Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii

The Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii (Hawaiian: Hope kiaʻāina o Hawaiʻi) is the assistant chief executive of the U.S. state of Hawaii and its various agencies and departments, as provided in the Article V, Sections 2 though 6 of the Constitution of Hawaii.[1] Elected by popular suffrage of residents of the state on the same ticket as the Governor of Hawaii, the officeholder is concurrently the Secretary of State of Hawaii.

The officeholder becomes Governor of Hawaii in an acting capacity upon an absence of the person occupying the office from the state or if the person becomes disabled from duty. Historically, Hawaii Lieutenant Governors were members of either the Hawaii Democratic Party or Hawaii Republican Party. Three have gone on to become Governor of Hawaii: George Ariyoshi, Ben Cayetano and John D. Waihee III.

Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
Logo of the Office of the Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii Josh Green (cropped)
Josh Green

since December 3, 2018
Term lengthFour years, renewable once
Inaugural holderJames Kealoha
FormationAugust 21, 1959
WebsiteOffice of the Lt. Governor


The Lieutenant Governor of Hawaiʻi is limited to two four-year terms. Inauguration takes place on the first Monday in December following a gubernatorial election. A single term ends at noon four years later. The Lieutenant Governor must be thirty years old and be a resident of Hawaiʻi for five consecutive years previous to election. Unlike some other states, the office of Lieutenant Governor of Hawaiʻi is a full-time position and requires that the Lieutenant Governor be barred from other professions or paid positions during the term.

List of lieutenant governors


  Democratic (12)   Republican (2)

# Picture Lt. Governor Took Office Left Office Party Governor(s) served under
1 James Kealoha James Kealoha August 21, 1959 December 2, 1962 Republican William F. Quinn
2 William S. Richardson December 2, 1962 December 2, 1966 Democratic John A. Burns
3 Thomas Gill Thomas Gill December 2, 1966 December 2, 1970 Democratic
4 BWV - Washington Place (cropped) George Ariyoshi December 2, 1970 December 2, 1974 Democratic
5 Nelson Doi December 2, 1974 December 2, 1978 Democratic George Ariyoshi
6 Jean King December 2, 1978 December 2, 1982 Democratic
7 John David Waihee III John D. Waiheʻe December 2, 1982 December 2, 1986 Democratic
8 President Arroyo with Hawaii Governor Benjamin Cayetano (cropped) Ben Cayetano December 2, 1986 December 2, 1994 Democratic John D. Waiheʻe
9 Mazie Hirono, official 110th Congress photo Mazie Hirono December 2, 1994 December 2, 2002 Democratic Ben Cayetano
10 Duke Aiona Duke Aiona December 4, 2002 December 6, 2010 Republican Linda Lingle
11 Brian Schatz Brian Schatz December 6, 2010 December 26, 2012 Democratic Neil Abercrombie
12 Shan Tsutsui Shan Tsutsui December 27, 2012 January 31, 2018 Democratic
David Ige
13 Lt Gov Doug Chin Doug Chin February 2, 2018 December 3, 2018 Democratic
14 Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii Josh Green (cropped) Josh Green December 3, 2018 Incumbent Democratic

Living former Lieutenant Governors of Hawaii

As of December 2018, there are eight living former Lieutenant Governors of Hawaii, the oldest being George Ariyoshi (served 1970–1974, born 1926). The most recent death of a former Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii was that of Nelson Doi (served 1974–1978, born 1922), who died on May 16, 2015. The most recently serving officeholder to die was Jean King (1978–1982, born 1925) on November 24, 2013.

Lieutenant Governor Term Date of birth (and age)
George Ariyoshi 1970–1974 March 12, 1926 (age 93)
John D. Waiheʻe III 1982–1986 May 19, 1946 (age 73)
Ben Cayetano 1986–1994 November 4, 1939 (age 79)
Mazie Hirono 1994–2002 November 3, 1947 (age 71)
Duke Aiona 2002–2010 June 8, 1955 (age 64)
Brian Schatz 2010–2012 October 20, 1972 (age 46)
Shan Tsutsui 2012–2018 August 9, 1971 (age 48)
Doug Chin 2018 July 21, 1966 (age 53)


  1. ^ "Hawaii Revised Statutes §26-1(a) (2019)". Hawaiʻi State Legislature. Retrieved 12 February 2019.

External links

1974 Hawaii gubernatorial election

The 1974 Hawaii gubernatorial election was Hawaii's fifth gubernatorial election. The election was held on November 5, 1974, and resulted in a victory for the Democratic candidate, Lt. Gov. George Ariyoshi over Republican candidate, former State Senator Randolph Crossley. Ariyoshi received more votes than Crossley in every county in the state.Although he was by law Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii at the time of this election, George Ariyoshi had had all the power and responsibility of the Governorship since October 26, 1973, when Governor John A. Burns was incapacitated due to illness and Ariyoshi was made acting governor.This was Crossley's second failed attempt to win the Governorship, having previously lost the 1966 election.

