Our ʻOhana

Malia Kekai

Board Chair

Malia Kekai (she/her) is a mother, wife, attorney, public servant, and explorer of the ever changing landscape of emotional regulation. Born and raised on Maui and now lives in Hilo, via Honolulu and Los Angeles. She loves beach days and camping with her wife and son. She is dedicated to public service and helping create safe and accepting places for all. One of her great joys is to participate in the practice of mālama 'āina.

Joshua Lanakila Mangauil

Board Treasurer

Lanakila Mangauil (he/him) is the founder of HŌʻĀ, formerly known as Hawaiian Culutral Center of Hamakua. Growing up in the forests of ʻĀhualoa and down in Waipi‘o Valley, Lanakila was raised by and able to learn from a wide range of Hawaiian practitioners. A lifelong student of Hula and ritual, Lanakila received the title of Kumu Hula through the ceremonial right of uniki. He is best known for his activism and leadership in the movement to protect Maunakea. Committed not only to activism but also solution creation, Lanakila is also a proud co-author of the revolutionary economic reform document: ʻĀina Aloha Economic Futures.

Eris Dela Cruz

Board Secretary

Eris Dela Cruz (she/her) is a māhūwahine and an avid gamer who values ʻohana and kindness. She was born on Hawaiʻi Island and was raised in Honomū and Pepe’ekeo by her parents and grandparents. Eris is passionate about helping others and finds joy whenever she gets the opportunity to make a positive impact. Her favorite ‘Ōlelo No‘eau is “Ua ola loko i ke aloha” or “Love gives life within” as she believes that love is imperative to one’s mental and physical welfare. 

Jonathan Kaʻupena Teves

Creative Director of Special Events

Jonathan Ka’upena Teves (he/him) was raised in Hilo and is a lifelong student of all things creative. From theater to hairdressing, photography to special events planning, he really has done it all. He’s an avid volunteer and has traveled across the U.S. working in Disaster Relief with the American Red Cross, leading a team for Americorps, and even supervising a security team at the Olympic Games Atlanta 1996. His love for community was first sparked by his grandparents Leinaʻala and Harold Teves who instilled in him the importance of giving back to the places that feed you. As someone who was always a little “different”, he knows the importance of providing mentorship, safety, and guidance to young local artists.

Keanu Steffen

Media Manager

Keanu Steffen (he/him) is from Hilo, Hawaiʻi. He is a recent graduate of Hilo High School where he was highly involved with the KVIKS Media program. Keanu has a very creative mind and enjoys making pottery and music. He is an avid photographer and is most at ease behind the camera. His new furbaby is a tiny tabby named Ipo. She’s our therapy cat and mascot. Come check her out at the Hale when you visit, she loves people!

Alanaʻaupō Savio


Alana‘aupō Savio (he/him) is from Nānākuli and Kalihi, O‘ahu. He currently resides in Kuhua, Honomū with his awesome family. He is a mahi‘ai, father, and māhūkāne. As a kalo farmer, he was mentored by Uncle Calvin Hoe. Like his mentor, he loves to grow and distribute food and medicine to community. He also has a passion for healing through pilina with āina. Ala wants to have good relationships and enjoy his life while helping others to do the same.

Krista Savio


Krista Savio (she/her) is a mother, Lā‘au Lapa’au practitioner, book nerd and lover of beauty. She is originally from Kona, O‘ahu but now lives in Kuhua, Honomū with her partner, their two children and a menagerie of animals. Krista deeply believes, as Dr. Cornel West said, that justice is what love looks like in public. She is lit up by mutual aid, community building, and anything festive and celebratory.

Jessica Waiaʻu

Co-Founder, Executive Director

Jessica Waiaʻu (she/her) is from Punaluʻu, Oʻahu and now resides with her wife, son, and extended family in Waiākea on Hawaiʻi island. She is a seasoned educator with over 15 years of counseling and teaching experience. She currently works at Kamehameha Schools as a Counselor and is an ASCA-Certified School Counselor and HOPE facilitator. As a kanaka, she does her best to honor her ancestors and create opportunities for others to honor their ancestors.