Mamo Ali‘i and Ali‘i ‘Aimoku.
From 1907 to 1983 Māmalahoa’s chief executive officer was called Mamo Ali
i. In 1983 this office title was changed to Ali‘i‘Aimoku.
|Mamo Ali‘i and Ali‘i ‘Aimoku of Māmalahoa||Term in Office:|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, David M. Heaukulani||2017 – Present|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, John Cuban||2014 – 2017|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, Herbert Puali’ialoha Ishibashi Jr.||2009 – 2014|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, Paul Kevin Kea Neves||1996 – 2009|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, Ernest Akoni||1991 – 1996|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, Stephen Kaili||1987 – 1991|
|Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, George Leilani Ah Tou Sr.||1983 – 1987|
|Kaukauali‘i, Earnest Akana Leong||circa 1952|
|Mamo Ali‘i, John K. Kai||circa 1942|
|Mamo Ali‘i , E.A. Namohala||1936|
|Mamo Ali‘i, Richmond Ellis||circa 1930|
|Mamo Ali‘i, William H. Beers||circa 1923|
|Mamo Ali‘i, Chas H. Siemsen||1907 – circa 1922|
Note: Please kokua, if you have any photos or information on any of our past chiefs please share it with us so it can be added here. Information may be sent to Kuauhau@MamalaHoa.org
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku David M. Heaukulani, 2017 – Present
David Manu‘ā Heaukulani was born in Hāmakua on Hawai‘i Island and was raised in Kalopā during his early years. His family then moved to ‘Oahu where he attended several schools. Following High School, he served in the military with the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division. Following his active duty service he served in the military Reserve units to include duty with the 44th Special Forces Group (USAR) and 6th Force Recon (USMCR).
He then attended the University of Hawai‘i under the G.I. Bill. He majored in criminology and received a Ph.D. from the Department of Sociology, University of Hawai‘i, Manoa. While attending college he worked with the Honolulu Police Department rising to become an Assistant Chief of Police. Following retirement with the Honolulu Police, he joined the U.S. Department of Defense serving in the Military Police Brigade in the U.S. Army Command of the Pacific. He took over the police detachment at Pōhakuloa Training Area (PTA) to convert the military police to civilian police. He then became the first civilian executive officer of PTA.
Following retirement in 2000 from the federal government, he taught sociology at the University of Hawai‘i, Hilo until he retired in 2010. He started a security guard training business in 2010 and developed the security guard training curriculum under a new state law that was the first curriculum adopted by the Board of Private Detectives and Guards, State of Hawai‘i.
He is also a musician and a wood craftsman involved in commercial production of ‘ukulele instruments and guitars. His community service included being the Cub Master with the Cub Scouts and then the Scoutmaster with the Boy Scouts at the Hilo Meishoin Buddhist Church. He is a member and currently an officer with the Hilo Elks Club.
He joined the Royal Order of Kamehameha I, Heiau O Māmalahoa after being inspired by the Kamehameha Festival in Hilo in 2010. After serving in several capacities including: Kahuna Kuhikuhi Puu‘one at the Moku level and Pūkaua Iki at the Ali’i Chapter level, he was appointed Ali‘i ‘Aimoku for Māmalahoa.
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku John Cuban, 2014 – 2017
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku Ali‘i Sir John Ku‘uhoamele Cuban K.G.C.K. was born and raised in Kalihi, O‘ahu and attended St. Louis High School in Kaimuki, O‘ahu. After he graduated in 1990, he moved to the island of Hawai‘i to attend the University of Hawai‘i of Hilo. It was there at the University of Hawai‘i, Hilo where he received his bachelor’s degree in Hawaiian Studies. Ali‘i Cuban has then been a Hawaiian cultural resource for the Hawai‘i Department of Education for 22 years. His Hawaiian cultural background stems back over 20 years of study under the mentorship of master kumu hula John Keola Lake of Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Ali‘i Cuban was employed as a teacher at Ha‘aheo Elementary School, Hilo for 21 years and is now presently employed at Mountain View Elementary School, Puna. He is also a seasonal teacher and an athletic coach at Kamehameha School, Hawai‘i campus. Together with spouse Roberta Cuban, Ali‘i Cuban is a father of seven children.
In 2003, he was appointed as a master kumu in the arts and traditions of hula. Along with being a kumu hula, he is an accomplished chanter and practitioner of the ‘olelo Hawai‘i (Hawaiian language), protocols, and traditions of old Hawai‘i. Ali’i Cuban is also a kahuna pule of Pu‘ukohola heiau, Kawaihae; director of the Hawai‘i island Halau Mele: Academy of Hawaiian arts, music, and dance; and he continues to serve the Hawai‘i Department of Education as a resource in instilling Hawaiian educational styles and values.
