Maui News

Lt. Dobrowolsky Promoted to Second in Command for State Sheriff Division

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Lt. Lanikoa “Koa” Dobrowolsky was promoted to First Deputy, which is second in command in the state’s Sheriff Division. Screen shot Courtesy State of Hawai’i

The Hawaiʻi Department of Public Safety held a pinning ceremony today to promote Lt. Lanikoa “Koa” Dobrowolsky’s promotion to First Deputy, which is second in command of the state’s Sheriff Division.

Dobrowolsky answers directly to State Sheriff Billy Oku. He is responsible for assisting the Sheriff in planning, directing and coordinating the activities of the Sheriff Division, as well as the activities of the Deputy Sheriffs engaged in providing law enforcement services for the State of Hawai’i.    

“Over the past 27 years, Koa has risen up through the ranks of the Sheriff Division,” said Public Safety Department Deputy Director Jordan Lowe. “He is a dedicated and experienced law enforcement and military leader, but most importantly, his heart is in the Division. I am confident he will provide effective leadership and accountability and will ensure that the division operates efficiently.” 

Lt. Koa Dobrowolsky (left) was promoted to First Deputy and now answers directly to Sheriff Billy Oku (right). Photo Courtesy: State of Hawai’i

Lt. Dobrowolsky most recently served, from 2011 to present, as the Commander of the Sheriffs Special Operations Unit supervising the Fugitive Apprehension Unit, Canine Unit and the Sheriff Rapid Enforcement and Counter Threat Team (REACT).

His responsibilities included developing complex tactical and operational plans involving coordination with multiple federal, state and county agencies, and supervising the response to critical/high risk operations and special events for the state.  

He began his career in the Sheriff Division in 1994 as a deputy sheriff, tasked with various law enforcement assignments including criminal investigations, fugitive apprehension and patrol operations. In 1998, he was promoted to sergeant and worked patrol, ran the District Court cellblock and the booking and receiving desk. From 2000 to 2011 he was as the lead instructor Sergeant for PSD’s Law Enforcement Training Academy, where he was responsible for the review of past training protocols and updating deputy sheriff recruit training.


Lt. Dobrowolsky also has a lengthy 28-year military career with the US Army. He currently serves as a First Sergeant in the US Army’s B Company, 301st Military Intelligence, responsible for the welfare, training, readiness, and the overall mission success of the expeditionary ready force. He also supervises operations conducted by intelligence analysts, cyber and signal intelligence, counter-intelligence special agents and human intelligence operators.  

Lt. Dobrowolsky is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and Department of Defense, Counter-Intelligence Special Agent Academy.  Reid Ogata, the previous Sheriff Division First Deputy, retired at the end of December 2020.


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