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Mayor of Honolulu

Mayor of Honolulu

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The Mayor of Honolulu is the chief executive officer of the City and County of Honolulu and considered the third most powerful official in the U.S. state
U.S. state
A U.S. state is any one of the 50 federated states of the United States of America that share sovereignty with the federal government. Because of this shared sovereignty, an American is a citizen both of the federal entity and of his or her state of domicile. Four states use the official title of...

 of Hawaii
Hawaii
Hawaii is the newest of the 50 U.S. states , and is the only U.S. state made up entirely of islands. It is the northernmost island group in Polynesia, occupying most of an archipelago in the central Pacific Ocean, southwest of the continental United States, southeast of Japan, and northeast of...

, behind the Governor of Hawaii
Governor of Hawaii
The Governor of Hawaii is the chief executive of the state of Hawaii and its various agencies and departments, as provided in the Hawaii State Constitution Article V, Sections 1 through 6. It is a directly elected position, votes being cast by popular suffrage of residents of the state...

 and the Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii
The Lieutenant Governor of Hawaii, concurrently the Secretary of State of Hawaii, is the assistant chief executive of that U.S. state and its various agencies and departments, as provided in the Hawaii State Constitution Article V, Sections 2 though 6. He or she is elected by popular suffrage of...

. An office established in 1900 and modified in 1907, the mayor of Honolulu is elected by universal suffrage
Universal suffrage
Universal suffrage consists of the extension of the right to vote to adult citizens as a whole, though it may also mean extending said right to minors and non-citizens...

 of residents of Honolulu to no more than two four-year terms. The mayor of Honolulu is only one of two officers elected countywide; the other is the prosecuting attorney. The Mayor of Honolulu is the successor of the Royal Governors of Oahu of the Kingdom of Hawaii
Kingdom of Hawaii
The Kingdom of Hawaii was established during the years 1795 to 1810 with the subjugation of the smaller independent chiefdoms of Oahu, Maui, Molokai, Lānai, Kauai and Niihau by the chiefdom of Hawaii into one unified government...

.

The mayor of Honolulu holds strong power in terms of the limits of the officer’s abilities, the size of the budget he or she controls and the unique relationship the officer has in association with the mayors of Asian and Pacific Rim
Pacific Rim
The Pacific Rim refers to places around the edge of the Pacific Ocean. The term "Pacific Basin" includes the Pacific Rim and islands in the Pacific Ocean...

 nations. The mayor of Honolulu has full control over appointment and removal of administrators, is invested with absolute control over department heads, wields veto power over the Honolulu City Council
Honolulu City Council
The Honolulu City Council is the legislative branch of the City & County of Honolulu and is considered the second most powerful parliamentary body in the State of Hawaii, following the Hawaii State Legislature...

 and has substantial control over the budget, totaling in excess of US$1 billion.

Currently, Peter Carlisle
Peter Carlisle
Peter Benson Carlisle is the current Mayor of Honolulu, Hawaii. He previously was the Prosecuting Attorney of Honolulu, from 1996 to 2010.-Life:...

 is the Mayor of Honolulu. He was sworn in on October 11, 2010. Previously, Kirk Caldwell
Kirk Caldwell
Kirk Caldwell is an American politician who was Acting Mayor of the City and County of Honolulu in 2010.-Life:Caldwell represented the 24th Representative District in the Hawaii State House of Representatives of the Hawaii State Legislature from 2002 to 2008, serving as the House Majority Leader...

 served as Acting Mayor of Honolulu beginning July 20, 2010 upon the resignation of Mufi Hannemann
Mufi Hannemann
Muliufi Francis "Mufi" Hannemann is an American politician. He is the former Mayor of Honolulu. Hannemann has served as a special assistant in Washington, D.C., with the Department of the Interior, where he was selected for a White House fellowship in the Reagan administration under Vice President...

, who had been Mayor since January 2, 2005.

Honolulu Hale and other offices


The mayor of Honolulu conducts official business from Honolulu Hale
Honolulu Hale
Honolulu Hale , located on 530 South King Street in downtown Honolulu in the City & County of Honolulu, Hawaii, is the official seat of government of the city and county, site of the chambers of the Mayor of Honolulu and the Honolulu City Council.In the Hawaiian language, hale means house or building...

, a historic city hall building constructed in classical Spanish villa architectural styles and sits along King Street and Punchbowl Boulevard in downtown Honolulu
Downtown Honolulu
Downtown Honolulu is the current historic, economic, governmental, and central part of Honolulu—bounded by Nuuanu Stream to the west, Ward Avenue to the east, Vineyard Boulevard to the north, and Honolulu Harbor to the south—situated within the larger Honolulu District...

