Maui Mayor | Kaua‘i Mayor


In a special two-hour edition, INSIGHTS will assemble leading candidates in two major Mayoral races.


–At 8:00 pm, it’s the forum for Maui County Mayor. Voters on Maui, Moloka‘i and Lāna‘i will elect a new Mayor for the first time in eight years. Current County Councilmembers Elle Cochran and Don Guzman and former Councilmember Mike Victorino are among the candidates who want the job.


–In the second hour, beginning at 9:00 pm, the forum features candidates for Kaua‘i County, where voters will elect a new Mayor for the first time in a decade. County Councilmembers Derek Kawakami, Mel Rapozo, JoAnn Yukimura and County Parks Director Leonard Rapozo are among candidates running for this office.


Meet other candidates in the race for Mayor


Join us during our live discussion by phoning in, or leaving us a comment on Facebook or Twitter. INSIGHTS is also live streamed on pbshawaii.org and Facebook Live.


Phone Lines:
462-5000 on Oahu or 800-238-4847 on the Neighbor Islands.




Visit the PBS Hawai‘i Facebook page.


Join our live discussion using #pbsinsights







Other Candidates in the race for Maui Mayor and Kaua‘i Mayor


Seven citizens are running in the Primary Election for Mayor of Maui County. Three of them appeared in a live broadcast of Insights on PBS Hawai‘i on July 19. PBS Hawai‘i invited the four other candidates via email to share their views on issues facing Maui County in written form up to 750 words. The candidates are Beau Hawkes, Alec Hawley, Orion Kopelman and Laurent Zahnd. Only Kopelman and Zahnd responded by the July 6 deadline.


Seven citizens are running in the Primary Election for Mayor of Kaua‘i County. Four of them appeared in a live broadcast of Insights on PBS Hawai‘i on July 19. PBS Hawai‘i invited the three other candidates via email to share their views on issues facing Kaua‘i County in written form up to 750 words. The candidates are Ana Mo Des, Debra Kekaualua and Clint Yago. None responded by the July 6 deadline.


MAUI CANDIDATES:    Orion Kopelman   |   Laurent Zahnd



Orion Kopelman

Candidate Orion Kopelman

At age 56 I have been a businessman for the last 30 years. I would like to see the county run more like a business. I was a Silicon Valley executive. As Vice President of Engineering I helped a company grow from 50 to 500 people in 6 years and learned how to make organizations work in efficient and effective ways.


I wrote a book in 1995 called “Projects at Warp-Speed: your guide to Quality Rapid Product Development.” I used it as a textbook and taught engineers and marketing people at the universities of Stanford and Berkeley continuing studies for 15 years.

I started a small management consulting firm in 1992 and was its president for a couple decades. It helped clients worldwide make more money by completing their projects and developing their products in half the time, at half the cost, with double the fun.


One of our clients was NASA’s vendors working on the space station. This 300-person team of mostly software engineers were way behind schedule on this 10-year project. We got them back on schedule and NASA successfully launched the space station on time.


As mayor I would ensure that our county government works efficiently and well. Thanks to my determination, I graduated from Stanford University with a bachelor’s degree in Computer and Electrical Engineering in only 3 years, in the top 10% of my class.


Ten years ago. I wrote my 4th book called “Creating Mauitopia: Making Maui a Real Paradise.” You can download an updated version for FREE from mauitopia.org.

I want to see the county move towards creating the Mauitopia vision. Part of this vision asks individuals to earn their living by doing what they love for work and thereby serving the community and the world. I would also encourage home-based businesses to facilitate raising children and improve our quality of life.


Another part of the Mauitopia vision is a “BHAG.” A Big Hairy Ass Goal. It suggests we put an end to crime, so we can all feel safe and allow our creativity to blossom.


We have to make smart decisions for the present and long term. We need to value every member of our society including the disabled and our hopefully gracefully aging senior citizens, who now live longer and can actively contribute to our society. We need to stop GMO or Genetically Modified Organism farming until we can practice it in a way that’s proven safe. And finally, we would promote a unique community that models the society of the future.


A couple years ago I wrote a mini-book called “Success Personal Decision Making.” Please make the right decision and vote for me for mayor.


I’ve been a member of the Rotary Club of Maui for over a decade. Previously I had been a highschool state tennis champion. These days I practice Feldenkrais daily, a type of yoga that emphasizes awareness through movement.


