Mel and Manawa are the founders of Ngahere Communities, a social enterprise championing the potential of South Auckland entrepreneurs, innovators and creators.
Maruhaeremuri Nihoniho spent much of her childhood beating high scores on the spacies machines. That pass time turned into a passion, as Maru became the founding CEO Metia Interactive, developing and producing games for multiple platforms.
Lynell is the only Māori patent attorney in Aotearoa. She is helping Māori navigate the intellectual property system, identify cultural property and develop protocols and processes for recognition and protection within Western structures.
Damaris Coulter (Ngāti Kahu) started her hospitality journey as a child, working at her uncle’s restaurant in Kaitaia. She grew up around hospo and spent her early adult life learning from some of the best chefs and restauranteurs in the business, both here, and in Italy and the UK.
The pair have spent their entire lives working to protect and preserve the ocean. Whether it be through waka ama, navigation, teaching, governance or policy change, they are working to have an everlasting positive effect on their tūpuna moana, the Waitematā.