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku Sir John Ku‘uhoamele Cuban K.G.C.K. has been part of the Royal Order of Kamehameha I for the past 21 years. He served in several of the offices in Māmalahoa serving as the Kahuna Pule in most of those years. He was elevated as Ali‘i in 1996 and was appointed as Ali‘i ‘Aimoku in January of 2014 by Ali‘i Nui Ali‘i Sir William Roback K.G.C.K.
He retired from this office and was elevated to Lani Ali‘i by Ali‘i Nui William Roback on May 15, 2017, a title and position that he will hold for life. Immediately after this, he was elevated to Kahuna Nui of the Royal Order of Kamehameha I. Kahuna Nui John Ku‘uhoamele Cuban, along with the brothers of Māmalahoa, continue to serve in advancing the condition of Hawai‘i’s nation and its people, physically, mentally, and spiritually; continue to protect, preserve, and perpetuate, the traditional Hawaiian culture, customs, and traditions; and provide more avenues and opportunities to share and educate others enriching and touching the lives of our people.
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku Pua Ishibashi, 2009 – 2014
HERBERT “PUA” PUALI‘IALOHA ISHIBASHI JR., is proud, yet humbled to call Moku o Keawe, his ancestral home. His father’s kupuna flows from Waipi’o Valley while his mother’s kupuna rises up from Ka‘ū Mākaha. Born in Hilo and raised in Waiohihu, Keaukaha, and ‘Āinakō, he was raised by his mother and grandmother to mālama the ‘ohana, perpetuate the culture, and aloha ke Akua. Married to Gloria Alohiwailani Duvauchelle of Kaua‘i, he is the proud father of five beautiful daughters (‘Alohiwailani, Kailani, Kaua‘i, Kanoenani, Kiana), and one son (Kāhili). He received his law degree (J.D.) from Gonzaga University School of Law, Washington, undergraduate degree (B.A.) in Business and Economics from the University of Hawai‘i, and associate’s degree (A.S.) in Electricity from Hawai‘i Community College.
At the invitation of George Kalehua (Kaka‘olelo), Pua was inducted into the Royal Order of Kamehameha I on 12/12/1994. After serving in various capacities and offices (Kaukau Ali‘i, La‘au Ali‘i, Kaka‘olelo, and Mamo Ali‘i), he was appointed to Ali‘i ‘Aimoku (CEO/High Chief) of Māmalahoa by Ali‘i Nui Sir Herman Kana‘e K.G.C.K on 10/24/2009 in Kailua-Kona, Moku o Keawe. He was reconfirmed Ali‘i ‘Aimoku of Māmalahoa by Ali‘i Nui Sir William Roback K.G.C.K on 12/04/2010 in Honolulu, Oahu. Subsequently, he was honored to be knighted Ali‘i Sir Herbert Puali’ialoha Ishibashi, Jr., K.G.C.K. by Ali‘i Nui Sir William Roback K.G.C.K on 01/22/2011 in Hilo, Moku O Keawe. Pua retired from this office and was elevated to Lani Ali‘i by Ali‘i Nui Sir William Roback K.G.C.K on Jan. 13, 2014, a title and position that he will hold for life.
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku Paul Neves, 1996 – 2009
Born in San Francisco (09/27/1953), PAUL KEVIN KEA NEVES, resides in Keaukaha-Hilo, Hawai’i on Hawaiian Homelands with his wife Wanda Mokihana, and his son Kinohi. Their daughter Akalā is a student at the University of Portland. A student of Kumu Hula Wayne Kaho’onei Panoke, who was ‘uniki in 1968, from the late Kumu Hula Winona Kapuailohiamanonookalani Desha-Beamer. Kumu Paul was ‘uniki in 1999.
Kumu Paul opened Hālau Ha’a Kea o Akalā in 1998. This hālau is now under the direction of his daughter, Kumu Hula Akalā Nāhikulani Neves. In 2004 he opened Hālau Ha’a Kea o Kinohi. This hālau, named for his son Kinohi, is now based jointly in Hilo and San Francisco under Kumu Paul’s direction. In 2006, Kumu Paul opened Hālau Ha‘a Kea o Mokihana in Washington DC in honor of his wife. He has judged and participated in hula competitions in Hawai’i and Japan.
Paul has been involved in the spiritual, cultural, and political challenges facing Kanaka ‘Ōiwi since 1984 and is an advocate for Kanaka ‘Ōiwi justice and rights. He was a founding member of Ka Lāhui Hawai‘i, a sovereignty initiative, and served as its first elected LT Governor. He served the Catholic community of the Malia Puka o Kalani Catholic Community in Keaukaha, Hawai‘i. He was invited into the Order of Kamehameha by Ernest Akoni (Ali‘i‘aimoku) in 1989. After serving in various offices including Kahuna Pule and Kaka‘olelo, he was appointed and served as Ali‘i ‘Aimoku from 1996 to 2009. In 2009 he was elevated to Kālaimoku, a position second only to the Ali‘i Nui of the Order, and on his retirement from this position in 2011 was elevated to Ali‘i No‘eau Loa, an office of high honor that he will hold for life.
