Back to top anchor

The Governor-General's blog

The official blog of the Governor-General of New Zealand

  • Auckland Justices of the Peace Association 100 years afternoon tea

    There’s an old saying that goes “if you want something done, ask a busy person”. This afternoon, Dame Cindy hosted a group that truly embodies that phrase - the Auckland Justices of the Peace Association. This year marks the Centenary of the AJAP, who have been voluntarily assisting the people of Tāmaki Makaurau since October 1922. The role of a Justice of the Peace can be Ministerial or Judicial, with duties ranging from certifying documents to issuing search warrants. The AJAP currently has 1200 sworn JPs and are able to help in over 30 languages.

    More photos

    Dame Cindy Kiro with Frank Rands, Sherryl Wilson and Ginny Radford

  • Gunners Day dinner 2022

    To (belatedly) celebrate Gunners Day, Dame Cindy hosted a dinner for the Royal New Zealand Artillery Association at Government House Auckland. The RNZAA was formed in 1934 by World War I veterans, and continues as an advocacy group for New Zealand Gunners past and present.

    During the dinner, Dame Cindy presented Lt Col (Rtd.) Tony McLeod with a pounamu, thanking him for his 11 years served as President of the RNZAA. Lt Col McLeod is no stranger to Government House, having served as aide-de-Camp to former Governor-General Sir Keith Holyoake back in the 70s.

    More photos

    Dame Cindy presents Lt Col (Rtd) Tony McLeod with a pounamu

  • Vision Bus Aotearoa

    This afternoon, Dame Cindy officially opened Vision Bus Aotearoa; University of Auckland - Waipapa Taumata Rau's initiative to help solve inequities and barriers of access in getting better eye health to those in need. The School of Optometry and Vision Science had been screening the vision of thousands of school children in the greater Auckland area, and found one in ten had a vision impairment that was not yet being treated. With the help of this new mobile optometry clinic, the School has the ability to provide a wider range of free eye-health services to more people.

    More photos

    Dame Cindy Kiro with Auckland University Executive leadership and benefactors of Vision Bus

  • HM Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee celebrations in London

    To celebrate the Platinum Jubilee of HM Queen Elizabeth II, Dame Cindy and Dr Davies travelled to the United Kingdom to represent Aotearoa at the official celebrations. The trip began with a meeting with New Zealand High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, HE Mr Bede Corry.

    Next was Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral in London. This event was attended by members of the Royal family, dignitaries and representatives from the Commonwealth. The Service was followed by a reception hosted by Lord Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan.

    On the 4th of June, Dame Cindy and Dr Davies attended the Platinum Jubilee Reception and Concert, featuring projections on the side of Buckingham palace and an impressive drone diplay lighting up the sky in many forms (including Corgis, naturally).

    The following day, Their Excellencies watched as members of the New Zealand Defence Force marched in the Platinum Jubilee Pageant. The Pageant was a four-part story of The Queen’s 70-year reign.

    While in the UK, Dame Cindy had the chance to meet with other Governors-General from around the Commonwealth. She held bilateral meetings with HE Gen the Hon David Hurley, Governor-General of Australia; HE Mary Simon, Governor-General of Canada; HE Dame Froyla Tzalam, Governor-General of Belize; and HE the Hon Grand Chief Sir Bob Dadae, Governor-General of Papua New Guinea.

    Dame Cindy and Mary Simon host a bilateral between New Zealand and Canada

    More photos



  • The Administrator attends the Service of Celebration for the Platinum Jubilee

    To celebrate Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, a Service of Celebration was held at the Cathedral of St Paul in Wellington this morning. The Administrator of the Government Rt Hon Dame Helen Winkelmann attended in place of Dame Cindy, who is in London for the Jubilee celebrations.

    The service featured reflections about Her Majesty from former deputy prime minister and secretary-general of the Commonwealth, Sir Don McKinnon, and Queen’s Young Leader award winner Ezekiel Raui.

    More photos

    Dame Helen Winkelmann speaks

  • Investiture Ceremony 30 May 2022 pm

    Today was the final day of the Auckland investiture round. The eight recipients of honours this afternoon were acknowledged for their services to the State and the community, education and historical research,  governance and education, philanthropy, public health nursing, disability and education, community and charity fundraising and performing arts governance.

