Te Roroa and Ngati Whatua as well as the Maori legal fraternity are mourning former Maori Law Society president Jolene Patuawa-Tuilave, who died of cancer on Thursday morning in Tauranga.
Ms Patuawa graduated from Otago University in 2000 and quickly achieved distinction as a lawyer specialising in Treaty, environmental and Maori law, first with Tauranga firm Holland-Beckett and then as a senior associate with Kensington Swan.
After returning to her home town last year, she was diagnosed with a recurrence of cancer while carrying her second child.
Her stepmother, Jackie Patuawa, told Waatea News that Jolene made a significant contribution to Maori through her work.
Jolene Patuawa-Tuilave is survived by her husband Rob and children Rob, Vitolia and 10-week-old Lui.
She will be taken to Taita marae at Mamaranui near Dargaville, with the funeral at 11am on Monday.