Karen Eoff Announces Candidacy for Hawaii County Council District 8

Karen Eoff

Aloha Friends and Family,

As you know, Councilman K. Angel Pilago has announced he will not seek re-election in 2012.  After much discussion with family and friends, and with the Pilago ‘Ohana, I am happy to announce that I have decided to run for the District 8 County Council seat to represent the Kona community and the island of Hawai‘i.

I have been married to my husband, Gary Eoff since 1975 and together we moved to Hawai‘i in 1981 to join my sister who also resides on the island.  We have lived in Kona for over 30 years.  We have several “hanai” children and grandchildren whom we have helped raise.

I am a founding member of the Kohanaiki ‘Ohana in 1987, serving as President from 2004 – 2008. The organization’s mission is to protect the natural and cultural resources along the Kona coastline. The Kohanaiki ‘Ohana successfully guided two Landmark Supreme Court wins and a Legislative victory protecting the traditional and customary rights of Native Hawaiians, encouraging public participation for good government, and improving state land use laws with regards to impacts of development on our communities.

After the legal issues at Kohanaiki were resolved, the Kohanaiki ‘Ohana worked with Mayor Kim’s administration and Kohanaiki Developers to forge a “Good Faith Agreement” for a 3-way partnership (Home/Landowners, County, Community) to a create a Shoreline Park at Kohanaiki which will be dedicated to the County for a public beach park.

From my early work grassroots organizing through my more recent work within the County government, I have a strong respect our multi-cultural diversity as a community and want to help build a caring and respectful society.  I believe in transparency in government, bringing fair and balanced government to island politics, and protecting our open space and conservation lands.

I am currently working as Legislative Assistant to Councilman Pilago, and assisted him during his first two terms on the County Council as well.  I have worked under three Council Chairs.  Over the last three years I have served as Secretary to the County Charter Commission and to the County Redistricting Commission.  My track record as an advocate for Kona combined with my experience in the Legislative Branch has prepared me well to serve on the County Council.

Many of the improvements that have been brought to District 8 have come about through partnerships and cooperation.  With your help and support, I will continue to work to see these projects to completion and continue to carry on the work that is best for our community and our island home.

Mahalo to all of you who have encouraged me to take on this new role.