Bench Dedicated in Honor of Maui Environmental Advocate
The founder local non-profit Mālama Maui Nui (formerly Community Workday Program) and former state leader for Keep America Beautiful, Jan Dapitan, was honored during a special ceremony Thursday at the Wailuku Courthouse.
Dapitan was recently given Keep America Beautiful’s highest level of recognition, the Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson Award, and had a bench installed in her honor at the courthouse.
Community members as well as local dignitaries gathered on the courthouse steps to recognize Dapitan for her decades-worth of dedication to environmental conservation efforts on Maui and throughout the state.
The event included lovely remarks from Dan Goodfellow, from Goodfellow Bros., Inc., Cecile Carson, senior vice president with Keep America Beautiful, Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa, Kahu John Tomoso, Leah Belmonte with the Office of Gov. David Ige, Barbara Fernandez from Maui Green & Beautiful, and Gabrielle Schuerger, executive director at Mālama Maui Nui.
During the ceremony, visiting Judge Larry Potter from Shelby County, Tenn. also spoke on Dapitan’s efforts to establish an environmental court here in Hawaiʻi. Potter later gave a presentation on Hawaiʻi’s new environmental court system during a public workshop at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center. He was accompanied by local Circuit Court Judge Joseph Cardoza, District Court Judge Adrianne Heely, and Justice Michael Wilson from the State Supreme Court.
Keep the Hawaiʻi Islands Beautiful, Mālama Maui Nui, Maui Green & Beautiful, and Goodfellow Bros., Inc., Judge Joseph Cardoza’s office helped organize the ceremony.