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For Sunday, December 12, 2010

By Star-Advertiser staff


McManaman nominated as human services chief

A longtime social services advocate has been tapped to lead the state Department of Human Services.

Pat McManaman, who spent 12 years as chief executive for Na Loio -- Immigrant Rights and Public Interest Legal Center, was nominated yesterday by Gov. Neil Abercrombie as the state's director of human services.

Since November 2008, McManaman has been deputy executive director the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission.

The nomination must be approved by the state Senate.

McManaman, an attorney, also has worked in the Office of the Public Defender, the Office of Consumer Protection and the Legal Aid Society of Hawaii.

She has also been a per diem state district judge the last 17 years.

McManaman would replace Lillian Koller, who served as human services director during all eight years of the Lingle administration.

Abercrombie has now announced 12 department directors and six deputies.

The governor's office said he is still interviewing applicants for attorney general, adjutant general and the directors of health and transportation.

Big Island politicians vie for Senate

Two Big Island politicians say they're interested in moving up to the state Senate.

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported Thursday that Democratic state Rep. Faye Hanohano of Puna will apply to succeed Sen. Russell Kokubun of Hilo, who plans to leave his post to become director of the state Department of Agriculture.

Former Big Island City Council Chairman Gary Safarik previously expressed interest in Kokubun's seat.

Hilo Councilman Donald Ikeda says he wants the post held until Monday by ex-Sen. Dwight Takamine of Hilo. Takamine resigned to become the state labor director.

Big Island Democratic leaders will submit a list of three nominees for both offices, from which Gov. Neil Abercrombie will choose replacements.

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