OD2A Peer-to-Peer Learning Coordinator
Our Mission & Vision
MISSION: The KANILEHUA WEBINAR SERIES introduces the ʻōhiʻa lehua, an endemic Hawaiian tree, as our teacher in healing the chronic and existential pain of historical and intergenerational trauma associated with opioid use disorder. Viewing the land as our communities and health as water cycle resilience, this series looks to the cloud catching, truth-telling, ʻōhiʻa lehua for ways to hoʻi ka wai, to remove seen and unseen emotional blockages to restore waters (waiwai) stolen by trauma. Aimed at creating safe spaces for co-learning, this series convenes peers across the systems of care who believe that when Indigenous leadership is uplifted, wellness is accessible to all.
VISION: Hoʻi ka ʻoʻopu ʻai lehua i ka māpunapuna
The lehua-eating ʻoʻopu has gone back to the spring.
Said of one who has gone back to the source.
“Our practices hold much of the medicine we need.” (#1034)
Katerine Burke – Principle Investigator
Katherine Yvonne Mary Burke is a junior epidemiologist (junior researcher) in the Thompson School of Social Work and Public Health at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Neuroscience & Behavior at Mount Holyoke College, and a Master of Public Health in Social & Behavioral Health Sciences from the Office of Public Health Studies at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Kat, as she prefers to be called, is a transplant from Connecticut, ancestrally from Greece, France, Ireland and Switzerland. She enjoys working with plants and the Pacific Healthcare Analytics Collaborative.
Kuʻulei Perreira-Keawekane – Cultural Advisor
Kuʻulei Perreira- Keawekane hails from the ʻōhiʻa and maile forests of Panaʻewa in Waiākea,, Hilo, Hawai’i Island. Her kūpuna ʻāina include Lokoaka and Peiwē of Keaukaha, and the Kūkahauʻula summit of the Mauna a Wakea. She is close to her kupuna, who include Verna Violet Akuna Low (picture). She is the third great-granddaughter of the late Sen. John Henry Wise, and is the tenth great-granddaughter of Kamehameha Paiʻea through his tenth wife, Kalaninuikaukoʻoluaole. Kuʻulei holds herself accountable to the justice work of her kūpuna, and she works in the field of ʻōiwi education and wellness. Through her social media platform on Instagram (@mauli.ola), she facilitates conversations on native identity, systemic change, generational trauma, and ancestral relations as pathways to holistic healing.
Dr. Amelia Borofsky – Evaluation Specialist
Amelia Rachel Hokuleʻa Borofsky, PsyD is passionate about the strengths of island communities. Trained as a clinical psychologist, she received an American Psychological Association Minority Fellowship for her research and clinical service with diverse populations. Her dissertation was a mixed-methods program evaluation of alumni of Native Hawaiian public charter schools. She developed the Native Hawaiian Leadership Scale and is active in cultural, strengths-based program evaluations. She started consulting in 2010 and has worked primarily in Hawaiʻi and the Cook Islands for non-profit and government agencies (see Clients). As an adjunct professor at Hawaiʻi Pacific University, she honed her passion for teaching and giving workshops. A global traveller, she speaks fluent Spanish and elementary Pukapukan. She is the co-editor of Regeneration: Telling Stories from Our Twenties (Putnam/Tarcher, 2003). Her articles have appeared in The Atlantic and Cook Islands News. In addition to consulting, she enjoys storytelling, surfing, and studying lomilomi massage. She is the proud single working mama of two young daughters, Reva and Yinale, and is an active part of the non-profit surfing momsʻ
Jaki Knaus – Project Manager
Jaki Knaus graduated from the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa with a B.A. Psychology, but has since developed a successful career in Graphic Design and Illustration. With over 8 years of experience in the field of design, Jaki has cultivated a robust skillset in various areas of creativity and technical know-how. One of Jaki’s most notable accomplishments was his part in the development of the University of Hawaii’s STAR GPS application that is currently used across all campuses by both students and faculty. As a self-starter, Jaki run’s his own business as a freelance graphic designer that aims to grow local businesses and start-up companies in Hawaii. Jaki is self-taught and continues to learn new forms of technology every day. During his free time, he enjoys fishing, volunteering, and spending time with his friends and family. You are most likely to find Jaki fishing at his not-so-secret fishing spot at Kewalo Basin, Ala Moana.
Awapuhi Lee – Graduate Assistant
Awapuhi Lee is a current master’s student in the department of Tropical Medicine where she is researching biomarkers of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). She graduated from Stanford University with a BA in Human Biology, concentrating on the Behavioral Development of Children and Adolescents. In her freetime, she enjoys spending time outdoors by walking/running, hiking, and paddling.
Vivienne Nguyen – Graduate Assistant
Vivienne Nguyen is a Graduate Student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa working with the Pacific Health Analytics Collaborative team as a Graduate Research Assistant. Vivienne has earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the California State University of Long Beach in Spring 2020. She has worked with CSULB’s PRO-Health Lab as a Research Assistant to help reduce minority mothers and their children’s stress. She is currently gaining her Master of Science in Epidemiology at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. During her free time, she enjoys cooking and crocheting.
Layne Nakano – Graduate Assistant
Layne Nakano is a graduate student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa pursuing a Masters of Accounting (MAcc) degree. Layne holds a B.S. in Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Sciences and B.A. in Finance and Management Information Systems. Layne has previously worked at University of Hawai’i School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) as a fiscal specialist assisting with research administration. In his free time, he enjoys cooking, exercising, and playing video games.