Candidate’s Name: GILBERT S.C. KEITH-AGARAN
Phone: (808) 242-4049
Address: Friends of Gil Keith-Agaran P.O. Box 857 Wailuku, Maui, Hawaii 96793
Political Office/Position Sought: State Senate District: 5
Are you an incumbent? Yes
Campaign contact name, phone number, and email address:
Craig G. Nakamura, Campaign Manager, (808) 242-4535
1. Why are you running for office?
I’ve been honored to serve as Central Maui’s state senator since 2013 and state representative since 2009, applying lessons learned as a community and church volunteer, experience, knowledge and skills as a practicing attorney and former state and county department director in addressing our common local and statewide challenges. I’m not a career politician (I initially was appointed to fill the position of the late-Rep. Bob Nakasone and was appointed to fill the first two years of the Senate term won by Shan Tsutsui in 2012) but like many of my friends and peers, I’ve been committed to community service for much of my adult working life. I’ve served on many different non-profit and community boards since moving home after college and law school. I formerly sat on the boards of the Community Clinic of Maui, the Maui Food Bank, A Keiki’s Dream, the Maui Memorial Medical Center Foundation, the Maui Leadership Council to the Hawaii Community Foundation, the Tri-Isle Resource Conservation and Development Council, the Hawaii Justice Foundation, and the Legal Aid Society of Hawaii, among others. I also served on the Maui High School Community Council before being appointed to the Legislature.
2. What are your views about Hawaiian self-governance? In your capacity as a legislator, what action, if any, would you advocate in support of Hawaiian self-governance?
The legislature should facilitate what the Hawaiian community determines is the preferred route to self-governance, including providing any legal structures required or desired under state law.
3. When it comes to Native Hawaiian issues, what do you perceive your role as a legislator to be? What ways can you, if elected, support Native Hawaiian concerns through your legislative abilities? If elected, describe specific Native Hawaiian bill ideas that you would be willing to propose or support for the advancement of Native Hawaiians.
Legislators introduce and vote on bills and to craft a State budget that reflects the priorities of communities we represent. A unique power of the State Senate is to confirm members of certain boards and commissions, including the Hawaian Homes Commission, and the various Burial Councils. I’ve been open to requests from constituents to introduce bills (i.e., recommendations of the Taro Task Force on protecting taro lands) and to speak with colleagues about particular issues important to different groups within the Hawaiian community.