Former Mayor Remembered As Respected Leader
Former Stratford District Council Mayor David Walter will be remembered as a well-respected leader says Mayor Neil Volzke.
Mr Walter sadly passed away on Saturday 5 September due to a short illness.
Mayor Volzke says, “David was a very well-known and much respected leader in local government circles. He always advocated strongly for what he believed was right and will be remembered as a no-nonsense formidable person around the council table.”
“David was a noted historian and was always our go to person when it came to the history of central and eastern Taranaki,” he says.
Mr Walter published the well-regarded book Stratford: Shakespearean Town under the Mountain as well as a work on farming and social patterns in the Whangamomona area.
“His knowledge and intellect made him an interesting person to engage with and you always ended the conversation knowing much more about the subject than when you started,” says Mayor Volzke.
“During his time as Stratford’s Mayor, David was a champion for the Forgotten World Highway SH43 and was keen to promote the early history of the eastern districts as a tourism story,” he says. “It is a great shame he won’t be here to see the last 12 km’s sealed as he had previously fought hard for that to happen.”
Mr Walter was first elected to the Stratford County Council in 1974 and became Mayor of the Stratford district when the County and Borough council’s combined in 1989.
He was also heavily involved with and held roles on a number of boards, trusts and organisations across Taranaki, including Taranaki Regional Council and Port Taranaki. In 1995 he was awarded a QSO for public service.
Mr Walter was acknowledged for his extraordinary contribution to the Stratford community in 2015 when he received a Citizens Award.
His dedication and commitment to both the Stratford district and wider Taranaki communities will continue to be admired for years to come.
Mayor Volzke, elected members and Council staff offer our sincere condolences to Mr Walter’s wife Isabel and his family.
The flag outside Council’s building on Miranda Street, Stratford will fly at half-mast on Wednesday 9 September, the day of Mr Walter’s funeral.