Endangered Species Recovery Committee Seeking Applications

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The Hawai‘i Department of Land and Resources announces that the State Endangered Species Recovery Committee (ESRC) is now accepting applications for the Hawaiian cultural practitioner position on the commission.

Applications will be reviewed and the names of qualified individuals will be sent to the governor, who will nominate one person for each vacant position. The term of the new appointee is four years, with a maximum of two terms. The appointment is subject to confirmation by the Senate.

The ESRC serves as consultant to the Board of Land and Natural Resources and the department on matters relating to endangered, threatened, proposed, and candidate species. The committee consists of seven members:

  • The chairperson of the board or the chairperson’s designee,
  • The ecoregion director of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service or their designee,
  • The director of the United States Geological Survey, Biological Resources Division or their designee,
  • The Dean of the University of Hawaii at Mānoa College of Natural Sciences or their designee, and
  • Three at-large members appointed by the governor pursuant to section 26-34. Nongovernmental members shall serve for four-year staggered terms, and shall not serve for more than two consecutive terms.

These are:

Two field biologists with expertise in conservation biology; and a person possessing a background in native Hawaiian traditional and customary practices, as evidenced by:

  • A college degree in a relevant field, such as Hawaiian studies, native Hawaiian law, native Hawaiian traditional and customary practices, or related subject area;
  • Work history that demonstrates an appropriate level of knowledge in native Hawaiian traditional and customary practices; or
  • Substantial experience in native Hawaiian traditional and customary practices.

The responsibilities of the Endangered Species Recovery Committee members include reviewing all applications and proposals for habitat conservation plans (HCP), safe harbor agreements (SHA), and incidental take licenses. Members make recommendations, based on a site visit and full review of the best available scientific and other reliable data. They must also give consideration to the cumulative impacts of the proposed action on the recovery potential of the endangered, threatened, proposed, or candidate species. They then recommend to the department and the board as to whether or not applications should be approved, amended, or rejected. The ESRC is also responsible for annually reviewing approved HCPs and SHAs to ensure compliance, and to make recommendations for adaptive management.


At-large members are volunteers and serve without pay, although certain expenses such as travel are reimbursed.

Applications for the Hawaiian cultural practitioner position are due by Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018 and can be submitted online (select “Department of Land and Natural Resources,” then “Endangered Species Recovery Committee”).

Interested applicants may contact Katherine Cullison, Conservation Initiatives Coordinator, Division of Forestry and Wildlife, at (808) 587-4148.

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