Hall of Fame Inductee 2016
Paul was born in the rural town of Tuatapere, Southland in May 1956. During his childhood he attended Pukemaori Primary School, but also spent a lot of time in the Pukemaori DT King yard. He drove his first truck in a hay paddock at the age of 12. This was when, as he said, ‘the diesel must have started flowing through the blood’. He went to Waitaki Boys High School in Oamaru and graduated in 7th form.
In 1974 he joined the IRD, which eventually took him to London. Paul was still employed by the IRD when his father gave him a small shareholding in DT King & Co Ltd. This was the beginning of his financial contributions to the transport industry.
In 1980 Paul began his time commitment to the transport industry. He moved from London back to Pukemaori to commence employment at DT King. Four years later he had to step up to the challenge of running the company, when his mother sadly got cancer and his father had to help her. He rose to the challenge brilliantly. Under his helm DT King has gone from strength to strength.
In 1982 and 1983 DT King purchased the log transport companies Crosbie Bros and Mason & Raynor. In 1985 he purchased ME Melhop Invercargill and Dunedin, changed the name to Commercial Vehicle Centre Ltd, then expanded it into Christchurch. He also purchased Western Haulage and established a branch at Otautau and the Clifden Limeworks.
His next big challenge was in 1996 when one of their biggest log cartage customers left, so expanded the logging business to fill the gap - Log Marketing NZ was successfully established.
In 2009 Commercial Vehicle Centre Ltd expanded into Nelson. In 2013 White, Bates and Shearing Transport were purchased, and a branch was established in Riverton. In 2015 he purchased HWH Trucks in Dunedin and established a branch there.
Paul has seen DT King go from a 33 truck fleet in 1980 to a 125 truck fleet in 2015.
He has not only committed time to his successful business, but to the larger road transport community, contributing a lot of time to the Road Transport Association in several roles; as President of Region 5, the President of Southland Branch and as Road Transport Association Conference Chairman.
He is also a dedicated community man contributing to the community he was born in.
Paul was a Member on the Board of Trustees for Tuatapere School and a Director of the Waiau Health Trust. He married his wife Vivienne in 1978 when he worked for IRD and has two children, Mark and Bridget.
His willingness to step up and meet challenges has meant he has made a huge contribution to the road transport industry in New Zealand.