The Project Tongariro Memorial Award was established by the society in memory of Keith Maurice Blumhardt, William Edward Cooper, Douglas Neal McKenzie, Derek Ian White and Marie Pauline Williams, who died on Mt Ruapehu while testing helicopter rescue equipment on 9 December 1982.

The award is open to any applicant for study – for fauna, flora, geology, volcanology, weather and natural and human history of Tongariro National Park.

Since the inaugural award in 1991, 35 young researchers have benefited from these awards enabling a wide range of research to be done in the Park.  From heather, to bats, skinks, kiwi, stoats, to visitor stats, to geology, to lahars, to botany and climate.  An amazing legacy.

The amount shall be determined annually by the executive (originally up to $1000 but since 2002, up to $2000 as long as the society is in a position to fund the awards). Applications for the Awards are accepted up until the end of June each year and are considered at the first executive committee meeting of the new financial year (usually in July/August).  The society’s executive seeks independent advice from a representative with an overview of science in the Turangi/Tongariro Conservancy (Dr Harry Keys has assisted with this review since the awards began and continues to do so).  Applicants will be advised of the executive committees' decision by August 31st and the awards are announced publically at the annual DOC Conservation Awards.
Recipients of awards are required to provide a photo and short resume suitable for publication by the society.  Recipients are asked to acknowledge the society where possible in for example a research publication such as a thesis. All recipients agree to send a copy of their work, including a thesis, to TNHS and are encouraged to contribute a short article for the annual Tongariro Journal.

Note if no applicants meet the required standards in a particular year, an award will not be made.

Please contact Project Tongariro on for more info and to apply.

  Project Tongariro Meomorial Award Recipients
Catherine Foster 
21992Mark Horricks
Palynology (pollen samples) of Gibson's Swamp
31992Mathew Ward
Investigating visitors' perceptions of crowding in Tongariro National Park
41992Xiang LiminPlant climate Panautea
51994Charlotte Severne
Geothermal investigations Tongariro - Waihi
61994Suzan DopsonMistletoe
71995Shane Cronin - Massey UniversityVolcanic stratigraphy in the north east sector of Tongariro National Park
81995Nick Monteith - Auckland UniversityStudying glacial history of Mt Tongariro and Mt Ruapehu
91996Vivienne Nichols
Mangaturuturu lahars - from the study of beech stands
101997Ross Martin
Kiwi-Stoat control research
111998Anna Grant
Post-release behaviour of captive-reared Kiwi
121998Gillian Rapson
Forest-grassland dynamics, Mangaeheuheu Basin
13 & 14
1999Michelle Prinscep & Paul Broady - Waikato UniversityStudy of Chemistry/Bacteria in Tongariro National Park waterways
151999Amy TrassStudy of forest restoration in the Park (Fruit dispersal & forest regeneration on the volcanic plateau)
162000Ross MartinStoat Behaviour
172000Tristram HaylesThe geology of the summit area, Ruapehu
182001Ben MillerThe physical volcanology, petrology and geochemistry of the Wahianoa Valley, SE Ruapehu
192001Gillian Lockett - Victoria UnivesityThe geology, volcanology and petrology of a pyroclastic fall deposit, Rangataua Member, South Ruapehu
202002Joanna MeysDactyllanthus Taylorii
212002Joanne ChizmarVolcanology of Tama Lakes
222003Elizabeth GroveMelicytus aff. Aplinus 'Rangipo'
232003Candice BardsleyPhysical volcanology of Red Crater
242004Ruth BasherPhysical volcanology of Te Maari Craters
252004Jessica WallaceVertical flight activity of short-tailed bats(Mystacina tuberculata) within beech and podocarp forests
262005Tom PaulinContemporary glacial retreat on Ruapehu
272005Maureen CoomberPublic perception re volcanic hazards on Tongariro Crossing
282005Elizabeth LigginsPhylogeography of common NZ skink
292006Anja MobisThe physical volcanology and hazards of pyroclastic eruptions from the Tongariro Volcanic Centre
302006Sascha BrocksFantail breeding success after rodent control in the Karioi Rahui - a cost effective monitoring tool
312007Michael DannA revision of the native ant species Monomorium antarcticum
322008Terry BlumhardtUK Search and Rescue methods to be used in Tongariro.  Attended international SAR conference in Scotland
332009Natalia Pardo - Institute of Natural Resources Massey UniversityPhysical volcanology of Mt Ruapehu and Mt Tongariro (understanding the physical controls of large scale explosive eruptions)
342010Emma PhillipsForecasting the consequences of the failure of the eastern rim of Crater Lake, Ruapehu
352010Moniqua Nelson-TunleyInvestigating the genetic dynamics of the small-scaled skink
362011Kirsty MyronPittosporum kirkii: autecology and conservation of an endemic epiphytic shrub
372011Yvonne TauraRresearch on the effects of willow and willow control on the wetland aquatic invertebrates
382012James CowlynThe significance of the Volcanic Phenomena; Pyroclastic Flows
392012Shaun EvesThe Timing of Past Glaciation in Tongariro National Park
402012Jessie PrebbleThe Taxonomy of the rare tag-named entity, Myosotis aff. pygmaea “Volcanic Plateau”
412012Erin HillPsychological and Health Benefits for Users of Tongariro National Park