Lewis Joseph (LJ) Holden is a fifth generation New Zealander.
He was born and grew up in Pukerua Bay, Porirua, Wellington. Holden's family history can be traced back to Scotland (Clyde), England (Cornwall, Preston and Norfolk), and Ireland (Cork). Lewis attended high school in Upper Hutt from 1997 - 2002, and was a Prefect there. In 2006 he completed his first degree, a Bachelor of Commerce from Victoria University of Wellington, majoring in International Business and Commercial Law. He then moved to Auckland to work for IBM as a sales representative.
At university Holden was a member of the Victoria University of Wellington Debating Society. In 2006 he participated in the Australasian Intervarsity Debating Championships and the New Zealand Universities' Debating Championships, the Joynt Scroll, which his team won. He won the Bledisloe Award for oratory in that year also.
Holden became a supporter of a New Zealand republic while still a high school student, after reading a book on the issue. In January 2003 Holden began a weblog on New Zealand constitutional issues named The Holden Republic. He gradually expanded the topics covered to include anything relating to the constitution of New Zealand. He believes a New Zealand republic should follow the Parliamentary republic model, with a president able to act as a check on the parliamentary executive. In 2004 he was elected to the executive of the Republican Movement. Following the resignation of Dave Guerin as president in 2006, Holden was elected president.
Holden supports changing the flag of New Zealand. In 2005, he volunteered collecting signatures for a petition to Parliament for a referendum on the issue, which was unsuccessful.