Turama Hawira
Celebrating The Members of Aotea


Turama HawiraTurama is affiliated to Ngā Rauru, Whanganui, Ngā Wairiki of Ngāti Apa and Ngāti Tuwharetoa. A noted researcher and whakapapa exponent for Whanganui iwi, Turama was also the 1976 Māori Farmer of the Year, the last independent farmer to win that title, and the family still has his cup.

His cultural path began at the early age of 7 through mentoring with his uncle Ruka Broughton, a ""young gun"" of Whanganui Māoridom in the 1980s. Ruka recognised the need for ongoing leadership within their area and worked with Turama, providing formal and informal training in language and culture.

Turama then followed Ruka to Victoria University, studying Māori and law and spent the holidays doing research for his uncle's thesis on Ngā Rauru history. He said he didn't do too well in law, but got involved in the university's fledgling Te Herenga Waka Marae, and in the formation of what became Te Wananga o Raukawa, one of New Zealand's Māori universities.

Turama has worked for the Department of Social Welfare as a cultural adviser, and helped with the formation of Te Oranganui Iwi Health Authority. He was a Māori Access tutor, and taught at Raetihi and at St Augustine's College.

He was a lecturer on Te Wananga o Raukawa's Marae-based courses, and most managed Taimaru Rangatahi, a 12-month total immersion Māori language programme for teenagers learning Whanganuitanga (Whanganui customary practices).