Hawai'i conservation alliance

Emerging Professionals As Nahululeihiwakuipapa*: Present And Future Conservation Stewards

Aurora K. Kagawa, Stanford University
Lasha-Lynn H. Salbosa, NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Wednesday, August 3, 3:20-5:20 PM, Room 313BC
Hawai‘i’s environmental and conservation professionals from government, private, academic, education and community nonprofit sectors describe their current work and experiences that have led them to their present roles. Building upon previous conference forums encouraging emerging professionals in conservation or students contemplating an environmental career, panelists in this forum will share their insights on the future of conservation in Hawai‘i and how Hawai‘i’s youth can prepare for and participate in that future. How might emerging professionals build support networks and gain experience to achieve their goals, and how might they channel passion, connection to resources and aloha ‘āina into a viable career in which they can professionally flourish? The objective of this forum is to generate an intergenerational dialogue about our changing world and how Hawai‘i’s youth can prepare themselves for the many diverse fields in conservation.
Speakers will have approximately 7-10 minutes in which to introduce themselves and their organization. Each speaker will respond to 1-2 questions about the skills, tools, and educational experience that have contributed to their success, as well as share some personal reflections on future directions in their field. In the second half of the forum, the speakers will split into smaller groups, co-led by group facilitators consisting of audience members grouped by similar interests. Topics for these smaller groups will include K-12 Education and Community Building, Resource Management and Fieldwork, Food Systems, Environmental Policy and Law, Research and Academia, and Private Business and Social Enterprise. Audience members will be encouraged to join smaller breakout groups providing for a more in-depth dialogue on diverse conservation fields. Established professional attendees in the audience will have an opportunity to interact with young professionals and inform small group discussions as well as share their views on our changing conservation world. These smaller breakout groups will explore leadership skills and educational and work experiences valued in these diverse fields.


  • Kevin Chang, Office of Hawaiian Affairs
  • Christian Giardina, Ecosystem Function and Health Program, Institute of Pacific Islands Forestry, USDA Forest Service
  • Kim Welch, Oahu Army Natural Resources Program, U.S. Army Garrison Hawai‘i
  • Sharon Ziegler-Chong, Pacific Internship Program for Exploring Sciences, University of Hawai‘i at Hilo
  • Pelikaokamanaoio Bertelmann, Keaholoa STEM Program, University of Hawai‘i at Hilo
  • Angela Hoppe-Cruz, MA‘O Organic Farms

* Nahululeihiwakuipapa was the name given in 2009 to the growing emerging professionals hui in Hawai'i conservation.

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