Announcement of a new Governor-General of New Zealand


The Queen, on the recommendation of the Prime Minister of New Zealand, has been pleased to approve the appointment of Dame Cindy Kiro as the next Governor-General of New Zealand.

Dame Cindy will serve in succession to The Right Honourable Dame Patsy Reddy, who will complete her term of office on 28 September 2021.

Dame Cindy Kiro - Biographical Notes

Dame Alcyion Cynthia (Cindy) Kiro was born in Whangārei, Northland, in 1958, the eldest of six children. She is of Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Kahu and British descent. Dame Cindy also has connections to Te Arawa in the Rotorua region.

Dame Cindy recently took up the role of Chief Executive of the Royal Society Te Apārangi. The Royal Society advances and promotes research and scholarly activity in science, technology and the humanities, and raises public awareness and understanding of those fields.

Dame Cindy holds a PhD in Social Policy and an MBA (Exec) in Business Administration from the University of Auckland and Massey University, and was the first in her family to achieve a university qualification.

Much of Dame Cindy’s career has been in the tertiary sector. She has had a distinguished career in academic research, culminating in leadership roles at several New Zealand universities. From 2009 to 2012 she was Associate Professor and Head of School of Public Health, Massey University; from 2012 to 2014 she was Professor of Education, Head of School Te Kura Victoria University of Wellington; between 2014 and 2018 she was firstly Te Tumu (Deputy Dean) Faculty of Education and Social Work and subsequently Director Tai Tokerau Campus at the University of Auckland; and between 2018 and 2021 she was Pro Vice-Chancellor Maori at the University of Auckland before taking up her current role at the Royal Society.  From 2014 to 2018 she was a member of the Ministerial Cross Sector Forum for the Ministry of Education, and from 2018 to 2019 she chaired the Welfare Expert Advisory Group.

In addition to her leadership in academic institutions, Dame Cindy has had extensive experience in other roles. These roles have included membership of the National Health Committee, Public Health Authority, Health Funding Authority and as General Manager Funding and Services Planning and Māori Health for the Auckland District Health Board. Alongside her other roles she was a member and chair of the National Hauora Coalition and NHC Trust Board from 2010 to 2020.  From 2003 to 2009, she was Children’s Commissioner, the first woman and Māori to hold the position. 

Dame Cindy has had many roles in voluntary and community organisations, reflecting her personal interests in supporting children, young people and disadvantaged members of society. From 2013-2016 she was the Director of the Starpath Project, looking into the impacts of socio-economic status on educational achievement in New Zealand.

Dame Cindy was appointed as a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (DNZM) for services to child wellbeing and education on the New Year 2021 Honours List.

Dame Cindy is married to Richard Davies, a doctor with a general practice attached to Auckland City Mission. Dame Cindy is the mother of two sons, step-mother to two sons and grandmother to two grandsons, and has a wide extended family. She speaks English and has a level of fluency in te reo Māori, and would like to learn Spanish, a language spoken by her grandchildren.

Related content

The tenth anniversary of the Christchurch earthquakes

While there are many sad memories of that terrible time, there is also solace in remembering how your community rose to the challenge of rebuilding your lives and supporting...

22 February 2021

A speech by The Duke of Cambridge at Al Noor Mosque, Christchurch, New Zealand

The message from Christchurch and the message from Al Noor and Linwood mosques could not be more clear - the global ideology of hate will fail to divide us.

26 April 2019
Press release 10 September 2018

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's Autumn Tour

Read more

A message from The Queen on the sixth anniversary of the Canterbury Earthquake in New Zealand

I hope that the new memorial will provide a place to remember, to grieve for what is lost, and to give thanks for what remains

21 February 2017

A message from The Queen following the earthquakes in New Zealand

I send my condolences to the families of those who were killed and to the people whose homes and businesses have been affected

15 November 2016
Press release 21 March 2016

Announcement of a new Governor-General of New Zealand

Read more

The Queen's Message to the Athletes

The baton relay represents a calling together of people from every part of the Commonwealth.

23 July 2014

Rugby World Cup 2015

13 October 2015

A speech by Prince Harry at Putiki Marae, Whanganui.

It is an honour to be here at Putiki marae, so close to the Whanganui River

14 May 2015

A speech by The Duke of Cambridge at Government House, Wellington, New Zealand

On this visit, I have no doubt that it will be Catherine and not just me who falls for New Zealand.

14 April 2014

A speech by Prince William at the memorial service in Christchurch, New Zealand

My grandmother once said that grief is the price we pay for love.

08 March 2011
Press release 07 March 2011

Appointment of new Governor-General of New Zealand

Read more
Press release 24 October 2010

Message following the New Zealand mining disaster

Read more
Press release 07 September 2010

Message following the earthquake in New Zealand

Read more
Press release 02 August 2010

Use of the title 'The Right Honourable' in New Zealand

Read more

A speech by Prince William to the New Zealand Supreme Court

New Zealand’s values are ones that I greatly admire.

18 January 2010
Press release 03 April 2006

Announcement of a new Governor General of New Zealand

Read more
Press release 16 May 2005

Prince William will visit New Zealand in July 2005

Read more

Maori gathering at Rehua Marae, Christchurch, New Zealand, 25 February 2002

New Zealand is working to improve and strengthen all the various relationships between Maori and the Crown.

25 February 2002

State dinner in Wellington, New Zealand, 25 February 2002

It is both a privilege and a pleasure to have served as Queen of New Zealand for these fifty years.

25 February 2002