Anne Tolley

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The Honourable
Anne Tolley
MP JP
Anne Tolley Gisborne 2008.JPG
Deputy Speaker of the New Zealand House of Representatives
Assumed office
8 November 2017
Preceded by Chester Borrows
Minister of Social Development
In office
13 October 2014 – 26 October 2017
Prime Minister John Key
Bill English
Preceded by Paula Bennett
Succeeded by Carmel Sepuloni
44th Minister of Education
In office
19 November 2008 – 25 November 2011
Prime Minister John Key
Preceded by Chris Carter
Succeeded by Hekia Parata
Minister for Tertiary Education
In office
19 November 2008 – 27 January 2010[1]
Prime Minister John Key
Preceded by Pete Hodgson
Succeeded by Steven Joyce
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for National Party list
In office
1999–2002
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for East Coast
Assumed office
2005
Preceded by Janet Mackey
Majority 6,413
Personal details
Born Anne Merrilyn Hicks
(1953-03-01) 1 March 1953 (age 64)
Wellington, New Zealand
Political party National Party
Spouse(s) Allan Hunt Tolley (m. 1973)
Children Three
Occupation Hotelier, Local Government
Website annetolley.co.nz

Anne Merrilyn Tolley JP MP (née Hicks, born 1 March 1953) is a New Zealand politician and member of the New Zealand House of Representatives representing the National Party. She previously served as Minister of Social Development, Minister of Local Government and Minister for Children during the Fifth National Government. From 2008 to 2011 she served as New Zealand's first woman Minister of Education.

Early life and family[edit]

Tolley was born in Wellington on 1 March 1953, the daughter of Mary Margaret Hicks (née Norris) and her husband Ronald James Hicks. She was educated at Colenso High School (now William Colenso College) in Napier, and spent time as a Rotary exchange student in Allentown, Pennsylvania, United States. She went on to gain a diploma in computer programming. In 1973 she married Allan Hunt Tolley, and the couple had three children.[2]

Local-body politics[edit]

In 1986 Tolley was elected as a member of the Napier City Council and remained in that role until 1995. She served as deputy mayor of Napier between 1989 and 1995, and was an elected member of the Hawke's Bay Regional Council from 1989 to 1992. She has been a Justice of the Peace since 1989.[2]

Parliamentary career[edit]

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate List Party
1999–2002 46th List 20 National
2005–2008 48th East Coast 43 National
2008–2011 49th East Coast 10 National
2011–2014 50th East Coast 8 National
2014–2017 51st East Coast 12 National
2017–present 52nd East Coast 11 National

Tolley represents the East Coast electorate, including Whakatane, Ōhope Beach, Opotiki, and Gisborne districts.

Tolley was elected in the 1999 elections as a list MP, having unsuccessfully contested the Napier seat against Labour's Geoff Braybrooke. In the 2002 elections, she unsuccessfully contested the Napier seat against Braybrooke's successor, Russell Fairbrother. Along with many other National MPs, Tolley did not escape the collapse of the party's vote that year, and so did not return to Parliament as a list MP.[3]

In the 2005 General Election Tolley successfully contested the East Coast Electorate, beating Labour Candidate Moana Mackey, daughter of the previous East Coast MP Janet Mackey.[4]

She served as the first woman National Party Whip from December 2006 until February 2008 when she became the party's Education Spokeswoman after Katherine Rich announced her intention to retire from Parliament after that year's election.[5]

Minister of Education: 2008–2011[edit]

As Minister of Education, Tolley was given responsibility for making schools more accountable "so that parents and pupils get the most from them".[6] This led to a battle with teachers over the introduction of a range of new proposals including a requirement for schools to report National Standards results. The controversial proposals were opposed by many teachers and school principals, some of whom refused to implement the standards.[7]

In June 2010, Tolley expressed concerns about a Parliamentary Library research paper that was critical of National Standards, calling it "unprofessional", "highly political" and so biased it could have been written by the union opposing the policy. Such papers are required by the Parliamentary Library to be politically neutral.[8] A month later the New Zealand Principals Federation voted to support regional associations which boycotted training for National Standards. Tolley reminded principals that in her view it would be quicker and give better results to contact herself or the Ministry of Education with concerns about the changes, than to speak through the media.[9]