Having written a book with the subtitle “Your Guide to Success in the Consciousness Age,” I value my spirituality a lot.


Top Three Goals and Objectives
Ori Kopelman, Candidate for Mayor of Maui


  1. Ensure most county work has deadlines and works with goals of quality, time, cost, and performance.


The founder of HewletPackard said, “what gets measured gets done.” All of the department heads in the county will be asked to set measurable objectives, including organizing as much work as possible in projects. We need to overcome the attitude of getting things done “wheneva.”


  1. Outsource as much county work as possible to private firms, as I believe the profit incentive gets things done more efficiently and effectively.


Have all department heads evaluate what of their department’s work can be outsourced. Have them get 3 competive bids.


  1. Put an end to crime so we can all feel safe and allow our creativity to blossom.


This seems like a BHAG, a Big Hairy Ass Goal, which has never been achieved in a community our size. The Aloha spirit and encouraging people to each do at least one random act of kindness (RAK) daily will make this happen.



Website: http://www.mauitopia.org


Facebook page: Ori Kopelman for Mayor


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Laurent Zahnd

Candidate Laurent Zahnd



My name is Laurent Zahnd, aka Mr L. I’m 34 and proud Dad of 4. I am a Management & Marketing Specialist.


I decided to run for Mayor after realizing that other candidates aren’t representing the people, nor making any real pledge to fix issues. The notion of public service got replaced by personal interest!


I’m aware that no one can get involved in Politics against the will of corporate interests, and that’s why my fellow Mayoral candidates only pretend to represent the people.


On another hand, the US just had to pull off the UN Human Rights because of its violations here in Hawai‘i. This isn’t Trump’s fault but ours as American occupiers of Hawai‘i, purposely ignoring the fact that we are occupying this Land illegally, and perpetuating a cultural Genocide on the Kanakas.


Up until now we were successful at silencing them, but the truth and the judgements are coming, and we will have to give back the stolen Land, and leave! Many of us will lose everything when that happens!


So I’m coming up with a solution to address this, before it’s too late, and restore our integrity as Americans.


My program is about restoring accountability and supporting the Hawaiians in the restoration of the Kingdom. Hawaiians won’t be revengeful and are ready to accept Americans who would like to stay.


Together, we have a Golden opportunity to transform the last State in the US; which otherwise will always be suffering the incapacity to compete with the Mainland.


Getting back to the neutral Kingdom will offer us the best geopolitical situation in today’s World; ideally situated between the US and Asia. This neutrality, comparable to the model of Switzerland, will offer us the opportunity to host a new location for UN negotiations between America and Asia, as well as the opportunity for duty-free trade and banking transactions.


This will literally bring TRILLIONS of dollars to Hawai‘i, enabling us to go from being the last State of the US, to being one of the first Nations in the World.


What is fantastic is that we don’t even need to exit the US, as we were never legally a part of it! The UN is very clear and qualifies our State as a fraudulent annexation.


The only interest of the US here is military, and there is a way to negotiate that. Switzerland for instance is neutral, but its army is still part of NATO, which makes it an ally of the US.


A newly formed Hawaiian National Guard could play the role of military and police to guarantee the Hawaiian independence. It could purchase its equipment from the US and lease a small portion of the Oahu base and a small district of Honolulu to the US so it could maintain the Pacific Command here for something like 20-30 years. But the condition for that lease would be to remove the troops and stop local military operations, while cleaning-up all the environmental impact generated, notably the leftover bombs and uranium traces.


As this transition would be a huge one, I’d propose to start first with a small scale experiment in Maui County, by creating a special status under the leadership of the UN. We could benefit from huge International and Federal funds to live a better life without all the pointless issues we suffer from today, and work together to rebuild the Hawaiian Kingdom institutions. We could then arbitrate the different land claims under International and Kingdom law and restore the forgotten Pono.


The Kingdom constitution will have to be revised and I would preach for a model of direct democracy (unlike the US), which would suppress most possibilities of corruption and guarantee a fair & equitable representation of all different Hawaiian factions that are now divided.


The opportunity for people to keep dual citizenship should be guaranteed, and as a small and suddenly rich Nation, it will be crucial to implement strict immigration policies.


I want us to be proud of ourselves and feel good about the Nation we are going to give to our Keiki.


It can be very simple to do what is right and repair the wrongdoings, and God did put everything in place for that miracle to happen today!


