Jacinda Ardern is in China today with her international profile burnished under the fire of the Christchurch terror attack.
The Prime Minister's approach in a time of crisis has been part of a tradition.
Anyone old enough remembers Bill Clinton's ability to emote and explain, Tony Blair putting words to thoughts after Diana's death, or George W. Bush with a bullhorn at Ground Zero.
The fact that Ardern's actions and words instead stand out as particularly notable speaks to the dreary political moment the world is in. She has shown up other current leaders, politicians and countries in comparison.
Our neighbour Australia presented a united front at the Christchurch memorial service with both government and opposition represented. But the country's mourning after the terror attack has been marred by political squabbles over migrants and guns, in contrast to the solidarity here.
In Britain, Prime Minister Theresa May's leadership is now so wounded by Brexit that even an offer to quit in exchange for MPs' support failed.
May's job appears as difficult and thankless as herding cats. Both Parliament and the country are hopelessly divided. Brexit makes the entire political elite look bad. It manages to be about a lot and very little at the same time. Talks and votes are held, Westminster heaves with intrigue and insults. Calculations stay the same: Soft Brexit? No Brexit? Or no-deal Brexit? It has been paralytic chaos.
May's approach has been rigid, pushing her deal over other options. She has prized holding her own party together over healing the country's rifts.
In the US, President Donald Trump keeps riffing on rifts between groups. He never strays far from immigration and is cutting aid to three neighbouring countries from which migrants flee. The striptease release of apparent Russia probe findings is fuelling some scepticism. Polls show the public wants the full report released. Trump seems determined to go into 2020 pitching his support base against the rest. If anything, Ardern's command, empathy and oratory has been reminiscent of Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama.
At the memorial, the Prime Minister said: "Our challenge now is to make the very best of us, a daily reality ... We each hold the power, in our words and in our actions, in our daily acts of kindness. Let that be the legacy of the 15th of March."
In 2015, Obama spoke at a funeral after the shooting deaths at a Charleston black church by a white supremacist. He warned that people shouldn't allow "ourselves to slip into a comfortable silence again ... to go back to business as usual ... to settle for symbolic gestures without following up with the hard work of more lasting change — that's how we lose our way again."
We are at that point now after the terror attack where "business as usual" could beckon. But memories of the unity and openness felt will remain. Security improvements have been pledged.
The Prime Minister has provided an example to the world that taps into a tradition we should expect of leaders — but currently don't.