This year has been one of growth and change for HIPHI. We say goodbye to two valued members of our Board of Directors, welcome two new additions, and welcome two more staff to develop our communications capacity, bringing our numbers to 31. 

Retiring Board Members

Dr. Forrest Batz

As we close out this year, we wish to celebrate two amazing board members who have contributed tremendously to HIPHI during their terms. Both Dr. Forrest Batz and Dr. Bryan Mih have served as board members since 2013 and were outstanding advocates and coalition members for the Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawaiʻi throughout their tenure. Forrest has served as the Coalition’s Policy Chair and was been instrumental in the Raise the Age to 21 campaign in 2015, presented at the 2018 Clearing the Cloud Conference, and continues to speak and present on various platforms to push tobacco issues forward.

Dr. Bryan Mih

Dr. Mih has been the Medical Director for the Kapiʻolani Smokefree Families Tobacco & Nicotine Cessation Program since 2010. He is currently the Tobacco Control Chair for the AAP Hawaiʻi Chapter. Whether it was supplying testimony to lawmakers or battling Big Tobacco in TV interviews, HIPHI and its community have been so appreciative of their medical expertise and willingness to work for a tobacco-free Hawaiʻi. 

New Board Members

We are pleased to announce three new board members to HIPHI’s 2021 slate. Please welcome Misty Pacheco, DrPh, May Okihiro, MD, MS, and Keshia Adolpho, LCSW! Misty is currently an Associate Professor of Kinesiology and Exercise Sciences at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo and Chief Public Health Officer of Maikaʻi Health Corporation. Dr. Okihiro is currently an Associate Professor in Pediatrics at the University of Hawaiʻi John A. Burns School of Medicine and Director of the Research Department at Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center. Keshia is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker at Molokai Community Health Center. We look forward to them joining our HIPHI ʻohana and continue to support our efforts in achieving a healthier Hawaiʻi.

New Staff

Alana Thomas

HIPHI’s team continues to grow, with two new staff joining us in December/January. Alana Thomas is our Public Health Education and Communications Coordinator, and joins HIPHI with a BA in Communications and experience in this realm. She is passionate about educating local communities on health equity. Alana believes the voices of local families can have a profound impact on public policy, and educating and empowering people in Hawaiʻi to engage in conversations on public health is a key value of hers. Alana spends her free time surfing and enjoying the beautiful hikes on Oʻahu.

Olivia Whittemore is the Special Projects Coordinator for the Hawai‘i Farm to School Hui, providing coordination support for the Hawai‘i Youth Food Council (HYFC) and other Hui projects. Originally from coastal Massachusetts, she earned her BA in Environmental Studies and International Relations from Saint Michael’s College in Vermont. She has worked extensively in the non-profit sector with a focused mission to enhance local food systems as a farmer, 4-H counselor, and community organizer. She looks forward to drawing from these experiences to support Hawaii’s farm to school movement from her new home on O‘ahu.

HIPHI Interns

HIPHI staff would also like to thank our Fall 2020 interns for their great work this semester:

  • Treysen Ishimoto (Hawaiʻi Oral Health Coalition)
  • Violet Moon (Hawaiʻi Farm to School Hui)
  • Ellen Thomson (Hawaiʻi Farm to School Hui)
  • Kassandra Pascual (Hawaiʻi School Peace Gardens)
  • Lauren Simpson-Gomez (CTFH Youth Council)

For more information on internship and volunteer opportunities at HIPHI please visit []  Applications for Spring 2021 are closed. Students who are interested in applying for Summer and Fall 2021 internship terms should fill out our Application Form as soon as possible.