In coming to work for Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Sarah Fulham feels she is keeping a promise she made to her late granddad, Maurice Nutira and she is delighted to be editing Te Pānui Rūnaka, a magazine he loved and felt connected to.

Sarah (Ngāi Tahu – Ngāti Irakehu), remembers her granddad watching the letterbox every month waiting for his latest issue of Te Pānui Rūnaka.

“He was very proud of TPR and he’d go through each new magazine pointing out whānau he knew. He loved looking at it and I think he would have been proud of me editing it,” she says.

Sarah has always had a passion for all things Ngāi Tahu and that was nurtured by her granddad, Maurice. He had close ties to his marae at Wairewa and he shared many of his stories about his early experiences in Little River and Birdlings Flat with her.

“Granddad talked a lot about his ties to Wairewa. He was very involved with the tuna heke there and his pōua is pictured in a number of early photographs that captured the Wairewa tuna harvest,” says Sarah.

“He was also well known from his time as Māori Studies lecturer at Lincoln University, a position he retired from in the 1990s.

“He always pictured me working for the iwi. I wish he was here to see that. He passed away in 2013, but I know he’s always with me.”

Sarah’s own background focuses on marketing. After she completed a Diploma in Contemporary Photography at the Design and Arts College in Christchurch in 2007, she applied for the first intake of the Ngāi Tahu Tourism Scholarship, which saw her complete a Bachelor of Tourism management, majoring in marketing. She graduated in 2012 and then spent five months travelling around Europe before taking up a job at Harcourts gold in Papanui, as a marketing support specialist.

Over the next three years she progressed up the ranks to become the company’s Digital Services Manager; and now, in her role as Te Pānui Rūnaka editor, she is looking forward to meeting all the people her granddad has talked about, along with all those who send in their words every month.

“TPR has so much potential but I’m very aware of the huge connection whānau feel to the magazine. It means so much to a lot of people and I’m honoured to have my name associated with it – and I look forward to receiving the next round of submissions,” she says.

Sarah Fulham – looking forward to editing Te Pānui Rūnaka.

Sarah Fulham – looking forward to editing Te Pānui Rūnaka.