Wellington iwi and those affiliated to Taranaki Whanui are mourning the death of respected Te Atiawa kaumatua Sam Jackson.
Mr Jackson died on Thursday at Wellington Hospital after a short illness. He was 80.
In 2010, he was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to the community.
Neville Baker, chairman of the Post Nicholson Block Settlement Trust, says Sam Jackson will be mainly remembered as a warm, hospitable man who was brilliant at making overseas visitors feel at home.
He says Mr Jackson was as adept in the Maori world as he was in the Pakeha world.
The Wellington Maori elder was effective at the community and marae level, he says, and equally successful as a leader at the national level and certainly on many occasions involved in welcoming and looking after international guests.
Sam Jackson worked as a tikanga adviser at the national museum of New Zealand, Te Papa Tongarewa, the Inland Revenue Department and Wellington Hospital. He also represented Taranaki Whanui at Parliament for State welcomes and other important occasions.
He will be lying at Pipitea Marae in Wellington before his burial, likely to be in a few days.