David Wilson (New Zealand politician)

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The Honourable
David Wilson
David Wilson MLC.jpg
1st Minister of Immigration
In office
30 April 1940 – 12 April 1944
Succeeded by Paddy Webb
6th Secretary of the Labour Party
In office
Preceded by Jim Thorn
Succeeded by Michael Moohan
Personal details
Born (1880-07-06)6 July 1880
Glasgow, Scotland
Died 24 August 1977(1977-08-24) (aged 97)
Wellington, New Zealand
Political party Labour

David Wilson (6 July 1880 – 24 August 1977) was a New Zealand politician of the Labour Party. He was a minister in the First Labour Government.


Early life and career[edit]

He was born in Glasgow, Scotland, a tailor, and was a union organiser in Derbyshire, England before migrating to Australia in 1911 and New Zealand in 1916. He became a Labour Party organiser, and assistant to Walter Nash then Jim Thorn.[1] Wilson served as the Labour Party's Secretary-Treasurer from 1936 until 1940.[2]

Political career[edit]

He was a member of the New Zealand Legislative Council from 22 September 1937 to 21 September 1944, when his term ended; and 16 June 1947 to 31 December 1950, when the Council was abolished.[3] He was a Member of the Executive Council in the First Labour Government: Minister without Portfolio from 8 November 1939 to 13 December 1949; Minister of Immigration and Minister for State Fire from 30 April 1940 to 12 April 1944; Minister of Broadcasting and Associate Minister of National Service from 21 January 1941 to 12 April 1944.[4]

Diplomatic career[edit]

He was High Commissioner to Canada and New Zealand delegate to the UN General Assembly 1944-47, and to FAO 1945, UNESCO and UNICEF 1946-47.[1]

He died in Wellington Hospital on 24 August 1977.


  1. ^ a b Gustafson 1986.
  2. ^ Paul, J.T. (1946). Humanism in Politics: New Zealand Labour Party in Retrospect. Wellington, NZ: New Zealand Worker Printing and Publishing. 
  3. ^ Wilson 1985, p. 167.
  4. ^ Wilson 1985, pp. 82-83, 116-117, 131, 167.


Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
R. M. Firth
New Zealand High Commissioner to Canada
Succeeded by
Jim Thorn
Party political offices
Preceded by
Jim Thorn
Secretary of the Labour Party
Succeeded by
Michael Moohan