Kai Kahele


(D-HI) 2nd District

Kai Kahele is a Native Hawaiian and long-time defender of the environment and the country, having served as a Hawaii State Senator and Lt. Colonel with the Hawaii Air National Guard.

Kahele began his work protecting Hawaii as the executive director of Pa‘a Pa’a Pono Miloli‘I, a nonprofit organization that preserves and protects the cultural, historical, and environmental life and well-being of Miloli‘i, the last Hawaiian fishing village in the state. In February 2016, Kahele was appointed to the Hawaii State Senate by Governor David Ige after the death of his father, Senator Gil Kahele. Kahele subsequently served as the Majority Floor Leader and Chairman of the Committee on Water and Land. As a Hawaii State Senator, Kahele championed legislation that protects Hawaii’s lands, waters, and communities, including: 100% renewable energy; sea-level rise adaptation plans; climate change mitigation efforts; and prohibiting waste or disposal facilities from being located in conservation districts. 

In Congress, Kahele will continue his work protecting communities by addressing the climate crisis and creating a green economy. He will work to prepare coastal states for the impacts of rising sea levels and protect our country’s natural resources.

Kahele joins the U.S. House to fill the seat of Representative Tulsi Gabbard, who earned a 93% lifetime score on LCV’s National Environmental Scorecard and ran for President of the United States.

In his own words: 

“As a Native Hawaiian growing up in an island state, protecting our environment and natural resources has always been a top priority of mine. I believe if we invest in policies that balance environmental sustainability with economic stability, we can unlock the potential of a green-economy for future generations while creating millions of new jobs that have been lost to globalization.”

Source: LCVAF Press Release.