31 Dec 2013

Top honours for ex-mayor and designer

10:16 pm on 31 December 2013

Four knights and two dames head the New Year's Honours list, including former Christchurch mayor Bob Parker and fashion designer Trelise Cooper.

Sir Bob received a knighthood for his leadership during the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011.

Sir Bob Parker.

Sir Bob Parker. Photo: AFP

As well as services to fashion, Dame Trelise's award is also for her work in the community. She was a Women's Refuge volunteer in the 1980s and 90s and has used her design skills to raise money for domestic violence and breast cancer causes.

She says she was speechless upon learning she was to receive the honour. Dame Trelise says along with selling her clothing to some of the biggest stars in the world, her community work has been equally important.

"I've really enjoyed the service part of that. I built a house at Fashion Week with a whole lot of fashion people. We built a house for Habitat for Humanity in 2009 for a South Auckland family. We then took another team the following year to Thailand and built eight houses."

Auckland businesswoman Alison Paterson, who chairs or sits on boards of several organisations including Vector and Crown Irrigation Investment Ltd, has also been made a dame, while the other knighthoods go to racing magnate Peter Vela, Archbishop David Moxon and educationalist Dr Toby Curtis.

Also from the world of fashion, Karen Walker has been awarded a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit, while Francis Hooper made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Ms Walker, who has been in the fashion business since she was 18, now sells her designs in 30 countries. Designer Mr Hooper is co-founder of fashion label World.

New Zealand's longest continuously-serving mayor, Southland's Frana Cardno, has been made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. Mrs Cardno served as the district's mayor from 1992 until her retirement in October 2013.

The world of sport

Record-breaking cricketer of the 1950s and 60s John Reid has been made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

An all-rounder, Mr Reid was the captain and top run-scorer when New Zealand won its first test match in 1956. He played 58 tests for the country, including 34 as captain. In 1963, he set a world record for the most sixes in an innings - 15 - which stood until 1995.

The 85-year-old says he is quite amazed to get a New Year's honour.

"I'm obviously very honoured, but it's a long time ago - the last test I played was in 1965. I've done a few things since - been a referee for 10 years all round the world. I've been everything in New Zealand cricket - I've been a selector, and I've been a president and I've been a coach."

He joked that he's had "a sort of lifetime of cricket, really, without getting paid too much."

Dick Tayler, who won the 1974 Commonwealth Games 10,000 metres gold medal, has become a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Others to gain that honour are former squash player Ross Norman, netball administrator Rita Fatailofa-Patolo and Te Horo's Peter Dale for services to sport.

The arts honoured

Phil Keoghan celebrates winning an Emmy for the Amazing Race in 2012.

Phil Keoghan celebrates winning an Emmy for the Amazing Race in 2012. Photo: AFP

United States-based New Zealander Phil Keoghan has been recognised for services as a television presenter and to tourism. Best known as the presenter of the Amazing Race, he has been made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

He began his career in the 1980s as camera operator in Christchurch and has been working as a writer, producer and presenter for about 25 years.

Now living in Santa Monica in California, Mr Keoghan says he is very surprised to have been given the award, but believes it is probably for trying to showcase New Zealand in various productions throughout his career.

Film-maker Geoff Murphy says he never dreamed he would be honoured for making movies.

The man behind New Zealand cult classic, Goodbye Pork Pie and Utu has been made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Pacific work recognised

A New Zealander with strong ties to the Cook Islands says he is humbled to be recognised in the honours list for his contribution to Pacific health.

Kiki Maoate, a paediatric surgeon at Christchurch Hospital, has been named an Officer of the Order of New Zealand Merit.

Among his many roles, Dr Maoate is also the chair of the Pasifika Medical Association, an executive member of the Cook Islands Health Network and a board member of Pacific Trust Canterbury.

"All I can say is, I thank everybody who thought that I deserved this award. And I hope that I can continue to contribute in some way to continue to help individuals, organisations or even individual countries to progress forward in whatever way I can."

The driving force behind voyages that recreated the great Polynesian migrations has also been recognised. Hekenukumai Puhipi, also called Hector Busby, has been named an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Mr Puhipi has pioneered two huge expeditions in double-hulled waka (canoe). One, from New Zealand to Hawaii, earned him an MBE in the 1990s.