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Royal Honours for St John Staff And Volunteers



A ceremony recognising the contribution of St John staff and volunteers has been held in Auckland at St Patrick’s Cathedral on 2 November.

The Order of St John honours system confers membership on those who give back to St John and the community and act conspicuously to fulfil the mission of St John New Zealand.

St John is the only organisation in Aotearoa outside of Government with its own royal honours system, and admission and promotion in the Order is based solely on exceptional service, not age or length of service.

The Auckland Investiture ceremony recognised both paid and volunteer St John people, with a number of those undertaking volunteer work in addition to their paid roles. Two officers were promoted to Knight/Dame of Grace, two were promoted to Commander, 12 to Officer and 21 admitted as Members to the Order.

St John Head of Order Matters, Gary Salmon, says this is one of the biggest events in the St John calendar, where staff and volunteers are honoured for their outstanding contribution and commitment to the organisation.

“The individuals being promoted and admitted to the Order of St John in Auckland have given much of their time and energy to serving their communities on behalf of St John and it is a very special privilege to be able to recognise them with these awards.”

St John Deputy Chancellor, Souella Cumming was promoted to Dame of Grace. Ms Cumming has been an active and significant contributor to St John’s Priory Chapter and Priory Trust Board deliberations for many years. She leads the Risk and Audit Committee and among her many responsibilities, ensures St John continues to improve its internal audit activities.

“I feel very humbled to be recognised for my contribution to St John. It’s an honour to be involved with an organisation which provides emergency ambulance, first aid and charitable services throughout New Zealand and globally.”

The Auckland Investiture ceremony was held in the presence of the Lord Prior of the Order of St John, Professor Mark Compton AM GCStJ and the Governor General and Prior of St John in New Zealand, Dame Patsy Reddy, who invested the members with the insignia of their grade.

Earlier this year in June, the Wellington Investiture ceremony saw three officers promoted to Commander, five to Officer and 24 admitted as Members to the Order.


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