State public safety and Hawaiian Homelands appointments announced

Published On: May 11 2012 05:23:50 PM HST
HONOLULU -

Governor Neil Abercrombie announced Friday the appointment of a new Director of the Department of Hawaiian Homelands and a change at the Public Safety Department.

Gov. Abercrombie will appoint Ted Sakai as the new Director for Public Safety, effective June 1, 2012.  Mr. Sakai held the position during the Cayetano Administration.

Jodie Maesaka-Hirata, the current Director, will take on the role of Deputy Director of Corrections, which was left vacant by Joe Booker who moved to the mainland.

"Jodie has shown true leadership by having the desire to put the public interest first, and that meant committing herself to the Corrections area of Public Safety where she has a wealth of knowledge and experience," said Gov. Abercrombie.

For nearly 27 years, Ted Sakai, 65, worked in a variety of executive positions in the State’s corrections system.  From 1998 to 2002, he served as the Director of Public Safety.  In that position, he provided leadership to the corrections and law enforcement entities.  Among other assignments, he also served as Administrator of corrections programs and as the Warden of the Waiawa Correctional Facility, where he tightened security, with no escapes for over two years, and expanded treatment programs for inmates.

The governor also named a Director to the Department of Hawaiian Homelands.

Jobie Masagatani will fill the seat being left vacant by Alapaki Nahale-a.

Ms. Masagatani previously served as DHHL Deputy Director from 1995 to 2002.

"I am deeply committed to the Native Hawaiian community and am very familiar with DHHL’s internal operations, funding, unique challenges and ambitious mission," said Ms. Masagatani. "I am looking forward to working with Deputy Director Michelle Kauhane and the dedicated staff who share a passion for service to Native Hawaiians and all of Hawai'i."

Ms. Masagatani leaves her position at the Office of Hawaiian Affairs where she is Special Assistant to the Chief Executive Officer.  Prior to serving at OHA, she was an assistant to the President and CEO of The Queen’s Health Systems where she facilitated development of the strategic plan to address Native Hawaiian health.  She also previously served as a Land Investment Analyst for Kamehameha Schools.

Ms. Masagatani, 47, earned a master’s degree in public affairs/urban and regional planning from Princeton University.  She earned a bachelor’s of science degree in education from Northwestern University. A graduate of Kamehameha Schools, Ms. Masagatani is a resident of Kailua.

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