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Hawaiian Home Lands director Alapaki Nahale-a to resign

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 9:29 p.m. HST, Mar 16, 2012

Alapaki Nahale-a, director of the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, will resign in May after the legislative session ends.

Nahale-a, of Hilo, was appointed by Gov. Neil Abercrombie in November 2010 to lead the department responsible for returning Hawaiians to their lands and promoting economic development in Hawaiian communities.

"Working for state government at this level has been a rewarding experience but also taxing on a number of levels," Nahale-a said in a statement. "While I am proud of all that we've accomplished so far, the decision for me to move on is what I believe is best for my family, which is my number one priority."

Nahale-a will serve until May 15, according to the governor's spokeswoman.

"Alapaki is a man who has and will do good things for Hawaii, especially Native Hawaiians. While I am saddened by his resignation, I am very proud of the work that he has done," Abercrombie said in a statement. "He has reminded me of the sacrifice that many state workers are making to better Hawaii and I appreciate the dedication and performance that is still being given under challenging circumstances."

Last year, Robert "Bobby" Hall, Nahale-a's deputy, chose to retire.

Abercrombie had named Nahale-a and Hall as a team as part of his initial Cabinet appointments.

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