And Jo Kelly-Moore says there are several similarities between her commerci' />

Auckland's first female dean was a lawyer before she became a priest.

And Jo Kelly-Moore says there are several similarities between her commercial litigation career and her upcoming role as the Anglican Church's Dean of Auckland.

The 42-year-old's appointment was announced yesterday.

Mrs Kelly-Moore said while there was some crossover with her careers, her "calling" was the same for both.

Her passion then, and now, was to work with people and help them.

"That was certainly ... at the heart of what drew me into the law.

"Being part of a church, there's a lot that's very similar. We have administration and business operations and we're there to serve people and the community. And we're certainly about justice and truth.

"Being a litigator in court, you need to find your voice, and that is very much part of the role of the dean.

"We engage with a lot of issues and we engage with society at all levels, so those skills and abilities are also something that I already call on."

Mrs Kelly-Moore says there are also differences. "I don't fill out six-minute time sheets any more, which is a bit of a blessed relief," she said with a laugh.

"I suppose the salary's a bit different, too," she added with a wink. But she wouldn't be drawn on which role paid more.

The Auckland diocese, which extends from Cape Reinga in the north to Thames in the south, is large, and Mrs Kelly-Moore is excited about dealing with both the community and its leaders in the lead-up to Auckland becoming a Super City.

Mrs Kelly-Moore was appointed to the role after the former dean, Ross Bay, was elected bishop.

She will leave her role of the past six years - vicar of St Aidan's Church in Remuera - in August.

Asked whether she would have a different leadership style because she is a woman, Mrs Kelly-Moore said: "I think I bring the gift and vision of a priest, like all my colleagues.

"It is a privilege to be the first woman Dean of Auckland, but as an individual and probably growing up in the era that I have, I tend to find my vocation as a human being doing what I'm called to do rather than focusing on being a woman as such."

A growing number of ordained women are in paid roles within the church, and about 40 per cent of the paid positions are filled by women.

In her spare time, Mrs Kelly-Moore enjoys entertaining friends and family, walking and running, and spending time with her husband Paul, who works in social services, and their sons Adam, 9, and Nathan, 6.

She will be the ninth Dean of Auckland.