2010 Hawaii gubernatorial election

The 2010 Hawaii gubernatorial election was held on November 2, 2010 to elect the next Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii. The winning candidates served a four-year term from 2010 to 2014. Incumbent Republican Governor Linda Lingle was term-limited in 2010 and not eligible to run for re-election. Former congressman Neil Abercrombie was declared the winner, defeating lieutenant governor Duke Aiona. Abercrombie was sworn in as the state's seventh (and its fifth Democratic) Governor on December 6, 2010.

The winners of the 2010 lieutenant governor primary election became the running mates of the 2010 gubernatorial nominees.

Brian Schatz

Brian Emanuel Schatz (; born October 20, 1972) is an American politician serving as the senior United States Senator from Hawaii, a seat he has held since 2012. Schatz was appointed by Governor Neil Abercrombie to replace Senator Daniel Inouye after his death.

Schatz served in the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1998 to 2006, where he represented the 25th Legislative District and was chairman of the Democratic Party of Hawaii from 2008 to 2010. He also worked as chief executive officer of Helping Hands Hawaii, an Oahu nonprofit social service agency, until he resigned to run for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 gubernatorial election as the running mate of Neil Abercrombie. He served as lieutenant governor until December 26, 2012, when Abercrombie appointed Schatz to serve out the rest of Daniel Inouye's U.S. Senate term after his death. Upon his swearing-in, Schatz was the youngest U.S. Senator in the 112th Congress. Schatz won the 2014 special election to complete the remainder of Inouye's Senate term, and was reelected in 2016 for a full six-year term, defeating Republican John Carroll.

Carol Fukunaga

Carol Fukunaga (born December 12, 1947) is an American lawyer and politician.

Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, Fukunaga received her bachelor's degree from the University of Hawaii and her law degree from the William S. Richardson School of Law. She practiced law in Honolulu. Fukunaga served in the Hawaii Constitutional Convention of 1978. She then served in the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1978 to 1982 and from 1986 to 1992 and was a Democrat. From 1982 to 1986, Fukunaga served as the executive officer for the Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii. Fukunaga served in the Hawaii Senate from 1992 to 2012. Since 2012, Fukunaga has served on the Honolulu City Council.

Doug Chin

Douglas S. Chin (born July 21, 1966) is an American attorney and politician who served as the 13th lieutenant governor of Hawaii, from February to December 2018. A member of the Democratic Party, Chin was previously the Attorney General of Hawaii. On December 18, 2017, Chin announced his intent to run for the U.S. House of Representatives; in August 2018, he lost the seat's Democratic nomination to Ed Case. In February 2018, Chin became Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii after the resignation of Shan Tsutsui and after two others in the line of succession declined the office.

Duke Aiona

James R. "Duke" Aiona Jr. (born June 8, 1955) is an American politician and jurist who served as the tenth lieutenant governor of Hawaii from 2002 to 2010. A Republican, he also served both as an attorney and a judge for the state prior to becoming lieutenant governor.

Aiona was the Republican nominee for Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 election, but was defeated by Democrat Neil Abercrombie in the general election. He was the Republican nominee once again in the 2014 election, but lost to Democrat David Ige.

Gary Hooser

Gary L. Hooser (born January 19, 1954) is an American politician and the former State Senate Majority Leader representing Kauaʻi and Niʻihau since 2002. He formerly served on the Kauaʻi County Council for 4 years before becoming a Senator.

In the summer of 2010, Hooser resigned his Senate seat to run for the office of Lieutenant Governor of Hawaiʻi. He was defeated on September 18, 2010 in the Democratic primary by Brian Schatz. He served on the Kaua'i County Council from 2014-2016 until defeated by Mason Chock. Hooser currently is president of Hawaii' Alliance for Progressive Action advocacy group.

Governor of Hawaii

The Governor of Hawaii (Hawaiian: Ke Kiaʻaina o Hawaiʻi) is the chief executive of the state of Hawaii and its various agencies and departments, as provided in the Hawaii State Constitution Article V, Sections 1 through 6. It is a directly elected position, votes being cast by popular suffrage of residents of the state. The governor is responsible for enforcing laws passed by the Hawaii State Legislature and upholding rulings of the Hawaii State Judiciary. The role includes being commander-in-chief of the armed forces of Hawaii and having the power to use those forces to execute laws, suppress insurrection and violence and repel invasion. The Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii becomes acting governor upon the officeholder's absence from the state or if the person is unable to discharge the powers and duties of the office. Historically, the Governor of Hawaii has been from either the Democratic Party of Hawaii or Hawaii Republican Party.

The current Governor of Hawaii is Democrat David Ige, who assumed the position on December 1, 2014. Hawaii was the first U.S. state to have an Asian American chief executive; George Ariyoshi served three terms between 1974 and 1986. The state currently has had three Asian American, one Native Hawaiian, as well as four white people holding the governorship.

Hawaii State Capitol

The Hawaii State Capitol is the official statehouse or capitol building of the U.S. state of Hawaii. From its chambers, the executive and legislative branches perform the duties involved in governing the state. The Hawaii State Legislature—composed of the twenty-five member Hawaii State Senate led by the President of the Senate and the fifty-one member Hawaii State House of Representatives led by the Speaker of the House—convenes in the building. Its principal tenants are the Governor of Hawaii and Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii, as well as all legislative offices and the Legislative Reference Bureau.

