local bespoke wooden furniture makers, they would sell the furniture at the local Saturday market, one who is still selling there today. 

When school finished I got my first construction job as hammer hand building Nelson's Water Treatment plant, a  $26 million project. It was my first experience in building and was a perfect lesson in what hard work was! it was wet muddy and freezing cold in the Nelson winter. ​

 At the completion of that project I got signed up as an apprentice with local builder Mainland Homes, and then later shifted to IMB Construction, known then as Ian McCully Builders where I completed my apprenticeship and spent 10 years of my career.

During my time with these local companies I had gained valuable experience from building residential new builds, to large architectural builds, renovations, to multi-storey commercial builds. 

One of the highlights of my time as an apprentice was entering the national Apprentice of the Year Competition. I placed 2nd locally, which was ok with me, my prize was a good haul of power tools, which on an apprentice wage was like winning the lottery.

It even lead to a site visit from the then Prime Minister, Helen Clark.

During my time at IMB I got married to my amazing wife Juanita, and we have been married close to 14 years now. We have two beautiful children, our girl Levani and boy, Griffin, who enrich my life, Levani loves dance and lounge room dance parties are one of our favourite past times. 

As time went on I became a foreman for that company and worked on some massive projects including the Sands Apartments in Tahunanui, Wakatu House in Montgomery carpark and the final project I worked on with them, the new Kaiteriteri Store.
During that project I decided it was time to start my own company and that was when Chris Donnelly Builders became a reality. 
Since then we have worked on Numerous projects, small renovation work to office fit-outs one of which was the English Language Partners new offices.
I strongly believe in hiring the best people, and I strive to train up my team to be positive, helpful and hardworking, with the ability to problem solve and think on their feet.


Andrew Donnelly - Apprentice

Andrew has recently come on board with us to learn the trade and he has already proven to be a great asset to the team! And yes, Andrew and Chris are brothers, so they work together like a machine. 

Andrew also plays the bagpipes which has taken him around the world. He has played in the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo twice, and also a trip Russia to play with his pipe band. 

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Gary George - Carpenter

Gary is our semi-retired carpenter who has worked with us on many occasions over the years.
He is super reliable and made himself available to help me out on the bigger jobs
When he is not Building he is volunteering for Big Brothers Nelson or planning his next trip in their house bus.