Raised in a family with both staunch Democrats and Republicans, I remember the Democratic Party of my great-grandmother, a fruit-canner, and my grandmother. They both could live in dignity and independence thanks to careful saving, Medicare, Social Security, and union pensions. We must live up to our Hawaiˈi legacy as champions for working people, including our retired senior citizens.
Every decision that I will make affects our residentsʻ bottom line, a duty which I take seriously. Our state can foster small businesses, and leverage federal money for infrastructure--Iʻve managed federal money for Oʻahu.
Education is the cornerstone of a democratic society. The first from my family to graduate from a 4-year college, I experienced doors opening for me because of the education and the experience that I received as a science student at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa.
Working families are sacrificing so much for our keiki to succeed. If elected, I will work with our teachers to reduce classroom size, improve teacher retention, and better train early childhood and special education teachers. But children are much more than statistics, so I recognize that statistics are only part of the story. Place-based education that helps our keiki think critically, and vocational training for our young trades workers can also meet the needs of our workforce.
Election time brings empty platitudes about the environment--Iʻve managed ecosystems. I restored rainforest in our ahuʻpuaʻa for 8 years, personally prevented some of our most imperiled Hawaiian species from becoming extinct, and worked as a US Forest and National Park Ranger. I can bring rare experience to the legislature as the only science professional running for state office.