Peter Russell has confirmed he has been appointed as the new head coach at Newcastle - with Graham Steadman set to join him.
Russell guided Hawke's Bay to three successive Air New Zealand Cup semi-finals between 2007 and 2009 - and although they finished eighth in 2010 he guided them to the second tier ITM Championship title last year.
Russell, who also worked as assistant coach to the Highlanders, has been linked to a number of roles since leaving the Magpies in October 2011 - including joining Dean Richards' revolution at the Falcons.
However the 48-year-old has now confirmed he will be moving to Kingston Park.
Russell told Hawke's Bay Today: "Improving the Falcons' position will be the aim and with good things in place and some good people around me we can achieve that."
Former Scotland defence coach Steadman is also set to make the switch to the Falcons, joining up with director of rugby Dean Richards, forwards coach John Wells and Russell.