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Barry in 2010
|13th Minister of Conservation|
8 October 2014
|Prime Minister||John Key
|Preceded by||Nick Smith|
|3rd Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage|
8 October 2014
|Prime Minister||John Key
|Preceded by||Chris Finlayson|
|Member of the New Zealand Parliament for North Shore|
30 November 2011
|Preceded by||Wayne Mapp|
|Majority||2011 -15,228 (62.44%)
2014 -16,503 (62.47%)
|Born||Margaret Mary Barry
5 October 1959 
Thorndon, New Zealand
|Political party||National Party|
Margaret Mary "Maggie" Barry ONZM (born 5 October 1959) is a New Zealand politician and a member of the House of Representatives, first elected in the 2011 general election. She is a member of the National Party, and is Minister for Conservation, Seniors Citizens, and Arts, Culture and Heritage. Barry has had a long career in broadcasting, including gardening shows, and has a rose named after her.
Barry's father was an accountant for the railways, and her mother was a florist. Both were strict Catholics. Barry was born in Wellington and went to Erskine College, a Roman Catholic school in Wellington.
She was a radio and television presenter for over 30 years. She began her broadcasting career in 1986 on National Radio's Morning Report and moved on to Nine to Noon in 1990. In 1992 she was a news interviewer for TV2's Counterpoint, and she was news presenter for Primetime in 1993. Her garden show, originally titled Palmers Garden Show but renamed to Maggie's Garden Show, ran on TV ONE from 1991 to 2003, with her as co-producer and presenter. Featured were ‘bug man’ Ruud Kleinpaste, gardening experts Bill Ward, Jack Hobbs, Gordon Collier and Professor Thomas William Walker ("John Walker"). She also produced several television documentaries. In the 1996 Queen's Birthday Honours, Barry was appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to broadcasting.
In the late 1990s she was a lay representative from the National Health Committee advising the Minister of Health, and was involved in reports on palliative care, cancer, and maternity services. She was the Chair of the Board of the New Zealand Book Council in 2006.
|Parliament of New Zealand|
Barry was interested in standing for the National Party in the 2011 Botany by-election, but did not become the candidate. She was selected as the National candidate for the safe seat of North Shore in May 2011 after the sitting MP Wayne Mapp decided not to run in the 2011 general election. Placed in number 57 on the National Party list, Barry was elected to Parliament by winning the electorate vote with an increased majority of 41.87% over her nearest rival, a Labour Party candidate. She also increased the Party Vote to 62.16%, 45.9% clear of the Labour Party.
During the 2011 election campaign Barry was spat at in Devonport, which appeared to shock her.
On 6 October 2014, Prime Minister John Key appointed Barry to the portfolios of Minister for Arts, Culture & Heritage, Minister of Conservation, and Minister for Senior Citizens. She was ranked 20th in Cabinet under the Key Ministry. After Prime Minister Key's resignation, Prime Minister Bill English reshuffled the Cabinet. Barry retained all three of her portfolios and is ranked 18th.
On 4 July 2014, Barry said that she was groped by Australian entertainer Rolf Harris when he was in New Zealand during the 1980s and she was recording an interview she hosted from Palmerston North. She said that Harris "came into the studio and they sat down and then he started to do the old wandering hands thing and she stood up and said 'well you can stop that right now'." Barry also said that he turned nasty on her before switching his charm back for the interview. At the time, a similar celebrity sexual conduct case was in the news, and retired parliamentarian Rodney Hide taunted Barry in his newspaper column, urging her to use her parliamentary privilege to breach the name suppression order against the defendant in the Queenstown suppressed indecency case.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Maggie Barry.|
|New Zealand Parliament|
|Member of Parliament for North Shore
2011 – present