I wish we will transmute our shame and hurt and work together for our greater good. It’s important that everyone benefits from this transition, even the bad guys, because they won’t let go of their oppressive power otherwise.


Vote for Mr L August 11th!


Website: vote4L.com


Facebook Page: facebook.com/yourNewMayor


Twitter Page: twitter.com/yourNewMayor


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Episode # 918: Jerome Ribao and other stories




Students from H.P. Baldwin High School on Maui trace a fellow student’s road to recovery after he was hit by a drunk driver. In May 2017, Baldwin senior Jerome Ribao suffered a severe leg injury from the accident. Despite this setback, Jerome found ways to remain active. After graduation, Jerome plans to continue to work toward his career goal of becoming an auto mechanic.




–Students from Aliamanu Middle School on O‘ahu explore the fears and anxieties faced by students transitioning from elementary to middle school. (From the HIKI NŌ archives.)


–Students from Moanalua High School on O‘ahu profile a marching band director who encourages students not to be the best students in the world, but to be the best people for the world. (From the HIKI NŌ archives.)


–Students from Waimea High School on Kaua‘i tell the story of a Waimea graduate who became a successful t-shirt artist and returned to his home-town to give back to his community. (From the HIKI NŌ archives.)


–Students from Montessori School of Maui in Makawao show how to create a device that will occupy and entertain cats for hours on end.


–Students from Konawaena High School on Hawai‘i Island show how a sport with origins from Native American Indians is growing in popularity on their island.


–And students from Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School on Kaua‘i tell the story of a quadriplegic artist who has developed a unique way of painting. (From the HIKI NŌ archives.)


This episode of HIKI NŌ is hosted by students at Kapa‘a Middle School in Līhu‘e, Kaua‘i.



Episode # 916: Athlete Leihali‘a Panui and other stories




Students from Wai‘anae Intermediate School in West O‘ahu tell the story of Leihali‘a Panui, a female place-kicker and senior at Kamehameha Schools Kapalama who played on the school’s men’s varsity football team during the 2017 season. At first Leihali‘a’s father was not sure he wanted his daughter playing football, but Lei’s mother said, “I told my husband, ‘Who are we to say whether Leihali‘a can or cannot play football? We’ll just leave it up to the coaches and let them decide if she’s good enough for the team.’” The coaches decided Leihali‘a was good enough and welcomed her onto the team. Once he saw his daughter playing, Dad was won over: “It’s an amazing feeling seeing my daughter on the field playing football and hearing the spectators cheering her on.” Says Leihali‘a, “If you love something and you’re passionate about it, I would definitely think you should go for it 110% with all your heart because you don’t want to look back ten years later and regret it. Life is too short to have any regrets.”




–Students from Mid-Pacific on O‘ahu tell the story of a street performer turned painter who finds an enthusiastic audience in Waikīkī.


–Students from James Campbell High School in Leeward O‘ahu tell the story of a child of divorce who finds solace and a new family in dance.


–Students from Kapa‘a High School on Kaua‘i explore the reasons why their town has the largest concentration of Mexican restaurants in the state.


–Students from Aiea High School on O‘ahu show us how to make a money lei (a very popular lei among graduates).


–Students from Kua O Ka Lā Miloli‘i Hipu‘u Virtual Academy on Hawai‘i Island tell us about the traditional Hawaiian practice of ‘ōpelu fishing.


–Students from Ka Waihona o Ka Na‘auao Public Charter School tell the story of the instrument that made Hawaiian music popular around the world: the steel guitar.


This episode of HIKI NŌ is hosted by students at Kaiser High School in East O‘ahu.



Episode # 915: Girls Got Grit and other stories




Students from Sacred Hearts Academy, an all-girl school in the Kaimuki district of O‘ahu, tell the story of their school’s professional mentoring program called Girls Got Grit. The program places Sacred Hearts students in professional work places where they are mentored by female staffers. The story follows Sacred Hearts junior Shelby Mattos, who is interning at Hawaii News Now through Girls Got Grit. “Being in Girls Got Grit allows students to enter a professional business environment, and doing that kind of sets a level of expectations for when we enter the workforce,” says Mattos. Other Girls Got Grit internships include Castle Medical Center and Alexander & Baldwin. The program’s director Shelly Kramer says, “I want these girls to come out strong, empowered and feeling that they have a network that they can touch.”




–Students from Hilo Intermediate School on Hawai‘i Island show us how to make a refreshing AND healthy snack: a yogurt parfait.


