Our ʻohana is constantly growing!
Ilima Ho-Lastimosa, MSW
Founder & Community Researcher
Ilima Ho-Lastimosa is a proud third-generation Native Hawaiian resident of Waimānalo, Hawaiʻi. A strong proponent of food sovereignty and sustainability, she is passionate about giving Pacific Island communities the tools, knowledge and skills they need to grow food in their backyards. To that end, Ilima became a certified Master Gardener and an aquaponics expert, with which she has spent the last six years teaching aquaponics throughout the Pacific and Pacific Northwest. Ilima has raised over $400,000 for programs benefiting indigenous peoples throughout the Pacific and North America. Ilima received her BA in Hawaiian Studies and MSW from the Myron B. Thompson School of Social Work at the University of Hawaiʻi . Presently employed as the Community Coordinator for the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources Waimānalo Research Station, Ilima concurrently works with numerous school-aged children through partnerships with several schools. Also a founding member of God’s Country Waimānalo, Ilima has and continues to offer programs to the Waimānalo and Native Hawaiian Communities.
Jane Chung-Do, DrPH
Public Health Researcher
Dr. Jane Chung-Do is an Associate Professor with the University of Hawai‘i Office of Public Health Studies. She obtained her MPH in Social and Behavioral Health Sciences and DrPH in Community and Translational Research from the University of Hawai‘i. She currently teaches and advises public health graduate students at the University of Hawai‘i. Jane has been working with the Waimanalo community since 2006 and has provided research support with the gardening, aquaponics, and wahine wa'a initiatives with God's Country Waimanalo and Ola Kino. She also has a background in mental health wellness, violence prevention, and suicide prevention and worked with a Waimanalo youth-driven organization called BRAVEHEART. She strives to use community-based participatory research by forming partnerships with communities to ensure that all research and health programming are grounded in the values, needs, and strengths of the community. Jane loves to surf and spend time in the ocean with her family.
Ted Radovich, PhD
Dr. Ted Radovich is an Associate Professor/Extension Specialist in the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM). Born and raised in Waimanalo, Ted graduated from Kailua H.S. where he was an active member of Future Farmers of America (FFA). He received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from UHM, and his Ph.D. from Ohio State University. Ted leads the Waimanalo Learning Center at the UHM Waimanalo Research Station, featuring 4 acres of certified organic land and an aquaponics facility. He co-coordinates the Sustainable and Organic Agriculture Program at UHM and is principal investigator of the Sustainable and Organic Farming Systems Laboratory. The primary focus of his lab's research are the links between ecological farming practices, yield, and crop quality. Ted also teaches multiple classes, including Herbs, Spices and Flavorings, Organic Food Crop Production, and Vegetable Crop production. Ted lives in Waimanalo with his wife and four children.
Samantha Keaulana-Scott, DrPH
Samantha Keaulana-Scott is a public health PhD graduate from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Her research focuses on examining determinants of Native Hawaiian health to demonstrate the relationships between structures of power and individual health. Currently, her research utilizes Indigenous research methodologies to document the experiences of historical and intergenerational trauma among Wāhine (Native Hawaiian women). Her intention in her work is to reveal concrete data which will communicate the urgency of health and social needs unique to Wāhine. Samantha is a strong proponent of pono (just) research and a member of the Waimānalo Pono Research Hui, a group that adheres to Indigenous community research ethics. Her long-term goal is to prevent inequitable opportunities of optimal health by demanding aloha, healing, and reparations for Hawaiians.
Ikaika Rogerson is a civil service worker at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard for the last 12 years. He graduated from both Kamehameha Kapālama and the University of Hawai’i with a bachelor of Hawaiian Studies currently pursuing his Master’s Degree. Ikaika is the owner of Rocky Farms, LLC specializing in Hawaiian Lā’au Lapa’au with products available at the Waimānalo Market Co-Op. He is a graduate of the GoFarm Program offered by the University of Hawai’i as well as an established aquaponics farmer. Ikaika is also a senior instructor at 101 Financial. Aside from his own businesses, Ikaika serves on the board of directors for O’ahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association as the Recording Secretary, and as a board member for both the Waimānalo Market Co-Op board and the Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association board. Ikaika lives in Waimānalo.
