Back to top anchor

New Year Honours 2019 - Citations for the New Zealand Distinguished Service Decoration


For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Serviceman S has made significant contributions to New Zealand’s interests during a number of tours of duty in the Middle East over the past five years.

Across several deployments in challenging environments, Serviceman S has created frameworks and implemented operations, which have supported his successors and continued to produce results. Serviceman S demonstrated effectiveness in establishing close working relationships with coalition partners and in understanding complex operating environments to produce positive and lasting outcomes.

Back to Honours List

PETERSON, Lieutenant Commander Jan Joseph Tupuola

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Acting Lieutenant Commander Jan Peterson was the Force Engineer Officer for the Multi-National Force and Observers (MFO) Mission in Sinai for 12 months across 2017/2018.

He became involved during the Force’s greatest restructure and modernisation programme in its 36-year history, including relocation from one end of the Peninsula to the other. This required the relocation of more than 500 staff, and significant infrastructure and capability development at the new South Camp base. The volume of engineer projects had increased from 7 to 10 projects per annum to more than 77 projects by the time he arrived. He was a central figure in the planning, coordination and delivery of many of the major infrastructure projects, which included the South Camp Headquarters Building, cold storage facility and warehouse, security perimeter fence and a new vehicle maintenance facility. He led the design, planning and resource coordination for the construction of four Remote Sites for Observer Force personnel, which included accommodation, communal facilities and protection. The site on Tiran Island was particularly challenging, requiring delivery of construction materials via more than 350 underslung loads from Black Hawk helicopters. His relationship building, particularly with Egyptian contractors, enabled him to deliver projects to schedule despite ambitious timelines. Lieutenant Commander Peterson made a significant contribution to the MFO’s ability to carry out its mission now and into the future.

Back to Honours List

PUTZE, Colonel Ruth Leonie

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Colonel Ruth Putze was posted to the United Nations Truce Supervision Organisation (UNTSO) from July 2015 to February 2016, and served as the Chief of the Observer Group in Lebanon, as well as the Senior National Officer for the New Zealand contingent.

In this role she was responsible for all UNTSO operations within Lebanon, the safety of the military Observer Group personnel under her command, and for maintaining liaison and a cooperative working environment between the Observer Group, the United Nations Interim Observer Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), other UN agencies and local communities. As one of only two female commanders serving in the Middle East (both with UNTSO) and the only one in South Lebanon, her exceptional performance has made her a role model for women throughout UNIFIL and UNTSO. Her work ethic and ability to build relationships with her counter-parts and seniors across more than 40 troop-contributing nations, as well as community leaders and members of the national military forces, were significant factors in the success of her command. During this time she instituted and completed a number of important projects, including the replacement of the Force’s armoured vehicles and an enhanced induction training regime for new observers. As the Senior National Officer, Colonel Putze added considerably to New Zealand’s knowledge of current events in Lebanon, Israel and Syria.

Back to Honours List

Last updated: 
Monday, 31 December 2018

Help us improve DPMC

Your feedback is very important in helping us improve the DPMC website.