He has given workshops on spiritual, cultural and political analyses of the Native Hawaiian people in Rarotonga, Cook Islands, across the United States, Puerto Rico, Europe and at the United Nations in New York, the World Council of Churches and the United Nations Human Rights Commission in Geneva, Switzerland. He has participated as an official observer for the Royal Order of Kamehaha I with regards to the Hawaiian Kingdom at The Hague, Netherlands at the World Court. Paul is a cultural practitioner of the traditional ways of the native Hawaiian people and advocates aloha, ‘ohana (family) and alaka’i (leadership/ discipline) as the core of our communal expression.
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku Ernest Akoni, 1991 – 1996
Born: 02/25/1918, Died: 01/03/2009
Born on February 25th, 1918 in Hilo, Hawaii, ERNEST AKONI was raised to be hard-working, honest, and care for his ‘ohana. At the end of his 8th grade year, he left school to support his family due to the untimely death of his father, Eddie Akoni. Enlisting in the United States Armed Forces (Army), he served as a Tech Sgt. during World War II and served in far off lands such as Guadacanal, a 2,510 square-mile tropical island in the South Western Pacific that played a pivotal military role in WWII. After honorably serving in the US Army, he returned home to Hilo and worked as a boilermaker for the Honoka‘a, Hamakua, and Ka‘u sugar plantations. Upon his retirement as a boilermaker (Union Local 204) he dedicated much of his time and energy to serve his community. Active in the Boy Scouts of America organization, he helped the young men of Keaukaha learn discipline and develop leadership skills. He was an active member of Malia Puka o Kalani Catholic Church in Keaukaha and often conducted his own prayer services at home with his ‘Ohana. He was also active in the Keaukaha Community Association.
Ernest was invited to join the Royal Order of Kamehameha I, by John Manuia and soon rose to positions of authority: conducting and planning meetings, attending conferences, and renovating Kamehameha Hall. A dedicated and proven leader, Ernest Akoni was appointed Ali‘i ‘Ai Moku of Māmalahoa in 1981 and served in this capacity till 1996. Having lived a long and fruitful life, Ernest Akoni passed away on Jan. 3rd, 2009 (90 years old) in Hilo. He was survived by his wife, Judy Akoni (Hilo) sons, Dwight Akoni (Mainland), Stafford Akoni (Kona), Ernest Edward Akoni (Keaukaha), Peter K. Akoni (Keaukaha) and Gregory K. Akoni (HPP) and daughters Julianne P. Akoni (HPP) and Michelle Nahale-A (HPP). He was also survived by twelve grandchildren including: Lindsay Akoni (Washington), Melissa Akoni (Ainaloa), Leah Akoni (Arizona/Keaukaha), Piliwailana Nahale-A (HPP) and, Noah K. Akoni (Keaukaha).
Ernest left a legacy of honesty, integrity, respect, ‘Ohana, and Aloha.
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, Stephen Kaili, 1987 – 1991
Born: unknown, Died: 02/20/1993
Stephen Kaili was initiated into this Most Noble Order of Kamehameha I, on December 11, 1950 as a Mamo Hawaiʻi. On January 4, 1961 he was elevated to the rank of Aliʻi , 5th degree. In the 1960, Ali‘i Stephen Kaili was appointed to the office of Mālama Mo‘olelo .
Aliʻi Stephen Kaili was recommended for elevation to Knights Companion, 6th Degree of the Royal Order of Kamehameha I, with the right and privilege to use the initials “C.K.” after his name. Aliʻi Sir Stephen Kaili was next elevated as Aliʻi Okana in 1984 as co-senior councilor to the Aliʻi ʻAi Moku George L. Ah Tou, Sr., and second ranking high chief at the subordinate chapter level and senior line chief under the Ali‘i ‘Aimoku. He was the fourth ranking high chief of the Order and the Aliʻi chapter and was also a member of the ʻAha Kuka.
In 1987 he was appointed to the position of Aliʻi ʻAi Moku by Aliʻi Nui, & Grand Master Clifford F. Kanehoalani Anderson K.G.C.K. to succeed Aliʻi ʻAi Moku, Ali‘i Sir George L. Ah Tou, Sr., K.C.K.. In 1990, he was again elevated to Knights Commander, 7th degree, the second highest degree of this Noble Order, with the right and privilege to use initials “C.K.C.” after his name.
