Maggie Barry was first elected as the Member of Parliament representing North Shore in 2011 and re-elected in 2014 and 2017.
National is currently in opposition and she now holds the spokesperson roles for Seniors, Veterans, Disability Issues and Associate Health, and is the former Deputy Chair of the Justice Select Committee that has recently finished considering a Member’s bill to legalise euthanasia.’
During the 51st Parliament (2014-2017) the Honourable Maggie Barry served three years as a Minister inside Cabinet with responsibilities for Arts, Culture and Heritage, Conservation, and Seniors. She has also been a member of the Lottery Grants Board and the Honours Committee.
Prior to becoming an MP, Maggie had a 30-year career in the media as a radio and television news and current affairs presenter and interviewer. Building on her horticulture studies at Lincoln, she was the presenter and co-producer of the popular and long-running “Maggie’s Garden Show” (TVNZ 1992-2003) and was honoured to have a hybrid tea rose named after her by internationally renowned rose breeder Sam McGredy. Maggie was appointed to the Order of NZ Merit for services to broadcasting in the 1996 New Years Honours.
A senior feature writer for the Listener magazine for five years, in 2009 Maggie was named best senior feature writer at the Qantas Journalism Awards and won the Helen Paske Award the same year for her extensive piece on Sir Edmund Hillary, his final interview which was published after his death.
In the late 1990s as a member of the National Health Committee’s Ministerial advisory group, she chaired a working party into the care of people who are dying, and also headed a review of NZ’s maternity services. Her long association with hospice included being Patron of Mary Potter Hospice, Hospice NZ, and Alzheimer’s Wellington. Maggie is a former board director of Outward Bound, Auckland City Mission and Chair of the Board of the NZ Book Council. She is currently the Patron of Tennis Northern.
Maggie lives in the historic suburb of Devonport on Aucklands North Shore with her husband Grant Kerr, a lawyer and avid collector of contemporary New Zealand photography. Her son Joe is a university student.