OHA: Office of Hawaiian Affairs


Executive Team

Seven executives make up the senior administrative leadership at the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. OHA’s executive team provides the authority and credibility needed to guide the strategic direction of the organization. The team is led by a Chief Executive Officer, who is appointed by the Board of Trustees. But the CEO selects all of the other members of the executive team, which is anchored by the Chief Operating Officer. The five other members of OHA’s executive team report directly to the Chief Operating Officer. Together, OHA executives all work as a team to bring the right combination of skills and experience to implementing policies, performing various functions of the operation, and helping the organization achieve its goals.

Photo: Kamanaopono Crabbe

Kamanaʻopono Crabbe, Ph.D. is the CEO (Ka Pouhana) at the Office of Hawaiian since January 2012. His priorities include restoring OHA’s integrity in the Native Hawaiian community. He is also focused on nurturing a sense of commitment to empowering Hawaiians and strengthening Hawaiʻi. He was selected from OHA’s executive team, where he had been Research Director since November 2009, gathering data needed for OHA to make sound decisions that allows it to engage policymakers in its efforts. Before joining OHA, he was the Director of Psychology Training at the Waiʻanae Coast Comprehensive Health Center. He earned his doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Photo: Lisa Victor

Lisa Victor is the Chief Operating Officer (Ka Pou Nui) for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. She was appointed to her position in August 2015. Her responsibilities include running the day-to-day operations of the 170-person agency. She has spent more than 25 years in technology, healthcare systems and strategic development. She comes to OHA from Kaiser Permanente where she served as Director of Information Technology, Application Development and Technology Consulting. For the last 6 years, she was Senior Director of Strategic Planning, Service Delivery Planning and Business Development.

Photo: Kawika Riley

Kawika Riley is the Chief Advocate (Ka Pou Kihi Kū) for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. He was appointed to his position in October 2013. His responsibilities include developing and advocating for policies that have broad implications for the Hawaiian community. Among his other responsibilities is monitoring laws to help ensure they are complied with at local, state and federal levels. He was elevated from his previous position as OHA’s Washington, D.C. Bureau Chief. He came to OHA from the Transportation Security Administration, where he was a national spokesman. He also spent nearly four years working for U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Akaka, who was chairman of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee. In addition, he was a political science instructor for George Washington University for nearly five years.

Photo: David Laeha

David K. Laeha is the Chief Financial Officer/Resource Management – Financial Assets Director (Ka Pou Kihi Kanaloa) for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. He starts service in this role in May 2017. His responsibilities include overseeing OHA’s fiscal and investment infrastructures as well as OHA’s grants, loans and scholarship programs. His staff is also responsible for OHA’s information systems and records management. Among his primary responsibilities are analyzing opportunities, making recommendations and maximizing the value of the Native Hawaiian Trust Fund and other investments. Laeha has 25 years of accounting and financial management experience. He is a licensed CPA with a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and master’s degree in accounting from the University of Southern California. Before joining OHA he worked for Fortune 500 firms such as GTE and IBM. For over a decade he operated his own consulting firm, CFO Hawai‘i LLC, which provided interim CFO services to high-growth businesses.

Photo: Lisa Watkins-Victorino

Lisa Watkins-Victorino, Ph.D. is the Research Director (Ka Pou Kihi Kane) for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. She was appointed to her position in April 2012. Her responsibilities include collecting reliable data critical to the OHA’s ability to engage the Hawaiʻi Legislature and others in the organization’s work. Her staff conducts and shares research intended to guide decisions and ensure that OHA’s efforts are based on solid information. She came to OHA from the Department of Education, where she was an educational officer/evaluation assistant in the agency’s Systems Evaluation and Reporting Section. Before that, she was a junior specialist/program assistant with the University of Hawai‘i’s Social Welfare Evaluation and Research Unit. In addition, she was a lecturer at the University of Hawai‘i’s School of Social Work.

Photo: Nicole Mehanaokala Hind

Nicole Mehanaokalā Hind is the Community Engagement Director (Ka Pou Kihi Lono) for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. She was appointed in February 2016. Her responsibilities include building widespread public support for OHA’s efforts, improving public profile of Native Hawaiians and keeping key audiences involved and strongly attached to the organization’s priorities. She came to OHA in 2012 as the Knowledge Based Strategist Specialist and has contributed to executive leadership in a number of high-profile initiatives including, but not limited to, nation building, educational partnerships with charter schools and the University of Hawai‘i, Papahānaumokuākea cultural excursions, and advocacy at the United Nations. A graduate of Moanalua High School, Mehana attended Honolulu Community College before getting her B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Hawaii at Mānoa

Photo: Miles Nishijima

Miles Nishijima is the Land and Property Director for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. He was appointed to his position in October 2014. As the latest edition to the executive team. He is responsible for providing strategic direction to the organization’s efforts to be a responsible steward of more than 27,000 acres of land. He most recently was vice president of property management at Alexander & Baldwin, Inc. He also previously served as assistant vice president of asset management for Kāneʻohe Ranch Management Limited, where he was responsible for handling leases for 151 commercial tenants occupying more than 300,000 square feet of space. He brings more than 30-years of commercial real estate executive experience to the newly created position.


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