Who We Are

The Malama O Puna Board of Directors is a group of your friends and neighbors who volunteer to keep up the work of “protecting Hawai ‘i ‘s precious natural heritage” by:

  • Creating and maintaining a native tree arboretum as a living outdoor museum for public education
  • Acting as consultants to the general public on ecosystem preservation and site restoration issues and making written materials and other sources available on these subjects
  • Developing audiovisual and written curriculum materials for all educational levels on Hawai‘i’s unique biota and ecosystems, and on techniques for protection, management and restoration
  • Partnering and networking with government agencies and other nongovernmental organizations with similar interests for the purpose of increasing public awareness regarding the importance of environmental protection
  • Promoting the development, growth and preservation of federal, state, county, district and private parks for the purpose of enhancing open spaces for future generations
  • Planting trees, shrubs and groundcovers to enhance the natural landscape
  • Encouraging greenways and bird corridors, both circum-coastal and between the coast and the uplands (mauka-makai) through various strategies, including acquisition of small critical parcels of land for conservation dedication and land-trusting
  • Promoting community and youth education programs to enhance public awareness of Hawai‘i’s natural beauty, and to stimulate a love of nature

In the past, our aims were limited to the environment, but more and more we are realizing that there is a lot of overlap between the environmental and the social (“ecology” and “economy” share the same Latin root). For example, “ice” houses, where crystal methamphetamine is either manufactured or used, contaminate wood, paint, carpets, upholstery and even the soil with toxins. Later residents in such a house can become seriously ill. So “ice” is definitely an environmental problem, but it has social and economic underpinnings that cannot be ignored if we are serious about addressing it.

Another example is the way in which greed, corporate capitalism, land speculation and weak land use laws conspire to prevent us from providing adequate housing for low and medium-income families while simultaneously destroying some of our most pristine and special places. You can fill in the blanks yourself with some of your favorite current cases.

 

OUR BOARD:

René Siracusa
President

Ann Kobsa
Vice-President & Invasive Species Coordinator

Sherry Kelso Palmer
Secretary-Treasurer, Land Trust Chair & Webmistress

Page Else
Director

Jaya duPuis
Director

Marjane Aalam
Director

Greg DeNike
Director

 

Who are we? We are YOU!