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Mauna to Mauna Ultra Happening Now on the Big Island of Hawaii

Endurance Events USA is pleased to announce the inaugural edition of the Mauna to Mauna Ultra, which is happening now on the Big Island and will continue until May 20, 2017. This unique event is a 6-stage, 7 day, self-supported footrace, covering a cumulative distance of approximately 155 miles (250 km). The race is open to runners and hikers.

The 155-mile course route which began at Coconut Island in Hilo, winds through 11 of the world’s 13 climate zones, and finishes at Hapuna Beach. The course is taking participants up the world’s most massive mountain (Mauna Loa) and part way up the world’s tallest mountain (Mauna Kea), hence the name of the race: Mauna to Mauna. Participants are climbing more than 16,000 feet over the course of the race.

The field of participants from all over the world has come together for this challenging event, assuming the responsibility of carrying their own backpacks containing food, sleeping bag, mat and other mandatory equipment for the week.

Participants could elect to compete as individuals or teams. Participants were expected to possess basic outdoor survival skills such as familiarity with outdoor gear and backpacking. However, they were not required to possess any technical navigational or climbing skills to take part in the Event. Entrants from 20 countries are participating.

The event is sponsored by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, Island of Hawai‘i Visitors Bureau and the County of Hawai‘i.

Please visit the event website at www.m2multra.com for more information. Follow the event on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/mauna2mauna.

 

Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke’elikolani Na Pua Lei O Ka Na’auao, Kupulau 2017 (College of Hawaiian Language Dean’s List, Spring 2017)

Ke kukala aku nei ko ke Kulanui o Hawai’i ma Hilo koleke `o Ka Haka `Ula O Ke`elikolani, i na inoa o na haumana kaha `oi no ke kau Kupulau 2017:

(The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Ka Haka `Ula O Ke`elikolani College of Hawaiian Language announces its Dean’s List for the Spring 2017 semester):

Jainine Abraham, Rhonda Akano, Destanie Alayon, Zion Apao, Joshua Bass, Laura Birse, Christopher Chow, Ramzen Coakley, Kaleimomi Dolera, Jayme Doyle, Kalamaku Freitas, Roberta Gaskin, Ezra Grace, David Griffith, Karise Hallsten, Stephen Hasegawa, Jetamio Henshaw, Kameron Ho, Pomaikai Iaea,

Alexa Iannantuano, Yukako Iha, Alana Kanahele, Mary Kealaiki, Hyesun Kong, Brittany Laddusaw, Yan Liu, Sheena Lopes, Haruka Miura, Lauren Mizuba, Ashley-Anne Morishita, Ashley Nakoa-Kawahakui, Ikaaka Pang, Moananuimaikalani Peleiholani-Blankenfeld, Sarah Rafferty, Samantha Reis, Sharnelle Renti Cruz, Josiane Saccu, Steven Sayers, Kaulana Stanley, Taylor Traub, Jessica Valladares, and Kotaro Yogi.

UH Hilo College of Pharmacy Names Spring 2017 Dean’s List

The following students from the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy have been named to the Dean’s List for the 2017 spring semester.

The Class of 2017 has been on experiential rotations during their final year of study.

Class of 2018: Chelsea Aipoalani, Tiffany Alberg, Ciara Butts, Goody Cacal, Robby-Sean Cayetano, Matt Chen, Jane Choi, Karen Christian, Mathew Eng, Sara Evanko, Erik Ferreira, Jennifer Fujio, Cierra Gauvin, Kelli Goo, Kelsy Kam, Jui-Yu Kao, Jonathan Kataoka, Macie Kim, Krystle Kiyuna, Katrina Kutter, Bernice La, XuanLam Le, Tram Le, Jessica Lee, Nicolette Lew, Miyuki Miller, Niaz Nafisi, Christopher Nakagawa, Kerri Nakatsu, Vicky Nguyen, Phuong Nguyen, Phuong An Nguyen-Huu, Megan Olaguer, Marina Ortiz, Carli Owan, Jessica Penaranda, Tran Pham, Joann Phan, Niko Pogorevcnik, Caroline Rhee, Lauren Sato, Lauren Skorheim, Andrew Skorheim, John James Taman, Ha Tran, Quan Truong, Paolo Vinh Tuan Truong, Amber Uto, Zebedee Walpert, Candace Woo, Seungyeun Yoo