He retired as Aliʻi ʻAi Moku on August 25, 1991 at the 61st Papa Aliʻi convention held at Kapaʻa Kaua‘i. It was at the 62nd Papa Aliʻi convention Held at Kahului, Maui, where he was again elevated to Knights Grand Cross (9th degree). This is the highest degree of the Royal Order of Kamehameha I, and with rights and privilege to use the initials “K.G.C.K.” after his name. Recommendation for elevation to this degree can only be made by the Aliʻi Nui, The ʻAha Kuka, and the Grand Council or the Subordinate Chapter of which he is a member.
On Febuary 20, 1993, at approximately 5:00 P.M., our beloved and illustrious Brother and hoananau, Sir Aliʻi Stephen Kaili’s life came to a close. Stephen we all love and will miss you. May the Lord be with you always.
(Note the above was discovered in the records of Māmalahoa and may have been the eulogy shared by the Heiau at Sir Aliʻi Stephen Kaili’s funeral).
Ali‘i ‘Aimoku, George Leilani Ah Tou Sr., 1983 – 1987
GEORGE LEILANI AH TOU JR. (April 13, 1926 – February 06, 2003, 76, of Honolulu, died Feb. 6, 2003. Born in Hilo, Hawai‘i. Retired Ellerbe Architectural Engineers architect, and former member, Royal Order of Kamehameha. Survived by wife, Francisca; sons, Michael, Kevin and Christopher; daughters, Kimberly Glidden and Patricia Blair; brother, Roger; sisters, Annie Lee, Pearl Ignacio and Emily Hoopii; five grandchildren.
Note: More info. needed, the above may actually be George Ah Tou Jr.
Kaukau Aliʻi, Earnest Akana Leong, c. 1952
Mamo Aliʻi, John K. Kai, c. 1942
Mamo Aliʻi, Charles B. Makanui, c. 1938
Richmond Ellis, c. 1930
Mamo Aliʻi, William H. Beers, c. 1923 – 1946
Born: 11/02/1877, Died: 03/14/1946
WILLIAM HENRY BEERS, lawyer, Hilo, Hawaii; born in Honolulu, Nov. 2, 1877; son of Henry A. and Caroline (Kamakauahoa) Beers; married Maude Olive Hansen at Olaa, Hawaii, Dec. 19, 1902; children; William H., Jr., Lorrin H., Fred Douglas, and Naomi Hansen. Graduated Kamehameha Schools, Honolulu, 1895; normal department same, 1896; University of Michigan, law department, LL.B., 1908. Taught Honokaa public school, 1896-97; Hilo Boarding School, 1898-1902; clerk and interpreter, House of Representatives, Hawaii, session 1909; appointed county attorney, County of Hawaii, October, 1909, and elected to said office, 1910-12-15-19; former member board of prison inspectors, 4th Judicial Circuit; held office of second district magistrate, S. Hilo, 1906; lieutenant N.G.H.; charter member Hermitage Club (now Hermitage Order) University of Michigan; member Kamehameha, Owl and forester lodges.
Note: The above bio was taken from page thirty-five of Men of Hawaii by John Siddall (1927). Internet electronic book at:
Historical Note Added 09/28/2010: William H. Beers was a LT Commander in the Navy, and was the last person appointed to Annapolis Naval Academy by Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole.
Historical Note Added 09/03/2012: Officers of Ahahui Kamehameha 1923 listed in Ka Nupepa Kuokoa 02/15/1923 found at: http://nupepa-hawaii.com/tag/ahahui-hawaii/
Hope Aliʻi ʻAimoku, Noa Webster Aluli, c. 1922 – 1934
Born: 12/01/1880, Died: 10/14/1937
NOA WEBSTER ALULI, lawyer, Honolulu; born at Wailuku, Maui Co., Hawaii, Dec. 1, 1880; son of John Thomas and Sarai (Kepoikai) Aluli. Educated at Wailuku government school, St. Lous College (Honolulu), University of Michigan, LL.B., 1901; Yale University, LL.M., 1905; married Emma Akamu in Hilo, Hawaii, Dec. 23, 1910; four children; Alai, Kaouiokalani, Aima, Neaulani, Auwae Leong and Noa Tong. Practised law in Maui County; deputy county attorney, County of Hawaii, 1905-10; practiced law in Honolulu since 1911. Member Union League Club of New Haven, Conn.; San Salvador Council, No. 1, Knights of Columbus, New Haven, Conn., and Order of Kamehameha, Mamalahoa Chapter, No. 2, Hilo Hawaii.
Note: Bio. on Ali’i Aluli available on page eighteen of Men of Hawaii by John Siddall (1927). Internet electronic book at:
Mamo Aliʻi, Chas. H. Siemsen, 1907 – c. 1922