2018 Primary Election Candidates

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MURRAY, Francine Kanani
Name on ballot:

MURRAY, Francine Kanani

Running for:

OHA trustee

District (if applicable):


Political party:

Does not apply/Nonpartisan race

Campaign website:


Current occupation:

Interim Compliance Assurance & Community Outre



Previous job history:

I always knew my calling was to serve the Hawaiian community. In 1999, I started working at OHA in the accounting department where I became familiar with state procurement; I worked for the board of trustees updating the manuals with the Policy and Planni

Previous elected office, if any:

None. I am not a politician, but I feel very strongly that I can help OHA to take things to the next level and do more to help better the lives of Hawaiians. OHA can be a great resource for its people. But first it needs to be accountable and transparent,

What qualifies you to represent the people of Hawaii?

My parents taught us to leave a place better than it was when we arrived, be respectful and kind to each other. Our local values are why I promote local businesses, aloha ‘āina, and responsible sustainable growth for the future.
I’m Hawaiian and Hawai’i will always be my home. I wish to continue to give back to the community and help to make Hawaii a better place for generations to come.

What are the top three challenges facing the voters you seek to represent?

1. Jobs with higher pay
The economy may be good and the unemployment rate low, but people need higher paying jobs so that they don’t have to work 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet.
OHA should start a career services program to direct more Native Hawaiians to higher paying jobs and direct our people to innovative programs so they can get the skills they need. Many employers are looking for people with cultural knowledge to help them, not just in the visitor industry, but also in many other industries. Our expertise in that area could give many Hawaiians an entryway into higher-paying jobs.

2. Education
A product of the public-school system and single mother of two, I worked full-time as I became the first in my family to graduate from college. I know first-hand that education can open the doors to better jobs and higher pay.
OHA should have scholarship programs that support students until they complete their education, and partner with organizations to provide internships, mentoring programs and job placement.

3. Affordable housing
OHA should build affordable housing through public and private partnerships. For example: OHA could partner with DHHL, the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, to build affordable condominiums for people on the waitlist that may not be able to afford a single-family house.
Also, instead of selling land in Kaka‘ako Makai to the City of Honolulu, OHA could negotiate a land-trade for a parcel along the Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) and build affordable housing on the TOD route for working people making it easier for them to commute to and from work.
Housing is only one aspect of the equation. OHA can develop communities where people can live, work and play.

If elected, what will be your highest legislative priority?

Build a brighter future for Hawaii by developing progressive industries to help Hawaii thrive for generations to come.
Traditional Hawaiian methods of food cultivation can be combined with modern technology to effectively and sustainably feed a community. One method of increasing efficiency could be growing vertically in several layers using hydroponics. We could partner with schools to teach youth about sustainable food practices—practices that would increase local food production and help the state meet its food security goals.
OHA received land in Kakaako Makai in 2012. It should be used for responsible growth. The vacant land where Fisherman’s Wharf stood is prime waterfront property that could be a gathering place featuring several restaurants and eateries that serve sustainably grown produce from local farmers. Sadly, after six years, the property remains vacant. OHA needs to do better.

If elected, what can you do to improve the lives of your constituents?

Create jobs with higher pay, and develop communities where people can have more balanced richer lives.
As a Hawaiian working at Hawai’i Community Development Authority, I have witnessed how our cultural background enhances community redevelopment. In He’eia, we are working with Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi to restore and maintain the health of the wetlands, by removing invasive species, restoring historic farm roads, and working to double the amount of wetland taro grown on Oahu.

Is there anything else you would like voters to know about you?

After working at OHA for 18 years in almost every department, I know OHA’s strengths and weaknesses. OHA needs to be accountable and transparent. I will ensure every dollar is spent wisely.

Our people deserve a higher quality of life. We must focus on the needs of the Hawaiian community as a whole.
It’s time for positive change at OHA. Together we can be the change our people so richly deserve.

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