BACKGROUND

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEES:

  • Chairman, Public Safety and Military Affairs
  • Vice Chair, Water Land and Agriculture
  • Member, Commerce, Consumer Protection and Health
  • Member, Transportation and Energy

NATIONAL COMMITTEES:

  • Vice Chair, Education, Asian & Pacific Islander Caucus, National Council of State Legislatures
  • Member, Agriculture Committee, National Council of State Legislatures

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND:

  • Graduate of Maui High School
  • University of Hawaii at Manoa, Bachelor of Arts degree (Psychology)
  • University of Hawaii at Manoa, 5th year certification, Special Education
  • University of Hawaii at Manoa, Masters degree in Education (Educational Administration)

PERSONAL AND FAMILY BACKGROUND:

  • Raised in the small country community of Upcountry Makawao on Maui
  • Veteran, U.S. Army, Security Agency (1964-1967)
  • Married for 40 years to Lynn Nishihara, retired from Hawaiian Electric Company
  • Daughters:  Joy Otsuka, teacher at Kapolei Middle School; Julie Oda, Test & Substation Clerk at Hawaiian Electric Company
  • Retired from Department of Education with 30 years of service (20 years as a Special Education teacher and 10 years as a school administrator)

COMMUNITY SERVICE:

  • President, Friends of Waipahu Public Library
  • Member, Pearl City Lions Club
  • Chair, Social Action Committee, Waipahu United Church of Christ
  • Past Board of Directors, Independent Living Waipahu
  • Past President, Waipahu Cultural Garden Park
  • Past President, Waipahu Community Association
  • Past Member, Waipahu Neighborhood Board
  • Past Vice President/Member, Leeward Lions Club
  • Past Vice President, Leeward Oahu Jaycees
  • Past Board of Directors, Leeward YMCA

AWARDS:

  • 2010 Legislator of the Year, Hawaii Medical Association
  • 2009 Legislator of the Year, Hawaii State Library
  • Legislator in Residence Program, University of Hawaii Manoa, 2011
  • First Hawaii State Jaycees Family of the Year, 1979