New MP for National

Joanne Hayes has been officially declared a National Party list MP, stepping into the position left by Katrina Shanks.

The Electoral Commission announced last night that it had declared the Whanganui-based Hayes to be elected to Parliament from the National list.

Shanks announced her retirement from politics late last year to head the Funeral Directors Association of New Zealand.

Hayes stood unsuccessfully for National in Dunedin South at the last election after she missed out on the candidacy for Palmerston North.

Speaking to Fairfax last month, she said she was unsure whether she would seek the Palmerston North candidacy again this year, given 2011 candidate Leonie Hapeta, was now a Palmerston North city councillor.

Hayes, who is of Ngati Porou, Atihaunui a Paparangi, and Rangitane ki Wairarapa descent, has also been involved in the health industry, including a stint as a diabetes awareness campaigner and is a former chief executive of

Whanganui-based Maori development organisation Nga Tai O te Awa.

Her last role was as director of community relations for UCOL Whanganui. 

(Live Matches)