Former Maui Democratic Party Chair Timothy Lara Announces Intent to Seek Senate District 7 Vacancy

April 30, 2021, 2:52 PM HST
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Former Maui Democratic Party Chair Timothy Lara

Former Maui Democratic Party Chair, environmentalist, and entrepreneur Timothy Lara announced his intent to fill the Senate District 7 seat being vacated by Senate Majority Leader J. Kalani English.

“First, I’d like to thank Senator English for his years of service to Maui County and the State of Hawaiʻi and extend my best wishes to him. He was a champion of water rights, conservation, and the environment in the Hawaiʻi Senate and will surely be missed,” said Lara. 

“I look forward to working with the Maui Democratic Party during the appointment process and continuing my service to Maui County and the community at large during this unique transition period,” Lara said. “If selected for the Senate District 7 vacancy, I will not seek reelection but rather finish the last year of Senator English’s current four year term. This would then create space for an open election in 2022 so that the people of Maui, Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi can choose their next senator.”  

Governor David Ige, Timothy Lara, and former Gov. Waihee. Photo courtesy.

Currently, Lara is the a Maui County Representative to the State Central Committee of the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi. He previously served as Chair of the Maui County Democratic Party and President of the Maui Young Democrats. 

A leader in sustainable tourism, Lara’s company, Hawaiian Paddle Sports, hosts a “Mālama Maui” give back program each month, benefiting more than 25 local nonprofit and community groups.

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Under Lara’s leadership, Hawaiian Paddle Sports became Maui’s first certified B-Corporation and a member of 1% For the Planet. The company is also certified by the Sustainable Tourism Association of Hawaiʻi, and was awarded a “Pineapple Award” for Leader in Activities, “Best Workplaces” and “Fastest 50” by Pacific Business News. 

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As Chair of Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapter, Lara advocated for and helped pass legislation to ban smoking in beaches and parks, use of single-use plastics for to-go food items, and the sale of sunscreens containing harmful chemicals for our oceans and reefs. 

He currently serves on the Maui Council for the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust, as a director for the Lahaina Restoration Foundation, and as a member of the Oneloa Coalition. He was awarded Pacific Business News’ 40 Under 40 and completed the Ka Ipu Kukui Fellows Program. 

On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader J. Kalani English announced his retirement from the Hawaiʻi State Senate, effective on May 1, 2021, citing long-term effects of COVID-19. The Governor has 60 days to fill the vacancy.

Timothy Lara and Hawaiʻi Young Democrats. PC: Courtesy.
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