Council & City

Mayor Grant Smith

Grant Smith is the Mayor of Palmerston North. He was first elected to Council in 2013 and elected Mayor in a by-election in 2015.

Head and shoulders photo of Palmerston North Mayor Grant Smith.

"It is a great honour to be Mayor of Palmerston North – we have a smart, young workforce, our economy is growing, our centralised location is advantageous and we are becoming a more diverse city. We are on the cusp of something special."

Mayor Grant Smith

Grant has an extensive background managing small to medium sized businesses and has managed multiple national and international sporting events. He has served on the boards of Te Manawa Museum Trust, The Manawatu Rugby Union, The New Zealand Rugby Museum, Central Squash Association and The New Zealand Squash Hall of Fame.

Palmerston North is home to 89,000 people, and a further 20,000 people commute to the city from neighbouring districts to work. The city is both young and smart. With an average age of 33 years, it also has the highest number of residents with PhDs in New Zealand and has the highest concentration of scientists and researchers in Australasia.

Grant is committed to the city’s new vision: Small city benefits, big city ambition. This reflects the value we all place on the great quality of life, community spirit, and affordable access to services that come with being a small city, as well as our ambition to have the opportunities larger cities offer. He believes that unlocking these opportunities calls for well-planned growth and sustainable management of our infrastructure resources.

Do you want to talk to the Mayor about an issue?

The Mayor holds public sessions in Council's Customer Service Centre on The Square each week and once a month in Ashhurst. If you would like to come along and chat, just phone Council’s Customer Service Centre and ask for available times.

Invite the Mayor to talk at your event

The Mayor attends many events throughout the year. If you would like him to attend your event please complete an online form so that your request can be considered. If the Mayor is unable to make it we will endeavour to arrange for the Deputy Mayor or a City councillor to attend instead.

Council portfolios and appointments

Grant serves on the boards of:

  • FoodHQ
  • New Zealand Squash Hall of Fame
  • Central Squash

He chairs:

  • Council
  • Committee of Council
  • Manawatū District/ Palmerston North City joint strategic planning committee

He is also a member of the following Council committees:

  • arts, culture and heritage
  • audit and risk
  • Chief Executive's performance review panel
  • community development
  • economic development
  • finance and performance
  • planning and strategy
  • sport and recreation

He represents the Council on the following organisations and groups:

  • Horizons Regional Council land transport committee
  • Local Government New Zealand zone 3
  • Palmerston North Performing Arts Trust
  • People on Bikes Forum
  • Palmerston North Performing Arts Trust
  • Manawatū-Whanganui Civil Defence emergency management group
  • Wastewater project steering group (ex-officio)

Mayor Smith is also a Justice of the Peace.