Located in downtown Honolulu, the Hawaii State Capitol was commissioned and dedicated by John A. Burns, second Governor of Hawaii. It opened on March 15, 1969, replacing the former statehouse, the ʻIolani Palace.

James Kealoha

James Kimo Kealoha (April 29, 1908 – August 24, 1983) was an American politician who served as the first lieutenant governor of Hawaii in the administration of Governor of Hawaiʻi William F. Quinn. Prior to his election as Lieutenant Governor, Kealoha served a number of years as a legislator on Hawaii island (the "Big Island"), distinguishing himself as a respected leader.

Jean King

Jean Sadako King, née McKillop (December 6, 1925 – November 24, 2013) was the sixth lieutenant governor of Hawaii, the state's first woman to be elected as such, from 1978 to 1982 in the administration of Governor George Ariyoshi.

Josh Green (politician)

Joshua B. Green (born February 11, 1970) is an American politician and physician serving as the 14th and current Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii since 2018. A member of the Democratic Party, he was the Hawaii State Senator from the 3rd district from 2009 to 2018 and Hawaii State Representative for the 6th district from 2005 to 2009.


Kealoha (translation: "The Love") is a common Hawaiian first name and surname and may refer to:

James Kealoha (1908–1983), Hawaii politician and first Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii

J. R. Kealoha (died 1877), Native Hawaiian veteran of the American Civil War

Katherine Kealoha, former deputy prosecutor

Pua Kealoha (1902–1989), American competition swimmer and Olympic champion

Warren Kealoha (1903–1972), American competition swimmer and Olympic champion

Kealoha Pilares (born 1988), American football player

Kealoha (poet), (born Steven Wong), performance poet and Hawaii's first Poet Laureate

Lyla Berg

Lyla Berg (born March 15, 1951) is a Hawaiian Democratic politician. She was first elected to the Hawaii House of Representatives in 2004 representing the Kāhala area of Honolulu on Oahu. Berg was a Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 election.

She was attacked for having sponsored a resolution to designate an Islam Day in 2009; critics claimed that according to the Julian Calendar, the holiday celebrated the September 11 attacks.

She lost in the primary to Brian Schatz.

Mayor of Honolulu

The Mayor of Honolulu is the chief executive officer of the City and County of Honolulu and considered the third most powerful official in the U.S. state of Hawaii, behind the Governor of Hawaii and the Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii. An office established in 1900 and modified in 1907, the mayor of Honolulu is elected by universal suffrage of residents of Honolulu to no more than two four-year terms. The mayor of Honolulu is one of only two officers elected countywide; the other is the prosecuting attorney. The Mayor of Honolulu is the successor of the Royal Governors of Oʻahu of the Kingdom of Hawaii.

The mayor of Honolulu holds strong power in terms of the limits of the official’s abilities, the size of the budget he or she controls and the unique relationship the officer has in association with the mayors of Asian and Pacific Rim nations. The mayor of Honolulu has full control over appointment and removal of administrators, is invested with absolute control over department heads, wields veto power over the Honolulu City Council and has substantial control over the budget, totaling in excess of US$1 billion.

Nelson Doi

Nelson Kiyoshi Doi (January 1, 1922 – May 16, 2015), was the fifth lieutenant governor of Hawaii from 1974 to 1978 in the first elected administration of Governor George Ariyoshi. Doi was a member of the Hawaii Democratic Party.

Robert Bunda

Robert "Bobby" Bunda (born April 25, 1947) is a former Democratic member of the Hawaii Senate, representing the 22nd District from 1994 through 2010, when he resigned his position in an unsuccessful bid for Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii. Previously he was a member of the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1983 through 1994.

He is the first Filipino American to attain the presidency of any state legislature in the United States.

He attended Ludwigsburg American High School in Stuttgart, Germany, Leilehua High School, Texas Wesleyan College where he earned his Bachelor of Science in 1974, and the University of Dallas for his graduate studies.

The 2009 Achievement Award for Public Affairs was conferred to Bunda by Filipinas Magazine. The magazine, self-described as "the Magazine for Filipinos Worldwide" named Bunda as among the "brightest lights" of the Filipino community.Bunda announced on October 13, 2009, that he had entered the 2010 race for Lieutenant Governor for the State of Hawaiʻi. Bunda subsequently lost the election to former state legislator and state party chairman Brian Schatz.

Shan Tsutsui

Shan S. Tsutsui (born August 9, 1971) is an American politician who was the 12th lieutenant governor of Hawaii from 2012 to 2018. A member of the Democratic Party, he was previously a member of the Hawaii Senate from 2003 to 2012, and he served as President of the Senate from 2010 to 2012. On January 29, 2018, Tsutsui announced his resignation, effective January 31.

Thomas Gill (politician)

Thomas Ponce Gill (April 21, 1922 – June 3, 2009) was a Hawaii politician. A member of the Democratic party, he served in the United States Congress from 1963 to 1965 and was the third lieutenant governor of Hawaii from 1966 to 1970. He unsuccessfully ran for governor twice, in 1970 and 1974.

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