Breadcrumbs

Season-Mary Downs

Director, Tukau Law and Consultancy - Northland, New Zealand

Key Info

Iwi:
Te Kapotai, Ngati Hine, Ngapuhi

Qualification(s):
  • Bachelor of Māori and Pacific Development
  • Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Laws
  • Master of Laws in Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples' Law
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Law
Subject(s):
  • Law
  • Te Reo Māori
  • Māori

Season-Mary has wanted to help her community long before she started her journey by studying a conjoint Law and Arts degree in and then completing a Master of Laws and PhD in Law. She says her motivation to keep studying was driven by a desire to address issues within the community. “I am loyal to Waikato. I came back to pursue a PhD because I knew I would have the University’s support.”

Season-Mary and others launched Tukau Law and Consultancy in the Bay of Islands, a firm that focusses on Māori legal issues. "We wanted to focus on law relating to treaty claims processes. The University’s Faculty of Law was a large influence on our emphasis on the treaty claims process, because we had lecturers who teach very bi-cultural and diverse law, like Linda Te Aho."

As well as being a director, Season-Mary runs a social enterprise and a community fund. The dedication to the cause means that she hasn't watched TV in over a decade. "If you’re passionate then there are sometimes sacrifices. I wake up before 6.30 and respond to emails before helping my two nieces get ready for school. My business partner and best friend Chelsea and I go get coffee and start doing admin and planning. I work until late in the night, with breaks for exercise and meals. No two days are the same but every day is dynamic."

Season-Mary has advice for future students. "If you’re passionate then you will definitely make a difference. Go for it and follow your heart. There are still a lot of issues in our country and more thorough research is needed. I believe the University of Waikato is where I get the best support for this research."


Other Success Stories

Leilani Tuala-Warren Leilani Tuala-Warren
Master of Laws

Rachel Devine Rachel Devine
Bachelor of Laws with Honours

Bradley Sam Bradley Sam
Bachelor of Laws with Honours, Bachelor of Management Studies with Honours

Tayla Afoa Tayla Afoa
Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Laws