Class of 2019: Sydney Barney, Deniz Bicakci, Athena Borhauer, Rene-Scott Chavez, Torrence Ching, Katrina Downey, Samantha Gonzalez, Cathlyn Goo, Leigh Heffner, Faith Hicks, Vance Hill, Tyler Hirokawa, Preston Ho, Kaylee Hoang, Kelly Kofalt, Logan Kostur, Kevin Lei, San Ly, Kate Malasig, Tyler Millar, Jennifer Nguyen, Kelsey Noetzelmann, Kara Paulachak, David Pham, Gam Phan, Rachel Randall, Jessica Regpala, Lindsey Reinholz, Desiree Shouse, Clement Tran Tang, Shannon Trinh, Nicholas Tsoi, Ashley Uehara, Nancy Wong, Veronica Wong, Krystin Yasay, Carrie Yeung

Class of 2020: BJ Isaac Acosta, David Cao, Brandi Chun, Wilson Datario, Joshua Dillon, Jensine Melody Domingo, Courtney Elam, Amelia Furlan, Jhoana Paula Gonzales, Taylor Hori, Su Hyon Kwon, Kamala Lizama, Tracy Lopez, Mary Lui, Vincent Manalo, Jarin Miyamoto, Shahrzad Mohammadi, Tony Moua, Stacey Nguyen, Andrew Nguyen, Kathleen Nguyen, Brent Ocker, Rachel Paragas, Tyler Peterson, Felix Rasgo, Robyn Rector, Taumie Richie, Shaina Saiki, Reid Shimada, Samantha Texeira, Andrew Thai, Jared Toba, Johnny Tran, Kelsey Trujillo, Kyle Tsubota, Thi Hong Vo, Stacie Waiamau, Brooke Zarriello

Public Informational Meeting on Rat Lungworm Disease on Molokai

The Hawai‘i State Department of Health (DOH), Maui District Health Office, will hold a public informational meeting on rat lungworm disease on Tuesday, May 30, 2017 at the Mitchell Pauole Community Center on Molokaʻi from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. The meeting will include an opportunity for the public to ask questions.

A number of public health experts and community partners will be present to share their findings and recommendations on preventing the spread of rat lungworm, including Lorrin W. Pang, M.D., Maui District Health Officer; Sara Routley, Health Educator; Alton Arakaki from the University of Hawai‘i’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR); Harmonee Williams of Sustʻaina-ble Molokaʻi; and Lori Buchanan from the Nature Conversancy of Hawai‘i.

Rat lungworm is a rare disease caused by the parasite Angiostrongylus cantonensis which is found in rats, slugs and snails. The disease affects the brain and spinal cord and occurs when a person ingests raw or undercooked snails or slugs or unwashed raw produce such as leafy greens. To date, DOH has confirmed 15 cases of the illness in Hawai‘i for 2017, including nine (9) from Hawai‘i Island, four (4) Maui residents and two (2) Maui visitors.

DOH has launched a number of initiatives to address rat lungworm. Together with partner agencies, community meetings have been held across Maui to educate the public on rat lungworm and to share best practices on the prevention of this disease, including the proper care and washing of produce, as well as rodent and slug control. DOH food safety inspectors have also worked with permitted food establishments on hygiene and food preparation, and medical advisories were sent to physicians and hospitals to increase awareness of the disease. DOH is planning future public information efforts to educate residents and visitors about rat lungworm.

The informational meeting on Moloka‘i is also supported by Rosie Davis from Huli Au Ola Area Health Education Center (AHEC); Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa and staff; Luana Alcon from the Maui County Parks & Recreation-Moloka‘i District; Margaret Makekau and DOH staff-Moloka‘i Office; State Senator J. Kalani English; and State Representative Lynn DeCoite.

Please call the AHEC at (808) 646-9037 or the DOH Maui District Health Office at (808) 984-8201 for more information on the meeting.

MUMPS OUTBREAK – Hawaii Department of Health Confirms FIVE ADDITIONAL Mumps Cases

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) today confirmed five (5) additional cases of Oahu residents with mumps bringing the total number of cases in 2017 to 47. The recently confirmed cases include children and adults whose infection is linked to other cases on Oahu. None of the cases required hospitalization.

The department expects to see more cases of mumps in Hawaii as the viral disease is highly contagious and circulating on Oahu.

The classic mumps symptom of parotitis often results in a tender, swollen jaw. Other symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, and loss of appetite. Some people with mumps have very mild or no symptoms. The disease is spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The disease can also be spread by sharing items, such as cups or eating utensils, or by touching contaminated objects or surfaces and then touching the eyes, nose, or mouth.

The MMR vaccine protects against measles, mumps, and rubella, and prevents most cases of mumps. Two doses of the vaccine are 88 percent effective at protecting against mumps and one dose is 78 percent effective. Being fully vaccinated can help protect loved ones, family members, friends, classmates and coworkers.