–Students from Mililani Middle School in Central O‘ahu feature Hawai‘i Women in Filmmaking, a nonprofit with a mission of addressing gender inequity in the film and media industry.


–Students from Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School on Kaua‘i tell the story of a young woman who designs and builds a wheelchair for her disabled dog.


–Students from Seabury Hall Middle School in upcountry Maui explore the integral role of mules at Haleakala National Park.


–Students from Kapa‘a Middle School on Kaua‘i feature a young woman in the traditionally male role of a Samoan fire knife dancer.


–Students from King Intermediate School in Windward O‘ahu tell the story of a female student who fell in love with DJ-ing.


This episode of HIKI NŌ is hosted by students at President William McKinley High School in Honolulu.



Quality of Life on Kaua‘i


INSIGHTS ON PBS HAWAI‘I presents a series exploring the quality of life on each island, with residents from each island driving the conversations. What issues matter most to each island? These episodes are a precursor to our upcoming Election 2018 coverage. Our first discussion explores the issues most important to the residents of Kaua‘i.


Join us during our live discussion by phoning in, or leaving us a comment on Facebook or Twitter. INSIGHTS is also live streamed on pbshawaii.org and Facebook Live.


Phone Lines:
462-5000 on Oahu or 800-238-4847 on the Neighbor Islands.




Visit the PBS Hawai‘i Facebook page.


Join our live discussion using #pbsinsights



Election 2018 Preview


Hawai‘i has the distinction of having the lowest voter turnout in the country. Will that track record continue? INSIGHTS ON PBS HAWAI‘I previews what’s to come. In November, the people of Hawai‘i will elect a Governor, members of Congress, new Mayors for the counties of Maui and Kaua‘i, County Council members and State Legislators.


Join us during our live discussion by phoning in, or leaving us a comment on Facebook or Twitter. INSIGHTS is also live streamed on pbshawaii.org and Facebook Live.


Phone Lines:
462-5000 on Oahu or 800-238-4847 on the Neighbor Islands.




Visit the PBS Hawai‘i Facebook page.


Join our live discussion using #pbsinsights



Journey to Emalani

PBS HAWAII PRESENTS Journey to Emalani


The commemoration of Queen Emma’s 1871 visit to the upland forest of West Kauai, as experienced by three hula halau, is the subject of this PBS Hawai‘i-produced film. It follows the halau and their kumu hula to Kokee for an annual festival of hula and chant, Eo e Emalani i Alaka’i (Emalani Festival): Tony Conjugacion’s Hālau Nā Wainohia; Charlani Kalama’s Hālau Ha’a Hula O Kekau’ilani Nā Pua Hala O Kailua; and Healani Youn’s The Ladies of Ke’alaokalaua’e. Hawaiian music icon Nina Keali’iwahamana narrates.



The Films of Eddie & Myrna Kamae,
From the Heart

All 10 films are available to watch below until April 6, 2018.

The Films of Eddie & Myrna Kamae - From the Heart


The Films of Eddie and Myrna Kamae, From the Heart is PBS Hawai‘i’s on-air and online film festival that showcases all 10 award-winning documentaries in the Kamaes’ Hawaiian Legacy Series, released between 1988 and 2007. Eddie Kamae, who passed away in January 2017, was well known for his contributions to Hawaiian music. With his wife Myrna, he also made films that perpetuated Hawai‘i’s cultural heritage for future generations.


Liʻa: Legacy of a Hawaiian Man

Liʻa: The Legacy of a Hawaiian Man


This documentary celebrates the music and spirit of Big Island performer and composer, Sam Li‘a Kalainaina (1881-1975). It is also about a place, Waipi‘o Valley, and a life shaped and nourished by that place. This film’s world premiere opened the 1988 Hawai‘i International Film Festival.

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Those Who Came Before
: The Musical Journey of Eddie Kamae

Those Who Came Before: The Musical Journey of Eddie Kamae


The Kamae’s final documentary pays tribute to the music of Hawaiians, whose gifts of knowledge helped guide Eddie Kamae. His pursuits led him to some of the most respected gate-keepers of the Hawaiian Renaissance: the author and translator Mary Kawena Pukui, the “Songwriter of Waipi‘o” Sam Li‘a, “Aloha Chant” author Pilahi Paki, and Hawaiian cultural resource Lilia “Mama” Hale. One by one, they entrusted him with key pieces of Hawai‘i’s musical heritage – inspiring him to understand, perform, and pass on to the children of Hawai‘i.

