MUNRO, Sir Leslie Knox, K.C.M.G., K.C.V.O.
Journalist, diplomat, jurist.
A new biography of Munro, Leslie Knox appears in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography on this site.
Leslie Knox Munro was born in Auckland on 26 February 1901 and educated at Auckland Grammar School and Auckland University College. From 1923 to 1938 he was lecturer in constitutional law and Roman law at Auckland University, becoming dean of the faculty in 1938. He then entered a new field, that of journalism, holding the post of associate editor of the New Zealand Herald in 1941; from 1942 to 1951 he was editor. Over these years he had held office in the New Zealand National Party and its Remuera branch, and under the National Party Government he accepted in 1952 the post of New Zealand Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representative of New Zealand to the United Nations. This office he held till 1958, during which time he was President of the Trusteeship Council of the United Nations, 1953–54, New Zealand Representative on the Security Council, 1954–55, and president of the twelfth session of the General Assembly, 1957–58. From 1958 to 1962 he was United Nations Representative on Hungarian Questions and Secretary-General of the International Commission of Jurists from 1961. He was made K.C.M.G. in 1950 and K.C.V.O. in 1957. In 1960 he published United Nations – Hope for a Divided World. Sir Leslie returned to New Zealand in 1963, and he successfully contested the Waipa seat for the National Party in the Parliamentary elections.