September 10, 2013


Kiaaina Has Long Record Of Advancing Priorities of Hawaii And Native Peoples In Washington

Washington, D.C. - Senator Mazie K. Hirono commended President Obama today for selecting Hawaii’s Esther Kiaaina to serve as Assistant Secretary for Insular Areas at the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI).

“Congratulations to Esther on her selection as DOI Assistant Secretary for Insular Areas,” Hirono said. “Esther has a long record of advancing the priorities of both Hawaii and native peoples in Washington, serving our state in leadership roles in both the House and Senate. In particular, she has been a strong and consistent advocate for the Native Hawaiian community throughout her time in public service. She also has strong experience with Hawaii’s unique land concerns through her work in the state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and Kamehameha Schools Land Asset Division. Esther is an excellent choice to serve in DOI, and I wish her a quick confirmation.”

Esther Kiaaina is the First Deputy Director of the Department of Land and Natural Resources for the State of Hawaii, a position she has held since 2012. Previously, she served as Chief Advocate for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs from 2009 to 2011 and from 2007 to 2009, she was a Land Asset Manager for the Kamehameha Schools Land Asset Division. Kiaaina served as Chief of Staff for Congressman Ed Case from 2003 to 2007. From 1999 to 2003, she was Chief of Staff and Legislative Director for Congressman Robert Underwood. Kiaaina served as a Legislative Assistant for Senator Daniel Akaka from 1990 to 1999. Kiaaina received a B.A. from the University of Southern California and a J.D. from the George Washington University Law School.