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Outstanding achievements recognised in Queen’s honours ceremonies | RNZ News

Dame Lisa Carrington was honoured today at an Investiture Ceremony. Photo: RNZ / Angus Dreaver

The flag at Government House in Wellington remains at half mast, but today was a day for celebrating those who have achieved the highest honours in New Zealand.

Those awarded their honours today were among the final few to get them in the Queen’s name.

Dame Lisa Carrington is New Zealand’s most decorated Olympian and she was last year named as the most influential Māori sports personality of the last 30 years.

She said it was humbling to be officially awarded the honour.

“[It’s] not something I ever thought would happen but it’s so special to be here today and do the full ceremony – it’s nice to just look back on why I’m here.

Wāhine toa are not knighted but instead are ceremoniously cloaked in a korowai.

Dame Carrington said she felt the honour of wearing a piece worn by other Dames before her.

Those awarded today were some of the last recipients of the Queen’s honours, which with the succession of King Charles III would be the King’s Honours thereafter.

Her Majesty’s grand portrait still hung at the top of the ballroom at Government House today, but for the first time God Save the King was played on the piano.

Governor-General Dame Cindy Kiro was not in attendance, as she has travelled to the UK for the Queen’s funeral.

In her place was administrator of the government, the Honourable Dame Susan Glazebrook.

She told the recipients and their whānau: "it’s been a privilege to hear your stories, you’ve each used your talents and abilities to improve the lives of your fellow New Zealanders”.

Prominent film producer Chelsea Winstanley (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi te Rangi) has championed the successful te reo Māori adaptations of Disney films, The Lion King, Frozen, and Moana.

Today, receiving her Order of Merit, she said she was thankful the contributions she had made to film and for Māori had been recognised.

“It’s not just me, there are so many people that help me do what I do and I’m very grateful for that” Winstanley said.

“One of our biggest dreams for Matewa Media who makes those productions was really just for moemoeā mo nga mokopuna o āpōpō – for our babies of tomorrow to see their own language in public spaces, in cinema, and be proud to talk into those spaces to hear their reo and know that it’s just so normal.”

Filmmaker Chelsea Winstanley was appointed an officer of the Order of Merit. Photo: RNZ / Angus Dreaver

Among those being awarded for their outstanding services today was Professor Alec Ekeroma, receiving a Order of Merit for his contributions to health and the Pacific community.

Ekeroma played a leading role in initiating the Pacific Society for Reproductive Health, a not-for-profit organisation, and is its current chief executive.

It is now the foremost organisation for the professional development of doctors, nurses and midwives in the Pacific region.

Dame Carolyn Henwood was also awarded the honour at a later ceremony this afternoon.

Other recipients of Queens honours today:

More Queen’s Honours ceremonies will take place over next two weeks, recognising the likes of Sir Tipene O’Regan, Dame Silvia Cartwright, and Taika Waititi.


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