JANE AU, PROGRAM DIRECTOR
Jane Lokomaikaʻikeakua Au was raised on the shores of Māeaea, on the island of Oʻahu. She is a daughter, sister, moʻopuna, artist, and enthusiast of nature. She obtained her BA and MA in Religion at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, where she focused on Hawaiian Religious beliefs and practices. She has spent several years studying religious theory, focusing in particular on indigenous belief systems and their inherent messages of sustainability. She strives to incorporate traditional Hawaiian aesthetics, genres, and epistemologies in her work. In 2018 she successfully defended her Master’s thesis on Kanaloa, the principle oceanic deity in Hawaiʻi, using rarely accessed Hawaiian Language resources and materials. She currently works as the program director for ʻĀina Momona. Her goal is to work towards a more sustainable future, where humans live in harmony with natural and cultural resources.
MAHINA POEPOE, MOLOKA‘I PROGRAM CO-COORDINATOR
Mahina Poepoe oversees ‘Āina Momona's program activities on Moloka‘i. She has a successful background in business and uses her skills to help with the administration of the organization's projects. She also often works on the land helping to actively care for and restore the island's natural and cultural resources.
MERCY RITTE MOLOKA‘I PROGRAM CO-COORDINATOR
Mercy Ritte, a wife and mother of four children, invests her time in advocating and promoting healthy lifestyle options in her community. Her experience spans 9 years of community engagement related to issues that impact human health & the environment and 5 years of teaching plant-based cooking classes. She has worked with young children, teens, adults, and kupuna. Mercy currently holds a BA in Psychology, is a certified holistic nutritionist, and is earning her graduate degree in original medicine & naturopathy.
ALEXA BADER, COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR
Alexa Meleana Bader leads ʻĀina Momona's website management, social media, newsletter, and graphics for the organization. Alexa is a proud graduate of Kamehameha Schools and currently holds a BA in Arts Administration with a concentration in Music, Public Relations, Marketing and Communications with a minor in Media Arts from Simmons University in Boston, MA. She is based on Hawaiʻi Island.
KIAʻI LOKO IʻA
From: Kane'ohe, O'ahu
Fun fact: I have never missed a Molokai Hoe since 2003.
Favorite thing about working with ʻĀina Momona: Farming
Fun fact: I like to sing while I work
Favorite thing about working with ʻĀina Momona: Being able to raise my family and do what I love - giving back and fighting for 'āina!
Fun fact: I am 15 years older than my next sibling.
Favorite thing about working with ʻĀina Momona: Knowing that we are revitalizing the land and sea - we practice what we preach!
Fun fact: I like to hunt
Favorite thing about working with ʻĀina Momona: Restoring 'āina