Damian Stone and Terena Wara have been appointed Judges of the Māori Land Court.
Judge Stone was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in May 1998. He holds an LLB from the University of Auckland and a BA from Victoria University of Wellington.
He is a managing partner at Kāhui Legal, specialising in commercial law. Before joining the firm he spent 10 years working for a large national law firm and was General Counsel for the Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission.
Judge Stone has regularly appeared in the Māori Land Court and before the Waitangi Tribunal.
Judge Wara was admited as a barrister and solicitor in July 2006 after graduating LLB(Hons) From the University of Waikato.
She is a director at Rotorua firm Tū Pono Legal Ltd, of which she was a founding director in 2014. Her main focus is in the Māori Land Court and the Waitangi Tribunal where she acts for Māori Land owners, Māori land trusts and incorporations, post-settlement governance entities, whānau, hapū and iwi.
Judge Patrick Savage has also been reappointed an Acting Judge of the Māori Land Court. Judge Savage was first appointed to the Court on 7 July 1994 after serving as Crown Solicitor for the Bay of Plenty. He retired from the Court in 2015 but has been reappointed as an Acting Judge since.