December 4, 2008 – Hilo, Hawaii
After deliberating in executive session, the seven member Hawaii County Police Commission unanimously voted to appoint Harry Kubojiri the new chief of police.
The commission chose between two leading candidates, Kubojiri and Chadwick Fukui, although County Corporation Counsel Lincoln Ashida stressed that the search was not limited to the two, nor was it limited to candidates living only on the Big Island.
A follow-up meeting was scheduled for December 10, 2008, in the event the interview process was not completed, however the police commission decided to go forward with the selection on Wednesday night.
Kubojiri’s family was present during the selection, as well as the new Hawaii County mayor, Billy Kenoi.
The Hawaii County Police Department website gives law enforcement career information for Kubojiri, detailing how “he joined the Police Department as a police recruit in July 1979. During his police career, Kubojiri has served as a patrol officer in both the Kona and South Hilo Patrol Districts, a detective-sergeant in both the Criminal Investigation and Vice Sections of East Hawaii, a lieutenant in the Administrative Services Section and in the South Hilo Patrol District, captain of the South Kohala Patrol District and major in charge of the Field Operations Bureau in West Hawaii. He was also instrumental in organizing the Department’s Special Response Team and commanded the group from 2000-2006.”
Kubojiri is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, as well as the Northwest Law Enforcement Executive Command College. He also graduated from the University of Hawaii-Hilo, where he majored in police sciences.
Kubojiri replaces retiring Police Chief Lawrence K. Mahuna, effective January 1, 2009.