New Zealand's Permanent Representative Gerard Van Bohemen
New Zealand's Permanent Representative Gerard Van Bohemen

Gerard van Bohemen is New Zealand’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

He led New Zealand's Mission to the United Nations in New York during New Zealand's two-year term as a non-permanent member of the Security Council (2015-2016).

Prior to his role as Permanent Representative, he was Deputy Secretary at the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, responsible for Multilateral and Legal Affairs. In this role, he oversaw the Ministry’s Consular Division, Environment Division, International Security and Disarmament Division, Legal Division, and United Nations, Human Rights & Commonwealth Division.

Gerard has served twice at the New Zealand Mission to the United Nations in New York, the first time as Deputy Permanent Representative during New Zealand’s 1994 - 1994 term on the Security Council. New Zealand also served on the UNSC between 1954 - 1955 and in 1966. 

Gerard’s career has combined service with the Ministry in Wellington and New York, and private legal practice in Auckland and Wellington. He was a Senior Solicitor at Russell McVeagh’s Auckland offices for two years, a Senior Solicitor then a partner for eight years at Buddle Findlay’s Auckland offices and a partner at Chen Palmer & Partners in Wellington. 

In these roles, he undertook a variety of environmental and resource management work and civil litigation. He appeared in the Environment Court, High Court, Court of Appeal and also appeared twice in the Privy Council in London.

Since returning to the Ministry in April 2005, Gerard led the presentation of New Zealand's claim to an extended continental shelf, led the New Zealand delegation in the negotiations that resulted in the adoption of the Convention on the Conservation and Management of High Seas Fishery Resources of the South Pacific Ocean, was the New Zealand negotiator in the reform process at the International Whaling Commission (IWC) and, since 2011, has been New Zealand’s Commissioner to the IWC. He has also been New Zealand’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Gerard graduated from Victoria University of Wellington with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Bachelor of Laws with Honours (1st Class).