Former Prime Minister of New Zealand
Day One: Lessons From a bold Global Leader
Rt Hon Sir John Key was Prime Minister of New Zealand from 2008 to December 2016, winning three general elections as leader of the centre-right National Party. He led the country through the aftermath of the global financial crisis and a series of devastating earthquakes in New Zealand's second-biggest city. When he retired from office New Zealand had one of the highest growth rates and best fiscal positions of any advanced economy.
Sir John was well respected in international affairs and chaired the International Democrat Union and the United Nations Security Council in 2016. Among his portfolio’s he was Minister for Tourism and has a strong interest in the best that New Zealand has to offer both local and international tourists. He was the instigator of the great New Zealand Cycle Trail.
Since retiring from politics Sir John has been an ambassador for philanthropic Japanese billionaire Dr Haruhisa Handa, his International Sports Promotion Society (ISPS HANDA) and other agencies. He has a keen passion for golf.
Sir John received top honours in the 2017 Queen's Birthday list. He was made a Knight Grand Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit which brings with it the title of Sir John. While he is certain people will still call him John, he was delighted that Bronagh becomes Lady Key. He was also recognized by the Australian Government and has been appointed an Honorary Companion in the Order of Australia.
In September 2017 Sir John joined the Board of Air New Zealand. In October 2017 he was appointed to the Board of ANZ Bank New Zealand and from early 2018 he will become Chairman. He is enjoying advisory and consulting roles for several different entities throughout the world.
In recognition of his achievements The University of Canterbury awarded Sir John a Doctor of Commerce honorary degree in December 2018. He graduated from the university in 1983 with a Bachelor of Commerce degree majoring in Accountancy.
Sir John worked in investment banking for 20 years primarily for Bankers Trust in New Zealand and Merrill Lynch in Singapore London and Sydney. His positions included heading Merrill Lynch's global foreign exchange business along with responsibility for European derivative trading and E. Commerce.
Sir John was a member of the Foreign Exchange Committee of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (1999-2001).