By 2008 she was our fifth longest-serving PM and the first Labour leader to win three consecutive elections. She was the fifth-longest serving Prime Minister of New Zealand and also its second woman to be in that office.
Helen Clark, New Zealand politician who was prime minister from 1999 to 2008. Jenny Shipley may have been our first female PM, but Helen Clark was the first elected one. Learn more about Clark’s life and career. Yet Clark has had to put up with a more or less ceaseless stream of innuendo aimed not just at her but at her husband too, not to mention comment by the yard on every little shift in her appearance.
When Helen Clark came under pressure to marry her partner, Peter Davis — pressure so unwelcome that she confessed she had cried on her wedding day — she gave in and married him in 1981 during her first campaign to win the Mt Albert electorate. Helen Clark was officially born Helen Elizabeth Clark was the 37 Prime Minister of New Zealand and former United Nations Development Programme Administrator. She was also the first woman in the country to head a major party (Labour). Asked what she could do about the smear campaign, she said: "In the end you have got to run on your reputation. She was the first woman in New Zealand to hold the office of prime minister immediately following an election.
Helen Clark said the suggestion that her husband was gay was "lies" and "an outrage". Former Primer Minister of New Zealand, former UNDP Administrator, Patron of The Helen Clark Foundation.
Clark came from a National-leaning rural family but developed her politics while studying and lecturing in political science at the University of Auckland.