Mauian Named President of National Association of Counties
By Maui Now Staff
Maui Councilman Riki Hokama was installed as president of the National Association of Counties (NACo), an organization representing 3,069 counties across the United States, on Monday, July 14.
“This is a historic moment – a first time for Maui County,” said Councilwoman Gladys Baisa. “We are very proud that one of our own holds a prestigious leadership position on a national level.”
NACo said the swearing-in took place on the final day of their 79th Annual Conference held in Orleans Parish (New Orleans).
Hokama is said to be the second Hawaiian to hold the position.
“I am honored to serve as NACo’s president and help counties provide much-needed services to residents across the country,” said Hokama. “Counties are the leaders on a wide range of issues, and I will work to make sure that we are well-prepared and well-represented at the federal level.”
During his address to conference delegates, Hokama announced his presidential initiative to “strengthen counties’ ability to deliver transportation and infrastructure services to their communities.”
Hokama was first elected to public office in 1978 as a delegate to the Hawaii State Constitutional Convention. Later, he was elected to serve on the Maui County Council from 1999 to 2009 and again in 2011. He is chair of the Council’s Policy Committee.
Raised on Lanai, Hokama graduated from the University of Hawaii with a bachelor of arts degree in sociology.