Malama Solomon

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Malama Solomon
Malama Solomon.jpg
Hawaii State Senate District 4
In office
December 2010 - Present
Term ends
November 8, 2016
Years in position 5
Base salary$46,272/year
Per diem$150/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
AppointedDecember 2010
Appointed byGov. Neil Abercrombie (D)
Term limitsN/A
Bachelor'sUniversity of Hawaii at Manoa, University of Hawaii at Hilo
Master'sUniversity of Hawaii at Manoa
Ph.D.Oregon State University
Date of birthMarch 3, 1951
Place of birthHonolulu, Hawaii
Campaign website
Malama Solomon is a Democratic member of the Hawaii State Senate, representing District 4. She was first elected to the chamber in 2012. She was appointed to the 1st District seat in December 2010 to replace Dwight Takamine.


Solomon earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in education from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, her bachelor's in cultural anthropology from the University of Hawaii at Hilo, and her Ph.D. in education from Oregon State University. Her professional experience includes working as the owner and manager of Waiaka Farms and Ranch. [1]

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Solomon served on the following committees:

Hawaii Committee Assignments, 2013
Commerce and Consumer Protection
Tourism and Hawaiian Affairs
Transportation and International Affairs


In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Solomon served on these committees:


Campaign themes


Solomon's campaign website lists the following issues:[2]

  • Geothermal Energy Development
"Fast tracked development of our island’s firm, renewable – safe -- indigenous power resource to take care of Hawai’i Island residents first..."
  • Agriculture
"Facilitated private sector initiatives to develop and support ag businesses to 'grow' our capacity to produce our own safe, healthy food."
  • Public Land Development Corporation
"An innovative, pro-active government-private initiative to better use state lands to the economic, environmental and social benefit of Hawai’i’s people."
  • Higher Education
"I am a long-standing champion of the development of West Hawai’i’s Palamanui campus and secured release by the Governor of $7.5 million to finally begin construction. Also supported adult ed programs, UH-Hilo’s School of Pharmacy, NHERC’s community classes and secured funding for urgently needed student housing at UH-Hilo."
  • Water
"Wai o ke Ola! Water is life! Secured a $5 million appropriation, which is critical to meeting the needs of today and tomorrow, including food self reliance. With a resident population of 183,000 on Hawai’i Island and 681,000 or more visitors annually, it is imperative that we protect this valuable resource."

Suit against the state

Solomon brought a suit against Hawaii over a water usage issue on Department of Hawaiian Home Lands pastoral property her family holds on the Big Island.

Solomon is among a group of plaintiffs who filed the suit in 2009, alleging that DHHL reneged on promises to provide water for livestock that graze on pastoral land leased to the plaintiffs.

The state argued that it advised the lessees to depend on catchment systems to water their cattle and that bringing water lines to the land would be prohibitively expensive.[3]

In late December 2010, Solomon withdrew as a plaintiff from the suit.

“I will be withdrawing from the suit,” Solomon said. “I kind of forgot about it.”[4]

Opposition to redistricting decision

Although Democrats on the Hawaii Reapportionment Commission were strongly supportive of the decision, voting 3-1 for the inclusion of non-resident/military populations, there has been strong push back from fellow Democrats on the Big Island. Solomon, along with Rep. Cindy Evans, Rep. Robert Herkes, and several others, have pressured the Commission to reverse its decision. In addition, some have threatened to challenge the decision in court.[5] The change in policy is expected to benefit Oahu and prevent it from losing a state senate seat. [6]



See also: Hawaii State Senate elections, 2012

Solomon won re-election in the 2012 election for Hawaii State Senate District 4. Solomon defeated Lorraine Inouye in the August 11 Democratic primary and defeated Kelly Greenwell (G) in the general election which took place on November 6, 2012. [7][8][9]

Hawaii State Senate, District 4, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngMalama Solomon Incumbent 66.6% 9,828
     Green Kelly Greenwell 33.4% 4,934
Total Votes 14,762

Hawaii State Senate, District 4 Democratic Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngMalama Solomon Incumbent 50.4% 4,068
Lorraine Inouye 49.6% 3,999
Total Votes 8,067

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Solomon is available dating back to 1998. Based on available campaign finance records, Solomon raised a total of $271,135 during that time period. This information was last updated on 6/24/2013.[10]

Malama Solomon's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Hawaii State Senate, District 4 Won $112,050
2006 Governor/Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii Defeated $93,255
1998 Hawaii State Senate, District 1 Defeated $65,830
Grand Total Raised $271,135


Solomon won election to the Hawaii State Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Solomon raised a total of $112,050.


Solomon lost the election for the Governor/Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii in 2006. During that election cycle, Solomon raised a total of $93,255.


Solomon lost the election for the Hawaii State Senate in 1998. During that election cycle, Solomon raised a total of $65,830.


Solomon was born into the Beamer family, known for its contributions to Hawaiian music and hula dance.[1]

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Political offices
Preceded by
Shan Tsutsui (D)
Hawaii State Senate - District 4
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Dwight Takamine (D)
Hawaii State Senate District 1
Succeeded by
Gilbert Kahele (D)