Jul 04

Fanaafi Aiono-Le Tagaloa

Personal Life:

Fanaafi Aiono-Le Tagaloa (born in Samoa) graduated with a PhD (Doctorate) in Law from Otago University in New Zealand, and was the first Samoan to do so.

Aiono-Le Tagaloa comes from a family of high academic achievers. Her mother is (Prof.) Aiono (Dr.) Fanaafi Le Tagaloa and her father is Le Tagaloa (Dr.) Pita. Her siblings, Leinani Aiono-Le Tagaloa is an Assistant Clinical Professor in Anesthesiology at UC (University of California), Semisi Aiono Le Tagaloa is a General Surgeon based at Wanganui Hospital, and Donna Aiono-Le Tagaloa is a School Principal in Samoa.



Aiono-Le Tagaloa gained a Bachelor of Law Honors degree at Otago University in 2000, and also has a B.A Honors (History) in 2001.

Aiono-Le Tagaloa spent two and a-half years back in Samoa undertaking field work for her thesis and to help finance her studies. She returned back to Dunedin and her studies back at Otago University in 2006, with the support of the Maori & Pacific Island PhD scholarship received from Otago University and personal funding support from her family.

Aiono-Le Tagaloa graduated with her PhD in 2009.


Highlights & Awards:

  • First Samoan to graduate with a PhD from Otago University in Law


Source – Otago Daily Times, Te Ara, Otago University

1 comment

  1. David Garlovsky

    Today I am saddened to hear of the passing of Prof Aiono Fanaafi Le Tagaloa. I was a teacher in Western Samoa when she was Minister of Education. The depth of her understanding of child development I most valued and equally her empathy towards others.

Comment below, let us know what you think...