Mike Heron to step down as New Zealand’s solicitor-general

By on 04/09/2015
Mike Heron is standing down from his role as New Zealand's solicitor-general

New Zealand’s chief legal advisor is stepping down after three years in the role.

Mike Heron announced yesterday that he plans to step down from his position as solicitor-general once a successor has been appointed in early 2016, so that he can base himself in Auckland where his family live.

As solicitor-general, Heron is the chief executive of the Crown Law Office – the public service department of New Zealand charged with advising the government on legal affairs; representing the government in appellate cases; and overseeing the prosecution of criminal offences before the courts.

Reporting only to the attorney-general, the solicitor-general provides advice directly to ministers, departments and agencies of government and also has responsibility for the prosecution of criminal jury trials and Crown representation in appeals against conviction and sentences.

State services commissioner Iain Rennie, who manages the appointment process for the position of the solicitor-general on behalf of the attorney-general, said: “I have had the privilege to work with Mike Heron on a number of issues. I have also been impressed by the quality of his legal advice, his ability to identify pragmatic solutions to complex problems and his strong commitment to serve the people of New Zealand and the government of the day.

“Mr Heron has been an effective steward as chief executive of the Crown Law Office. He has successfully developed Crown Law as an effective public sector organisation. His leadership of the government legal network has connected the legal profession to a much greater extent than in the past, to the benefit of legal professionals within the Public Service and the departments they serve.

“As Mr Heron is an outstanding public servant, I am hopeful that he will be able to return to a senior role in the Public Service in the future.”

Advertising for the position will start next week.

About Winnie Agbonlahor

Winnie is news editor of Global Government Forum. She previously reported for Civil Service World - the trade magazine for senior UK government officials. Originally from Germany, Winnie first came to the UK in 2006 to study a BA in Journalism & Russian at the University of Sheffield. She is bilingual in English and German, and, after spending an academic year abroad in Russia and reporting for the Moscow Times, Winnie also speaks Russian fluently.

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