Christine Rankin

A Passion for Leadership

Christine Rankin is the former Chief Executive Officer of one of the largest government departments in New Zealand at the time, WINZ. Christine’s passion for leadership and her belief in the power of individual potential is the centre of her continuing work.

Christine’s career achievements in over 20 years with the public service are remarkable. In 1978, having previously been receiving the Domestic Purposes Benefit, she joined the Department of Social Welfare as a temporary clerk. This was a turning point in her life, which led to an outstanding career in the public service. Excellent performance outcomes resulted in a series of promotions until in 1989 she took over the position of Director for the Auckland Central/Grey Lynn district. At 34 years of age, she was the youngest director in the country.

Later under her leadership as Regional Manager for Income Support, the Northern Region rapidly moved from being known as the worst performing region to become the best performing Income Support region. She was later appointed General Manager for Income Support and then Chief Executive of Work and Income New Zealand, responsible for around 5500 staff, from 1 October 1998 until May 2001.  She had a high profile Employment Court case she took against the Crown following the non-renewal of her employment contract.

Since 2005, Christine has worked as a business consultant and advisor. She featured on a regular Friday morning Wellington radio show. She has been a regular panelist on How’s Life on TV1 and AM on TV3. Christine’s column in the Weekend Herald reflects her values and beliefs. She speaks about these and other topics including leadership, passion, innovation, changing organisations, human behaviours and political/socio issues; as well as her own personal story about making it against the odds.

Christine is the CEO of ‘For the Sake of our Children Trust’ which was her chosen charity on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ on which she appeared in 2006. The Trust is a broad based movement of New Zealanders to bring the spotlight back onto our most vulnerable citizens - our children. They say society and government have gone too long turning a blind eye to violence, neglect and abuse towards our future people..

In 2007 she was elected to the Auckland Regional Council, as the representative of the North Shore constituency.  She gained appointment as a commissioner of the Families Commission in 2009 - a role she continued in until 2013.   She also was elected to the Upper Harbour Local Board and to the Waitemata District Health Board in 2010 and re-elected to both in 2013.

She has been a Councillor of Taupo District Council since 2016, and Deputy Mayor since 2019.

Christine’s passion for leadership and her belief in the power of individual potential is the centre of her continuing work.


  • Leadership
  • Passion and innovation
  • Changing organisations
  • Human behaviours
  • Political/social issues
  • Her personal story about making it against the odds