Dwight Takamine

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Dwight Y. Takamine
Hawaii Director of Labor and Industrial Relations
Assumed office
Member of the Hawaii Senate
from the 1st district
In office
Preceded by Lorraine Inouye
Succeeded by Malama Solomon
Member of the Hawaii House of Representatives
from the 1st district
In office
Preceded by Yoshito Takamine
Succeeded by Mark Nakashima
Personal details
Born (1953-01-29) January 29, 1953 (age 64)
Honokaʻa, Hawaii
Political party Democratic
Residence Laupahoehoe, Hawaii
Profession attorney

Dwight Y. Takamine (born January 29, 1953) is an Okinawan-American Hawaii state senator and state representative (1984–2007). A Democrat, he represents the first district on the island of Hawai'i.

Early life and education[edit]

Dwight, the eldest of five children, was born January 29, 1953 and raised in the plantation community of Honokaʻa to Yoshito and Kimiko Takamine. Yoshito Takamine served in the Hawaii State House of Representatives from 1959 to 1984. Dwight attended Honokaʻa Elementary School and Honokaʻa High School where he excelled both athletically and scholastically. In 1971, Dwight graduated High School as class valedictorian. Dwight went on to earn a bachelor's degree in psychology while participating in the ethnic studies program at the University of Hawai`i at Manoa. Dwight subsequently studied law at UH and received his law degree from the William S. Richardson School of Law in 1978.


After graduating, Dwight began practicing law in Honolulu. In 1983, he opened his own law office in Hilo, Hawaii as his father Yoshito Takamine resigned after 26 years in the Hawaii House of Representatives. The younger Takamine took his father's seat in 1984. Dwight maintains a house in Laupahoehoe but usually lives in Honolulu with his second wife who is a school official there. He has continued to practice labor law focusing on workers' compensation cases. On behalf of the ILWU, whose ties to the Takamine's go back decades, Takamine has pushed a lumber mill in Oʻokala, and a wood-burning power plant in Paʻauilo. Local residents are against both proposals. Takamine and his father played a key role in the controversial 1980s Kamehameha Schools (formerly Bishop Estate) decision to buy the Hamakua Sugar Company lands and then plant them in eucalyptus. The story is recounted in Hawaii book "Broken Trust".

Since 1984, Dwight served as the State Representative for the Big Island's 1st District until 2007 when he was elected as the State Senator for District 1.During one campaign he "went to bat" at the century-old local Kalanianaole Elementary and Middle School located on the Hamakua Coast. With the demise of the jobs of the sugar-cane industry, the school had declined when Dwight stepped in and revived interest.[citation needed] His roles in the legislature as a Representative have included serving as Chair of several committees, notably the Finance Committee from 1998-2006. He was deposed from this position on the Finance Committee during pre-2007-session faction fighting in the Democratic caucus. During the 2006 campaign, Takamine had co-hosted an official Akaka campaign rally at the Honokaa ranch of Larry Mehau. Takamine and numerous other Democrat elected officials and candidates were photographed there by Hawai'i Free Press photojournalists. [1]

In this time, different factions were supporting their respective leaders for chair positions. When his faction failed to seat their leader, he was subsequently stripped of his committee chairmanship. He then ran for the Senate seat being vacated by Sen Lorrane Inouye. Dwight Takamine was elected November 4, 2008 as a candidate for the State Senate District 1 which includes Hilo, Hamakua, and Kamuela. His opponent was Republican Ted Hong, a former member of the UH Board of Regents and the former state labor negotiator.

Dwight campaigned for President Barack Obama.


Dwight is married to Carol who has focused her career on early childhood education. They have a blended family and three sons. Galen is a college student currently attending Azusa Pacific University, and Aaron and Trevor are in high school.[citation needed]

External links[edit]