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Monday, December 14, 2009
Judicial Nominee lists released: Lingle seeks public input
By News Release @ 5:26 PM :: 10988 Views :: Maui County, Education K-12, Energy, Environment

GOVERNOR LINGLE SEEKS PUBLIC INPUT ON NOMINEES FOR INTERMEDIATE COURT OF APPEALS AND CIRCUIT COURT JUDGES

HONOLULU – Governor Linda Lingle today released two lists of judicial nominees that were provided to her by the Judicial Selection Commission to fill one vacancy each on the Intermediate Court of Appeals and the First Circuit Court (O‘ahu).  Governor Lingle is making the lists available to the public to encourage public comment on the nominees. 

The two lists are the products of the Judicial Selection Commission’s review of the background and qualifications of all applicants and its evaluation of each applicant.  The Commission does not rank the candidates. 

Nominees for Associate Judge, Intermediate Court of Appeals:

  • Sabrina S. McKenna – Current position: circuit judge, Circuit Court of the First Circuit.  Prior experience: district judge, District Court of the First Circuit; assistant professor, University of Hawai‘i William S. Richardson School of Law; instructor in business law, University of Hawai‘i College of Business; corporate secretary and general counsel, Otaka, Inc.; associate, Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel.
  • Steven M. Nakashima – Current position: partner, Marr Jones & Wang.  Prior experience: district judge, District Court of the First Circuit; associate and partner, Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel; law clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit; law clerk, attorney general, State of Hawai‘i; law clerk, attorney general, State of Oregon.
  • Karen T. Nakasone – Current position: deputy public defender, Office of the Public Defender.  Prior experience: law clerk, Intermediate Court of Appeals, Associate Judge Simeon Acoba.
  • Lawrence M. Reifurth – Current position: director, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.  Prior experience: deputy director, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs; counsel attorney, Oshima Chun Fong & Chung; insurance commissioner, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs; supervising deputy attorney general, Department of the Attorney General, Education Unit; deputy attorney general, Department of the Attorney General, Public Utilities Unit; associate attorney, assistant city attorney for cities of Fairfax, Mill Valley and Sausalito, Calif.; attorney, Bagshaw Martinelli Corrigan & Jordan, San Rafael, Calif.; associate attorney, Pettit & Martine, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Michael K. Tanigawa – Current position: adjunct professor, Kapi‘olani Community College.  Prior experience: staff attorney, Intermediate Court of Appeals; arbitrator, Court Annexed Arbitration Program; attorney, Char Sakamoto Ishii Lum & Ching; adjunct professor; partner, Tanigawa & Tanigawa; Grand Jury Counsel; deputy public defender, Office of the Public Defender.

Nominees for Circuit Judge, First Circuit Court (O‘ahu)

  • R. Mark Browning – Current position: district family judge, Family Court of the First Circuit.  Prior experience: per diem district family judge, Family Court of the First Circuit; partner, Shim Tam Kirimitsu Kitamura & Chang; deputy prosecuting attorney, Department of the Prosecuting Attorney, City and County of Honolulu; law clerk, Ashford & Wriston.
  • Colette Y. Garibaldi – Current position: district judge, District Court of the First Circuit.  Prior experience:  Per diem district judge, District Court of the First Circuit; deputy prosecuting attorney, Department of the Prosecuting Attorney, City and County of Honolulu; contract attorney, law clerk, Koshiba & Young; law clerk, Los Angeles County Municipal Courts, Planning and Research Unit.
  • Edward H. Kubo, Jr. – Prior experience: U.S. Attorney, District of Hawai‘i; assistant U.S. attorney, District of Hawai‘i; deputy prosecuting attorney, Department of the Prosecuting Attorney, City and County of Honolulu; associate trial attorney, Carlsmith and Dwyer; law clerk, Kobayashi and Watanabe.
  • Lanson K. Kupau – Current position: partner, Kobayashi Sugita & Goda.  Prior experience: attorney, Reinwald O’Conner & Playdon; deputy public defender, Office of the Public Defender.
  • Steven M. Nakashima – Current position: partner, Marr, Jones & Wang.  Prior experience: district judge, District Court of the First Circuit; associate and partner, Goodsill, Anderson, Quinn & Stifel; law clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit; law clerk, attorney general, State of Hawai‘i; law clerk, attorney general, State of Oregon.
  • Dean E. Ochiai – Current position: vice president and managing attorney, First Insurance Company of Hawai‘i, Ltd.  Prior experience: deputy corporation counsel, Corporation Counsel, City and County of Honolulu; Damon Key Char & Bocken Law Firm; deputy prosecuting attorney, Department of the Prosecuting Attorney, City and County of Honolulu; administrative assistant, whip clerk, State Representative Brian Taniguchi.

The Governor has 30 days from receipt of the lists (December 11, 2009) to submit her selections to the Hawai‘i State Senate, which would need to confirm the nominees.

Public comments on the nominees may be sent via e-mail to governor.lingle@hawaii.gov or by fax at 808-586-0006.  All comments should be submitted by the close of business on Wednesday, December 23, 2009.

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