    Congratulations to Dame Marie Shroff and the other recipients.

    More photos

    Dame Marie Shroff
  • Investiture Ceremony 30 May 2022 am

    This morning's six recipients of honours insignia at Government House included Dr Geoff Lorigan, CNZM, who was acknowledged for his work in strategic development, academia and business. Sporting prowess featured in the careers of two recipients: Jane Tehira, ONZM who was a representative player in three different sporting codes and a member of the women's rugby team that won the 1949 Te Rarawa Challenge Cup; and Jim McPhee, who represented New Zealand in judo at Commonwealth and Olympic Games.

    Image Gallery

    Dr Geoff Lorigan, of Auckland, CNZM for services to business and leadership development
    Ms Jane Tehira, of Auckland, ONZM for services to sport
  • Reception for the Himalayan Trust on Everest Day

    Tonight’s reception for the Himalayan Trust at Government House Auckland celebrated Everest Day – 29 May 2022 is the 69th anniversary of the historic conquest of Everest by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay. It was just as much about Sir Ed's wonderful legacy - the Himalayan Trust. Peter Hillary reminded us how perfect our timing was, as his speech coincided with the moment when his father reached the summit. Ang Kaji Sherpa spoke about the education he received at one of the many schools built by Sir Ed, which then enabled him to pursue training as a mountain guide in the Himalayas. Sir Ed's Himialayan Trust has transformed communities with its ambitious programme of building schools and hospitals in the Solukhumbu Everest region.

    Speech transcript

  • Dr Davies' patronage of St John's community programmes

    On 15 March, His Excellency Dr Richard Davies was invested as an Officer of St John and took up the role of Patron for Community Health.

    Last week, St John hosted Dr Davies to a comprehensive induction tour, including its Community Health programmes and services. Dr Davies visited Farm Cove Intermediate to see St John's Whatuia te Waiora Weaving Wellbeing programme in action, before going to St John retail stores and a Manukau Area Committee showcase. The Kelston Youth Division enabled Dr Davies to see youth members undertaking badge work and practical sessions and present a number of awards. Dr Davies also boarded a Health Shuttle and met the shuttle volunteers.

    At St John Archives Dr Davies learnt about the history of St John and the variety of Community Care services that St John delivers to the community, and the impact of COVID-19 on those services.  The Therapy Pet volunteers and their furry friends were a particular hit with Dr Davies. St John's Communications Centre provided an opportunity for him to see the sophistacated communication technology used in emergency response.


    Dr Davies' visit to St John archives
  • Auckland Investiture 28 May 2022 PM

    At this afternoon’s investiture ceremony, eight honours recipients received their insignia. They included Maxine Shortland, who has contributed 40 years to Netball as a player, coach, manager and administrator. Her governance roles in Northland have included Chief Operating Officer at Ngati Hine Health Trust.

    Heather Tanguay received a QSO for services to local government and the community. She was recognised for her time as Mayor and City Councillor in Palmerston North. Through her work with Palmerston North Red Cross, she helped settle hundreds of refugees into the area.

    Image Gallery

    Mrs Heather Tanguay, of Auckland, for services to local government and the community
  • Investiture Ceremony 28 May 2022 am

    This morning's eight honours recipients included Sir Wayne Shelford KNZM, former All Black Captain and men's health advocate, and Rawiri Paratene, who received his CNZM for his services to Maori, film and theatre. Recipients were acknowledged for outstanding services to local government and the community, race relations and youth, to mental health, transitional housing, and as a General Practitioner.

    Image Gallery


  • Auckland Investitures 27 May 2022 PM

    Among the eight recipients at this afternoon’s investiture ceremony was Teremoana Rapley, where she was recognised for contributions to music and television. Teremoana is known for her solo music career, as part of Moana and the Moahunters, and collaborations with other artists like King Kapisi and Che Fu. Teremoana has also been a presenter on Mai Time, and was a producer at Māori Television for 10 years.

    Also recognised was Harry Mikaere, who has contributed significantly to New Zealand’s aquaculture industry. Chef Rob Oliver received an MNZM for services to the food industry and Pacific Communities.

