STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1640

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

 

RE: GOV. MSG. NOS. 638, 639, 640, 642, 643, 644

 

 

 

Honorable Donna Mercado Kim

President of the Senate

Twenty-Eighth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2015

State of Hawaii

 

Madam:

 

Your Committee on Health, to which was referred Governor's Message Nos. 638, 639, 640, 642, 643, and 644, submitting for study and consideration the nominations of:

 

Disability and Communication Access Board

 

G.M. No. 638

ANN CHINEN ITO,

for a term to expire 6-30-2016;

 

G.M. No. 639

PAULINE AUGHE,

for a term to expire 6-30-2019;

 

G.M. No. 640

ED CHEVY,

for a term to expire 6-30-2019;

 

G.M. No. 642

MISELLA TOMITA,

for a term to expire 6-30-2019;

 

G.M. No. 643

YOLANDA PHELAN,

for a term to expire 6-30-2018; and

 

G.M. No. 644

ROBIN K. INABA,

for a term to expire 6-30-2019,

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

Your Committee has reviewed the personal histories, resumes, and statements submitted by the nominees and finds Ann Ito, Pauline Aughe, Ed Chevy, Misella Tomita, Yolanda Phelan, and Robin Inaba to possess the requisite qualifications to be nominated to the Disability and Communication Access Board.

 

ANN CHINEN ITO

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination of Ann Ito from the Disability and Communication Access Board and one individual.

 

Ms. Ito is currently the Director of the KOKUA Program for the Office for Students with Disabilities at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, which serves undergraduate, graduate, and professional students with learning, physical, psychiatric, and other documented disabilities. She earned a Master's degree in Social Work and Bachelor's degree in Speech from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She also serves as Chairperson for the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped Consumer Advisory Board and as President of the Friends of Hoopono.

 

Ms. Ito indicated in her personal statement that she brings her best energy, knowledge-based judgment, genuine respect for human differences, and passion for social justice to the Board.

 

Your Committee finds that Ms. Ito's past experiences providing disability access services to individuals, as well as her continuing commitment to serve those with disabilities in the college community, will be great assets to the Board.

 

PAULINE AUGHE

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination of Pauline Aughe from the Disability and Communication Access Board and one individual.

 

Ms. Aughe is an entrepreneur, speaker, and author who spreads the inspiring message of hope and possibility using various media platforms, such as books, live events, and videos. She also authored a chapter in the best-selling book, "Fight For Your Dreams: The Power of Never Giving Up". Ms. Aughe earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Santa Clara University. She currently volunteers for Aloha Independent Living Hawaii and serves on the Mayor's Committee on People with Disabilities for Hawaii County.

 

Your Committee finds that Ms. Aughe's past experiences related to the employment of individuals with disabilities, as well as her commitment to inspire others through her inspirational words and messages, will be great assets to the Board.

 

ED CHEVY

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination of Ed Chevy from the Disability and Communication Access Board and one individual.

 

Mr. Chevy is recognized as a veteran in the field of deaf education, as he is an American Sign Language Instructor and mentor of families with children who have hearing loss. He also is a speaker and lecturer, speaking at such events as the Annual Pacific Rim Conference on Disabilities.

 

Mr. Chevy indicated in his personal statement that he is interested in the Board's role in credentialing interpreters, advocacy, and legislation.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Chevy's past experiences as an educator and instructor of American Sign Language, as well as his commitment to deaf awareness, will be great assets to the Board.

 

MISELLA TOMITA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination of Misella Tomita from the Disability and Communication Access Board; Aloha State Association of the Deaf; Gallaudet University Alumni Association, Hawaii Chapter; Hawaii Deaf Surfriders Association; Hawaii School for the Deaf and the Blind Alumni Club; and one individual.

 

Ms. Tomita is currently an American Sign Language Lecturer at Kapiolani Community College and an American Sign Language and Social Skills Instructor at the Comprehensive Service Center for Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing, and Deaf-Blind. She earned a Bachelor of Social Work from Gallaudet University. As the daughter of an active deaf father who has been involved with the Board for many years, Ms. Tomita is well-aware of the issues affecting the Deaf community, such as access to government facilities and services within the community.

 

Your Committee finds that Ms. Tomita's experiences as an American Sign Language instructor, as well as her continuing commitment to sharing Deaf culture with others, will be great assets to the Board.

 

YOLANDA PHELAN

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination of Yolanda Phelan from the Disability and Communication Access Board and one individual.

 

Ms. Phelan currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Hawaii Association for the Blind. She also started her own business, Sharper Senses, which provides sensitivity training to management and staff for restaurants, hotels, shops, airports, and other businesses that provide services to the public. Furthermore, she serves on the Hoopono State Rehabilitation Center for the Blind Advisory Board, having served twice as Chair.

 

Your Committee finds that Ms. Phelan's past experiences advocating for issues that affect the safety and access to the Blind community, as well as her continuing commitment to educating communities on Blind awareness, will be great assets to the Board.

 

ROBIN INABA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination of Robin Inaba from the Disability and Communication Access Board and one individual.

 

Ms. Inaba is owner and principal of Inaba Architecture, LLC, a design firm that provides architectural services for commercial, public, residential, and hospitality projects. She earned a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She has proven to be an avid proponent of accessible design, attending design-related conferences and trainings and improving education outreach to architects.

 

Your Committee finds that Ms. Inaba's past experiences as a business owner and community volunteer, as well as her expertise in the field of architecture and design, will be great assets to the Board.

 

As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committee on Health that are attached to this report, your Committee, after full consideration of the background, experience, and qualifications of the nominees, has found the nominees to be qualified for the positions to which nominated and recommends that the Senate advise and consent to the nominations.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Health,

 

 

 

____________________________

JOSH GREEN, Chair