Great Scots Distinguished Alumni
Scots College has a proud heritage of producing the All-Round Character. Looking back through our history, it is clear that Scots has produced many students to be proud of: from captains of industry and sporting greats, to those who have served their nation well.
Initiated in 2018 the Great Scots Distinguished Alumni scheme recognises outstanding Scots Collegians who have gone on to make significant achievements at national and international levels while still demonstrating the All-Round Character.
Nominations for Great Scots Distinguished Alumni are always open. For criteria and to apply please click here.
Click on each image below to read more about our Great Scots.
Sir Clifford Plimmer
Sir Clifford Plimmer KBE (1905-1988) a great-grandson of Wellington pioneer John Plimmer, continued the family tradition of business success and public service. He was also a foundation pupil at Scots College. Sir Clifford joined stock-and-station agency Wright Stephenson & Company in 1922, working his way up the hierarchy to become chairman in 1953 and expanded the organisation into one of the country’s largest public companies.
Sir Clifford was the director of several public companies and a member or chairman of many public bodies including the Taxation Committee (1951), Royal Commission on State Services (1962) and the New Zealand Trade Promotion Council. He was also a trustee of the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research.
Sir David Carruthers
Sir David Carruthers KNZM is a long-serving member of the New Zealand legal community. He worked as a lawyer in Wellington, Pahiatua and Palmerston North, before being appointed as a Family Court Judge in 1985.
In 2001 Sir David was appointed as Chief District Court Judge, a position he held until 2005, when he was appointed as the chairman of the New Zealand Parole Board. In 2012, he joined the Independent Police Conduct Authority as its chairman until his retirement in 2017. He was awarded a Knighthood for his services to the District Court.
Alistair Dryden is a former New Zealand rower. At the 1962 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, he won the silver medal as part of the men’s eight. Alistair, in a coxed four, went on to win the inaugural Prince Phillip Challenge Cup regatta in 1963 in Henley-on-Thames, then widely regarded as the event closest to a world championship.
The same coxed four team competed at the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo where they placed eighth. He then competed in the men’s eight at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico, where the team came fourth in the final.
Professor Richard Furneaux
Professor Richard Furneaux is recognised as a Great Scot for his outstanding science achievements and all-round character.
Professor Richard Furneaux is a scientist specialising in the fields of carbohydrate chemistry, drug discovery and development, synthetic organic chemistry and natural products chemistry.
Richard attended Scots College for virtually his entire school life [1955 – 1967]. He embodies the All Round Man; he was a prefect, won the Olympic Mathematics prize and was awarded Dux (with John Leuchars) in his final year. Richard was a member of the choir, part of the Editorial Committee of the Scot magazine, a laboratory assistant, and involved in the charity groups Scots College World Aid Foundation and the Teen Aid Service.
Richard discovered his love for chemistry at an early age from his father, Keith, who was a chemist. Keith was involved with the Scots College Parent Association and in 1967, the family donated the Furneaux Prize for Good Citizenship.
After completing his PhD at Victoria University, Richard left Wellington for his post-doctorate studies in America. He returned in the 1980s to join the Department of Science and Industrial research (DSIR).
Professor Furneaux now leads a team of expert carbohydrate chemists at the Ferrier Research Institute, part of Victoria University of Wellington. Over nearly 30 years the team has established a world-class reputation for developing compounds that have resulted in significant breakthroughs in medical care including discoveries for treatments targeting leukaemia, lymphoma, gout, malaria and solid cancer tumours.
Richard is a fellow of both the Royal Society of New Zealand and the New Zealand Institute of Chemistry and is the NZ representative on the International Carbohydrate Organization. He has been recognized with many awards including Wellingtonian of the Year for Science and Technology. He has authored 183 original papers, 24 reviews and was named as an Inventor on 21 patent families.
Richard is a director of Humble Bee, a company with a mission to replace existing toxic and unsustainable plastics with superior, biologically-inspired materials.