MMR vaccine is available at local pharmacies across the state. To locate a vaccinating pharmacy in your community, visit http://health.hawaii.gov/docd/vaccines-immunizations/vaccine-locators/ or call the Aloha United Way information and referral line at 2-1-1.

Additional information about mumps and the ongoing investigation can be found on the DOH website at http://health.hawaii.gov/docd/department-of-health-investigating-mumps-cases/.

Hawaii Attorney General Chin Urges Department of Justice to Rescind Harsh New Sentencing Guidelines

Coalition of States Ask for Dialogue with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Criminal Justice Issues

Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin joined District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine and attorneys general from 13 other states in calling for United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions to rescind new instructions for Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors that are neither smart on crime nor good for public safety. The state attorneys general also asked to meet with Sessions to discuss smarter, data-driven approaches to criminal justice policy that are better for public safety and more fiscally sound.

In a letter sent to Sessions, the attorneys general write that “there is a strong and bipartisan national consensus that the harsh sentencing practices reflected in the DOJ policy announced last week do not increase public safety, and that consensus is supported by strong data.” Additionally, they say that “the new DOJ policy runs contrary not only to this consensus, but to basic principles of equal justice and sound fiscal policy.”

Attorney General Chin said, “Jeff Sessions wants to turn back the clock to a generation when sentencing policies impacted minorities unfairly and led to overcrowded prisons. Much research conducted and data analyzed since the time I started as a Honolulu deputy prosecutor in 1998 has taught law enforcement what works better and what is more fair. At a time when crime statewide is relatively low, this new DOJ policy hurts our community.”

Click to read full letter

Joining Attorneys General Chin and Racine in today’s letter are attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Vermont and Washington state.

Governor Ige Honors Hawaii State’s Top Employees

Gov. David Ige today recognized winners of the Governor’s Awards, which honors State Executive Branch employees, managers and work teams who exemplify the highest caliber of public service and dedication in serving the people of Hawai‘i. The statewide program is administered by the Department of Human Resources Development (DHRD).

Governor David Ige

“Public employees have made important contributions to our continuing efforts to improve the efficiency and quality of government services,” said Gov. Ige. “We are honored to work with such dedicated individuals, and we appreciate all they do each and every day.”

Here is a list of the awards presented:

STATE MANAGER OF THE YEAR: Mark Patterson, corrections manager, Department of Human Services

Mark is directly responsible for the effective delivery of services to youth at the Hawai‘i Youth Correctional Facility. He has worked tirelessly to create a pu‘uhonua, a place of sanctuary for healing, for Hawai‘i’s troubled youth.  Plans are underway to provide a communal space for various faith-spiritual based groups to meet and share their services with the youth and their families.

EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR: Lowell Spencer, school custodian, Department of Education

As Head Custodian at Honowai Elementary School, Lowell has transformed  the 50-year-old campus, which now features well-manicured grounds lined with native Hawaiian plants. He has built a team of staff members who have repaired and re-purposed items in innovative ways, keeping the school’s buildings in excellent condition.

STATE TEAM OF THE YEAR: NextEra-Hawaiian Electric Merger Evaluation Team, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

This dedicated 15-member team worked tirelessly to process and analyze more than a hundred thousand pages of information in their review of the proposed $4.3 billion merger between NextEra and the Hawaiian Electric Companies. In each and every instance, they upheld the division’s mission to protect and advance the interests of Hawai‘i’s regulated utility consumers.

“These exceptional state employees have selflessly given of themselves to enrich the lives of those they serve,” said Governor Ige.  “Their accomplishments perpetuate the aloha spirit and make our state a special place to live and work.”

The three winners were selected from 56 exceptional groups and individual nominees.  A volunteer Selection Committee of five prominent members of the community carefully reviewed the 56 nomination packets and rated them according to defined categories.  The committee presented their recommendations for the three awards to Governor Ige.

The five members of this year’s Selection Committee are: Paula Akana, News Anchor, KITV-4; Roy Amemiya, Jr., Managing Director, City & County of Honolulu; Christopher Conklin, Executive Director, Honolulu-Pacific Federal Executive Board; Kim Gennaula, Executive Director of Advancement, Iolani Schools; and Scott Williams, Executive Director, Lex Brodie’s Tire, Brake & Service Company.

Hokulea Sets Sail for Hawaii and Historic Worldwide Voyage Homecoming

After 5 days in the community of Tautira – a  second home of the Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) and legendary canoe Hokulea – the crews of Hokulea and Hikianalia bid  a warm goodbye to their Tahitian voyaging ohana and departed on the final historic leg of the Worldwide Voyage: sailing home to Hawaii.

