Nicola Willis (politician)

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Nicola Willis

Nicola Willis 2017 (cropped).jpg
Willis at the 2017 Victoria University Politics Society Wellington Central Electorate Debate
Member of the New Zealand Parliament
for National Party list
Assumed office
3 April 2018
Preceded bySteven Joyce
Personal details
Nicola Valentine Willis

(1981-03-07) 7 March 1981 (age 38)
Wellington, New Zealand
Political partyNational Party
Spouse(s)Duncan Small
Alma materVictoria University of Wellington
University of Canterbury [1]
WebsiteParty website

Nicola Valentine Willis[2] (born 7 March 1981)[3] is a New Zealand politician who is a Member of Parliament for the National Party. Following Steven Joyce's retirement from politics, Willis took his seat in Parliament.

Early life[edit]

Willis was born and raised in Wellington. She graduated with a first-class honours degree in English literature from Victoria University of Wellington in 2003,[4] and later on received a post-graduate diploma in journalism from the University of Canterbury in 2017.[5] She was a member of the Victoria University Debating Society, and competed in international tournaments.

After graduating in 2003, she worked as a research and policy advisor for Bill English. She went on to serve as a senior advisor to John Key in 2008. She has also worked for Fonterra.[1]

Political career[edit]

New Zealand Parliament
Years Term Electorate List Party
2018–present 52nd List 48 National

Willis contested at the 2017 election as National's candidate for the electorate of Wellington Central,[6] and was number 58 on the party list. Based on preliminary results, she would enter parliament, but in the final results National went down two seats whilst the Labour and Green parties increased by a seat each.[7] Willis was second in line should there be a vacancy in a list seat held by a National Party MP during the 52nd New Zealand Parliament, and following Bill English's and Steven Joyce's resignations in March 2018, Willis along with Maureen Pugh entered parliament.[3]

Willis was appointed National's spokesperson on early childhood education by leader Simon Bridges.[8]

Willis was vocal against Grant Guilford's attempt to change Victoria University of Wellington's name to the University of Wellington.[9]


  1. ^ a b "About Nicola".
  2. ^ "Declaration by Electoral Commission that Nicola Valentine Willis is elected a Member of Parliament". 3 April 2018.
  3. ^ a b Tess Nichol (6 March 2018). "Nicola Willis National's newest MP". Newstalk ZB.
  4. ^ Wellington, Victoria University of (8 June 2016). "Roll of graduates". Victoria University of Wellington.
  5. ^ "Graduate Search - Alumni Association | University of Canterbury". The University of Canterbury.
  6. ^ Vernon Small (5 March 2017). "National chooses Nicola Willis for Wellington Central seat". Stuff.
  7. ^ "Meet NZ's newest MPs: Green's Golriz Ghahraman and Labour's Angie Warren-Clark". 1 News. 6 October 2017.
  8. ^ "Bridges unveils team to take on Ardern-Peters Govt". 11 March 2018.
  9. ^ "No name change for Victoria University". Newsroom. 19 December 2018.