Archive for February, 2008
The conference was an outstanding success, far beyond the expectations of the executive. We had expected about 20 to 25 participants, which would have been satisfactory for a new organization in a small community, but 82 were present when a count was taken on the last day.
Audience attention and participation was excellent, as was the extensive coverage of the events by the media – Cook Islands News, Cook Islands Herald and Cook Islands Times, Television Cook Islands, Radio Cook Islands, and at least two radio stations in New Zealand.
The positive response from members of the association and from the public has been overwhelming.
Six of our most distinguished members were so impressed with the conference and the work of the association that on the last day they took the initiative and paid life memberships at a cost of $1,000 each. They were:
- Dr Joseph Williams – former cabinet minister and Prime Minister of the Cook Islands, now a leading medical practitioner
- Dr Sir Terepa’i Maoate – currently Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, former Prime Minister and prominent medical doctor
- Mr Iaveta Ta’ungaotetini Short – distinguished lawyer, businessman and community leader, former cabinet minister
- Professor Jon Tikivanotau Jonassen – currently professor at BYU Hawaii, former Secretary for Foreign Affairs of the Cook Islands, Secretary for Cultural Development, Deputy Secretary-General of the South Pacific Commission, High Commissioner, noted composer and author
- Mr Ross Holmes – prominent lawyer in the Cook Islands and New Zealand
- Dr Ngama’u Wichman-To’u – researcher and businesswoman who has also been very active in community affairs and voluntary organizations.
It is proposed that their contributions, and those of any others who decide to join them as life members or as life patrons, or who otherwise contribute to the fund, will be used as the basis of a permanent trust fund from which only the interest will be used to finance or assist research projects and publications. The life members will be asked to nominate one of their number to be on the committee of management for that fund, along with the Association’s president, treasurer and any other person the executive appoints.
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