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Keynote SpeakersKeynote speakers
KEYNOTES - Wednesday, May 29

Conference Opening Ceremony, Protocols, and Welcoming General Session

Wednesday, May 29, 2024  |  8:15 AM - 9:30 AM

The conference begins with ceremony and protocols to acknowledge and center Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiian) hosts who are welcoming NCORE participants to the conference. This session will feature Kumu Hina, Pwo Navigator Chadd Paishon, the first of two Suzan Shown Harjo award recipients, and welcoming remarks by NCORE conference administrator, Dr. Belinda Biscoe.

Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu

presenter Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu

Hinaleimoana Wong-Kalu, “Kumu Hina,” is a Native Hawaiian transgender woman born and raised in the Nu’uanu District of O’ahu. She came of age during the Hawaiian Renaissance of the 1970s, a time of renewed interest in Hawaiian language, culture, music, and art. This movement sparked Wong-Kalu’s passion for preserving her traditions, specifically the art of storytelling and dance.

“It is the wisdom perpetuated in the traditions of hula (dance), oli (chant), and mele (song) that inspires me the most,” says Wong-Kalu. “I use this knowledge in pursuit of wellness in our islands and in alignment with the true meaning of aloha: love, honor, that intimates respect for all.”

Today, she is a teacher, cultural practitioner, and community leader promoting the Kanaka (Hawaiian) language, philosophy, and traditions of her people across diverse educational, political, and media landscapes. She is also an accomplished filmmaker who uses digital media as a modern extension of Hawaii’s ancient storytelling traditions.

Chadd Paishon

presetner Chadd Paishon

Aloha mai kakou, o wau o Chadd `Onohi Paishon ua hanau mai la ma Beverly Hills, Oahu a lua. My name is Chadd `Onohi Paishon and I was born in Beverly Hills, Oahu also known as Papakolea.

I would lay out my life in 3 areas; family, music & the ocean.

I am the youngest of 5 siblings and also the youngest of, 82, 1st cousins. The family has been and still is a huge part of who I am. It was defined by my grandmothers and holds true to this day. Growing up my “friends” also became a part of my family and that has continued till today. Once you are in my “bubble” it’s for life. My grandmother, Emma Honuaiwa Halemanu, was a musician and composer. Growing up all of
her grandchildren would be with her on our weekends and you were given a choice, “sing or dance.” Oh, did I also mention my grandmother also danced and taught hula. So, I chose singing and that is another area that is for life. Music has allowed me to create lifelong relationships, travel to many different places, and share through music with many different people.

The ocean… ocean is part of my earliest childhood memories. From my father diving and fishing and sharing that love of the ocean with me to bodysurfing, longboarding, or paipo, being in, on,
or under the ocean was always and still is fine with me. The ocean and our cultural revitalization of voyaging have come to define a large part of who I am. I am the Executive Director & Senior Captain for a non-profit voyaging & education organization by the name of, Na Kalai Wa`a based in Waimea, Moku o Keawe.

I am a sailor, crew member, Captain & Navigator for our voyaging canoes in Hawai`i and am a part of Ohana Wa`a. I have had the privilege to sail aboard our voyaging canoes for over 35 years.

My main function in our organization is to move forward the vision and mission of our organization which was founded in 1993 following the building of our first canoe, Mauloa. We then moved into the creation and building of our voyaging canoe, Makali`i in 1995 with the support of our community. To this day we continue to serve our community through education programs focused on voyaging and the resources it takes to maintain and perpetuate voyaging. I am also one of five men from Hawai`i who were initiated into a ceremony called, Pwo, by Grandmaster Navigator, Pius Mau Piailug in 2007 in Satawal, Micronesia. The five men, Nainoa Thompson, Shorty Bertelmann, Bruce Blankenfeld, Chad Kalepa Baybayan and myself, are responsible for passing on the knowledge we learned from our teacher and mentor, Pius Papa Mau Piailug.

O wau o Chadd `Onohi Paishon, eia la.

Hui, Featuring Jonathan and Jamaica Osorio

Wednesday, May 29, 2024  |  4:30 PM - 5:45 PM

Puʻuhonua: Building Freedom Places Together
Join Drs. Jonathan and Jamaica Osorio as they share moʻolelo (liberatory stories) of resilience and defiance against enduring imperial regimes. Delving into the complexities of American colonial violence, they examine its ongoing impact in Hawaiʻi and beyond, touching on themes of capitalism, militarism, white supremacy, and carceral politics. Through the lens of collective liberation and sovereignty, they invite reflection on the role of indigenous institutions like the puʻuhonua (places of refuge) in forging pathways towards a more just and peaceful future. Explore with us as we envision freedom worlds built collectively beyond incommensurability and scarcity.

Drs. Jonathan and Jamaica Osorio


Dr. Jonathan Osorio

Dr. Jonathan Kay Kamakawiwoʻole Osorio is the Dean of Hawaiʻinuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge. He is married to Mary Carol Dunn and has fathered six children, all reasonably well adjusted human beings. Dr. Osorio received his PhD in History from the University of Hawaiʻi in 1996 and was on the faculty of the Kamakakūokalani Center for Hawaiian Studies, serving as director of the Center from 2003 to 2008. As a professor, he has collaborated with numerous other faculty and students in many departments to bring recognition for indigenous knowledge, championing Hawaiian language, performing arts and the study of Hawaiian and Pacific Islands history and contemporary issues through conferences, forums and publications. He has published broadly and both of his books, Dismembering Lāhui (2002) and The Value of Hawaiʻi (2010), co-edited with Craig Howes, have won local publishing awards. Dean Osorio serves on several boards and committees in support of Hawaiian sovereignty and protection of sacred places in Hawaiʻi. He is a composer and singer and has been a Hawaiian music recording artist since 1975.

Dr. Jamaica Osorio

Dr. Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio is a Kanaka Maoli wahine artist / activist / scholar / storyteller born and raised in Pālolo Valley to parents Jonathan and Mary Osorio. Jamaica earned her PhD in English Hawaiian literature) in 2018 from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Currently, Jamaica is an Associate Professor of Indigenous and Native Hawaiian Politics at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Jamaica is a three-time national poetry champion, poetry mentor and a published author. In 2020 her poetry and activism were the subject of an award-winning film, This is the Way we Rise which premiered at Sundance Film Festival in 2021. In 2022 she was a lead artist and Co-writer of the revolutionary VR Documentary, On the Morning You Wake (To the end of the world), that premiered at Sundance Film Festival 2022 and won the XR experience Jury award at SXSW 2022. She is a proud past Kaiāpuni student, Ford Dissertation (2017) and Post Doctoral (2022) Fellow, and a graduate of Kamehameha, Stanford University (BA) and New York University (MA). She is the author of the award winning book Remembering our Intimacies: Moʻolelo, Aloha ʻĀina, and Ea which was published in 2021 by The University of Minnesota Press. She believes in the power of aloha ʻāina and collective action to pursue liberatory, decolonial, and abolitionist futures of abundance.

Photo at top featuring a Microsorum spectrum leaf (endemic to Hawai‘i and commonly known as a laua‘e fern) provided by the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority. Used with permission.