Kirk Kaulu Deitschman, a child of Waimānalo, O'ahu. He is a 2013 graduate of Henry J Kaiser High School and received his BBA in Business Management from the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, Shidler College of Business along with a minor in Religion Studies. He had a wonderful opportunity to spend a semester studying International Business in Florence, Italy. He has interned at Hui Malama O Ke Kai, Harold K.L. Castle Foundation and Ko'olau Mountains Watershed Partnership. Before working at Hui Mālama O Ke Kai as an Alaka'i (leader, program alumni), he participated in their after-school programming from 5th-12th grades. Kirk has a deep passion for the Waimānalo community and wants to continue the advancement for our kānaka. He has a strong desire to restore our native natural resources and to be more self-efficient society, strongly believing in the power of the youth.
LeShay Likolehua Keliiholokai was born and raised in Waimānalo, Oʻahu. LeShay received her Bachelors of Science in Pre-Medical Studies from Hawaiʻi Pacific University. Over the course of eight years, LeShay was part of Hui Mālama O Ke Kai Foundation, where she created the ʻŌpio Leadership Program. This program was developed to instill servant-hood leadership within the ʻōpio of Waimānalo. LeShay went on to pursue a Master of Arts degree in Art Therapy and Counseling from Southwestern College in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She believes that through art we are able to explore emotional, behavioral, and social challenges to better understand the human psyche, allowing access to one’s core self.
Kenneth Ho Jr., MSOM
Kenneth Ho, Jr. is a firefighter with certifications in water safety, emergency medical technician, and personal training. He is also the executive director of OLA KINO, a pilot program he conceptualized, implemented, and executed over summer 2017 with the intent to combat health disparities, social injustices, and historical traumas Kānaka Maoli endure. The target audience for the program is Native Hawaiian Youth from Waimānalo aged 5-12 years. Also one of the founding members of another grass-roots organization, God's Country Waimānalo (GCW), Kenneth is the Safety Officer for Waimānalo Limu Hui, a limu restoration group formed under GCW. Kenneth graduated from the Kamehameha Schools, received his BS from Wayland Baptist University, and completed the MS of Operations Management at the University of Arkansas. In January 2018, Kenneth will begin doctoral studies at the University of Southern California. Kenneth lives in Waimānalo with his two children.
Phoebe Hwang, DrPH
Dr. Phoebe Hwang is a faculty member at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Office of Public Health Studies and Kapiʻolani Community College Community Health Workers Program. She graduated from the University of Hawaiʻi with her doctorate in Public Health, with a specialization in community-based participatory research and life course epidemiology, masters in Molecular Biosciences and Bioengineering with a specialization in cancer cell biology and tropical alternative medicines, and undergraduate degrees in Biology and Dance. She currently teaches Research Methods in Public Health, and works as a health research consultant for various organizations. Phoebe is also a yoga and Tai Chi instructor, massage therapist, and coffee enthusiast. She lives in Makiki with her family and loves to sleep and eat chocolate cake (that is at least 3 layers tall) on her spare time.
Kahaulahilahi Vegas, MPH
Kahaulahilahi Vegas hasa background in Hawaiian language and Hawaiian culture. She graduated with her Masters in Public Health focusing on Native Hawaiian and Indigenous Health. Since 2015, Kahau has been working in partnership with the John A. Burns School of Medicine, Department of Native Hawaiian Health on a culturally-based study, Ola Hou I Ka Hula focused primarily on Native Hawaiians with hypertension, which is a Hula study and program looking to lower high bloodpressure. Kahau is also an alakaʻi for the hālau that she has been dancing for over 18 years, she also graduated two levels in hula.
Dr. Bradley (Kai) Fox
Dr. Bradley (Kai) Fox is currently an instructor in the Sustainable Agriculture Program of the Department of Natural Sciences at Windward Community College, and an affiliate faculty member in the Department of Molecular Biosciences and Bioengineering in the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at UH Mānoa. Kai was born and raised in Nu'uanu, O'ahu and graduated from the University Laboratory School. Following graduation, he earned a BS in Biology from the University of Redlands, and an MS in Animal Science and PhD in Fish Physiology from UH Mānoa. Kai enjoys fishing, diving and hiking and lives in Nu'uanu with his wife, son, and two dogs.