As the date for the Tauranga by-election was announced last week, it made me reflect on the past four-and-a-half years I have spent as a locally-based List MP here in Tauranga.
One of the best decisions my family and I made was to move to Tauranga nearly 16 years ago. It’s a beautiful city with huge opportunities. We had lived in Southland, where I was a teacher and then a principal; and then a wonderful opportunity came up to be the principal of Merivale School.
I was very keen to accept the challenge of being a principal at a Decile 1 school. Being at the school and being part of the Merivale community was and will always be one of the highlights of my career and life.
What drives me to do this job is the people; I want to do my part to improve the lives of our community and support people to be the best that they can be.
One of my Ministerial roles is the Minister for Women, another passion of mine, and this week I have spoken out about the misogynistic abuse against women in public office and that I have had to prepare myself for an increase in such abuse which is now happening.
There have been many highlights in my past four-and-a-half years as an MP. I have met with hundreds of people and organisations and I’m always struck by the generosity and good work being done in our community. I believe the future is looking very bright and we need to keep up the momentum to make this city the best city to live in.