Waimarama Taumaunu attended Canterbury University between 1981 and 1983 graduating with a bachelor's degree in history. During that time she was also a member of New Zealand's national netball team, the Silver Ferns, her career spanning from 1981 to 1991. She played in the Silver Ferns team that won the 1987 Netball World Championships, and was also captain of the team in the last three years of her international career.
Taumaunu has experience in sport management and governance spanning many years and two countries. In 1998, Taumaunu was appointed as National Performance Director for All England Netball, remaining in that role until 2003. During that time she was the assistant coach for the England national team in their 2003 Netball World Championships campaign.
Returning home in 2003, Taumaunu worked for the State Services Commission in the Chief Executive Employment and Development Unit. In 2008 she became assistant coach for the Silver Ferns, under head coach Ruth Aitken, and in 2011 took over as head coach. In New Zealand, Taumaunu's governance roles have included The Correspondence School, The Broadcasting Standards Authority, the Alcohol Advisory Council, Sport New Zealand and she is a former Director of High Performance of Sport NZ. She is currently the High Performance Director for Netball Central Zone and Te Wananga o Raukawa Pulse and a member of the New Zealand Parole Board.
Of Ngāti Porou and Ngāi Tahu descent, Taumaunu was inducted into the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame in 1996 and into the Māori Sports Hall of Fame in 2007.