Gilbert Wilson was born in New Plymouth and educated in Auckland. He began his banking career with the National Bank in 1924 and joined the Reserve Bank eleven years later in 1935.
In 1953, Mr Wilson became the second person to hold the position of Chief Cashier, a position he held for three years before becoming Deputy Governor in 1956. In 1962 he became the first Governor to have begun his career in the Bank in a non-executive position. Mr Wilson retired in 1967 and passed away on 29 March 1994.