QSM honours for broadcaster and teacher

18:57, Jun 02 2014
jim sullivan
HONOURED: Jim Sullivan has been recognised for his dedication to broadcasting.

Two former South Canterbury men have been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours.

Broadcaster Jim Sullivan and former Twizel Area School principal Ron Ballantyne both received the Queen's Service Medal.

Sullivan, who now lives in Dunedin, started his broadcasting career more than 50 years ago in Timaru.

ron ballantyne
AWARD: Former South Canterbury man Ron Ballantyne has received the Queen's Service Medal.

Since then he has worked in Christchurch, Palmerston North and Dunedin. He also worked in Holland.

He fronted Radio New Zealand's Morning Report programme in the late 1970s. He has also been Radio New Zealand's chief archivist and manager of the Oral History Centre at the Alexander Turnbull Library.

From the early 1990s, Sullivan compiled and presented the Dunedin-based programme Sounds Historical on Radio New Zealand National. He is also the author of more than 30 books, featuring aspects of New Zealand history.


Ron Ballantyne, who now lives in Dunedin, recently retired after working in education for 40 years. During that time he was principal at Twizel Area School and Hurunui College.

At Hurunui College, where he was principal for 14 years, Ballantyne dedicated part of his role to greeting and farewelling students on buses, regardless of the weather. He also competed in school cross-country races and staff versus students games.

Ballantyne was also known to pay for stationery for disadvantaged students and tutored French in his own time.

He introduced restorative practice to the college and got a high percentage of the teachers trained in the programme.

He instigated regular information-sharing and feedback meetings with the principals of surrounding schools.

An Education Review Office report in 2012 commended the school on its close relationship with the community and its positive, inclusive and settled culture.

Ballantyne was president of the Canterbury Area Schools Association for four years, and also served on the national executive.

The Timaru Herald