Eight New Members Join House of Representatives
The House Majority Democratic Caucus and House Speaker Scott K. Saiki welcomed eight newly elected representatives to the Capitol in preparation for the 2021 Legislature.
The group includes six men and two women, ranging in age from their 20s to 50s. One is a returning lawmaker; two new members represent their Hawaiʻi Island communities; two new members represent Windward O‘ahu; and three new members will represent different portions of urban Honolulu.
The new majority members are:
- Representative Greggor Ilagan, District 4 (Puna)
- Representative Jeanné Kapela, District 5 (Nāʻālehu, Ocean View, Capt. Cook, Kealakekua, Kailua-Kona)
- Representative Jackson Sayama, District 20 (St. Louis Heights, Pālolo, Maunalani Heights, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimukī)
- Representative Adrian Tam, District 22 (Waikiki, Ala Moana)
- Representative Sonny Ganaden, District 30 (Kalihi Kai, Sand Island, Hickam, Pearl Harbor, Ford Island, Hālawa Valley Estate)
- Representative Matthew S. LoPresti, District 41 (Ewa, Ewa Beach, Ewa Gentry, Ewa Villages, Hoakalei, Ocean Pointe)
- Representative Patrick Pihana Branco, District 50 (Kailua, Kāneʻohe Bay)
- Representative Lisa Marten, District 51 (Kailua, Waimānalo)
The newly elected representatives have a wide range of experience and talent that will give fresh insight into the challenges that the House Majority will face in the upcoming session.
Their backgrounds reflect the interests and occupations of many working families across the state and include educators, community advocates and business people. One served our country as a diplomate in the U.S. Foreign Service; another has extensive experience in public health prevention and education programs abroad; and another was raised on a small coffee farm, becoming a leading member of a local coffee farmers association to promote and protect that important industry.
Among the new lawmakers are Native Hawaiians, kamaʻāina, an immigrant, and the children of immigrants – all devoted to building a better future for our families. Priority issues for the new members include addressing the impending devastating effects of climate change, finding relief for the high cost of living for working families, and protecting the health of our residents while putting our state on the path to economic recovery during the coronavirus pandemic.
The incoming freshmen lawmakers will be tasked with helping address the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic during the upcoming legislative session set to begin in January 2021.
“These new leaders will bring fresh perspectives to the House as we continue to face the health and economic challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic. I am confident that their unique backgrounds and shared commitment to their communities will be a benefit to the Legislature and the state,” said Speaker Saiki.