Mike Ward (New Zealand politician)

Michael Grahame Ward JP (born 18 July 1942) is a former Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand politician. He was an MP for one term from 2002 to 2005. He was co-leader of the Values Party (a predecessor to the modern Greens) from 1985 to 1988. In 2006, Ward was an unsuccessful candidate for male co-leader of the Green Party, following the death of Rod Donald in 2005.

Mike Ward

Portrait photo of a man in his late 60s with grey hair and glasses in a raincoat
Ward in 2010
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for Green party list
In office
2002 – 2005
Personal details
Born (1942-07-18) 18 July 1942 (age 77)
Hastings, New Zealand
Political partyGreen (until 2017)
OccupationArtist, politician

Early lifeEdit

Born in 1942,[2] Ward was educated at Nelson College from 1956 to 1959.[3] He attended Christchurch Teachers College from 1962 to 1963, gaining a Diploma of Teaching, and worked as a primary school teacher in 1964. He then studied at the University of Canterbury from 1965 to 1968 and was awarded a Diploma of Fine Arts majoring in sculpture. He worked as a secondary school teacher between 1969 and 1977.[2]

Political careerEdit


New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate List Party
2002–2005 47th List 9 Green

Ward was an unsuccessful candidate at seven New Zealand general elections before being elected in the 2002 general election at No. 9 on the Green party list, after the counting of special votes.[4] Although he moved up one place on the list for the 2005 election he lost his seat as the Green vote fell. When he was in Parliament, he was the Green Party spokesperson on Arts and Culture, Older Persons, Small Business, Sports, Fitness and Leisure, Tourism and Waste-free. These portfolios were taken over by the remaining six Green MPs after Ward lost his seat.

Ward was a Values Party candidate in the 1981, 1984 and 1987 elections. He was a Green Party candidate in the 1990 election. He was an Alliance candidate in the 1993 and 1996 elections. He was a Green Party candidate in the 1999, 2002 and 2005 elections.

Ward was next on the Green party list before Nándor Tánczos resigned in 2008. Ward initially declined to stand aside so that Russel Norman, the Green co-leader, could take Tánczos's list seat when he resigned from Parliament. Ward changed his mind, because of the advantages in having the party co-leader in Parliament during an election year,[5] and Norman became an MP on 27 June.

Nelson City CouncilEdit

Ward served as a Nelson City Councillor from 1983 to 1989 and from 1992 to 1998. He stood as a candidate for Mayor of Nelson in 1986, 1989 and in 2007. He came a close second in 1989 and came fourth in 2007.[1][6] He unsuccessfully stood for mayor in 2010.[1] and stood again for mayor in 2019,[7] coming fifth.[8]

Creative AllianceEdit

In May 2017, Ward announced the formation of a new political party called Creative Alliance.[9] However, as of July 2019 the party has not stood in any elections and is not registered.

Other activitiesEdit

In 2005, shortly after that year's general election, Ward won the Montana World of Wearable Art Supreme Award.[10] Ward is the only person who completed all the first 28 Coast to Coast races.[11] Ward is also an appointed Justice of the Peace.


  1. ^ a b c Neal, Tracy (9 September 2010). "Because they asked: a fourth bid to be mayor". The Nelson Mail. Retrieved 11 September 2010.
  2. ^ a b "Mike Ward". Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand. Archived from the original on 25 May 2010. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
  3. ^ Nelson College Old Boys' Register, 1856–2006, 6th edition
  4. ^ "Greens gain seat in final vote count". The New Zealand Herald. 10 August 2002. Retrieved 29 January 2010.
  5. ^ Trevett, Claire (4 June 2008). "Greens co-leader set to be MP - at last". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 29 January 2010.
  6. ^ Election 2007 - Election results for Mayor, Council, and District Health Board Archived 15 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine, Nelson City Council.
  7. ^ "Mike for mayor?". 30 May 2019.
  8. ^ "Nelson City Council 2019 Triennial Elections Progress Result". 12 October 2019.
  9. ^ Anderson, Charles (19 May 2017). "Nelson artist Mike Ward starts new political party - The Creative Alliance". Stuff. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  10. ^ "Ward wows art world". The New Zealand Herald. 24 September 2005. Retrieved 29 January 2010.
  11. ^ Gibbs, Peter (5 March 2010). "Coast to Coast still hellishly difficult". The Nelson Mail. Retrieved 11 September 2010.