Catherine Cruz

Catherine Cruz is the Host of The Conversation and a member of HPR’s news team. She has been a television reporter in Hawai‘i since 1983 and has won a number of awards and respect from a statewide audience. She spent more than thirty years at KITV, covering beats from government to education and health. Originally from Guam, Cruz is also a co-founder and former Board member and programming chair of Pacific Islanders in Communication (PIC). Catherine is a graduate of San Francisco State University with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

Anthony Quintano / Flickr

Scores of new high-rises are planned for Oahu’s urban core. Starting October first anyone who develops a unit that could impact schools in the area will be assessed an impact fee of $3,800.

Catherine Cruz

Hotel workers in Waikiku as well as on the mainland took to the streets in an effort to flex their political muscle.

In San Francisco, police arrested 75 people during yesterday’s rally in front of Marriott’s Union Street hotel. In Boston, workers staged a sit-in on a city street, though there were no arrests.

A similar effort was tried in Waikiki but United Here workers ended up gathering on Kakalaua across from the Waikiki Marriott where union leaders announced they will take a strike vote on September 10th. 

Catherine Cruz

Labor Protests, Feather Cloak in Burned Museum; Impact Fees; New Release from Jake Shimabukuro

Amber Khan

Hawaii's triumphant little leaguers have returned home as world champions. Team members Taylin Oana, Jace Souza, Zachary Won, Mana Lau Kong, Kory Chu, and Hunter Nishina came into the HPR studio to share some of their experiences from the whirlwind trip to the U.S. mainland. 

Amber Khan

DHS Secretary in Hawaii, Little League Champs; Adaptive Surfing; Art at Four Seasons


City Lawsuit, Smart Yields, Safe Food, Aupuni Space, Lei Of parks

Smart Yields

Smart Yields is a 3-year old local tech startup with the goal of helping farmers work smarter. They're using 21st Century sensors and apps to give farmers better insight on ideal harvest dates and plant health. With recent funding from a U.S. Department of Agriculture grant, Smart Yields is now trying to make it easier for local farmers to comply with food safety standards.  

Kenteegardin / Flickr

During this year's legislative session, state lawmakers approved the language for a statewide ballot referendum on a new amendment to the state constitution. If approved by voters, the amendment would create a state-wide property tax on certain investment properties to fund public schools. But attorneys from all of Hawaii's county governments are now challenging the proposal.


A decade ago, Marcus Erikson jumped aboard a boat made of plastic bottles to make a Pacific Crossing and to make a point about marine debris. It was what he thought, a good cause - to draw attention to the garbage patch and to find a solution to the growing marine plastic pollution. He reflected on the nerve-wracking trip, as no one knew for sure if the boat would hold together for the trip, but it did. A decade later, he tells us he is encouraged and hopeful for the future.


Wikimedia Commons

The day Hurricane Lane was set to hit Oahu we brought a cross-section of people on our show to talk how to keep our residents and visitors safe. One of those guests was Dennis Hwang, a Sea Grant specialist who co-authored a book on Disaster Preparedness that includes new guidelines to help determine if your house is strong enough to withstand tropical or hurricane force winds.



Disaster Preparedness; Pacific Garbage Patch; “I Promise” School; Bon Dance

Lessons from Lane

XL Catlin Seaview Survey

A team of scientists gathered today at the East-West Center to talk about our crisis coral and the need to stage an intervention. To some it’s “Doctor Doolittle meets CSI” because researchers believe they can’t just document the change on the reefs, they have to act to save them. We talked to Bob Richmond director of the UH Kewalo Marine Laboratory who is part of the Council of reef experts about the meeting.


Among the many businesses impacted by Hurricane Lane is a used bookstore and music owner. Royce Wilson is grateful for his friends who have come to his rescue and who are starting a go fund me page as the shop owner and his landlord do not have flood insurance. Wilson is frustrated that he can’t stop the water seeping through concrete walls in the building. His landlord has sump pumps going and the Fire Dept has helped to reduce the flooding but he is frustrated that he can’t file a claim for damages just yet.

