Native Hawaiian Perspectives December Webinar – December 1, 2022 – 12noon HST

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Hawaii Island Economic Development Board is honored to announce panelists for the upcoming webinar happening Thursday, December 1 at noon HST. The conversation will be moderated by Jacqui Hoover, HIEDB Executive Director.

Panelist: Lee-Ann Noelani M.H. Heely, DM

Dr. Lee-Ann Noelani Heely is the Director of Health Equity Department at Hawaii Island Community Health Center. The Health Equity Department supports the spectrum of community health providing upstream and midstream preventive education, community outreach and SDOH support through a team of Community Health Educators, Community Health Workers and SDOH Case Managers.


The goal is to reduce health disparities, increase health literacy, increase access to healthcare, link patients and non-patients with community-based organizations that support the social determinants of health.

Panelist: Wally Lau

Originally from Oahu, Wally Lau relocated with his ohana to Hawaii Island in 1997, first residing in Waimea then in Kailua-Kona. A graduate of Central Washington University, and passionate in helping strengthen families and communities, Wally began his career at Salvation Army Treatment Center for Children and Youth and Kamehameha Schools Alternative Education Programs on Oahu. Upon relocating to Hawaii Island, he started the E Ala Ike day treatment school for youths in Kapulena and the Neighborhood Place of Kona before accepting the appointment as Deputy Managing Director and then Managing Director for the County of Hawaii. 


He currently serves as the Cultural Liaison for the Hawaii Island Community Health Center and is a member of the Hawaii Island Fentanyl Task Force. Wally continues to strengthen families and communities through his volunteer work with such organizations as Royal Order of Kamehameha Ekahi, Kahu Ku Mauna, Kukio Community Fund, Hokupa`a Navigational Council, Five Mountain Hawaii and Na Leo O Hawaii Public TV.

Panelist: Shane Akoni Palacat-Nelsen

Shane Akoni Palacat-Nelsen is a Native Hawaiian born and raised in Kona. He comes from a humble family who fished and farmed where he learned the importance of malama aina. 

Shane is the president of Kuakini Hawaiian Civic Club of Kona, honoring Hawai’i Island’s first Governor, whose philosophy and focus was attuned to the diverse approaches to economic development. Shane also leads several Native Hawaiian organizations that promote and perpetuate ‘ike kupuna (traditional knowledge) and its role in modern Hawai’i. 

He currently is a Public Policy Advocate for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and enjoys spending ‘ohana time in gathering and celebrating generational traditions and customs. 

Moderator: Jacqui Hoover

Born and raised on Hawaii Island, Jacqui Hoover serves concurrently as President of Hawaii Leeward Planning Conference and as the Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer of the Hawaii Island Economic Development Board.  

She currently serves on the Military Native Hawaiian Advisory Council, Pohakuloa Training Area Community Advisory Group, State of Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative Steering Committee, Hawaii Aerospace Advisory Committee and other boards and commissions.

Register Today!
About Hawaii Island Economic Development Board
Hawaii Island Economic Development Board incorporated in 1984 is a private non-profit 501(c)3 whose mission is to provide and promote private sector support and expertise for balanced growth in Hawai`i County in partnership with Federal, State, County, and private resources. HIEDB’s work includes developing and publishing the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) for Hawai`i Island and contributing to the CEDS for the State of Hawai`i (first published in 2005). Updated every five years, HIEDB is preparing to work with the community to update this important economic roadmap in 2021. Since 2006, HIEDB has also focused on its Kama`aina Come Home ®initiative to offer pathways for Hawai`i expatriates to return home.  To learn more, please visit or call (808) 935-2180.
Hawaii Island Economic Development Board | 67-1185 Mamalahoa Hwy, Unit D-104 #353 , Kamuela , HI 96743

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