Maui News

Catholic Religious Leader Selected as State Coordinator on Homelessness

January 20, 2011, 9:24 PM HST
* Updated January 29, 2:25 AM
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By Wendy Osher

An executive in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Honolulu is leaving his post to take on a new secular role in state government. Marc Alexander was appointed today as the state Coordinator on Homelessness by Governor Neil Abercrombie.

Gov. Abercrombie is pictured here at his Maui island inauguration celebration in December. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Alexander was granted release from his fatherly duties after serving five years as the Vicar General for the diocese. The decision was made after Alexander’s request for a six-month sabbatical at the end of December.

Stressing his commitment to end homelessness in Hawaii, Governor Neil Abercrombie called the issue one of, “deep, mutual concern.”

“Marc will lead a multi-faceted approach that requires collaboration among many departments, organizations, lawmakers, and programs,” said Gov. Abercrombie.

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During the 2010 campaign, Gov. Abercrombie and Alexander crossed paths twice, during gatherings of the Hawaii Pastors Roundtable.

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In his new capacity, Alexander will work with state and federal agencies, community programs and foundations, and the business community to find opportunities and solutions to address homelessness collaboratively.

“I am humbled by the confidence in my ability to work toward a solution,” said Alexander. “Through this position, I hope to honor all the public and private servants who have worked tirelessly to address the fundamental need of shelter, for the good of all residents,” said Alexander.

In his previous capacity as Vicar General of the Catholic Church in Hawaii, Alexander oversaw operations for some 1,300 employees. He was also part of the team that developed the Diocese’s first-ever strategic plan.

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Alexander was born in Japan and raised in Hawaii. He studied in Indiana, Belgium and Italy, and received his Doctorate in Sacred Theology from Gregorian University in Rome.

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