Wikimedia Commons

Hawaii Island Update: Storm Recovery, Still Life Books & Vinyl, Coral Reef Health, Gypsy 808

Department of Land and Natural Resources

  Bernice, Emmett and Lonesome George were treated to a downtown Honolulu stay thanks to Hurricane Lane. Not a big deal--but we are talking snails. Endangered ones.

We talked with a Kapaa Hee who works with the state’s endangered snail program who was preparing to spend the weekend snail sitting.


Department of Land and Natural Resources

Kauai County Update, HiEMA Update, Big Island Businesses, Snail Rescue, Kanikapila During Hurricane Lane

United States Department of Defense

Across the islands, residents and visitors are dealing with the effects of Hurricane Lane. Fire and rain have forced evacuations across the Big Island and Maui overnight. Tourists are scrambling as airlines have canceled some flights. There are pockets of power outages across various islands due to the gusty winds even though the Hurricane has been downgraded to a Category 2 storm. Hurricane Lane’s advance has slowed to 2 miles an hour.


Prepare, prepare, prepare. You can’t stress that enough according to Lily Bui. She works with the National Disaster Preparedness Training Center and is studying the resiliency of island communities like Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands as a Ph.D. candidate at MIT.


Hurricane Lane Update, Homeless Preparation During Hurricane, Healthcare During Storms, Disaster Preparedness, Reporter Update with Wayne Yoshioka


The Central Pacific Hurricane Center has been tracking Hurricane Lane and has been issuing updates throughout the day. HPR’s News Director, Bill Dorman,  joined us to talk about the latest developments.  The Hawaiian Islands continue to remain vulnerable as Category 4 Hurricane Lane passes south of Hawaii Island. You can track the system online at  

Wikimedia Commons

The problem of abandoned and derelict vehicle varies from island to island. On Oahu, the city secured two lots this summer to remove the junked cars off its city golf courses where the vehicles were being stored temporarily.


Storm Coverage; Abandoned Vehicles; Shared Spaces; Adaptive Surfing


  Last year was a big one for the film industry here in the island-- generating more than $300 million into the economy according to state’s own business figures.


The State Land Board will be taking up a hot-button issue that some say could set a bad precedent for public lands across the state.

It has to do with public beach long used by the hotel for resort activities. Critics say the state hasn’t been adequately compensated.

The Sierra Club, Hawaii’s 1000 Friends, the Surfrider Foundation and a handful of Kahala and Diamond Head residents have written the Land Board and the staff of DLNR about their concerns.

Wikimedia Commons

Kahala Resort Permit Flap, Film Tax Credit, HPR Reporter Debrief, Madagascar Peace Corps update with Kamaka Dias

Kai Lenny / Facebook

In the surf world, hydrofoil boards are turning heads. In the south of France, the town of Anglet has actually taken steps to ban hydrofoils altogether. It was the first such ban in the Atlantic. Here in the Pacific, Hawaii organizers of the standup paddle race between Molokai and Oahu added a Hydrofoil division. The winner of that race was Maui waterman Kai Lenny, who made the trek in less than three hours.

Kai Lenny / Facebook

Grieving Whales, Washington Place Celebration; Hydrofoil Revolution

Sequoia National Park

Hotshots are elite teams of firefighters who battle wildfires in remote and rugged terrain. Former Hilo resident Brian Hughes was the captain of a California-based hotshot team who was recently killed while fighting a fierce wildfire in Ferguson, California a few weeks ago. 

Wikimedia Commons

Hotshot Remembrance; Hurricane Names, Election Winners and Losers; Hawaii Honeybees

TSA Photo


Your Hawaii State ID or driver's license may not be accepted by airport security officers after October 2020. Under the Federal Real ID Act, states are required to verify certain personal information for those ID cards to be considered valid by federal authorities. Hawaii began compliance in 2014, but more recent changes mean that some ID's may still be considered invalid in 2020.