Hawaii News All 6 judge nominees receive unanimous endorsements By Dan Nakaso email@example.com Oct. 28, 2021 Mahalo for supporting Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Enjoy this free story! All six nominees to fill state judge vacancies on Oahu, Maui and Hawaii island received unanimous support on Wednesday from written and oral testimony at a Senate hearing that had both poignant and awkward moments. Read more Mahalo for reading the Honolulu Star-Advertiser! You're reading a premium story. Read the full story with our Print & Digital Subscription. Subscribe Now Read this story for free: Watch an ad or complete a survey Log In Already a subscriber? Log in now to continue reading this story. Activate Digital Account Print subscriber but without online access? Activate your Digital Account now. All six nominees to fill state judge vacancies on Oahu, Maui and Hawaii island received unanimous support on Wednesday from written and oral testimony at a Senate hearing that had both poignant and awkward moments. The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote today on Gov. David Ige’s Circuit Court nominees and the 3rd Circuit District Court nominee, followed by a scheduled Senate Floor vote on Friday. The nominees are: >> Clarissa Y. Malinao, Shanlyn A.S. Park and Kevin T. Morikone to Oahu’s 1st Circuit Court. >> Kirstin M. Hamman to Maui’s 2nd Circuit Court. >> Wendy M. DeWeese to Hawaii island’s 3rd Circuit Court. Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald also nominated Kimberly B.M. Taniyama to the 3rd Circuit District Court. Wednesday’s hearing began with a tearful statement by Malinao, the only child of Filipino immigrants. “To achieve a better life, my father enlisted in the United States Navy,” she told the Judiciary Committee. “At the time, to start, he was offered to be a shoe shiner or a cook. He opted to be a shoe shiner and through hard work and perseverance ended his military career retiring as an officer at the rank of Navy lieutenant. My mother had a challenging upbringing. At a very young age, her and her six siblings performed manual labor to contribute to the support of their family. It is from their experiences that they have instilled in me the values of hard work, to be resilient in the face of adversity, to remain humble and respectful and to pay it forward. These bedrock principles are that I live by.” Levi Hookano, president of the Hawaii State Bar Association that endorsed all of the nominees, later said, “I’m glad I had some time to recompose myself after Miss Malinao’s opening statement.” Wednesday’s hearing went bumpier for District Family Court Judge Morikone, the only male nominee up for Senate confirmation. Judiciary Committee members Donna Mercado Kim (D, Kalihi Valley- Moanalua-Halawa) and Jarrett Keohokalole, (D, Kailua- Kaneohe) both questioned Morikone extensively on his lack of pro bono legal services, community service and participation on Judiciary committees as a judge, like the other nominees. Even potential candidates who were not nominated “all far exceed the experience that you have,” Kim said. “… Everybody talks about community. And if there’s pro bono work you say, ‘I have not provided pro bono legal services since becoming a full-time Family Court judge.’ But I look at everybody else and they all did pro bono work even though they were a judge for a short period of time.” At one point, Morikone suggested that providing pro bono legal services could represent a conflict of interest for him as a judge. “After becoming a full-time judge, especially, I try to stay out of being an advocate of one side or the other,” Morikone said. Keohokalole concluded questioning Morikone’s lack of pro bono work, community service and service on Judiciary committees by saying, “there’s not a lot in the record for us to address one way or another.” Previous Story Central Pacific Bank triples earnings Next Story Kokua Line: Are face mask rules different on military bases?