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Hauraki Gulf advocate, author wins top award

Published: 14 September 2016

Author Raewyn Peart has been announced the winner of the 2016 Holdaway Award for leadership in and around the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park.

The award was presented at the Hauraki Gulf Forum’s annual marine park seminar yesterday afternoon.

Raewyn is the author of The Story of the Hauraki Gulf, a 368-page illustrated book charting the discovery, transformation and restoration of the Hauraki Gulf. The book was three years in production and was launched on Monday.

In the book Raewyn describes growing up enjoying the wonders of the Hauraki Gulf through sailing and her growing concerns about its decline - an issue that was also brought into focus by the Forum’s State of our Gulf report in 2011.

Hauraki Gulf Forum Chairman John Tregidga said the book reflected Raewyn’s passion and advocacy for the Gulf over many years.

“By writing an ecological and social history of the Hauraki Gulf, Raewyn helps us see the importance of new awareness, commitments and investments in restoration, ” says Tregidga.

Tregidga adds that Raewyn’s skills in law, research and writing have also contributed to published guides on the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park Act management objectives and to the application of marine spatial planning in New Zealand.

Raewyn, from Pt Chevalier, is currently a member of the Stakeholder Working Group for the Sea Change - Tai Timu Tai Pari process, due to complete a spatial plan for the Hauraki Gulf later this year.

She is also Policy Director for the Environmental Defence Society and the author of several other books including Castles in the Sand: What’s happening to the New Zealand coast and Dolphins of Aotearoa: Living with dolphins in New Zealand.

“Anyone who has worked with Raewyn will recognise a fierce intelligence and a tireless and relentlessly positive advocate for doing right by the Hauraki Gulf,” says Tregidga. “She is a most worthy recipient of this year’s award.”

The Holdaway Award recognises the legacy of Jim Holdaway, who championed the creation of the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, within a farming, civic and military career characterised by courage, service and leadership. Jim’s wife Ann Holdaway, 91, and their daughter Sarah were present at yesterday’s award presentation.