Sen. Kahele Named Higher Education Chair

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Kaiali’i Kahele. Photo courtesy Office of Governor David Ige.

Kaiali‘i Kahele. Photo courtesy of the Office of Gov. David Ige.

Newly elected State Sen. Kaiali‘i Kahele (Dist. 1 – Hilo), was selected to chair the Senate Committee on Higher Education by Senate leadership on Tuesday, Nov. 29.

Sen. Kahele will fulfill the final two years of his late father’s term in the Senate, representing the residents of Hilo after being elected to the seat on Nov. 8, 2016.

Sen. Kahele, a 1992 graduate of Hilo High School, pursued his higher education at Hawai‘i Community College, the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo and received his Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa in 1998.


As the chair of HED, Sen. Kahele will oversee the formulation of legislation for the University of Hawai‘i System, including three baccalaureate universities, seven community colleges and four educational centers across the state.

In addition, his committee purview includes the Senate confirmation of the University of Hawai‘i Board of Regents.

Sen. Kahele will also serve as vice chair of the Senate Committee on Education with Sen. Michelle N. Kidani, the committee’s chair.


“It is an honor and I am humbled to represent the residents of Senate District One in Hilo,” said Sen. Kahele. “I appreciate the trust and confidence the Senate leadership has in me with these important committee assignments. I have a passion for education and providing quality, affordable education for all keiki at all levels across our state. Working together with Sen. Kidani, I am looking forward to reshaping P-20 education throughout Hawai‘i and providing opportunities for our children to compete in the global arena as well as giving them the tools to shape the future of our Island home.”

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