Communicator of the Year

The Communicator of the Year award recognises individuals who each year best demonstrate what effective communication looks and sounds like.


2019 Winner Sir Peter Gluckman

Congratulations to Sir Peter Gluckman who was named the BlacklandPR Communicator of the Year for 2019 for his debunking of the “meth test myth” and stimulating public discussion on contentious issues such as genetic modification.

"Sir Peter's clarity, and his reputation, ended the misuse of the testing and the standard being used by the Government." - Director Mark Blackham




Previous winners


2018 Communicator of the Year 

Mike King


2017 Communicator of the Year

Greg O'Connor


2016 Communicator of the Year

Shamubeel Eaqub


Selection process

The award recognises the achievements of a communicator in the 12 months prior to the awards announcement.

The winner is selected by the team at BlacklandPR from New Zealanders who have illustrated communication skills at the national level over the previous year.


Nominees are ranked out of 10 points for the following communication traits;

  1. Presence (mana, prestige, visibility, regularity)
  2. Turn of phrase (ability to capture attention and encapsulate an idea)
  3. Information and explanation (selection of information, and ability to educate succinctly)  
  4. Passion (persuasiveness of their commitment)
  5. Empathy (extent to which they relate to and reflect the interests, needs and ability of their audience)


The kōauau

Presented with the title of Communicator of the Year is a bespoke Māori kōauau trophy designed and carved by Wellington based Māori craftsman and designer Sam Hauwaho.


The kōauau is a traditional Māori flute instrument. Historically it has been used to welcome people into life and assist the spirit as it leaves, to attract birds, to heal bones and to help memorise knowledge.


Throughout history, cultures worldwide have used instruments to communicate. From drums to conch shells, instruments have been used send messages of importance, emit emotion and create a presence.


The kōauau honours this history and the spirit and purpose of communication.