. Other administrative officers under the mayor of Honolulu work from separate municipal buildings on the larger civic campus of which Honolulu Hale is a part.

Domestic policy


From the courtyard of Honolulu Hale, the mayor of Honolulu is mandated by the city and county charters to make an annual State of the City address. In this speech, the mayor of Honolulu outlines the administrative and legislative agenda for the year. It is also a summation of the budget to be implemented compared to the budget of the previous year.

The mayor of Honolulu also organizes the major public services managed by the mayor’s office. He or she oversees dozens of departments, including: Honolulu Board of Water Supply, Honolulu Fire Department
Honolulu Fire Department
The Honolulu Fire Department, popularly known as the HFD, is the principal firefighting agency of the City & County of Honolulu under the jurisdiction of the Mayor of Honolulu...

, Honolulu Police Department
Honolulu Police Department
The Honolulu Police Department is the principal law enforcement agency of the City and County of Honolulu, Hawai'i, headquartered in the Alapa'i Police Headquarters in Honolulu CDP....

 and the Oahu Civil Defense Agency. Unlike most United States mayors, the mayor of Honolulu does not oversee any schools, a jurisdiction of the Hawaii State Department of Education.

Managing director


Assisting the mayor of Honolulu in overseeing these departments and other domestic policy issues is the Managing Director of Honolulu. His or her most important role is to serve as acting mayor in absence or resignation. The current Managing Director is Douglas S. Chin.

Foreign policy


Honolulu is often considered the Geneva of the Pacific due to its commercial and trade, political and military, as well as academic influences over Asia and the Pacific Rim. Honolulu is the site of several international governmental and non-governmental organizations and summits, as well as the site of high-profile multinational military exercises called RIMPAC
RIMPAC
RIMPAC, the Rim of the Pacific Exercise, is the world's largest international maritime exercise. Conducted biennially , it is hosted and administered by the United States Navy, with the United States Marine Corps, United States Coast Guard, and Hawaii National Guard forces under the leadership of...

. RIMPAC is conducted by the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Pacific Command
United States Pacific Command
The United States Pacific Command is a Unified Combatant Command of the United States armed forces responsible for the Pacific Ocean area. It is led by the Commander, Pacific Command , who is the supreme military authority for the various branches of the Armed Forces of the United States serving...

 whose headquarters is in Honolulu’s Salt Lake
Salt Lake, Hawaii
Salt Lake is a suburban neighborhood of Honolulu, Hawaii on the island of O‘ahu. The area is also known as Āliamanu after a nearby crater, although Salt Lake itself is in a crater called Ālia pa‘akai — meaning "salt pond" in the Hawaiian language...

 subdivision.

The uniqueness of Honolulu’s significance to the global community has forced the mayor of Honolulu to assume a constant diplomatic role that goes beyond the foreign policy roles of almost all United States mayors. The mayor of Honolulu serves as concurrent chairman of several multinational mayoral bodies and convenes special sessions of international summits regularly.

First Lady of Honolulu


As a Hawaiian tradition, the wife of the mayor of Honolulu is honored with the ceremonial title of First Lady of Honolulu. Honolulu is distinct in this tradition as most United States cities and towns reserve the title of First Lady to the wife of the state governor, wife of the President of the United States
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 or wife of visiting foreign heads of government. Honolulu deemed it necessary to bestow the ceremonial title to reflect her role in relation to her husband’s extensive international responsibilities. The title is not codified in modern law but the honorific is derived from customs of the Hawaiian monarchy
Kingdom of Hawaii
The Kingdom of Hawaii was established during the years 1795 to 1810 with the subjugation of the smaller independent chiefdoms of Oahu, Maui, Molokai, Lānai, Kauai and Niihau by the chiefdom of Hawaii into one unified government...

.

List of mayors of Honolulu

  • Joseph James Fern
    Joseph J. Fern
    Joseph “Joe” James Fern was the first Mayor of Honolulu from 1909 to 1915 and again from 1917 to 1920. During and after his tenure, Fern became one of the most beloved political figures in the Territory of Hawaii...

    , 1909–1915, 1917–1920 Democratic
  • John Carey Lane
    John Carey Lane
    -Early years:Born at Makao, Oahu, Lane was educated at Hauula School and St. Louis College. He held various jobs as a clerk, and from 1893 to 1900 farmed near Honolulu...

