Don Stafford MBE, CBE 

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He nui te arohaina o Tākuta Don Stafford i tana mārama me tana ngākaunui ki te iwi o Te Arawa.  Ka haikai a Don i a ia e tamariki tonu ana i te taenga atu o ngā kaumatua o tērā wā ki te toa a tana matua.  I reira ia i ako ai i ngā kōrero mō te iwi Māori o tuawhakarere, he rōreka ki te taringa, he pārekareka ki te ngākau.

 

I whakanuia te kupu kōrero a Tākuta Stafford e te tini, ka mutu, nā tōna āheinga ki te kōrero Māori i whai mana ai te koroua Pākehā nei i te ao Māori.  I hau hoki tana rongo i ērā pūkenga kōrero me tōna mātauranga huri noa i Rotorua, i te motu, i te ao whānui hoki.

 

I whakarewaina e Tākuta Stafford tētehi pukapuka whakahirahira e kīia nei te ingoa ko ‘Te Arawa: A History of the Arawa People’ i te tau 1967.  He rite tonu te whakamahia o tēnei pukapuka nei hei puka kaikohi.  He mea rangahau e Tākuta Stafford te nuinga o ngā kaupapa i tēnei pae tukutuku.  Ahakoa tonu te whakahē a ētehi i ngā kōrero i tuhia rā e Tākuta Stafford, hei tāna, koirā tonu te whakaoranga o ngā kōrero i te nui o te kōrerohia o ērā kōrero.

 

Atu i tērā pukapuka whakahirahira, rua tekau mā rua atu anō ngā pukapuka i tuhi ai ia e pā ana ki te rohe o Rotorua.  Nō reira, hei tohu whakanui i āna mahi whakapau kaha i ngā tau, e rua kē ngā tohu i whiwhi ai ia i te Kāwanatanga, arā, ko Te Tohu Toihau MBE hei mema o te kāhui rā i te tau 1982 me Te Tohu Toihau CBE hei toihau o te kāhui i te tau 1993.  Hei āpiti atu hoki, i te tau 1993, nā Te Whare Wānanga o Waikato ia i whakawhiwhia ai ki te Tohu Kairangi Hōnore. He tohu mātauranga whakahirahira tērā ka whakawhiwhia ki te tangata kua eke ki ngā taumata tiketike o tāna anō kaupapa.  

 

Nā te hōhonu o tōna mātauranga i riro ai i a ia te tūranga o te kaitiaki tuatahi o Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa i te tau 1968.  E kitea tonuhia ana ētehi o ana kōrero tuku iho i kohinga whakaahua o Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa nāna tonu nei i whakarite.

 

He mea whakatuwhera tētehi wāhanga hou o te Whare Kaukau i te tau 2011 ka tapaina ai ki te Don Stafford Wing hei tohu whakamaharatanga ki a ia.  I whai wāhi a Tākuta Stafford ki ngā whakaritenga o tērā wāhanga o te Whare Taonga, ā, ahakoa tana pīrangi kia tae ā-tinana atu ia ki taua whakatuwheratanga rā, auare ake.  Ka mate a koroua i te marama o Apireira, i te tau 2010. Ahakoa te pōuri o ngā kaimahi o Te Whare Taonga, i harikoa tonu rātau i tō rātau mōhio ka maumaharatia tonutia a Tākuta Stafford i tana whakaheke werawera kia ora ngā kōrero o Te Arawa i te rohe o Rotorua.

 

I te tau 2010, nā Mauriora Kingi ōna whakaaro i whakapuaki mō Tākuta Stafford.  Hei tāna “He whare pukapuka a Stafford e kī ana i ngā kōrero mō Te Arawa, ko ia tērā, ko te tuahangata Pākehā o Te Arawa”.

Qualities: diligence, scholarship, relationships, identity, humility

More to watch:

Don Stafford’s daughter’s speech at the opening of the Don Stafford Wing:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MY0W760ZNQ

About the relaunch of Don Stafford’s book Te Arawa: A History of the Arawa People:

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/rotorua-daily-post/video/news/video.cfm?c_id=1503430&gal_cid=1503430&gallery_id=164562

 

About the passing of Don Stafford:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LkC2NjlZV0

 

More to read:

Rotorua Library has an entire temperature controlled Heritage and Research area dedicated to Don Stafford containing dozens of his research items on everything from fish and wildlife to Māori education.  There are also many video interviews of well-known Rotorua people made by Don Stafford and available on DVD.

 

This excellent bibliography created by Rotorua Library lists all of Don Stafford’s work and is a great place to start

investigating his important and fascinating work:

 

http://rotorua.kete.net.nz/documents/0000/0000/0020/Don_Stafford_Bibliography.pdf


Sources:

https://nzhistory.govt.nz/people/don-stafford

https://nzhistory.govt.nz/keyword/don-stafford

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/rotorua-daily-post/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503438&objectid=10994086

http://rotorua.kete.net.nz/documents/0000/0000/0020/Don_Stafford_Bibliography.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LkC2NjlZV0