Updated: December 2, 2023
Governor Josh Green, M.D. has appointed Trish La Chica and Luke Evslin to fill the State House of Representatives seats on Oʻahu and Kauaʻi respectively, after the seats were left vacant due to earlier cabinet-level nominations.
Trish La Chica will serve House District 37 (Mililani Mauka, Mililani Town, Koa Ridge and Waipi‘o Gentry), on O‘ahu; and Luke Evslin will serve House District 16 (Wailuā, Hanamā‘ulu, Kapaia, Līhu‘e, Puhi, portion of ‘Ōma‘o) on Kaua‘i.
“I’m very humbled by this opportunity to serve,” La Chica said in a news release. “I want to express my warm mahalo to Governor Green for this appointment. Serving as a policy advisor on public health and housing and homelessness issues, I’ve been able to develop a knowledge base on addressing challenges facing our state. As a State Representative, I look forward to working with the Governor and my colleagues at the Legislature to truly help make life better for our local families.”
La Chica most recently served the City and County of Honolulu as the executive director of the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Homelessness. Previously, she was Community and Government Relations Manager at AlohaCare, where she facilitated a $1M community reinvestment program to help underserved communities. She also has served on the Mililani Neighborhood Board and various boards and coalitions.
“Thank you to Governor Green for appointing me to represent district 16 in the State House,” Evslin said in the release. “I believe strongly that effective policy can help solve some of the biggest collective challenges that we face — from housing to climate change. And I promise to work relentlessly with the Governor and my new colleagues towards solutions that improve the quality of life for all of Hawai‘i, for our children, and for the generations to come.”
Until recently a member of the Kaua‘i County Council, Evslin is a longtime entrepreneur who has shepherded a successful business career and overcome tremendous personal challenges after suffering severe injury during the 2010 Moloka‘i Hoe. While on the Council, he co-introduced legislation addressing the critical shortage of affordable housing; proposed creation of a county program to leverage $1.2M in Clean Water State Revolving Funds to provide free septic systems to homeowners, among other legislation.
“These two long-time public servants have stepped up at a crucial time for the people of our state and I have every confidence that they will work hard every day to represent the people of their districts,” said Gov. Green.
The new House Representatives’ names were among six submitted to the Governor by the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i in accordance with state law (HRS 17-4).
Evslin and La Chica succeed former State Representatives James Tokioka and Ryan Yamane, respectively. In December, Tokioka was appointed by the Governor to serve as deputy director of the Airports Division of the Department of Transportation, while Yamane was appointed by the Governor to serve as deputy director of the Department of Human Resources Development.