UHPA continues to endorse Representative Richard Onishi. Rep. Onishi is a member of the House Higher Education Committee and brings a vast array of knowledge to the committee regarding retaining and recruiting faculty, the importance of research funding and an understanding of the economic challenges that face our islands. We appreciate the opportunity to work with Rep. Onishi.
With your support UHPA believes David Tarnas will be the next representative for House District 7. He is a former UH Sea Grant Extension Agent for West Hawai‘i. He currently serves as an environmental planner on projects for harbors, farms, fishponds and forest plantations. He is knowledgable in the areas of scientific research facilities and renewable energy projects. He has served the community in various positions from AYSO to Waimea Community Theater. David’s vast experiences and knowledge will be a valuable support UHPA faculty and House District 7.
UHPA is pleased to endorse Dale Kobayashi for House District 23. In the 2016 election cycle Dale came within 71 votes of ousting the incumbent, this cycle the incumbent chose not to even run for re-election. The seat is now vacant and there are five candidates vying to represent House District 23. UHPA PEC had an opportunity to speak with each of the candidates through different venues. We were able to narrow the final interview process down to the top two and then after two rounds of interviews the recommendations was to continue support for Dale. He continues to be involved in the community; chairing the neighborhood board. He has retired as a full time career in the financial arena but has kept his finger on the pulse of Hawai‘i finances and is ready to improve the minimum wage, health fund and take on the tough funding issues facing UHPA and UH.
Lisa Kitagawa is another newcomer to the Legislature and UHPA is pleased to endorse her. Although new to the elected side of the legislative process, Lisa has been working at the legislature for Representative Aaron Johnson, Chair of the Labor Committee. Previously Lisa spent 15 years working in various positions at UH and as a member of UHPA; form CTAHR to Leadership Development and as an APT. Lisa’s time with UH provided her with insight to the needs of UHPA faculty in areas of facilities, recruitment, retention and grant funding. Lisa is also up-to-date on Labor issues that are before the Hawai‘i Labor Relations Board. She understands the struggles of protecting Chapter 89 with the Janus case just around the corner. Lisa’s background will serve her well as an advocate for UHPA and her community. We are excited to endorse Lisa for House District 48.
UHPA endorses another newcomer to the legislative process, Scot Matayoshi, House District 49. Scot is currently an Associate at the law firm of Schlack Ito. Scott received his law degree from the University of Hawai‘i’s William S. Richardson School of Law. He also taught science at Nanakuli Middle School and continues his involvement in education as the President of the Malama Honua Public Charter School Foundation. Scot enjoys serving his community on the Neighborhood Board, VP of the Kaneohe Christmas Parade and member of the Ko‘olaupoko Hawaiian Civic Club. In his spare time he relaxes at the dojo where he is a blackbelt. Scot’s background made him an ideal candidate for House District 49, he knows his community well and as a graduate of UH Law School and practicing attorney he has a unique perspective and understanding of the legal issues Janus will have on the UHPA faculty.