Ken Douglas, born 1935, is a leading trade unionist and has been committed to and concerned with the working conditions in New Zealand for over 30 years.
He has not only made a significant contribution to the trade union movement in New Zealand, but is also respected within the movement worldwide.
He began his successful career in 1959, when he was elected as the President of the Wellington Drivers’ Union. He then went on to be the elected Secretary of the Wellington District Council of the New Zealand Federation of Labour and consequently became the Secretary of the national body.
In addition, he was the Foundation President of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions (CTU) and gave 12 years of service to the organisation. He was re-elected as President twice and represented the CTU on the Taskforce for Employment.
He also represented the New Zealand trade union movement in a number of international union bodies. He was President of the Asia-Pacific Regional Organisation of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) and was on the executive board of ICFTU. He was President of the International Centre for Trade Union Rights and served as a substitute Worker Representative on the International Labour Organisation governing body. He has also been an Advisor to government delegations at World Trade Organisation Ministerial Conferences in Singapore and Seattle.
Other organisations that he has been involved with include the Prime Minister’s Enterprise Council, the board of TRADENZ, the Todd Foundation, and the board of the Asia 2000 Foundation.
Ken Douglas has been a Member of the Council of The Institute of Policy Studies, the Industrial Relations Centre at Victoria University of Wellington, and the Institute of Strategic Studies. He has also sat on various committees and boards dealing with technology, training, and employment issues, and was recently elected to the Porirua City Council.
He has been involved in many sporting organisations over the years. He has been a Member of the Titahi Golf Club for 30 years and is currently President and is a Member of the Porirua Softball Club.
He has been involved with the Titahi Bay Rugby Club (now Northern United) since the 1960s as a player, coach, and as an active member of the Management Committee, helping the club to merge with Porirua Rugby Club to form Northern United Rugby Football Club.