I just heard that Rod Donald died of a heart attack around midnight last night. He is a huge loss for the Green Party, for Parliament, for Aotearoa New Zealand... and most of all for his family.
I was actively involved in the Green Party for nearly four years. In my experience, Rod was unfailingly good humoured, energetic and generous. He was a kind friend to me and my daughter whenever we met. In 2000 Rod nominated me as the Green's representative on a political tour of Australia and afterwards took me to Bellamys to hear about my meetings with Alexander Downer etc.
I might not have agreed with all of Rod's politics, nor his tactics, but I had a huge amount of respect for him as a leader. The brilliance of the Green's co-leadership set-up meant that his strengths and weakenesses complimented Jeanette's. His drive, charisma and intelligence will be a hard act to follow.