Maata Smith-Tauwhare is a descendant of Ngāi Tahu / Ngāti Wheke. Maata was born in Lyttelton and had an amazing childhood raised in Rapaki, attending West Lyttelton Primary School then onto Te Wai Pounamu College. Initially trained to be a home science teacher, however with the support of my family and friends I retrained as a Primary School Teacher while my three sons were young.
Maata is a retired Deputy Principal and is the current Chairperson of the Whakaraupō Carving Centre Trust. Maata has been a Board member since 2010. Maata passionately believes in the kaupapa of the Carving Centre and the amazing staff and board who support it. Currently Maata is thoroughly enjoying my retirement, reading a massive amount of books and babysitting her gorgeous Mokos.