Kim attended Scots College for Years 1-8. By his own admission Kim wasn’t sporty, but he was already excelling academically. In his final year he was a Junior Monitor (Prefect), Primary Editor of the Scot magazine, in the primary school choir and received the Endeavour Prize.
It was during these primary years that Kim’s interest in science was awakened by highly respected primary teacher Peter Avery demonstrating how to grow copper sulphate crystals. It set Kim on his life’s interest in science and he credits being pushed by the teachers as preparing him for his future role at NASA. He knew how to work hard and that work would be rewarded. It was a good solid education in a very positive environment.
Kim left Scots when his family moved to Australia’s Gold Coast. He then finished off his high school years when his family moved back to New Zealand at Mount Maunganui College, where he was one of their first Scholarship winners.
In 1977 Kim graduated with a Bachelor of Science, with honours in physics, from the University of Canterbury. He became a Master of Science two years later and in 1983 he completed a doctorate in physiology at Otago University. Kim left for the University of California, San Diego three days after gaining his PhD. It was the start of his work in space research, which he thought might be for a year or two, but his expertise would keep him permanently in the USA, and he ended up working for more than 20 years on the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) space programme based in Houston, Texas. He became a US citizen in 1994 and he was part of the NASA groups that won several awards.
Kim was principally involved in studying the effects of the absence of gravity on the lungs of astronauts on board the Space Shuttle, and later the International Space Station. His findings remain the definitive body of work on the subject and in 2003 they were recognised by Otago University, which conferred on him a Doctor of Science degree. He also did numerous experiments on NASA’s microgravity research aircraft. To work for NASA he needed to be competent with his hands as well as his brain, which he enjoyed. With typical humility Kim says he was privileged to be involved and just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
Kim and his wife Jenni remain residents in San Diego, where, in 2015, he was an adjunct professor (medicine) at the University of California San Diego. More recently though, after 35 years in San Diego, the two New Zealanders built a house in Kerikeri and now spend their time between there and the US, where Kim still manages a Laboratory in San Diego.
Kim has achieved much in an outstanding science career and is an excellent example to others.
Kingi Smiler (1966–1970) as a chartered accountant is a hugely experienced businessman and professional director specialising in business planning and corporate restructuring. A former partner of Ernst and Young until 1997, Kingi was a driving force behind the establishment of Miraka in 2011, a milk production plant utilising geothermal energy. In 2013 he was awarded the Federated Farmers agri-business man of the year and in 2015 was the supreme winner of the Māori Business Leader Award.
Sir Walter Norwood
Sir Walter Norwood KBE (1920–1922) joined family business Dominion Motors in 1926 and played a prominent role in the development of the business, through to pioneering the assembly in New Zealand of the first Morris vehicles. He presided over the amalgamation of Dominion Motors to form the New Zealand Motor Corporation which, at one stage, controlled a quarter of the New Zealand market. Also a keen philanthropist Sir Walter established several trusts to benefit a number of worthy causes. He was awarded a Knighthood for his services to commerce and the City of Wellington.
Euan Robertson (1959-1966) was a notable New Zealand distance runner in the 1970s.
Euan attended Scots for eight years as a boarder from Eastbourne. He was a member of both the choir and the Pipe Band, appeared in College productions and was a Gibb House prefect. Initially Euan played rugby however he gave this up for cross country running with the Wellington Harrier Club.
Competing in the hey-day of middle-distance running in New Zealand, Euan first came to prominence at a provincial level in 1964, when he competed in the Intermediate Inter-collegiate Cross Country placing first. Known to clock up over 100 miles (160 km) around the Miramar Peninsula each week Euan showed great promise and dedication early on with many wins over the course of 1966.
After College, Euan attended Massey University where he gained a degree in agricultural soil science. He was a soil conservator for the Ministry of Works from 1973, then transferred to Cambridge and Auckland where he gained an MBA degree.
