Hon Mark Mitchell MP for Rodney
Minister of Defence, Minister for Land Information, and Associate Minister of Justice
I was honoured to be elected as Rodney's Member of Parliament firstly on the 26th November 2011, and again in 2014. I am Minister of Defence, Minister for Land Information, and Associate Minister of Justice. I was previously Minister of Statistics, Deputy Chair of the Law and Order Select Committee and a member of the Commerce Select Committee for the 50th Parliament. I am Co-Captain of the Parliamentary Rugby team, and enjoy playing fixtures with my fellow colleagues, staff and former Members of Parliament around the country.
Born on Auckland's North Shore, I spent my first years living on Whenuapai Air Force base. My father was a Flight Lieutenant, flying Orion’s. My mother was the daughter of the Base Commander Air Commodore Frank Gill, who was also the National Party MP for East Coast Bays, Minister of Health, Defence, and the New Zealand Ambassador to Washington. Born from Irish Catholic, English and Canadian stock, I was educated at Rosmini College, whose motto is ‘Legis Plentido Charitas-Charity Fulfils the Law.' After leaving school, I went into farming where I learned what long hours of physical work and hard graft were all about. The rural sector is where our 'number 8 wire' attitude was born. Throughout my career overseas, often in a competitive environment, this common sense approach to problem solving, and 'failure is not an option' attitude helped me get ahead.
In 1989, I joined the New Zealand Police, and was a member of the Dog Section and Armed Offender's Squad. My partner was a small black German Shepherd named Czar. Even though he was small he had a big heart, he loved kids. He was not so keen on adults though, especially bad ones. One of the first jobs Czar and I attended together was a confrontation with an offender armed with a samurai sword, whose intent was to attack medical staff at Rotorua hospital. During the arrest, both Czar and I were stabbed. Czar fully recovered from his injuries but I never regained the full use of my right arm. To this day, I remain strong on law and order. Safe neighbourhoods are a priority for me, I back law and order policies that keep our families and communities secure, and ensure the rights of victims are protected.
After leaving the police, I relocated overseas and launched an international business career, which included the start-up of my own company specialising in hostage rescue, supply chain security, and risk management. Working closely with the World Economic Forum, I helped to establish logistic emergency response teams that provided humanitarian support in countries hit by natural disasters, such as the Philippines, Pakistan, and Haiti. I was also a member of the executive management team of several global companies, including one of the biggest logistics companies in the world.
Later on in my overseas career, I began leveraging my business network and knowledge in emerging markets to begin assisting New Zealand entrepreneurs and businesses to introduce their services and products into new markets. I am passionate about generating growth in both our tradable sector and local economy, and support the National Government's principles of economic management. I understand the pressures businesses of all sizes face, the responsibility they carry, and the importance that each one plays in the future of our country. My belief is that continued investment in our infrastructure is critical to get our people and products moving safely and more efficiently.
I have four teenage kids at home, which is both challenging and lots of fun. Peggy and I made the decision to bring our blended family home to New Zealand, settling in Orewa, we enjoy the great Kiwi lifestyle, and the advantages of our kids to being educated in local schools. I appreciate the importance of a good education and support the lifting of New Zealand's education standards and getting good information to parents.
I have an open door policy in my electorate office. If you have any concerns or questions, or just want to meet for a chat, please don't hesitate to contact my office directly. I look forward to meeting you soon.