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Waves of Change

Lahaina: Waves of Change


In 1999, Eddie Kamae visited Lahaina, only to find that Pioneer Mill, the center of Lahaina’s sugar industry, was closing down. It was the end of an era – a simpler, more innocent time that Eddie remembers from visiting his grandmother during childhood summers in Lahaina. Eddie leads us through many of the changes Lahaina has undergone, both historical and personal. And despite all of the radical changes and tumultuous times Lahaina has experienced, it remains a sacred Hawaiian place, not because of what has been built upon it, but because of what is in the hearts of people who live there.

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The History of the Sons of Hawai‘i

The History of the Sons of Hawaii


This documentary tells the story of the charismatic band that helped launch the Hawaiian cultural renaissance. Spanning 40 years of Hawai‘i’s rich musical tradition, the film offers an intimate look at a unique group of performers and composers: their songs, their humor and their devotion to a sound that continues to convey something essential about the Hawaiian spirit.

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Kī hōʻalu Slack Key: The Hawaiian Way

Kī Hōʻalu: Slack Key, The Hawaiian Way


Kī hō‘alu (slack key) is the Hawaiian way of making music. Performers and composers reveal how this unique style of playing conveys something essential about the Hawaiian spirit and the Hawaiian family tradition.

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Luther Kahekili Makekau: A One Kine Hawaiian Man

Luther Kahekili Makekau: A One Kine Hawaiian Man


This documentary pays tribute to the untamed spirit of a colorful and controversial Hawaiian man. Known throughout the islands, Luther Makekau was part philosopher and part outlaw, a chanter and a singer, a fighter, a lover, a cattle rustler, a rebel and a poet. Born on Maui in 1890, during the reign of King Kalākaua, he lived nearly 100 years, shaped by a century of turbulent cultural change.

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Listen to the Forest

Listen to the Forest


This environmental documentary speaks of the widespread concern for rainforest preservation, while reminding us of traditional Hawaiian values. Interviews, chants, and original songs and dances give voice to an older form of ecological wisdom summed up in the phrase “mālama ‘āina,” to take care of the land.

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: Bridging Past to Present

Hawaiian Voices: Bridging Past to Present


This documentary honors the role of kūpuna (elders) in preserving Hawaiian culture. It focuses on the legacies of three respected Hawaiian elders whose lives bridged the transition from older times into the late 20th century. They are Ruth Makaila Kaholoa‘a, age 93, of the Big Island; Lilia Wahinemaika‘i Hale, age 85, of O‘ahu and Molokai; and Reverend David “Kawika” Ka‘alakea, age 78, of Maui. Each is a living archive of invaluable lore and recollection, a treasure whose stories, memories and perspectives need to be shared as a way of bringing the healing wisdom of the past into the often fragmented world of the present.

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WORDS, EARTH & ALOHA: The Source of Hawaiian Music

Words, Earth & Aloha: The Source of Hawaiian Music


In Hawai‘i, music has always been much more than a form of entertainment. Through the centuries, it has been a primary means of cultural continuity. This documentary pays tribute to a wide range of composers who flourished between the 1870s and the 1920s, and for whom Hawaiian was still a first language. The film explores the poetry and play of Hawaiian lyrics, as well as the places and features of the natural world that inspired songs still loved and listened to today.

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KEEPERS OF THE FLAME: The Cultural Legacy of Three Hawaiian Women

Keepers of the Flame: The Cultural Legacy of Three Hawaiian Women


This documentary chronicles the lives of three Hawaiian women who helped to save the Hawaiian culture, which was in serious peril. The combined artistry and aloha of Mary Kawena Pukui, ‘Iolani Luahine and Edith Kanaka‘ole “helped to revive the flame of traditional Hawaiian culture – a flame that had almost died,” says Eddie Kamae in his on-camera introduction to the film.

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Na Pali and Manuakepa

NA MELE Na Pali and Manuakepa


In this vintage performance from the PBS Hawai‘i studios, two outstanding Kaua‘i groups offer their special style of Hawaiian music. Na Pali and Manuakepa infuse their talents into traditional and original material. Songs include “Limahuli,” “Hokulea Hula,” “Moonlight Lady,” “Lokelani Blossoms,” “Hawaiian Love Chant” and others.



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