    More photos

    Ms Teremoana Rapley, Dame Cindy Kiro


  • Auckland Investitures 27 May 2022 AM

    A New Zealand sporting trailblazer received a DNZM this morning at Government House. Dame Ruia Morrison was recognised for her outstanding tennis career, where she was the first Māori to compete at Wimbledon. She played in the 1957, 1958 1960 tournaments, and has since become a pivotal figure in Aotearoa tennis. Dame Ruia was also the New Zealand Open singles champion six times, famously beating Margaret Court in the 1960 final.

    Hon Steve Chadwick was honoured for her career in both local and central government. As a Member of Parliament, she was Minister of Conservation, Women’s Affairs and Associate Minister of Health. She has been Mayor of Rotorua since 2013.

    More photos

    The Honourable Steve Chadwick, Dame Cindy Kiro

  • Auckland Investiture 26 May 2022 PM

    Eight further recipients were welcomed to Government House for their investiture ceremony this afternoon, including Nigel Borell, recognised for services to Māori art. He was the creative mind behind Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art, and is currently curator Taonga Māori at the Auckland War Memorial.

    Professor Emeritus Stuart Middleton received a CNZM for work services to education. He helped develop Manukau Institute of Technology’s Tertiary High School. This school helps students at risk of disengaging with education complete NCEA and University Entrance, and transition them to higher learning.

    Mrs Kolokesa Māhina-Tuai, Dame Cindy Kiro


    More photos

  • Auckland Investiture 26 May 2022 AM

    Former Auckland City Missioner, Sir Chris Farrelly, received his KNZM at Government House this morning. Sir Chris was recognised for his long career in Te Tai Tokerau’s health sector, and for his work leading the Auckland City Mission. As Missioner, he led the development of the City Mission’s new facility, HomeGround.

    Also receiving honours was journalist Jim Tucker, who has contributed to the industry for over 50 years, and Margery Pita, who was an original member of the Māori Volcanics Showband.

    Congratulations to all recipients this morning.

    More photos

    Mrs Ingi Tusini-Rex, Dame Cindy Kiro

  • Auckland Investiture 25 May 2022 AM

    Dame Cindy presented insignia to six Honours recipients this morning at Government House Auckland. Mr Ross Black was acknowledged for his services to health, founding the Otago Rescue Helicopter Trust and acting as its Chair from 1998 to 2019. Ms Jessica Buddendijk received her Honorary Queen's Service Medal for services to the aged care sector, in particular during the COVID-19 pandemic. Sincere congratulations to all of this morning's recipients.

    Mr Ross Black, ONZM, of Wanaka, for services to health

    You can find more images from the ceremony here.

  • Auckland Investiture 24 May 2022 PM

    Auckland investiture ceremonies continued this afternoon, with eight further recipients honoured for their outstanding work across New Zealand. Mr John Rosser received his insignia for services to choral music, including as National Director and adjudicator of the annual Big Sing secondary schools’ choral festival. Mrs Louisa Humphry received the insignia of an Honorary member of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to Kiribati community and culture.

    Mr John Rosser, CNZM, of Auckland, for services to choral music

    You can find further images from the ceremony here.

  • Auckland Investiture 24 May 2022 AM

    Professor Dame Marilyn Waring was one of those acknowledged in this morning's investiture ceremony at Government House Auckland. Dame Marilyn is Professor of Public Policy at the Auckland University of Technology, and has had an esteemed academic career across the fields of economics, women's issues, and international aid. Six other recipients were acknowledged for their outstanding service and achievements across education, police, and Pasifika communities.

    Professor Dame Marilyn Waring, DNZM, of Auckland, for services to women and economics

    You can find more images from the ceremony here.

  • Auckland Investiture 23 May 2022 PM

    Auckland investiture ceremonies began at Government House this afternoon, with eight outstanding individuals receiving insignia for their contributions across the fields of education, humanitarian advocacy, and conservation. Among recipients was Professor Dame Carolyn Burns, who received her damehood for her pioneering research on the ecology of lakes, and who served as the first female president of the International Limnological Society.