Euan competed in both the 1974 and 1978 Commonwealth Games gaining a sixth placing in the 3000m steeplechase at the 1976 Montreal Summer Olympics where he also set a New Zealand record of 8 minutes 21.08 seconds. He later won New Zealand senior titles in the 5000m, 10 000m and 3000m steeplechase and cross-country and represented New Zealand at the World Cross Country Championships on a number of occasions. In 1975, he finished 5th, one place behind Olympic champion Sir John Walker, as part of the New Zealand Cross-Country Team.
In all he competed for his country at seven World Cross Country Championships between 1969 and 1983, winning the New Zealand title in 1980 – a moment he regarded as the highlight of his career.
Robertson later managed and coached New Zealand cross-country and track teams. He married Charlotte in 1973; they had four sons.
A young man in his prime, Euan passed away at the age of 47 doing what he loved best, running cross-country with a group of young athletes over sand dunes at Bethells Beach near Auckland.
Dr. Robin Bell
Robin grew up in Hataitai. He briefly went to Hataitai Primary School before attending Scots College with his brother for virtually his entire school life from 1947-1958 (Years 2 -13).
Robin, whilst in Year 12, was joint Dux with Graham Lewis in 1957.
In the best tradition of the Scots all-rounder, Robin’s main interests were in Maths and Science and he also enjoyed languages and English literature. Compulsory sport was insisted on by Headmaster Col Glasgow and Robin enjoyed soccer and golf.
After leaving Scots, Robin attained a science degree from Victoria University of Wellington where he took full advantage of everything offered; he loved studying Physics and Maths, dabbled in student politics, discovered squash, badminton, tennis, and skiing, and participated in a VUW Expedition to the Antarctic Dry Valleys.
Subsequently, Robin was offered a place in the Nuclear Physics Laboratory at Oxford University, where he did his Doctorate. In those days nuclear power and weapons were popular and research facilities in Oxford, Harwell and Aldermaston were outstanding. The great hope at the time was power from nuclear fusion of hydrogen.
Robin accepted a research post in 1969 in the Nuclear Physics Department at the Australian National University in Canberra, where he was also for some years Deputy Master of an ecumenical residence, Burgmann College. Robin met his wife while there.
Permanent academic jobs in nuclear physics dried up in the 1970s, so Robin had to change career. He decided to study law and move into the public service. He credits his ability to adapt so easily to his varied and disciplined education at Scots.
After graduation and admission, Robin joined the Federal Government’s Attorney-General’s Department. He found this a very stimulating legal environment with great research facilities. He worked on new policies for areas such as copyright and privacy where technology was necessitating major changes to the law and he was able to draw on his science background.
Subsequently, Robin became Deputy Commonwealth Ombudsman and then Deputy Electoral Commissioner.
After retiring from the Australian Public Service he joined the international law firm Minter Ellison where he worked until his full retirement.
Robin lives in Canberra with his wife, they have four children.
Robin’s achievements in two professional fields makes him an excellent example to others.
Dr. Peter Gianoutsos
Peter was the epitome of the all-round man during his time at Scots (1944-1957); he achieved highly academically, was a Prefect, a finalist in the College senior public speaking competition, enjoyed being in the cricket 1st XI and took part in three Gilbert & Sullivan productions including the prime role of Pirate King in the ‘Pirates of Penzance’.
Peter attended Medical School at Otago University where he specialised in Respiratory Health. In 1970 he moved to Sydney and accepted a job at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.
Peter remained at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital until 2013, becoming a Senior Respiratory Physician. Throughout this period, he was closely involved with the development of the profession through the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand; he was both Treasurer and President of the New South Wales State branch.
Peter served on the Boards of a number of related organisations including the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital Medical Board as Chairman.
Instrumental in the establishment of the Australian Lung Foundation, Peter used his professional networks to promote activities in the community’s interest, such as the Tobacco Plain Packaging Bill 2011.
Peter has had a longstanding teaching career at the University of Sydney, and was appointed Clinical Associate Professor in 2006. He was also engaged as a visiting professor at the University of Papua New Guinea.
