The Hon. Mark Mitchell
Mark Mitchell was appointed as the Minister of Defence on 24 April 2017.
Both Mr Mitchell’s father and grandfather served with the Royal New Zealand Air Force, and he spent his early years living at Base Whenuapai in Auckland. His grandfather, Air Commodore Frank Gill, was a cabinet minister between 1975 and 1980 and was later appointed as New Zealand Ambassador to Washington.
Mr Mitchell joined the New Zealand Police in 1989 and became a member of the Dog Section and Armed Offenders’ Squad. After leaving the Police in 2002, he established an international private security firm. Working closely with the World Economic Forum, he helped establish logistic emergency response teams that provided humanitarian support in countries hit by natural disasters, such as the Philippines, Pakistan, and Haiti.
He served as Chairperson of Parliament’s Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee from 2014 to 2016. In 2016 he was appointed the Minister for Land Information, Minister of Statistics, and Associate Minister of Justice. He is retaining the Land Information and Associate Justice portfolios, as well as taking over the Defence portfolio.
Last year he visited New Zealand Defence Force personnel at Camp Taji in Iraq with Minister Brownlee and the Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.
Mr Mitchell is also the MP for Rodney and lives in Orewa with his family.