Program Manager, Consultant at USPACOM
US Army, Major (Ret)
Deputy Director - Pentagon Force Protection Agency, Pentagon, Washington, DC Consultant - Camber Corporation and ICF International
Small Business Owner/Financial Planner - USPA & IRA
I grew up in Kalihi-Palama (KP) and graduated from Farrington HS, Chaminade
University (CU) and UH ROTC. My life-long goal has been to serve Hawaii through public office. I began holding leadership and public service positions as a student. Those positions included being a member of the first KP Neighborhood Board (NB) and Governor Ariyoshi’s appointee as a Health Commissioner for Sub-area Honolulu. Before graduating, two of our late, great statesmen encouraged me to pursue a military career. They urged me to then return home and use my experiences and knowledge to serve the people of Hawaii. I followed their advice and retired as a Major, US Army and decorated combat veteran.
As a military leader, small business owner, and Federal civilian at the Pentagon, I successfully managed budgets of up to $250M. I am an experienced long/short-term planner with excellent negotiation skills, and consistently turned complex “No Win” situations into “Successful Win-Win Outcomes.” In 2015, I received the highest civilian award from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and a Congressional Letter from the late US Congressman Mark Takai. Currently, I am a consultant-USPACOM, adjunct professor-CU, professional Hawaiian musician, and volunteer with military and civic organizations to include the Ala Moana/Kaka’ako NB and Makua Ali’i Senior Center.
I am concerned with Hawaii’s future and our one-party legislature. If there is no change to the status quo, Hawaii will continue to experience the same challenges.
It’s time for a change in leadership. I bring fresh ideas to the table. I will work with both sides of the aisle to bring common-sense and critical thinking to the State Legislature. Together, I believe we can craft realistic long-term solutions to the challenges Hawaii faces.
My list is in no particular order of precedence since all three are my co-equal
priorities that require immediate attention and action.
Homelessness. I believe that no Hawaii resident should be forced, or allowed, to live on the street or in public common areas. Individuals and families become homeless for a variety of reasons. The current plan to build temporary housing, though commendable, appears to be only a short-term fix that fails to resolve the complex root causes of homelessness. If elected, I plan to bring Federal, State, and local subject matter experts together to examine the reasons residents became homeless and suggest long-term solutions. I will identify all profit and non-profit organizations related to homelessness, consolidate like programs, eliminate duplicative efforts, assess whether additional programs are needed, and press for partnering with private industries. I will advocate for realigning funds from various programs (without raising taxes) and support “living wage” legislation.
Improving the Public Education System. Hawaii hasn’t done enough to improve our public education system; one of the consequences is that Hawaii is not retaining quality teachers. If elected, my plan is to: a) audit the Hawaii Department of Education to identify areas of improvement; b) press for legislation to increase teachers’ pay and benefits; c) provide incentives and tax credits for retired teachers, kupuna, and businesses to participate in after-school academic tutoring and life skills programs; d) propose legislation to make student loan repayment more feasible through a state/local job program for graduates; e) propose legislation to partner with businesses to adopt a school and rebuild the public school aging infrastructure. Teachers love seeing their students learn and excel. If Hawaii’s public school system encourages students to fully expand their potential and prepares them for the path they follow after graduation, it will be a “Win-Win” situation for Hawaii’s students and teachers alike.
Affordable Senior Care Facilities. There is a need to build more Senior Care facilities statewide for our aging population. In the interim, we must find a solution for families paying high costs of “out-of-pocket” caregiving expenses to care for their kupuna and other family members requiring home care.
If elected, my priority will be to press for legislation that provides common sense
solutions that are realistic and enforceable. For example, I will work toward legislation that addresses the root causes of homelessness, lays out long-term solutions, and incorporates corresponding laws that are enforceable.
I plan to look for ways to reduce the tax burden and work toward making Hawaii affordable again. As part of the plan, I see a need to eliminate the long-standing “Tax and Spend” practice in Hawaii.
I don’t have all the answers, but am willing to work across the aisle to identify ways to make Hawaii’s cost of living more affordable. I plan to work with businesses to diversify Hawaii’s economy and create higher paying jobs and careers. I am for rebuilding Hawaii’s agriculture and farms, promoting local small business throughout Senate District 12, and promoting statewide business and investment opportunities. I envision being able to incorporate environmental concerns while diversifying Hawaii’s economy.
Throughout my career, I have effectively created successful outcomes in “No- Win” situations. My goal is to now apply my expertise and experiences in order to effect realistic, positive changes for Senate District 12 and Hawaii.