Former National Party leader Dr Don Brash, yatchsman Peter Burling, comedian/mental health advocate Mike King, and fashion designer Annah Stretton are only some of the nominees being considered for next year's Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year.
The award honours people who contribute to the wellbeing of New Zealand through exceptional contributions to their disciplines.
Any member of the public can nominate an individual or community organisation.
Awards manager Glyn Taylor said: "Each year, nominations reflect what New Zealanders are talking about and are interested in. Kiwis working hard to address critical social issues continue to feature prominently.
"A particularly interesting nomination is that of Dr Don Brash, who has been at the forefront of the debate around freedom of speech that's dominated headlines in recent weeks."
Nominations for New Zealander of the Year 2019:
- Dr Don Brash: former National Party leader, free speech advocate
- Annah Stretton: fashion designer, philanthropist and entrepreneur
- Peter Burling: Team New Zealand yachting skipper
- Sue Kedgley: former Greens MP, Wellington regional councillor
- Mike King: mental health advocate
- Dave 'The Brown Butterbean' Letele: athlete and weight-loss coach
- Alan Halse: director of Culturesafe NZ
- Mary O'Hagan: mental health innovator and advocate
- Simone Anderson: lifestyle influencer and weight-loss star
Nominations for the award close on September 17, and a shortlist of ten candidates will be announced in December.
Previous winners of the award include equal pay advocate Kristine Bartlett (2018) film director Taika Waititi (2017), and former All Black Richie McCaw (2016).