Peter credits Scots College with teaching him to show respect at all times and to consider the point of view of others; the personal discipline he learned at the College has remained with him all his life.
Professor Paul Healy
Paul began Scots in Year 3 in 1963. By the time he was a senior, he was one of eight students put on a track to receive special tuition. Bill Heppleston, tasked with improving the College’s academic record, was Paul’s history teacher and inspired him to be a scholar.
Paul excelled at Scots and in 1973 was the Proxime Accessit, awarded a University Entrance Scholarship, was Deputy Head Boy, Head of MacKenzie House, sang in the choir and was a strong middle-distance runner.
Paul graduated from Victoria University of Wellington in 1977 with a Bachelor of Commerce and Administration in Accounting and Finance with First-Class Honours. This helped secure a place at the University of Rochester in New York State in 1978, where he achieved a Master’s degree in Economics and a PhD in Business.
Paul spent 14 years teaching at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s famed Sloan School of Management where he received awards for teaching excellence and served as Deputy Dean.
Paul joined Harvard Business School in 1997 and has served as Chair of the Doctoral Programs, Chair of the Accounting & Management Unit, and Senior Associate Dean for Research, and then for Faculty Development. He has taught courses in accounting, financial analysis, corporate governance and business ethics at the MBA and executive levels.
Paul’s research focuses on Wall Street research, corporate governance and corruption, and financial analysis. His work has been published in leading journals in accounting and finance. He is also the co-author of a leading financial analysis and valuation textbook. His research has received many awards.
Acknowledgement of his work has included being made a fellow of the NZ Institute of Chartered Accountants in 2013 for outstanding contributions to the profession of accountancy.
Paul is currently a visiting lecturer at Victoria University of Wellington.
Jeff Barratt (surname Courtney-Lewis while at Scots) is recognised as a Great Scot for his outstanding finance and banking achievements and all-round character.
Jeff’s successful professional career was set on course by a high achieving time at Scots. He was Dux of the Intermediate School and he excelled at sports; being a member of the College’s 1st teams in soccer, cricket, rugby and athletics, winning the Watt Cup for Athletics and setting the College Intermediate shotput record in 1967.
Jeff graduated with an LLB from Sydney University in 1973. Afterwards he joined Stephen Jaques, one of the largest law firms in Sydney and commenced his Masters in Law.
In 1975 Jeff was awarded the Frehill Hollingdale and Page Prize for Public Companies, after which he returned to England to visit his father and to play cricket for the Middlesex County Cricket Club. He continued playing club cricket until recently, having captained Hampstead Cricket Club and was Chairman of the Blackheath Cricket Club in Surrey.
From 1977 until 2017 Jeff had a successful career with Norton Rose Fulbright, a global law firm in London, becoming a partner in 1979 and holding a number of management positions. He also spent three years in the Middle East setting up the Norton Rose office in Bahrain; whilst there he captained a Bahrain XI in several international matches. Later, he spent two and a half years in Hong Kong where he set up the Norton Rose project finance group for the S. E. Asian Region.
Jeff is recognised internationally as a leader in his specialised fields of Project Finance and Banking. He has written numerous legal articles and publications and has been a visiting professor at the London Metropolitan University since 2013.
Since 1987 Jeff has been a Member of Lloyd’s and he currently sits on the Lloyd’s Council (Main Board) having been elected to that post in 2016 and is also a Director of the Association of Lloyd’s Members. He has been actively involved in promoting the City’s interests and has chaired the City UK Infrastructure and Energy Executive Board from 2013 until 2017. Jeff was a Non-Executive Director of the International Project Finance Association from 2011 until 2018; he sat on the London Council of the Confederation of British Industry from 2011 until 2018 and currently sits on its International Advisory Group. He was Chairman of the Cook Society in 2015 and 2016 and Deputy Chairman in 2017 and 2018. He is a Freeman of the City of London.
