A former Cook Islands prime minister is one of seven Pacific Island New Zealanders given awards in the New Year's Honours announced today.
Dr Joseph Williams, who has been awarded the Queen's Service Order, was involved in politics in the Cook Islands for 18 years, representing Cook Islanders living in New Zealand.
But Dr Williams, who has medical practices in Mount Wellington and Glen Innes, says the honour is for his work in developing health services for the Pacific Island community.
"I have given a whole lot of presentations to Pacific conferences on various subjects, particularly the prostate cancer in Pacific men, and then eczema in Pacific children here. I run a very big practice in eczema, not just for Pacific people but the whole community at large."