About the Trust

Established in August 2000, the Māori Literature Trust was specifically set up to promote and foster the development of Māori literature.

The Trust seeks to encourage innovation and quality by awarding authors for outstanding literary achievements.

The Trust comprises members from the literary and Māori sectors. We have been fortunate to have support of renown author Patricia Grace on our trust board for many years. In 2017 Patricia retired from her service and we welcomed the accomplished author Dr Paula Morris to our team. The current members of the Trust are:

  • Robyn Bargh (Chair)
  • Sir Hirini Moko Mead
  • Lady Tilly Reedy
  • Whiti Hereaka
  • John Huria
  • Dr Paula Morris



The new logo was designed by Raymond Hohipa of Tūhoe and Kahungunu decent. He was inspired by the traditional quill which was one of the most important inventions to writing. It allowed us to record our histories, ideas and discoveries. Prior to the quill a small number of talented people carved as way of communicating, the quill transformed the way in which people connected and made communication more accessible to the multitudes who were now able to document their ideas and art.

The two koru shapes represent both the writers and the readers. The interdependences between the readers and the writers are critically important to successful story telling.

The term Pikihuia has also been adopted to celebrate the writers awards. Pikihuia, the symbol of the plume, represents quality and continuous improvement, these important characteristics are valued by the Trust.

Finally the feather acknowledges the bond between the Māori Literature Trust and Huia publishers who use the Huia bird as their symbol.

Read about Te Papa Tupu >>
Read about The Pikihuia Awards >>