Skip to content

Peter Hughes

Te Tumu Whakarae mō Te Kawa Mataaho Public Service Commissioner | Head of Service

Te Kawa Mataaho Public Service Commission


Wellington, New Zealand

Peter Hughes

Missing or inaccurate information?

Directory update request

“I strongly believe in the ideal of public service and I have devoted the whole of my working life to it. It is a privilege to serve as State Services Commissioner.”  Peter Hughes

Peter took up the role of State Services Commissioner and Head of State Services on 4 July 2016. 

He has had a career spanning more than thirty-five years in various roles across the state sector. Before joining the State Services Commission he served as Secretary for Education for three years from 2013. Prior to this, he was Professor of Public Management and Head of the School of Government at Victoria University of Wellington from 2011. He is currently the Chair of the Board of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government, having served as a Director since 2016.

He started his career in the Public Service as a clerk at the Department of Social Welfare and his roles have included providing policy advice, working in the field and senior executive management. 

Peter was Chief Executive at the Ministry of Social Development for ten years, and before that was Secretary for Internal Affairs, Chief Executive of the Health Funding Authority and Deputy Director-General of Health. 

Peter has been named Government Department CEO of the year five times by TransTasman.  In 2012 he was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to the State and in 2013 was voted Wellingtonian of the Year in the Government category.