New Zealand Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy is to officially invest Tariana Turia in her New Year honour at Whanganui's Pūtiki Marae on August 14.

Dame Patsy will spend three days in the region, with visits and an official reception on August 15. On August 16 she officially opens the New Zealand International Commercial Pilot Academy.

Patsy Reddy was made a Dame Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in September 2016, and was sworn in as Governor-General for a five-year term.

Her previous career had been in law, business and the public sector.


She had been a law lecturer, a Crown treaty negotiator, a member of many boards and the founder of a private investment company.

Whanganui's Tariana Turia was the founder of Te Oranganui Iwi Health Authority and a leader of the 1995 occupation/reclamation of Pākaitore/Moutoa Gardens.

She went on to become a Labour Party MP, then found the Māori Party and become its co-leader in Parliament.

Since leaving politics she has been appointed to Te Pou Tupua for the Whanganui River, a role she said was the most important of her life. She was made a dame in the 2015 New Year Honours, but has never been formally invested.

That's to happen at Pūtiki Marae on August 14. The day will begin with a pōwhiri for local people at 9am, followed by another for Dame Patsy's party at 10.30.

Former Attorney-General Chris Finlayson and former Prime Minister Bill English are expected to be in her party.

The investiture will take place immediately after the pōwhiri.

Details about the rest of Dame Patsy's visit are still being finalised. But she is expected to visit New Zealand Glassworks that afternoon.


On the Wednesday morning she will meet knitters at Whanganui's Gonville Cafe Library, then visit Pacific Helmets and Kotuku Foundation Assistance Animals Aotearoa, for which she is the patron.

Those visits will be followed by a community reception.

On the Thursday morning Dame Patsy will officially open Whanganui's new council-owned commercial pilot academy, before heading to the RNZAF's Ohakea air force base.