Celebrating a golden career in local politics
4 October 2013
Celebrating a golden career in local politics
A career in local politics spanning more than 50 years was celebrated at Henderson’s Civic Chambers last night (3 October) at a special gathering to mark the retirement of Assid Corban OBE, JP.
Mr Corban, 88, who served as Mayor of the former Henderson Borough and Waitakere City Councils, steps down after spending the past three years as deputy chair of the inaugural Henderson-Massey Local Board.
Board members held their final meeting before next week’s local body elections and then paid tribute to a man who stood as a successful candidate for the first time back in 1956 and has become one of the longest-serving politicians in New Zealand.
Mr Corban was joined at the ceremony by his wife of 65 years, Miriam, who was saluted for her support and tireless work as a former Mayoress.
Also attending were close family, friends, former colleagues and guests including Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse and Auckland Council chief executive Doug McKay.
Speakers acknowledged Mr Corban’s outstanding contribution to local government and the wider community.
“Assid, you are an example of long and outstanding service to the community and we will miss you very much,” said Henderson-Massey Local Board chair and former Waitakere City councillor Vanessa Neeson.
Highlights of Assid Corban’s career include the development of Henderson’s West Wave swimming complex ready for the 1990 Commonwealth Games and the bowling facility at the same site which was built in time to host the 1988 men and women’s world championships.
During a stint on the former Auckland Regional Authority, he supported the creation of regional parks and Manurewa’s Botanic Gardens.
He has had a long-held interest in parks and open spaces for the community and was Foundation Director and Executive Member of the QEII National Trust from 1978 to 1987.
Outside of his local government responsibilities, Mr Corban has been active in preserving Henderson’s history – particularly his family’s and the area’s winemaking heritage – as well as being Trustee of the Corban Estate Arts and Cultural Trust since 2001.
He has also been a longstanding member of the New Zealand Orchid Society and the Auckland Horticultural Council, is a Fellow of the Royal Institute of Horticulture and was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1988 for services to local government and the community.
Mr Corban thanked friends, family and colleagues for supporting him over the years and had a message for all candidates standing at the 2013 elections.
“You have to make the day-to-day decisions, but the ones you make for the future are the most important,” he said.
“You are in local government to serve the community not a political party. If you work for the common good and look to the future you will make great progress.”
Another political retiree on the night was former Waitakere City councillor and Henderson-Massey Local Board member, Ross Dallow, although he hinted at a possible return at the 2016 elections.
The former senior policeman
and Waitakere City councillor has been involved in West
Auckland politics and the community for the past 21 years
and was Chairman of the Trusts Stadium Development Board and
the Trusts Stadium for 15 years until 2012.
Mr Dallow was praised for his “single-minded focus” in driving through completion of the stadium and its top-class facilities.
He told the audience: “The west represents something very real and close to my heart. I hope it never changes.”
Both men received flowers and certificates recognising their work from Vanessa Neeson, who thanked them for their “extraordinary commitment” to the community.
Assid Corban OBE, JP,
1956-1959 and 1965-1971: Councillor, Henderson Borough Council.
1959-1962 and 1971-1974: Deputy Mayor, Henderson Borough Council
1970-1981: President, Auckland Local Bodies Association
1981-1987: Executive Member, Auckland Local Bodies Association
1971-1983: Member, Auckland Regional Authority
1974-1980: Chairman, Auckland Regional Authority Parks Committee
1974-1989: Mayor, Henderson Borough Council
1976-1984: Executive, Municipal Association NZ.
1989-1992: Elected as the first Mayor of Waitakere City Council.
1995-2001 and 2004-2010: Councillor, Waitakere City Council.
1995-2013: Waitakere Licensing Trust .
2010-2013: Deputy Chair, Henderson-Massey Local Board.
Ross Dallow MNZM, QPM, NZSSM (Erebus),
1992-2010: Waitakere City councillor.
1992-2012: Trustee, Waitakere Licensing Trust.
1995-2004: Chairman, Waitakere Licensing Trust.
1995-2005: Vice-President, New Zealand Licensing Trust Association.
1995-2005: Director, The Trusts Charitable Foundation
1997-2012: Chairman of the Trusts Stadium Development Board and the Trusts Stadium.
2010- 2013: Henderson-Massey Local Board member.