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Four nominated to state Board of Education, Land Use Commission

Gov. David Ige has picked new two members for the state Board of Education and two new commissioners for the state Land Use Commission.

Former educator Patricia Bergin and business reporter-turned-attorney Bruce Voss were selected to serve on the nine-member Board of Education.

The governor appointed former deputy attorney Dawn Chang and Gary Okuda to the nine-member state Land Use Commission.

Ige also reappointed Commissioner Jonathan Scheuer, whose current term expires on June 30.

On the Land Use Commission, Chang will replace Chad McDonald, who was holdover appointee; while Okuda will fill a long-standing vacancy.

On the education board Bergin will replace vice chair Brian De Lima and Voss will replace Patrica Halagao.

Chang was a deputy attorney general with the Land/Transportation Division and counsel to various state boards and commissions such as the Land Board and Water Commission for 14 years. She is principal of Kuiwalu, a public affairs company that specializes in strategic planning and facilitating culturally sensitive issues for public and private sector projects.

Okuda has practiced law since 1981 specializing in diverse real estate matters.

In a statement released by Ige’s office, Okada said: “The Land Use Commission plays a vital role in protecting Hawaii’s precious resources, and carrying out the mandates of the Hawaii State Constitution. I am humbled to be asked to play a part in fulfilling these responsibilities for all people who love Hawaii and call it home.”

Bergin is a former teacher with the state Department of Education. She is currently the coordinator for leadership teams of Ka HULI Mua, a consortium of preschool programs on three islands. She also serves as an adjunct professor at Chaminade University.

Voss is a partner with the law firm of Bays Lung Rose & Holma. His practice emphasizes business, real estate, employment law and litigation. He previously worked as a reporter for Pacific Business News and KHON2 News. Voss is a graduate of Kalaheo High School and the Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaii.

The appointments are subject to confirmation by the Senate.

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  • A classroom teacher should be appointed to the State BOE….someone who knows what is happening in the current field in curriculum, classroom discipline, instruction, and how much monies are trickled down to the various depts. within the school…appointing somebody in admin. and who were once a classroom teacher is of no relevance. I’m talking about a classroom teacher who is overburdened with all the tests, paperwork, curriculum guides that those people on the BOE have no relevance and understanding and only act upon “ivory tower” ideas that they feel should be implemented within the schools and State Education Policy and really out of touch with really what is happening in the classroom…….I don’t care if the Gov.’s wife is a vice-principal…many of the administrators leave the classroom because they can’t handle the classroom and therein lies the crux of many problems within the school and state level……

    • I definitely concur with your comment….definitely they need to be monitored…..something is really rotten as Shakespeare would say, “something is rotten in the state of Denmark” which means that something is not kosher when you get underhanded decisions like these…..all political and wouldn’t surprise me that plenty KALA is being passed under the table for these commissioners to chg. the zoning from ag to urban or residential…..yup, hywnsytl…u r so right that somebody gotta watch these guys but who???? seems like everybody is connected to the machine……

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