The Department of Land and Natural Resources, headed by an executive Board of Land and Natural Resources, is responsible for managing, administering, and exercising control over public lands, water resources, ocean waters, navigable streams, coastal areas (except commercial harbors), minerals, and all interests therein. The department’s jurisdiction encompasses nearly 1.3 million acres of State lands, beaches, and coastal waters as well as 750 miles of coastline (the fourth longest in the country). It includes state parks; historical sites; forests and forest reserves; aquatic life and its sanctuaries; public fishing areas; boating, ocean recreation, and coastal programs; wildlife and its sanctuaries; game management areas; public hunting areas; and natural area reserves.
Suzanne D. Case, Chairperson
Suzanne Case was born in Hilo and grew up in Hilo and Honolulu. She attended Waiakea-Kai Elementary School, Keaukaha Elementary School and Punahou School (1974). She attended Williams College and Stanford University, where she graduated with honors (B.A., History, 1979), and received her law degree from Hastings College of the Law, University of California, San Francisco.
Suzanne is a 28-year veteran of The Nature Conservancy, having served as the Hawai‘i Program’s Executive Director from 2001-2015. During her years at The Nature Conservancy, she oversaw the acquisition of the 116,000-acre Kahuku Ranch addition to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, eight Hawai‘i Nature Conservancy preserves, Palmyra Atoll, new National Wildlife Refuges at Hakalau on the slopes of Mauna Kea and at O‘ahu Forest, and assisted with the formation of watershed partnerships for forested management throughout Hawaii, the growth of networks of local communities working to restore their near-shore marine resources, and implementation of large-scale projects to remove invasive algae from Hawai‘i’s reefs and coastal areas. Governor Ige appointed Suzanne Case as Chair of the State of Hawai‘i’s Department of Land and Natural Resources in April, 2015. (Photo courtesy of Nature Conservancy of Hawaii)
Kekoa Kaluhiwa, First Deputy
Prior to joining DLNR, Mr. Kaluhiwa was Principal of Kuano‘o Communications, specializing in business development consulting in strategic public and government relations’ strategies. From 2010 – 2012, Mr. Kaluhiwa served as Director of External Affairs for First Wind Energy, providing community, government and media relation strategies in the successful development of several utility scale renewable energy projects in Hawaii. From 1999 – 2010, he worked for U.S. Senator Daniel K. Akaka. His final position was as Executive Assistant to the Senator, while he worked in the Honolulu office with primary duties relating to constituent services.
Mr. Kaluhiwa holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science with a Minor in Society and Justice from the University of Washington.
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