New Year honours recipients highlight what makes NZ unique

Prime Minister

The 183 recipients of New Year honours represent the best of New Zealand and what makes us unique in the world, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.

“The 2023 New Year honours list is full of leaders and pioneers whose contribution has enriched us a country and helped make us unique in the world,” Jacinda Ardern said.

“Across sport, arts, te ao Māori, the environment, health and public service, philanthropy and so much more these recipients are not just good at that they do, in many instances they are leading the world.

The New Year 2023 honours list includes a number of appointments as Knights and Dames Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

“Sir Ashley Bloomfield was absolutely central to our world leading response to COVID-19. He was completely dedicated to protecting New Zealanders health and did so in such a calm and considered way. He has been the epitome of a public servant.

“Dame Farah Palmer’s shoulders are those on which the success of the current Black Ferns squad was built. The winner of three Rugby World Cup titles herself, she wasn’t content with just inspiring on the field and through her role as a rugby administrator has been instrumental in building the women’s game to the success it is now.

“Our environment is central our identity as a country and Dame Jan Wright has been a tireless advocate for its protection. As Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment her robust and independent reports on climate change and freshwater quality have informed policy and leave a legacy. 

“Sir Mark Dunajtschik’s philanthropic contribution to health services has made a real difference to so many. His financial support to build a new children’s hospital in Wellington as well as replacing a mental health facility in the Hutt Valley are but two of his significant and selfless contributions to the health and wellbeing of his community.

“Dame Miranda Harcourt has provided a heart and backbone to our theatre and screen industries for decades. A familiar on screen face to many, she has also been a driving force behind the scenes, bringing new talent to domestic and global attention as the Head of Acting at Toi Whakaari the New Zealand Drama School and as an acting coach and mentor to some our most successful actors and directors. This year she won the Kea World Class New Zealander supreme award for “accelerating the connection of the performing arts scene in New Zealand with the wider global community.

“Sir Haare Williams is a pioneer of Māori broadcasting and has played a key role in the development of te reo speakers in the film and television industry. Ensuring te reo Māori is published, spoken and performed is critical to its revitalisation and few have made such a significant contribution across academia and media to achieve that goal.

“On behalf of New Zealand I thank all the honourees on the list for their contribution, service and the inspiration they provide us,” Jacinda Ardern said.