    Professor Dame Carolyn Burns, DNZM, of Dunedin, for services to ecological research

    You can find more images from the ceremony here.

  • SPCA 150th Anniversary Celebration

    Last night at Government House Wellington, Dr Davies hosted the Royal New Zealand Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) for their 150th anniversary celebrations. Since 1872, the SPCA has been committed to helping New Zealand animals: through advocacy, education, rehabilitation, and of course, adoption.

    Fedya on high alert

    St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals, is attributed with the words: ‘We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart, and to bring home those who have lost their way.’ The SPCA truly embodies the spirit and compassion of St Francis, and we wish them every success.

    You can find more images from the event here, and Dr Davies' full speech here.

  • Dame Cindy visit to Abu Dhabi

    Dame Cindy travelled to Abu Dhabi to attend an azza (official ceremonial ceremony) following the death of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Dame Cindy was New Zealand's official representative and paid respects on behalf of the people of New Zealand to the family of His Highness.

  • New Zealand Search and Rescue Awards 2021

    While Dame Cindy was in the United Arab Emirates, in her place Dr Davies was honoured to welcome recipients of the 2021 New Zealand Search and Rescue Awards. These awards recognise NZSAR personnel who have gone above and beyond to ensure people who find themselves in perilous situations made it back home. The New Zealand Search and Rescue sector is made up of around 12000 people across many different agencies, working together to rescue people in distress on land, at sea, or by air. NZSAR covers an area stretching all the way from Scott Base in Antarctica to as far north as Tokelau. Of the almost 3000 incidents NZSAR was involved in last year, 45% resulted in a search and rescue operation being launched.

    More photos


  • Launch of the Trees that Count Legacy Project for the Platinum Jubilee

    This year, DOC, Trees that Count and Tapu o Tane will assist community groups, iwi and private landowners to plant 100,000 native trees at various locations across Aotearoa. These plantings are New Zealand’s legacy project to mark the Platinum Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth’s accession to the throne.
    On 16 May at Government House, the Chief Justice, Dame Helen Winkelmann, Hon Kiritapu Allen and Joris de Bres of Project Crimson launched the project by planting a kauri in the grounds. 
    Dame Helen was acting as Administrator for the Government while Dame Cindy was in Abu Dhabi representing New Zealand at an azza (official condolence ceremony) for His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

    To read Hon Kiritapu Allen's speech, click here.

    You can read more about the initiative on the Trees that Count website.

    Hon Kiritapu Allen and Dame Helen Winkelmann planting a kauri
  • Pōwhiri at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds

    Surrounded by her whānau and closest supporters, Dame Cindy was officially welcomed onto the Waitangi Treaty Grounds as Governor-General. Among esteemed guests was Kiingi Tūheitia, as well as leaders and representatives from iwi across Te Tai Tokerau and Waikato. Following the pōwhiri, Dame Cindy completed the custom for all new Governors-General of planting a pōhutukawa on the Treaty Grounds.

    Dame Cindy and Dr Davies enjoying the waiata

    Her Excellency closed her address to the congregation with the famous words of Sir James Henare: ‘Kua tawhiti kē tō haerenga mai, kia kore e haere tonu. He nui rawa ō mahi kia kore e mahi tonu' – 'We have come too far not to go further. We have done too much not to do more'.

    Warrior following the challenge

    You can find more images from the day here, and Dame Cindy's speech here.

  • Homecoming at Mōtatau Marae

    It was a very special day for Dame Cindy and her whānau in Northland, as she was formally welcomed onto Mōtatau Marae in recognition of her appointment as Governor-General. During the welcome, Dame Cindy was presented with an exquisite korowai – Te Ata o te Whenua – made especially for Her Excellency as a token of deepest aroha, pride, and esteem from Te Tai Tokerau. The name translates as 'the Shadow over the Land'.

    Dame Cindy addressing the marae in her korowai

    You can find more images from the day here, and read Dame Cindy's speech here.

  • Wellington Investiture 10 May 2022 PM

    Eleven recipients were recognised for outstanding service in their communities in the final investiture ceremony of this round at Government House Wellington. Venkat Raman received an MNZM for his work on behalf of the New Zealand Indian community, which includes as founder of Gandhi Nivas and the Saint Mother Teresa Interfaith committee. Richard Benge also received an MNZM for his work with Arts Access Aotearoa, an organisation that increases participation in the arts for those who would otherwise experience barriers in doing so.

