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Eight New Staff Join HIPHI in Spring 2024

HIPHI is thrilled to introduce eight new staff members joining our team in Spring 2024! Meet our newest team members:

Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawai‘i

Natalie Croul [she/her/hers] joined HIPHI in March 2024 as the O‘ahu Community Coordinator for the Coalition for Tobacco-Free Hawai’i. She will be giving educational presentations and engaging with community members about the dangers of tobacco. Natalie graduated from UC Berkeley with degrees in Public Health and Cognitive Science in 2018. Since then, her work has largely been in Public Health research and providing crisis counseling in non-profit settings. Fun fact: Natalie has been playing guitar for eight years but, ironically, has terrible stage fright.

Community Health Workers

Kala‘i Gonsalves HeadshotKala‘i Gonsalves [she/her] joined HIPHI in January 2024 as a Community Health Worker. In her role, Kala‘i will conduct outreach and connect clients to pharmacy services on the island of Maui. Previously, Kala‘i worked as a Certified Pharmacy Technician. In her free time, she loves to spend time with her family, going to the beach, traveling, and going shopping with her family.

Kulamanu Brown joined HIPHI in March 2024 as a Community Health Worker for Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies on the island of Maui. Born and raised in Lāhainā, her love and passion for her culture and community stems from being a part of a multi-generational ‘ohana and a graduate of Lāhaināluna High School. She studied at the University of Hawai‘i Maui Campus (UHMC) to become a Certified Nursing Assistant(CNA). She continues to serve the Lāhui by volunteering with Kula Kaiāpuni ‘O Lāhainā (Hawaiian Immersion School) with the ‘Ōlelo Hawai’i Program, Ho’omau, and the Makahiki Games. Kulamanu’s greatest love is being a wife, mother, and grandmother. She is a strong believer in God and Family first and teaches Sunday School. She has been a Caretaker for 10+ years and has worked in the Hospitality Industry for 30+ years.

Geri Kaleponi joined HIPHI in March 2024 as a Community Health Worker. She will be working with Catholic Charities to help provide services to the community and Kūpuna. Previously, Geri worked with HIPHI through Partners in Development as the Island Coordinator for COVID. Geri has been in the medical field for over 35 years, working with Native Hawaiians in rural areas on all islands. She enjoys planning events and fairs and working on fundraisers, and she especially likes working with indigenous tribes.

Farm to School

Noel Shaw [she/her] joined HIPHI in March 2024 as the Farm to Early Child Care and Education Program Coordinator. In this role, she will oversee Farm to Early Childhood Education (ECE) initiatives by supporting the coordination of programmatic and operational activities of Hawai’i’s ECE coalition. This includes building relationships with local farms and early childhood centers so keiki are accustomed to farming and farm fresh food. Noel has a BS in Applied Indigenous Studies and Political Science and a JD with an Emphasis in Federal Indian Law. She has organized communities around the protection of our natural resources and was previously a guidance counselor for the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians. Noel is from Kalawahine, has three keiki, and enjoys children’s books and learning about kalo farming and stream restoration.

Finance & Operations

Anh Goon joined HIPHI in February 2024 as the Grant Accountant to assist with all aspects of accounting, maintain company records, and perform duties in accordance with GAAP and HIPHI’s internal financial policies and procedures. She is responsible for Accounts Payable functions, general grant billings, grant reporting, and account reconciliation. Anh has a BBA with a major in Finance from UH Mānoa and was previously a student intern at the Federal Probation & Pretrial Services Office, Account Receivable at La Tour Bakehouse, and Academic Peer Coach and HR Assistant at Kapi‘olani Community College. Anh enjoys spending time with her dog, clay painting, cooking, and listening to podcasts. Fun fact: her dog has a first name and last name.

Kayla Yamamoto [she/her] joined HIPHI in March 2024 as the Executive Assistant, bringing a wealth of experience in supporting CEOs and Boards of Directors. Previously, Kayla worked at Unity, a nonprofit holistic healing center, where she excelled as Executive Assistant and Project Manager. With a passion for travel and backpacking, Kayla has explored 48 countries, balancing her adventurous spirit with her career.

Research

Mikaella Joy Liban [she/her] joined HIPHI in January 2024 as the Community Research Specialist VISTA, where she will assist in determining the Filipino cultural views of tobacco, and identify Filipino-specific tobacco cessation interventions through the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning. Mikaella graduated from UH Mānoa with a BA in Public Health in 2023. Her interests align with serving Hawaiʻi’s Filipino community through health research and data. Mikaella also enjoys reading, crocheting, and spending time with family, friends, and her dog.

Interested in joining our growing team?

Learn more about current opportunities with HIPHI at hiphi.org/employment.

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