OHA board elects new chair

“OHA must continue to strengthen itself as a “tool” for successful Native Hawaiian self-determination,” said Trustee S. Haunani Apoliona – Photo: Zach Villanueva


HONOLULU—The Board of Trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) announced today that Trustee Colette Y. Machado has been elected as the new chairperson of the board. Machado replaces Haunani Apoliona who has been the chairperson for nearly 10 years.

“Through the years, Chairperson Apoliona has done a great job of managing the many different challenges we face as an organization,” said Chairperson Machado. “The transition has been smooth and we are all very excited to begin this new chapter.”

Machado represents Moloka‘i and Läna‘i and has been a trustee since 1996. She has also served as a commissioner on the State Land Use, Hawaiian Home Lands, Moloka‘i Island Burial Council, and the Kaho‘olawe Island Reserve commissions.

“OHA has just celebrated its 30th anniversary and we are looking forward to all that the next 30 years will bring,” Machado said. “There are many challenges ahead but also many opportunities, and as we move forward, OHA will work together to improve the quality of life for Native Hawaiians.”

Apoliona was first elected to the board in 1996 and continues as Trustee at-large in her fourth term.

“I am grateful to my colleagues for allowing me the privilege of being the longest serving Board Chairperson in OHA’s 30 year history; nine years and nearly 8 months. Since 2000, the OHA Board, collectively, lead significant progress for our beneficiaries, but there remains more to achieve,” Apoliona said. “This board leadership transition is something I have planned for and provides a good start as we begin the new decade. OHA must continue to strengthen itself as a “tool” for successful Native Hawaiian self-determination and I look forward to working with Chairperson Machado, our OHA Board and our staff from Hawai‘i to Washington D.C. Mahalo to all for your support.”

Apoliona will give the key note address for the State of OHA and the Hawaiian Community today highlighting OHA activities in 2010 and other milestones in our Hawaiian community.

This year also marks the election of a new Board of Trustee member, Peter Apo, and re-election of four current trustees, Rowena Akana, Boyd Mossman, Oswald Stender and John Waihe‘e IV.

Reorganization of the board included changes to committee assignments with Waihe‘e as the chairperson and Apo as vice chair for the Committee on Beneficiary Advocacy and Empowerment (BAE); and Stender as the chairperson and Robert Lindsey as vice chair for Asset and Resource Management (ARM).

“I have full confidence in the reorganized board and we will be playing to the strengths of our members to move OHA forward into a brighter future for all Native Hawaiians,” Machado said.

Download this press release. (PDF)
View the State of OHA Address

Media Contact:  
Lloyd Yonenaka

Office of Hawaiian Affairs
Office: 808-594-1982
Mobile: 808-754-0078