Dell Higgie served as a career diplomat and international law specialist with the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade until her retirement in 2021.
Over the years, her Wellington-based appointments have included serving as New Zealand’s International Trade Law Adviser (responsible for all WTO litigation) and six years as New Zealand’s first Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism & Director of MFAT’s International Security and Disarmament Division. Her past overseas appointments include serving as Ambassador to the European Union, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Denmark, and as Permanent Representative to the United Nations and Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva.
For the 12 years before her retirement, she was New Zealand’s global Ambassador for Disarmament. During this time she was President of the CD in 2015 and served as Chair of the Missile Technology Control Regime from 2019-2020. After her retirement she continued to serve as an Ambassador-at-Large for MFAT and as Chair of the Geneva-based Voluntary Trust Fund for the Arms Trade Treaty until August 2022. Since November 2022, she has been Ambassador and Chargée d’Affaires at the New Zealand Embassy and Permanent Mission to the UN in Vienna.