Ian Cross

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Ian Robert Cross, CMG (born 6 November 1925), is a novelist, journalist and administrator, and has contributed significantly to New Zealand letters. His first novel, The God Boy, was released in 1957 to critical acclaim. Later novels are The Backward Sex (1959), After ANZAC Day (1961) and The Family Man (1993).

Cross was born in Masterton and educated at Wanganui Technical College. He was a reporter 1943–1956, including the Dominion (1943–1947 and chief reporter 1951–1956), the Panama-American 1947–1949 and the Southern Cross 1949–1950. He was public relations manager for Feltex NZ 1961–1972.

His contribution to New Zealand literature extends to his work on various boards, his critical commentaries and his various roles in the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation. He was editor of the New Zealand Listener 1973–1977, chairman of the NZBC 1977–1984 and chief executive 1984–1986. He has been president of several organisations, including the Indecent Publications Tribunal 1964–1967, PEN 1968–1972, the QEII Arts Council 1968–1972, and the National Commission for UNESCO 1969–1972.

He held a fellowship in journalism at Harvard in 1954–1955 and the Robert Burns Fellowship at Otago University in 1959. He won The Atlantic Monthly short story prize in 1956. In 1988 he published The Unlikely Bureaucrat, a non-fiction memoir. Another memoir was released in 2007 called Such Absolute Beginners.

In the 1994 New Year Honours, Cross was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George, for services to broadcasting and literature.[1]

He married Tui Tunnicliffe in 1952. They have four sons.


  • Lambert, Max (1991). Who’s Who in New Zealand (12th ed.). Reed, Auckland. p. 141. ISBN 0 7900 01306. 

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