Chapter Co-Chair

Will Caron was born in Honolulu but grew up in Kahaluʻu on Oʻahu's windward side. He is a graduate of ʻIolani School and the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa. After 8 years as an editor and journalist (Ka Leo O Hawaiʻi, The Honolulu Weekly, Mana Magazine, The Hawaii Independent, Summit), he recently took a position as the communications director for the Hawaiʻi Appleseed Center for Law & Economic Justice. He is a member of the Palolo Neighborhood Board and serves as the chair of the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi's 20th House District.


Chapter Co-Chair

Jade Frank is a sophomore at Kamehameha Schools Kapalama. She has been interested in politics for a long time and is working on setting up a YPDA chapter at KSK and setting up a voting drive at the school.






Ross Villiger is a graduate student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa studying molecular biology and is currently co-secretary for YPDA Hawaiʻi. He is excited for the new year and what is in store for 2018 in terms of furthering progress and justice in our local and national community.



Grant Okazaki was born and raised in Kalihi, Oʻahu, and is a graduate of Moanalua High School and Chaminade University where he studied Mass Media Communications. He currently works at ʻOlelo Community Media in Mapunapuna. Interest in politics and the economy started at a young age. Growing up with a large family, it was necessary to fulfill everyone's needs with limited resources. 

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Kaiwi Greaney is a sophomore at Kamehameha Schools Kapalama and travels back and forth between Molokai and Kailua, Oʻahu. He is passionate about economic equality and righting the injustices of our current capitalist system. He also enjoys skating and playing video games. At KSK, he is involved in clubs such as Lua, It's Academic, and the E-Sports club. 


Economic Justice Action Committee Chair

Nate Hix is a former teacher at Castle High School currently working toward creating a higher living standard for all of Hawai‘i’s residents. After learning that poverty was an issue due to resource distribution rather than resource scarcity, he knew he needed to act. He is the founder of Living Wage Hawaiʻi.

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Social Justice Action Committee Chair



Environmental Justice Action Committee Chair

Charessa Fryc is currently a student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa studying political science and dance. In the past, she has been involved with the Hawaiʻi Bernie Sanders Campaign, Citizen's Climate Lobby Honolulu, and has worked with the the Sierra Club Hawaiʻi Capitol Watch team.


Chairperson of the Board

Two years ago, Erynn Fernandez was inspired by the Bernie Sanders Campaign and got involved phone-banking for Sanders, as well as Pramila Jayapal and Tim Canova. She is working toward making universal healthcare a reality in Hawai‘i and helped add that as a priority to the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i’s legislative agenda. She is currently the Chair of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i’s Health Committee, the Co-Chair of Progressive Democrats of Hawai‘i and a member of the local Our Revolution steering committee.


At-Large Board Member

Maile Murphy is a lover of dogs, yoga pants and basic human rights, though not necessarily in that order. Following the election of Donald Trump in 2016, she became involved in local progressive politics here in Hawai‘i. Though a supporter of many progressive causes, her work mainly concerns those issues impacting women. She is proud to have been an organizer in the push to pass 2017’s SB501, which is now law. She served as the inaugural Chair of the Social Justice Action Committee.


At-Large Board Member

Jeanné Kapela was born in Kona and graduated from Konawaena High School in 2012. She is pursuing a graduate certificate in social justice from Harvard University. In 2015, Jeanné won the Miss Hawaiʻi crown and founded UNITE Hawaiʻi, an organization devoted to ending sexual exploitation through the power of education. Jeanné is running for House District 5 to protect West Hawaiʻi’s iconic agricultural  industries, to ensure a quality education for our keiki and to be a champion for working families.


At-Large Board Member

Natalia Hussey-Burdick recently graduated from the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa with a BA in biology. Her focus is on connecting scientists with lawmakers, and she works with a variety of environmental and social justice organizations to promote positive change in Hawaiʻi. She is running for State House in District 49.


At-Large Board Member

Jun Shin is a Political Science major at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa. He chose to get involved in politics after being inspired by the presidential campaign of Bernie Sanders and its message of hope and solutions. Jun has spent time volunteering at the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi, YPDA and Pono Hawaiʻi Initiative, and for various progressive candidates during the 2018 election cycle. He hopes to gain a more intricate understanding of the issues and to make his voice heard in the political process as he continues along in his journey as a young, progressive community advocate.


At-Large Board Member

Randy Gonce is a U.S. Air Force veteran and graduate of the Community College of the Air Force with an AA in mechanical and electrical systems, and of Hawaiʻi Pacific University with a BA in Applied Linguistics. He is currently a graduate student in HPU's Global Leadership in Sustainable Development program. He is employed as a policy researcher and legislative aide to Rep. Matt LoPresti and he serves on the Drug Policy Forum of Hawaiʻi and as a cannabis advocate for military veterans. He is running for State House in District 48.


At-Large Board Member

Jodi Malinoski was born on Kauaʻi and raised on Oʻahu. She received her degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa in 2013 and currently works as the O‘ahu Group Coordinator for the Sierra Club of Hawai‘i, where she coordinates outreach, lobbying and fundraising efforts towards environmental campaigns related to climate change, clean energy, development, local food and water security, and waste reduction at the state and county level.


At-Large Board Member

Josh Michaels is an attorney born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi. He is passionate about civil rights, criminal justice reform and smashing the patriarchy. He has worked for three members of Congress, the Chief Justice of the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. As a board member, he will continue to advocate for action on critical issues like affordable housing, workers' rights, gender equality and immigration reform.


At-Large Board Member

Wayne Liou is Chicago-born, Seattle-raised, and spent three years living in Montreal. He has a PhD in Economics from UH Mānoa where his research involved analyzing policies that affect migrants, including Arizona's "Show Me Your Papers" law and the impact of language access on Medicaid take-up rates. He served as the economist for the Long-Term Services and Supports Feasibility Study, which proposed a public long-term care insurance program, and spent a year in D.C. at the Congressional Research Service. He is currently a researcher for the Senate Majority Research Office at the Hawaiʻi State Legislature working with the committee on Transportation & Energy.


At-Large Board Member

Kimiko LaHaela Walter is a mother, an environmentalist and a community activist. Her educational background is in environmental science, with an MSc in Forest and Wildlife Ecology. She is also a feminist, an advocate for equal rights, civil rights, LGBTQ rights, indigenous rights and is passionate about civic engagement. She is currently the Conservation Program Coordinator for Sierra Club of Hawaiʻi.


At-Large Board Member

Hunter Heaivilin is currently pursuing his PhD at UH Mānoa researching the impacts of climate change on agriculture across the state. As a member of the Sierra Club Oʻahu Group's Executive Committee, he focuses on agricultural policy and watchdogs the consumptive use of our productive lands. He works as the market manager for Farm Link Hawaiʻi, helping Oʻahu’s organic farmers connect with local buyers.



Landon Li is currently a Junior at UHM majoring in Economics and Psychology. Born and raised on Oʻahu, his parents immigrated from China and raised Landon to hold their values while embracing the new lifestyle of Hawaiʻi. Landon likes to read, watch films, play music, go to the beach and help out. The community and people in his life have given so much to Landon, and he wants to give back through participating in community organizing.