Rotorua MP Todd McClay has risen up the ranks in recent years and is almost guaranteed a place in Parliament after September's general election.
This morning, the National Party released its list for this year's election with Mr McClay going up nine places to 14 on the list.
His position places him ahead of party stalwarts Nick Smith and Judith Collins.
Party president Peter Goodfellow said the list was made up of a strong mix of experienced talent and fresh faces.
"National is incredibly lucky to have so many capable people we can draw on, from our leader Prime Minister Bill English right through to our newest candidates.
"Putting together a list is never easy, but this strikes the right balance between recognising experience, diversity and pursuing ongoing renewal," Mr Goodfellow said.
Elsewhere in the region, Tauranga MP Simon Bridges was named at six on the list with East Coast MP Anne Tolley at 11 and Taupo MP Louise Upston at 19.
Mr McClay said he was grateful for the confidence his party had shown in him, but "I've never paid much attention to the list because it's an absolute privilege for me to be the MP for Rotorua".
"Like the last two elections, I want to show the people of Rotorua I value their support and will continue to work with our mayor and council to make sure Rotorua is a great place to live and work."
Mr Goodfellow said rejuvenation was important for any political party and National was going into the election with some fantastic new candidates.
"This is National's most diverse list ever," he said.
"We're incredibly proud to represent New Zealanders from all walks of life, with a range of ethnicities and backgrounds.
"We've got business people, teachers, farmers, community advocates, scientists and a pilot - just to name a few.
"Every MMP election is very close.
"All of our candidates will be campaigning hard to ensure National gets a strong party vote result so we can keep delivering for New Zealanders," Mr Goodfellow said.