Ige’s second choice for DLNR chair is a radical change from his first

After last month's Carleton Ching fiasco, the governor's new choice, Suzanne Case, is causing sighs of relief across Hawaii's social media networks.

News Report
Will Caron

Today Governor David Ige announced his new nomination to lead the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) (subject to confirmation by the Senate), Suzanne Case, and the widespread opposition to Ige’s previous choice, developer-lobbyist Carleton Ching, is calling the choice a win for Hawaii.

“A friend told me the other evening, she was not prepared to call the rejection of Carleton Ching a ‘victory’ until she saw who the replacement nominee was. Well, this is mind-f@ckingly awesome good news,” wrote Bart Dame of Progressive Democrats on his Facebook wall. “I also see it as good news about Governor Ige’s willingness to listen, and increases the opportunity for a good working relationship with him over the next four years. At least, when he is right. And, when he is wrong, he just gave us a strong incentive to oppose him until he gets it right!”

Similar statements can be found on Twitter and Facebook from many of the same people who vocally opposed Ching’s nomination last month.

Case is a 28-year veteran of The Nature Conservancy and has served as its executive director since 2001. She oversees all operations of the Hawaii program including 16 preserves totaling 53,000 acres, working in native forest, coastal and marine conservation directly and through partnerships on the six main Hawaiian Islands. She also oversees the Palmyra Atoll nature preserve and research station in the Pacific. Case attended Waiakea-Kai Elementary School, Keaukaha Elementary School and Punahou School where she was the first female student body president. She graduated from Stanford University with a B.A. in History and received her law degree from Hastings College of the Law, University of California, San Francisco.

“Suzanne shares my vision of wise stewardship of Hawaii’s public and conservation lands and waters, for excellence in government to make the most of our limited resources, and for collaboration and inclusion in carrying out the many responsibilities of the DLNR and the State of Hawaii for the benefit of all,” said Governor Ige in a press release.

“Great news, he did a 180 on this nomination,” wrote Cynthia Fritts of Citizens for Equal Rights.

“I am truly humbled at the prospect of serving Hawaii as Chair of the Department of Land and Natural Resources and honored by the confidence Governor Ige expresses in me in putting my name forth as his nominee. I look forward to meeting with our senate leadership for their consideration of my confirmation,” said Case.