The people of Tautira have been the Tahitian caretakers of the canoes and crews of PVS since Hokulea’s maiden voyage in 1976. Upon arrival in Tautira, the crew payed homage to the family ties so important to the shared voyaging heritage of Hawaii and Tahiti, visiting the grave sites of leaders who helped build the connection more than forty years ago.

The crews were hosted at Mayor Papa Sane’s home and welcomed as family in this voyaging community so closely held to Hawaii’s own.

The morning of Wednesday, May 17, Hokulea, sister canoe Hikianalia, and escort vessel Gershon II began the final leg of the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage departing from Tahiti to head back home to Hawaii. This last, historic stretch of the sail plan is expected to take 3-4 weeks (pending weather).

The canoes will make a celebratory return to Honolulu on Saturday, June 17 at Magic Island for a cultural welcoming ceremony followed by a grand celebration open to the entire community.

The week-long celebration will continue with the Malama Honua Fair and Summit, a three-day event at the Hawaiʻi Convention Center , which will highlight the voyaging, cultural, environmental, educational, and health and well-being missions of the Worldwide Voyage by sharing malama honua “stories of hope” and voyage-inspired initiatives and activities with the public.

The event’s inspirational speaker series will feature local and global speakers who have engaged with the Voyage including: Megan Smith, 3rd chief technology officer of the United States; Dieter Paulmann, founder of Okeanos Foundation for the Sea; and Ocean Elders Sylvia Earle, Jean-Michel Cousteau, and Don Walsh. Registration for these events is now open at www.hokulea.com/summit.

New Hawaii House Leadership Team Empowers Women and the Next Generation

Hawaii State House Speaker Scott K. Saiki announced his full leadership team today. His new leadership team for the House of Representatives will help to empower women and the next generation of leaders at the State Capitol.

From left: Rep. Jarrett Keohokalole, Rep. Aaron Ling Johanson, Rep. Mark M. Nakashima, Rep. Dee Morikawa, Rep. Della Au Belatti, House Speaker Scott Saiki, Rep. Cindy Evans, Rep. Henry J.C. Aquino, Rep. Kaniela Ing, and Rep. Justin Woodson

For the first time since statehood, three of the top four leadership positions will be filled by woman and seven of the total 11 leadership positions will be filled by lawmakers in their early 40s or younger. Representatives from all three neighbor island counties comprise nearly half of the leadership team.

From left: Rep. Dee Morikawa, Rep. Della Au Belatti, House Speaker Scott Saiki, and Rep. Cindy Evans

“As we look to build and reform the Hawaii State House of Representatives, it is important to ensure that women and the next generation of leaders are given the opportunity to lead under my tenure as Speaker. We have a real diversity of perspective and life experience in this leadership team that will position us well to lead the state on the many critical issues facing us today,” said Speaker Saiki.

The new House leadership includes:

  • Vice Speaker – Representative Della Au Belatti (District 24)
  • Majority Leader – Representative Cindy Evans (District 7), Hawaii Island
  • Majority Floor Leader – Representative Dee Morikawa (District 16), Kauai
  • Majority Policy Leaders – Representative Jarrett Keohokalole (District 48)
  • Representative Kaniela Ing (District 11), Maui
  • Majority Whips – Representative Henry J.C. Aquino (District 38)
  • Representative Aaron Ling Johanson (District 31)
  • Representative Chris Lee (District 51)
  • Representative Mark M. Nakashima (District 1), Hawaii Island
  • Representative Justin Woodson (District 9), Maui

Big Island Police Arrest Suspect in Pahoa Bank Robbery

Hawaiʻi Island police arrested a 57-year-old man for a robbery incident that occurred Wednesday afternoon (May 17).

Photo via William-Jon Ah Yo

Responding to a 1:47 p.m. call, officers responded to the 15-2000 block of Pāhoa Village Road in Pāhoa after a man reportedly demanded money from bank tellers before brandishing a knife. The suspect fled on foot after receiving an undisclosed amount of cash. Neither the bank employees nor were any customers injured.

Photo via William-Jon Ah Yo

At 2:25 p.m. and following a search of the area by police, Anthony Gover was located approximately 800 feet away from the bank in the parking lot of the Pāhoa Community Aquatic Center where he was taken into custody without incident. A knife, along with an undisclosed amount of cash suspected to have been taken from the bank have been recovered.

Anthony Gover

Gover is currently being held in the Hilo cellblock on suspicion of robbery in the first degree and theft in the second degree while Detectives with the Area I Criminal Investigations Section continue the investigation.

Police ask anyone who may have witnessed the incident or have any other information about it to contact Detective Grant Todd of the Area I Criminal Investigation Section at (808) 961-2381 or Grant.Todd@hawaiicounty.gov.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the island-wide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.00. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers does not record calls or subscribe to any Caller ID service. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.