Jeff actively supports many children’s charities including the Dyspraxia Foundation, Snow-Camp, Wooden Spoon and the Change Foundation (formerly Cricket for Change). He has been involved in a University scholarship programme between Sydney and the UK, and as a qualified coach and mentor with the City & Guilds of London Institute, he continues to mentor and coach a number of senior executives.
Jeff is married to Sharon and they have two children, Justin and Maeve.
Chris Reid (1962-1967)
Chris was a Prefect at Scots College and an accomplished sportsman, he played 1st XI cricket and 1st XV rugby thereby gaining his cricket and rugby caps, and represented the College at athletics.
Chris studied for his Bachelor of Laws at Victoria University, Wellington, and joined a local firm after graduating. Chris is a keen mountaineer climbing in New Zealand and overseas. It was a love of climbing that took him via Nepal when he headed to the United Kingdom and Europe for his OE. He thought he would be away for a year; however, he worked overseas for the next 20 years.
In 1975, using his Austin 1300 car, Chris started as a driver for DHL – which was then a tiny courier company. Pulling in friends from New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom to act as drivers, Chris helped turn DHL’s London office into the heart of a global empire. During this period DHL became the leading alternative to the postal services for the international delivery of documents and parcels.
Chris took his experiences to America. As President of TNT USA from 1983-1986, he was able to turn the business around from years of heavy losses to profitability and a greatly increased market share. He moved from New York to Sydney in 1987 to become TNT’s Regional Director for Asia Pacific; he was a director of TNT Express for 11 years.
Chris and his family returned to New Zealand in 1993. He took over as CEO of Skyline Enterprises in Queenstown; during his time the flagship business, Queenstown Gondola & Restaurant, won the Best Visitor Attraction at the NZ Tourism Awards in 1995.
From 1997, Chris was the owner and Managing Director of Pack ’n’ Pedal, a nationwide retailer of cycling and outdoor products. Chris developed the business to become a market leader in outdoor retail, winning several industry awards for innovation and marketing.
Chris’s next enterprise, The Interface Financial Group was twice a finalist in the High Growth category at the national Small Business Awards. Currently, Chris is a Director of The Business Engine that assists small/medium businesses reach their potential.
Chris is an author of two books My Business Life and Fly by Night.
Chris has achieved much in an outstanding career in business and is an excellent example to others.
While visiting Wellington Chris Reid held an evening presentation sharing his experience in helping to turn DHL’s London office into the heart of a global empire. Watch the zoom recording here.
Reverend Hēmi Pōtatau (1920-1922)
Great Scots is a Distinguished Alumni Award that recognises the achievements of past students of Scots College. This award is presented to Hēmi Pōtatau in recognition of his outstanding cultural and religious achievements and all-round character.
Hēmi Pōtatau (Ngāti Kahungunu and Ngāti Rākaipaaka) was the first student of Māori descent to attend Scots College. It was the start of many firsts for Hēmi who was a trailblazer for te ao Māori and te reo Māori throughout his life. Although only at Scots for a short time he made his mark, fully embracing the sport and cultural activities on offer; he was in the 1st XV, played the trombone in the brass band and wrote the school haka which he performed with vigour. He continued to be involved with the College through the then Old Boys Association and always supported its events and jubilees.
Hēmi was ninth out of 12 siblings and grew up in Nuhaka, Hawkes Bay. At 14 he started to chop wood for the Māori Presbyterian Mission, and Missionary Sister Edith subsequently fostered him. It was to honour her that he converted from the Anglican to Presbyterian faith. The Mission funded Hēmi’s attendance at St Stephen’s College in Auckland before sending him to Scots College from 1920-1922.
In 1925 Hēmi was the first Māori enrolled at Knox Theological College, and the following year he was among the first Māori to attend Otago University. In 1933 he was the first Māori graduate of Knox and was ordained a Presbyterian Minister.
During the war Hēmi served with the Composite Signal Depot and the 28th Māori Battalion in the Middle East, where he was trained in intelligence work and learned the local Arabic dialect and French.