    Mr Venkat Raman, MNZM, of Auckland, for services to the Indian community

    That concludes this round of Wellington investiture ceremonies. Our warmest congratulations to all recipients.

    You can find more images from this afternoon's ceremony here.

  • Wellington Investiture 10 May 2022 AM

    This morning at Government House Wellington, Dame Cindy was pleased to acknowledge Dr Lindsay Mildenhall, ONZM, for his extensive work in the fields of neonatal intensive care and resuscitation training. Dr Chris Moyes, ONZM, was also acknowledged for his work on the treatment of hepatitis B (HBV), which led to the introduction of an HBV immunisation programme for children.

    Other honours recipients received insignia for their contributions across governance, sport, community, theatre, and heritage. Dame Cindy will host the final ceremony in this round of Wellington investitures later today.

    More photos

    Dr Lindsay Mildenhall, Dame Cindy Kiro

  • Wellington Investiture 9 May 2022 PM

    Among the ten recipients at this afternoon’s investiture ceremony was Dr Arapera Royal Tangaere, receiving a CNZM for her work with Te Kōhanga Reo Trust since 1982. The first Kōhanga Reo opened in the Wellington region that year, and there are now around 460 of the Māori language immersion preschools across the country.

    Teremoana Yala was recognised for her work in the Cook Islands community, including time as the Cook Islands High Commissioner to New Zealand. Also honoured was renowned artist and Treaty negotiator Alex Nathan, and conservationist Bill Fleury. Congratulations to this afternoon’s recipients.

    Dr Arapera Royal Tangaere, CNZM, of Wellington, for services to Māori and education

    You can find more images from the ceremony here.

  • Wellington Investiture 6 May 2022 PM

    For this week’s final investiture ceremony, Dame Cindy welcomed eleven recipients to Government House. Rosemary McLeod was recognised for her career as a writer and cartoonist. She was one of the creators of iconic New Zealand drama Gloss, and has won several awards for her long-form journalism in North and South magazine.  

    Actress Tanea Heke received an MNZM for services to the arts and Māori. Ms Heke recently starred in the 2021 film Cousins, and is currently Director of Te Kura Toi Whakaari: New Zealand Drama School. Marilyn Moffatt also received an MNZM for her years of work with Surf Life Saving New Zealand.

    Ms Rosemary McLeod, ONZM, of Wellington, for services to journalism and television

    You can find more images from the ceremony here.

  • Investiture Ceremony 6 May 2022 AM

    The eleven honours recipients at this morning's investiture ceremony were thanked for their achievements and services to Pacific health and education; agricultural science and business; tertiary education; Fire and Emergency New Zealand; dairy and agriculture; education; Maori education; social work; and the community.

    Image Gallery

    Faumuina Professor Fa'afetai Sopoaga, of Dunedin, CNZM for services to Pacific health and tertiary education
  • Investiture Ceremony, 5 May 2022 PM

    This afternoon Honours recipients were acknowledged for their services to paediatric and neonatal care; disabilities and the arts; the New Zealand Police;  the community; women's health; musical theatre; traffic safety; floristry; and the Melanesian community. 

    Image Gallery

    Dr Simon Rowley, of Auckland, CNZM for services to paediatric and neonatal care
    Superintendent Andy McGregor, of Papamoa, ONZM for services to the New Zealand Police and the community
  • Investiture Ceremony 5 May 2022 AM

    This morning's Honours recipients included three NZDF personnel who played pivotal roles in New Zealand's response to COVID-19: Air Commodore Darryn Webb, MNZM for services to the New Zealand Defence Force; Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Blythen, DSD for services to the NZDF; and Wing Commander Richard Deihl, DSD for services to the NZDF.

    Congratulations to all eleven recipients at this morning's investiture ceremony.

    Image Gallery

    Air Commodore Darren Webb, MNZM
    Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Blythen, DSD for services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Help us improve the Governor-General website

Your feedback is very important in helping us improve the Governor-General website.

1 + 4 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.