Chauncey Kalā Lindsey-Asing, President
Chauncey Kalāokalanikamālamalamaokekuahiwiamekekai Palenapa Pacheco Lindsey-Asing hails from the cool uplands of Waimea, Hawai‘i. The eldest of four sons, Chauncey was born to Justin Asing of Papakōlea, Oahu and Almyra (Lindsey) Asing of Waimea, Hawai`i. He studied Hawaiian Perspectives of Natural Resource Management at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa and obtained a position with the O`ahu Army Natural Resource Program (OANRP). While a Senior Natural Resource Specialist for OANRP, Chauncey accepted an opportunity to move home to Hawai`I island and serve as the Project Coordinator; Wildlife Biologist for DOFAWs Mauna Kea Forest Restoration Project. He is a husband to Kayla Asing, father to Kahalekulu and Kaluhea Asing and is a student of hula, Hawaiian culture, the environment and his profession.
Liana Iaea Honda, Vice-President
He kama ʻo Liana Kalaiokamanu Iaea Honda na Shermaih Kahuakai Iaea, Jr., no Kalihi me Gunda Pedersen no Kenemaka. No Mākaha mai ʻo ia. Raised in Mākaha, Liana now resides in Kaʻohe, Paʻauilo in Hāmākua Hikina. She has a BA in Liberal Studies, a Hawaiian Medium in Education certificate from UH-Hilo (Kahuawaiola) and a M.Ed, also from UHH. Liana is a kumu hula, having learned hula from Mililani Allen and going through the ʻuniki ritual with Māpuana de Silva. A lifelong educator and administrator, she now works in healthcare focusing on improving the health and well-being of Native Hawaiians.
Valerie Peralto, Treasurer
Valerie Miranda Peralto was born and raised in ʻUmikoa Village on Kūkaʻiau Ranch in Koholālele, Hāmākua, Hawaiʻi. She is the daughter of Daniel & Vera Miranda, the wife of Joel Peralto, a mother of three children, and a grandmother of two moʻopuna. She is jointly owns Peralto & Co. CPAs Inc. with husband, Joel, and has been practicing accounting on Hawaiʻi Island for over thirty years, where she has been a lifetime resident.
Shaelene Kamakaʻala, Secretary
Shaelene Kuʻulei Kamaka'ala was born and raised in the ahupuaʻa of Punaluʻu, Koʻolau Loa, Oʻahu. Shae graduated from the Kamehameha Schools in 2005 and completed her Associate’s of Art Degree in Political Science from Marymount College in 2007, her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of San Diego in 2009, and most recently, her Juris Doctor Degree from the William S. Richardson School of Law in 2014. As a board member of Hoala Aina Kupono, she is the joint-co-founder of the Kahana Kilo Kai program, a grassroots and community-based ocean monitoring program. Kahana Kilo Kai’s vision is to build the community’s capacity to restore Kahana’s konohiki fishery and bring abundance back to the bay. She also represents Oʻahu as a member of the E Alu Pū Council, a network of grassroots communities caring for their place. Shae has had the privilege of working with and learning from communities statewide, while championing community-based stewardship of Hawaiʻi’s nearshore fisheries. Formerly, she served in the public sector as the Community Based Fisheries Area (CBFA) Coordinator for DLNR DAR. Currently, she serves as the Director of ʻĀina Protection for the Hawaiʻi Land Trust.
Shani Kailani Gacayan Carvalho, Director
Shani Nicola Kailani Gacayan Carvalho was born and raised in Paʻauilo, Hāmākua, and is the daughter of Stephanie Kamohai of Waiākea, Hilo and Beldon “Kookie” Gacayan Sr. of Paʻauilo. She is the eldest daughter of four children, and holds a Bachelor's of Arts degree in Public Administration, with a focus on Community Health, from the University of Hawaiʻi, West Oʻahu. Kai has served our community in the field of health care since 2010, as a health educator, tobacco treatment specialist, patient and youth advocate, and as Public Relations Director with Hāmākua-Kohala Health. Kai also serves as the Chair of the Coalition for a Tobacco Free Hawaiʻi, and is the co-founder of the Hawaiʻi Island Youth Academy. Within our Hāmākua community, Kai has served as Secretary for the Hāmākua Cougars Pop Warner Football Association for more than 5 years, in response to the growing need for safe spaces and mental health support services for youth in Hāmākua. Lastly, she serves as a member of the By-Law Committee for the Paʻauilo Camp Association. The community work that Kai participates in can be directly connected to her love for the communities that have helped raised her, and the LOVE she has for her husband Casey and children Caleh, Līhau, Hāʻena, and Chael. She is a hula dancer, basketball player, and lover of acai bowls, and roots reggae music, specifically Ooklah the Moc.
Zelda Dela Cruz, Director
Zelda K. Bailado Dela Cruz is the daughter of Primo & Mildred "Grammie" Travis Bailado, born and raised in Paʻauilo, Hāmākua, Hawaiʻi. Zelda now resides in Hilo, Hawaiʻi with husband Tommy Dela Cruz. She is currently a Supervisor for a Credit Union and has 40 years of Credit Union experience along with extensive involvement in community projects. She is also a founding member of huiMAU.
Kū Kahakalau, Director
Dr. Kū Kahakalau is a native Hawaiian educator, researcher, song-writer, and expert in Hawaiian language, history and culture, and founder of Ku-A-Kanaka Indigenous Institute for Language and Culture. Dr. Kahakalau, her husband Nālei and their daughters ‘I‘inimaikalani and Pōlanimakamae, reside in Kukuihaele, Hāmākua, Hawai‘i. For the past 20 years, Kū and her family have planted taro and other utilitarian plants in Waipi‘o Valley, teaching young men and women their roles and responsibilities as 21st century Hawaiians, and sharing with thousands of learners from around the world, the value and the importance of aloha ‘āina.
Derrick Kiyabu, Director
Born and raised on O‘ahu, Derrick Kiyabu has returned to Hawai‘i Island where he began studying agriculture at Hawai‘i Community College after high school. He has over 25 years experience working and studying in the fields of agriculture and community development. Derrick was formerly the Program Coordinator and Farm Coach for GoFarm Hawai‘i, a farmer training program based at Namoku, near Honoka‘a. He currently resides in Hilo Palikū and manages various farms across the island of Hawaiʻi.
Lisa Malia Yang, Director
Lisa Malia Yang was born in Torrance, California and raised in Hilo, Hawai’i. She is the daughter of Henry and Elizabeth Yang of Hilo. While a student in the joint J.D./M.B.A program at the Williams S. Richardson School of Law and the Shidler College of Business at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, she focused her studies on Native Hawaiian law. She is currently practicing law as an attorney in Honolulu.