At the end of the war Hēmi married Ira Rangiatu (Ngāti Tuwharetoa), they went on to whangai two tamariki; Kitty Ohlson and Maungarongo Pōtatau.
Hēmi spent his Ministry serving various parishes throughout Aotearoa and was recognised as a kaumatua when he was appointed as the first moderator of what is now Te Aka Pūaho.
A lifelong learner he continued education into his later life, completing his deferred BA when he was 70. As a mature student at Victoria University Hēmi was a champion of te reo Māori, he helped establish Māori language week in the 1970s and while patron of ‘Te Reo Māori Society’ he petitioned for a Māori television production unit (1974).
In his later years Hēmi, wrote his autobiography ‘He Hokinga Mahara’ as his thesis for his doctorate. It was the first autobiography to be published in te reo Māori and was a finalist in the first Pegasus Prize for Māori Literature 1984.
In 2004, the Junior School’s Pōtatau House was named after him.
Hēmi Pōtatau, church leader, academic and Māori champion, is a truly inspirational character who is an excellent example to others. It is therefore my great pleasure to make this Award posthumously to Hēmi and formally induct him as a Great Scot.
Virtutem Paret Doctrina
He taonga tino motuhake te tohu ‘Great Scot’ kia āhukahuka ai ngā ākonga o mua mō a rātou mahi rangatira kua tutuki i a rātou. Inawhai anō ka riro i a Hēmi Pōtatau te taonga nei hei whakamana i āna mahi whakaharahara mō tōna ahurea, mō tōna whakapono hoki.
He uri nō Ngāti Kahungunu, nō Ngāti Rakaipāka, nō Tūhoe me Te Rarawa a Hēmi Pōtatau. Ko ia te ākonga Māori tuatahi i whakauru ki Kōtarani Kāreti. Heoi,he timatanga tēnei mō te amorangi nei mō āna tini whiwhinga mō te ao Māori. Heoi anō, ahakoa te poto o tāna noho ki te kura ka maumahara tonu te kāreti ki a ia mohoa noa nei.
Nā, i roto a ia i te kapa 1st XV, i te reo pēne e whakatangi ana i te pūkumekume me te mea hoki nāna te haka ā te kareti nei i tito, i rāngona i tōna ihi, tōna wehi i a ia e hakahaka ana.
Ko te tamaiti tuaiwa o te tekau mā rua a Hemi, i tupu ake ia i Nūhaka ki Te Matau a Māui. E te tekau mā wha tau tōna pakeke i tīmata ia ki te poro rakau mō te Hāhi Perehipitiriana me te mihingare a hēhita Edith, hei whakahonore i a ia i panoni a Hēmi i tōna whakapono mai i te Mihingare ki te Perehipitiriana. Waihoki, nā te haahi Perehipitiriana a Hēmi i tautoko ki Kōtarani Kāreti i ngā tau 1920-1922.
Nō te tau 1925 i whakauru a Hēmi ki te kareti o Knox Theological, arā, hei kanohi Māori tuatahi. Ka mutu, ko te tau whai muri atu ko ia tētahi Māori mataati ki te Whare Wānanga o Ōtākou. Kātahi ka whakawahingia ia i te tau 1933 hei minita mō te hāhi Perehipitiriana.
I te pakanga o ao i whakarato a ia mō te Composite Signal Depot. Kātahi mō te ope taua 28 o Te Hokowhitu a Tū ki Tāwāhi, ki Iraka, ki Iharaira hei whai mōhiotanga, ka ako hoki i ngā reo Ārapi me te reo o Wīwī.
I te mutunga o te pakanga ka mārena a Hēmi i a Ira Rangiatu nō Ngāti Tūwharetoa. I whāngai rāua i a Kitty Ohlson rāua ko Maungarongo Pōtatau.
Tāria te wā kua whakapito ngoi a Hemi ki te whakarato i tōna hāhi puta noa i te motu. I tohua ia te kaumatuatanga mō āna mahi hei kaitakawaenga mo Te Aka Pūaho.
