Steve grew up the fourth of six children in a loving
extended family in Hastings. She has lived with her husband John and family, in
Rotorua since 1975.
Steve is a qualified Midwife, whose career in midwifery
began at Hutt Hospital and extends beyond New Zealand to include senior nursing
roles in London and Papua New Guinea. Most of her nursing was at Rotorua
Hospital, where she held a variety of positions including Manager of Women,
Child and Family Services, and Client Services Director at Lakeland Health
Crown Health Enterprise.
Her community achievements include establishing the first
family planning clinic in Rotorua, helping to establish the first Women’s
Refuge in Rotorua, and the Rotorua School for Young Parents.
From 1996 to 1999 Steve was a councillor on Rotorua District
Council, chairing the Social Services Committee.
She was subsequently approached by members of the community
and asked to stand for Parliament. In 1999 she ran a successful campaign for
Labour and became the Member of Parliament for Rotorua. Steve’s career in
Central Government spanned twelve years, including three years as a List MP.
During this time, she held the portfolios of Associate Minister of Health,
Minister of Conservation and Minister of Women’s Affairs. Her proudest
achievements include sponsoring the Smoke
free Environments Act and securing funding ($72 million) for the
clean-up of Rotorua lakes.
From 2012 to 2013, Steve worked as a business consultant for
health, conservation and democratic governance. Many of her projects were under
the auspices of the United Nations, in New Zealand, Asia and the Pacific.
In 2013, Steve was again asked to represent her community
and successfully stood for mayor of Rotorua. She now spearheads a committed
council and community working collaboratively to see the Rotorua District grow
and flourish. ‘Tatau tatau
- we together’, is their vision.