    , 1915–1917, Republican
  • John Henry Wilson, 1920–1927, 1929–1931, 1947–1955, Democratic
  • Charles N. Arnold
    Charles Arnold
    Charles Arnold, formally Charles N. Arnold was Mayor of Honolulu from 1927 to 1929.-References:*...

    , 1927–1929 Republican
  • George Fred Wright
    George F. Wright
    George Fred Wright was Mayor of Honolulu from 1931 to 1938. Wright, a native of Honolulu, worked as a surveyor. He died in office in 1938 while traveling aboard the SS Mariposa. Memorials to him were installed at a downtown housing project and at Washington Middle School in the Pawaa section of...

    , 1931–1938 Republican
  • Charles Spencer Crane
    Charles Crane
    Charles Spencer Crane was a businessman and politician in Hawaii.-Life:Crane was born in Honolulu on January 4, 1869, the son of a whaler captain E. D. Crane. He started working at the Honolulu telephone company...

    , 1938–1941
  • Lester Petrie
    Lester Petrie
    Lester Petrie , American politician, was Mayor of Honolulu from 1941 to 1947, including when the city was attacked on December 7, 1941 by the Japanese military.-Political career:...

    , 1941–1947
  • Neal Shaw Blaisdell
    Neal Blaisdell
    Neal Shaw Blaisdell served as Mayor of Honolulu from 1955 to 1969 as a member of the Hawaii Republican Party. As chief executive of City and County of Honolulu, Hawaii, Blaisdell oversaw one of the largest construction booms in city and county history, working closely with Governor John A...

    , 1955–1969, Republican
  • Frank Francis Fasi
    Frank Fasi
    Frank Francis Fasi was a United States politician having the distinction as the longest serving Mayor of Honolulu in Honolulu, Hawaii. He also served as a territorial senator and member of the Honolulu City Council...

    , 1969–1981, 1985–1994, Democratic, Republican, Non-Partisan
  • Eileen Anderson
    Eileen Anderson
    Eileen Anderson is the first and so far only woman to serve as Mayor of Honolulu, Hawaii, United States. She was in office from 1981 to 1985. A Democrat, Anderson served in various positions in the city and county and the state...

    , 1981–1985, Democratic
  • Jeremy Harris
    Jeremy Harris
    Jeremy Harris, born December 7, 1950 in Wilmington, Delaware, served as Mayor of Honolulu from 1994 to 2004. A biologist by training, Harris started his political career as a delegate to the 1978 Hawai'i State Constitutional Convention...

    , 1994–2004, Democratic
  • Muliufi Francis Hannemann
    Mufi Hannemann
    Muliufi Francis "Mufi" Hannemann is an American politician. He is the former Mayor of Honolulu. Hannemann has served as a special assistant in Washington, D.C., with the Department of the Interior, where he was selected for a White House fellowship in the Reagan administration under Vice President...

    , 2005–2010, Democratic
  • Peter Carlisle
    Peter Carlisle
    Peter Benson Carlisle is the current Mayor of Honolulu, Hawaii. He previously was the Prosecuting Attorney of Honolulu, from 1996 to 2010.-Life:...

    , 2010–present, Independent

Notable candidates and acting mayors

  • D. G. Anderson
    D. G. Anderson
    Dominis Garrida Anderson , also popularly known as D.G. Anderson and Andy Anderson, is an American politician and businessman from Honolulu, Hawai'i....

  • Duke Bainum
    Duke Bainum
    Mark Edmund "Duke" Bainum was an American politician and physician. Bainum served in the Hawaii State House of Representatives as a member of the Hawaii Democratic Party and was elected in a nonpartisan race to the Honolulu City Council and held various committee chairmanships during his tenure...

  • Ben Lee
    Benjamin Lee (politician)
    Benjamin B. Lee, popularly known as Ben Lee, served from 1998 as managing director of the City & County of Honolulu under Mayor of Honolulu Jeremy Harris. During leaves of absence by Mayor Harris, Lee had assumed the role of acting mayor of Honolulu several times during his tenure...

  • Patsy Mink
    Patsy Mink
    Patsy Matsu Takemoto Mink was an American politician from the U.S. state of Hawaii. Mink was a third generation Japanese American and member of the Democratic Party. She also was the Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs.Mink served in the U.S...

  • Kirk Caldwell
    Kirk Caldwell
    Kirk Caldwell is an American politician who was Acting Mayor of the City and County of Honolulu in 2010.-Life:Caldwell represented the 24th Representative District in the Hawaii State House of Representatives of the Hawaii State Legislature from 2002 to 2008, serving as the House Majority Leader...


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