Our Islands, Our Future

Invited by the Nisei Veterans Memorial Center (NVMC), two respected leaders of Hawaii’s government came to Maui to share experiences of their time at the helm of the Aloha State between 2010 and 2014. Former Attorney General (AG) David Louie was interviewed by special guest former Governor Neil Abercrombie about Louie’s new book, “From the Desk of the Attorney General: A Memoir.”

AG Louie, the country’s first Chinese-American state AG, featured excerpts from his book and Governor Abercrombie offered his unique expertise as an interviewer. “My book is a memoir of my experiences as a public servant—the challenges faced, the insights gained, the lessons learned,” Louie explained. “I wanted to share the behind-the-scenes account of the way things really get done, how issues are addressed and decisions made, how goals are achieved and power wielded. My historic koa wood desk in Hawaii’s state capitol gave me a front row seat for viewing and shaping landmark cases on environmental issues, Native Hawaiian rights, internet safety, same-sex marriage, human trafficking and more.”

Former Governor Abercrombie’s career spans five decades as an elected official. From 1975 to 1979, he served in the Hawaii House of Representatives. Later he was elected to the Hawaii Senate. He won a seat in the U.S. Congress in 1986 in a special election to complete the term of a resigning member of the US House of Representatives. Abercrombie noted, “In the pages of his book, Louie covers a wide range of political and governmental issues, both in Hawaii and across the country, all of interest to anyone who wants to make a difference and contribute to the common good. His Asian-American experiences and his standing as the country’s first Chinese-American AG greatly influenced his views on the importance of social justice for our communities.”

Deidre Teagarden, NVMC Executive Director added, “Louie’s account of his time as AG gives the reader a very special look into the inner workings of government at the highest level; the good, the not so good, and the humorous. We were thrilled that Governor Abercrombie was here in person to interview Louie.”

Serving as AG of Hawaii was both a serendipitous opportunity and a tremendous endeavor. I am forever grateful to Governor Abercrombie and to the countless others who helped me navigate the job in so many ways. David Louie, Former Hawaii Attorney General