|10th Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii|
December 4, 2002 – December 6, 2010
|Preceded by||Mazie Hirono|
|Succeeded by||Brian Schatz|
June 8, 1955|
Pearl City, Hawaii, U.S.
University of the Pacific (BA)|
University of Hawaii, Manoa (JD)
James R. "Duke" Aiona Jr. (born June 8, 1955), is an American politician and jurist who served as the tenth Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii from 2002 to 2010. A Republican, he also served both as an attorney and a judge for the state prior to becoming lieutenant governor.
Aiona was the Republican nominee for Governor of Hawaii in the 2010 election, but was defeated by Democrat Neil Abercrombie in the general election. He was the Republican nominee once again in the 2014 election, but lost to Democrat David Ige.
James Aiona was born in Pearl City, Hawaiʻi. He is of Hawaiian and Portuguese descent on his father's side and Chinese on his mother's side. His mother worked as an elementary school teacher and his father worked as a life insurance agent. He attended Saint Louis School, a local academy of the Diocese of Honolulu. Upon graduating high school, Aiona played basketball at University of the Pacific in Stockton, California and pursued a bachelor of arts degree in political science, which he received from there in 1977. Aiona returned to Hawaiʻi and graduated from the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa in 1981.
He began his legal career at the City and County of Honolulu as a deputy prosecutor, and was appointed to the Hawaiʻi State Judiciary in 1990 as a Family Court judge. In 1996, while serving as Circuit Court judge, Aiona became the first administrative judge and primary architect of the Drug Court Program in Hawaiʻi. The program gives non-violent offenders a chance to stay out of prison through active and effective drug rehabilitation.
In 1977, while attending law school, he met Vivian Welsh at a dance in Waikīkī. They married in 1981. They have two sons, Kulia and Makana; and two daughters, Ohulani and Kaimilani. As lieutenant governor, Aiona was paid $117,312 per annum.
Aiona and Governor Linda Lingle became Hawaii's first Republican administration to win a second term, and they won with the largest margin of victory in any gubernatorial race in the history of the state. Aiona ran to succeed Lingle as governor in 2010, but lost to Neil Abercrombie; he ran for governor again in 2014, losing to Democrat David Ige.
|Republican||Linda Lingle/James Aiona||194,338||51.6|
|Democratic||Mazie Hirono/Matt Matsunaga||177,186||47.0|
|Republican||Linda Lingle/James Aiona (incumbent)||215,313||62.5||+10.9|
|Democratic||Randy Iwase/Malama Solomon||121,717||35.4|
|Democratic||Neil Abercrombie / Brian Schatz||222,724||57.8%|
|Republican||James Aiona / Lynn Finnegan||157,311||40.8%|
- ‘‘The Council of State Governments,’’ “The Book of the States: 2008” Archived October 14, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
- http://hawaii.gov/ltgo/lg[permanent dead link]
- "Office of Elections" (PDF). hawaii.gov. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to James Aiona.|
| Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
|Party political offices|
| Republican nominee for Governor of Hawaii