The kayaker found dead this morning in the Kaituna River near Rotorua was a top international competitor in whitewaker kayaking.
Louise Jull had been living in Rotorua as a teacher at Western Heights High School.
The 26-year-old had been kayaking on the river last night when she became separated from her two companions.
Her body was found just after 10am by local rafters and police searchers near the area where she was last seen.
Her family have issued a statement saying she was a respected, integral part of the New Zealand kayak community.
They said she was a positive role model for women in sport and a strong advocate for women in kayaking.