The stand-off between Tolley and teachers was embarrassing for the Government and resulted in Cabinet changes after National was re-elected in November 2011.[10] Hekia Parata was made Education Minister while Tolley was demoted in the Cabinet rankings, becoming Minister of Corrections and Police.[11] She took over the role from Judith Collins who moved up the rankings to become Minister of Justice - filling the vacancy created by the retirement of Simon Power from Parliament.[12]

Minister of Corrections: 2011–2014[edit]

In March 2012, one of her first major announcements as the Minister of Corrections was the proposed closure of the old prisons in Wellington and New Plymouth. She also said that a number of older units at Arohata, Rolleston, Rangipo and Waikeria prisons would close.[13] Later that year, the Government awarded a 25-year contract to Serco to build a 960-bed prison at Wiri, South Auckland, at a cost of NZ$900 million.[14][15] Tolley attended a sod-turning ceremony at the site of the new prison Wiri in September 2012.[16]

Other Ministerial roles 2008 - 2017[edit]

From 2008 to 2011 Tolley was the Minister of Education and Minister Responsible for the Education Review Office. From 2008 to 2010 she was the Minister of Tertiary Education. From 2011 to 2014 she was the Minister of Police and Corrections. Since 2014 she has been the Minister of Social Development.

From September to December 2016 Tolley was the Minister for Youth. On 20 December 2016 she became the Minister for Children and the Minister of Local Government.[17]

Opposition and Deputy Speaker: 2017 - present[edit]

Tolley and the National Party were returned to opposition after the 2017 general election result which saw kingmaker party, New Zealand First, agree to a coalition with the Labour Party. On 8 November 2017, the House elected Tolley its Deputy Speaker.

Personal[edit]

It emerged in 2010 that Tolley had undergone gastric bypass (stomach stapling) surgery in order to lose weight.[18] Tolley joins other current and former New Zealand politicians including Rahui Katene, David Lange, Chester Borrows, Donna Awatere-Huata and Tariana Turia to have had gastric bypass surgery at some point in the past.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "John Key announces Cabinet reshuffle". The New Zealand Herald. 26 January 2010. Retrieved 26 January 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Taylor, Alister, ed. (2001). New Zealand Who's Who Aotearoa 2001. Auckland: Alister Taylor Publishers. ISSN 1172-9813. 
  3. ^ "Candidate profile: Anne Tolley". Newshub.co.nz. 2011-10-20. Retrieved 2017-07-17. 
  4. ^ "Electorate Profile East Coast". Parliament.nz. October 2005. Retrieved 2017-07-17. 
  5. ^ "Katherine Rich puts family before politics in her decision to stand down". Newshub.co.nz. 2008-02-13. Retrieved 2017-07-17. 
  6. ^ Editorial: Trust parents with the facts about schools, NZ Herald 22 November 2011
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ Young, Audrey (30 June 2010). "Tolley upset at paper on standards". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 16 September 2011. 
  9. ^ [2]
  10. ^ "Women move up the Govt ranks". The New Zealand Herald. 13 December 2011. 
  11. ^ Romanos, Amelia (12 December 2011). "Boost for women in new Cabinet". The New Zealand Herald. 
  12. ^ "Power hands over SOE portfolio". The New Zealand Herald. 13 April 2011. 
  13. ^ [3]
  14. ^ Clendon, David (21 June 2012). "$900 million for empty beds" (Press release). Wellington: Green Party. Archived from the original on 10 February 2013. Retrieved 29 December 2012. 
  15. ^ APNZ (23 March 2012). "Minister defends prison closure plans". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 29 December 2012. 
  16. ^ [4][dead link]
  17. ^ "Tolley, Anne - New Zealand Parliament". Parliament.nz. 2017-04-07. Retrieved 2017-07-17. 
  18. ^ Forbes, Michael (26 January 2010). "Stomach-stapled MPs put weight behind Turia". Stuff. New Zealand. Retrieved 16 September 2011. 

External links[edit]

New Zealand Parliament
Preceded by
Janet Mackey
Member of Parliament for East Coast
2005–present
Incumbent
Political offices
Preceded by
Chris Carter
Minister of Education
2008–2011
Succeeded by
Hekia Parata
Preceded by
Judith Collins
Minister of Corrections
2011–2014
Succeeded by
Sam Lotu-Iiga
Preceded by
Paula Bennett
Minister for Social Development
2014–2017
Succeeded by
Carmel Sepuloni