Kaʻala Buenconsejo Named New Maui Parks Director
By Wendy Osher
Maui County officials today confirmed the appointment of Kaʻala Buenconsejo as Maui’s new Parks Director.
Buenconsejo was a recent candidate in the West Maui Council race, but was defeated in the November general election by incumbent Elle Cochran.
According to Buenconsejo’s campaign website, he is the Director of Marketing for Nā Hoaloha ʻEkolu, the parent company of the Old Lahaina Lūʻau, Aloha Mixed Plate, Star Noodle, and Leoda’s Kitchen and Pie Shop in West Maui.
County officials tell Maui Now that Buenconsejo began his new post on Tuesday, and has already begun getting his feet wet by attending department meetings.
Parks Department deputy director, Brianne Savage had been serving as interim director following the departure of former director Glenn Correa who retired in June after being on paid leave for several months.
County communications director Rod Antone said Correa’s administrative leave was due to a personnel matter, which he is still unable to discuss. In June, The Maui News reported that there was a police investigation relating to operations at the Waiehu Municipal Golf Course. Maui police today said the case has been completed and submitted to the Attorney General’s Office for review and disposition.
In an email communication with staff on Dec. 5, Savage announced Buenconsejo’s appointment saying, “He will be an excellent leader for the department as we continue to strive for more efficient and effective ways to serve our community through the implementation of positive change.”
Antone credited Savage saying, “she did a fine job filling in as acting director until we were able to fill the position.” Antone said Savage will continue to serve as deputy director as the new administration takes office on Jan. 2, 2014.
According to Antone, the director post is paid over six figures, and is in charge of the oversight of approximately 300 employees.