An environmental group is calling for the Cook Islands government to rethink the sacking of Jacqui Evans from the board of the Marae Moana marine reserve.
The Cook Islands has received praise for its huge, multi-use marine park spread over more than two million square kilometres.
But Te Ipukarea Society says dumping Ms Evans is not a good look.
The society's Kelvin Passfield said sacking the woman who was instrumental in establishing the reserve sends the wrong message.
"And the person who has just won the Goldman Environmental Award, being internationally recognised for the work she has done on the Marae Moana.
"I think for the government to sack her just makes them look ridiculous and makes them look not serious at all in their intentions to really have a marine park which means something."
Ben Ponia in the Prime Minister's Office said it is not commenting at this stage on the decision, but that it will make a statement at a later stage.