Back to top anchor

New Year Honours List 2023 - Citations for Companions of the Queen's Service Order

To be a Companion of the Queen’s Service Order:

DOBSON, Mr John Robert

For services to people with disabilities

Mr John Dobson has been a driving force behind Life Unlimited, originally the Disabled Living Centre (Waikato) Trust, as a founding Trustee from 1979 and Chair since 1991.

Mr Dobson led the growth and change to Life Unlimited in 1997 to reflect the wider scope of services offered to the disability sector nationally. He has performed this role alongside his profession as an accountant. He brought together three charities providing various support services for people with disabilities to become one organisation with a comprehensive business framework. Contract opportunities were developed with government agencies to provide more consistent funding streams and he led the organisation from a $300,000 per annum revenue to a business of more than $6 million. He was instrumental to initiatives such as a ‘total mobility’ system around Hamilton with ramped vans as taxis, until local taxis took over this service, and the renting of a store where disabled people could sell their wares and learn skills. He led the acquisition of Hearing Therapy services, with Life Unlimited now providing free national Hearing Therapy, autism information and advice, Advocacy to Mobility and disability retail outlets, Waikato community programmes and needs assessment service coordination in the Hutt Valley and Gisborne. Mr Dobson has chaired Hamilton Gardens Development Trust since 2012, overseeing significant fundraising.

Back to Honours List

To be a Companion of the Queen’s Service Order:

MCELNAY, Dr Caroline Ann

For services to public health

Dr Caroline McElnay was Director of Public Health with the Ministry of Health (MoH) from 2017 until 2022 and helped lead New Zealand’s public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr McElnay led public health advice to inform policy development, public health risk assessments of local cases and outbreaks, and assessment of outbreaks in quarantine-free travel states in Australia. She has worked with multiple government agencies and public health units to support their COVID-19 response, and provided technical advice on the vaccination programme. She monitored global developments on the fast-moving virus and worked to assess risks with Australian counterparts as a member of the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee. She committed to ensuring public health interventions delivered evidence-based and equitable outcomes. She collaborated on a paper analysing the impact of New Zealand’s initial response to COVID-19, which resulted in the team being awarded the Liley Medal from the Royal Society of New Zealand. She had a leading role in MoH’s communications to the New Zealand public, regularly speaking alongside the Director-General of Health and the Prime Minister at press conferences. Dr McElnay is well regarded for remaining calm under pressure and her ability to convey technical information in understandable ways, providing confidence for decision-makers in uncertain circumstances.

Back to Honours List

To be a Companion of the Queen’s Service Order:

MOEAHU, Mr Kura Te Rangi

For services to Māori and the arts

Mr Kura Moeahu (Te Kāhui Maunga, Te Āti Awa, Ngā Ruahine, Taranaki-tuturu, Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Tama, Ngāti Toa) is recognised for his knowledge of tikanga and Mātauranga Māori and has contributed to the arts, culture and heritage sector.

Mr Moeahu has held a wide range of roles with various organisations, particularly advising on tikanga and te ao Māori. He is presently Chairman of Te Runanganui o Te Ati Awa, Ātiawa Toa FM radio station, Waiwhetu Marae Trust, Pipitea Marae Trust, Waiwhetu Pa Reservation No.4, and the Harbour Island Kaitiaki Board. He has been Tumu Whakarae for Parliamentary Service since 2007, cultural advisor to the Mayors of Wellington and Lower Hutt, Iwi representative on Wellington Central Police’s Māori Advisory Board, and is on the Creative New Zealand Board. He helped develop Creative NZ’s national strategy for Māori arts ‘Te Hā o ngā toi Māori’. He is Deputy Chair of Wellington Māori Cultural Society, who hosted Te Matatini o Te Ao 2019 in Wellington. He was a member of the Wellington Institute of Technology and Whitireia Community Polytechnic, providing guidance to transition to Te Pukenga. He was instrumental in establishing Te Auaha New Zealand Institute of Creativity. Mr Moeahu has helped his iwi Te Ātiawa with the Awakairangi Waka relocation project, supporting a collaborative conservation effort between six iwi with ownership claims of Te Awakairangi Waka and planning for the future of this taonga tūturu.

Back to Honours List

To be a Companion of the Queen’s Service Order:

WANO, Mr Hayden Paul Waretini

For services to Māori health

Mr Hayden Wano (Taranaki, Te Atiawa, Ngāti Tama, Ngāti Awa) was appointed as the Chief Executive Officer of the newly established Tui Ora in 1998 and has grown the organisation from a workforce of four to more than 180 today.

Tui Ora is an iwi-owned Kaupapa Māori health and social service provider, the largest in the Taranaki region, offering 35 services and programmes. As CEO for the past 24 years, he has contributed positively to bringing iwi, whānau, other health providers and the Taranaki District Health Board together to deliver better and more equitable health and wellbeing outcomes for Māori. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Tui Ora was a leading provider that contributed to an 89 percent double vaccination rate for Māori in Taranaki. He was the first Mental Health Service Manager for Taranaki Area Health Board in 1989 and served as the first Chair of the Taranaki District Health Board between 2001 and 2008. His previous governance roles include Chair of the Health Sponsorship Council, Interim Chair of Health New Zealand, Chair of TSB Community Trust and of TSB Group Ltd, and Board member of TSB Bank. Mr Wano is currently the Chair of Te Hiringa Māhara – Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission, a Trustee of Taranaki Arts Festival Trust and of WISE Trust, and a Board member of the Taranaki Chamber of Commerce.

Back to Honours List

Last updated: 
Saturday, 31 December 2022

Help us improve DPMC

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