He mea mutunga kore te whai matauranga mā Hēmi ahakoa e 70 ōna tau ka riro i a ia tana tohu paetahi mai i te Whare Wānanga o Wikitoria me te mea hoki he mātanga reo ia. Ko ia tētahi i āwina ki te whakapūmau i te wiki o Te Reo Māori i ngā tau 1970 me te taunaki i te roopu o Te Reo Māori Society, kua petihana mo te Whakaata Maori i te tau 1974 anō hoki.
I tōna kaumātuatanga i tuhia tōna ake haukiri e Hēmi, arā, ‘He Hokinga Maumahara’ mō tōna tohu kairangi, ā, koia te haukiri tuatahi i whakaputaina i te reo Māori. Ka mutu, i eke ki ngā whiringa toa o te kaupapa ‘Pegasus Prize for Maori Literature 1984’.
Ko Hēmi Pōtatau, he amorangi, he kairangi, he mātanga, he tangata ngākau māhaki, he tangata manawanui, he pia, he tauira, he rangatira aweawe mō ngā uri whakatipu. Nō Scots te whiwhi kia tuku atu te taonga whakaharahara nei ki tō tātou raukura kauanuanu. Nōku te hōnore nui ka whakawhiwhia matetia rā ia, a Hēmi Pōtatau ki te kāhui o ngā Great Scots.
Nō reira, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa
Hēmi Pōtatau Biography, written by Angela Ballara and Tame H. Takao, was first published in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography in 2000. It was translated into te reo Māori by the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography team.
The First Seven Thousand. A jubilee history of Scots College 1916-1990 written by James Brodie
Sir Ian Macarthur (1916-1923)
Sir Ian Hannay Macarthur (1906-1975) was the first pupil to be enrolled at Scots College in 1915, his grandfather, W.M. Hannay, was a member of the first Board of Governors. Sir Ian’s brother Colin and his half-brothers Alister and Ross also attended the College.
While at Scots, Ian was the embodiment of the All-Round Man, twice receiving the Pattie cup for ‘merit in classroom and field’. In 1923 he was Head Prefect and Dux and the school’s second recipient of a University Entrance Scholarship.
Ian was also an all-round sportsman, while at Scots he captained the 1st XI cricket team and the tennis team. He played in the 1st XV, served on the athletic and swimming committees and was a keen member of the cadet corps winning the McKelvie Cup for shooting in 1921. Hockey wasn’t introduced to Scots until 1953 but Ian took it up at university and went on to represent Wellington from 1928 – 1935.
In the cultural domain, Ian was a member of the College brass band, acted in drama productions and was piano accompanist for the school choir. In 1920 he was a member of the founding Editorial Committee for ‘The Scot’, which is still going today!
Ian studied at Victoria University, graduating with a Master of Laws in 1931. He worked at a law firm in Auckland before setting up on his own in Wellington from 1935 -1940.
During World War II he served as a major in the New Zealand Army with the Second Expeditionary Force’s Third Division in Fiji and the Solomons. After the war he held a number of professional appointments: he was a member of the Council of Legal Education, an examiner in the Law of Contracts for the University of New Zealand, and president and treasurer of the Wellington District Law Society. He was a partner in Chapman Tripp in Wellington until 1959 when he was appointed to the Supreme Court in Christchurch. Lawyers of the time speak of him as a compassionate and courteous judge. In 1974, he received a knighthood for his service to the legal profession. Sir Ian died suddenly in Christchurch in 1975.
Throughout his life, Ian maintained an interest in Scots’ affairs. He was president of the Old Boys Association between 1935 and 1937 and served on the Board of Governors from 1937 until 1940. He always spoke of his years at the school with gratitude for the broad opportunities that were available to him, and for the values that were instilled in him – respect, honesty, and fairness. In 2004, the Junior School’s Macarthur House was named after him.
Sir Ian achieved much in an outstanding legal career and is an excellent example to others.
Photo thanks to the New Zealand Law Society