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David Ige
Ige photographed by Dallas Nagata White in 2014
8th Governor of Hawaii
In office
December 1, 2014 – December 5, 2022
Lieutenant Shan Tsutsui
Doug Chin
Josh Green
Preceded by Neil Abercrombie
Succeeded by Josh Green
Member of the Hawaii Senate
In office
January 15, 2003 – December 1, 2014
Preceded by Norman Sakamoto
Succeeded by Breene Harimoto
Constituency 16th district
In office
January 15, 1995 – January 15, 2003
Preceded by Eloise Tungpalan
Succeeded by Ron Menor
Constituency 17th district
Member of the Hawaii House of Representatives
In office
January 15, 1993 – January 15, 1995
Preceded by Suzanne Chun Oakland
Succeeded by Mark Takai
Constituency 34th district
In office
December 2, 1985 – January 15, 1993
Preceded by Arnold Morgado
Succeeded by Henry Haalilio Peters
Constituency 43rd district
Personal details
David Yutaka Ige

(1957-01-15) January 15, 1957 (age 67)
Pearl City, Territory of Hawaii
Political party Democratic
Dawn Amano
(m. 1982)
Children 3
Education University of Hawaii, Manoa (BS, MBA)

David Yutaka Ige (/ˈɡ/; born January 15, 1957) is an American politician and engineer who served as the eighth governor of Hawaii from 2014 to 2022. A Democrat, he served in the Hawaii State Senate from 1995 to 2014 and the Hawaii House of Representatives from 1985 to 1995.

In the 2014 gubernatorial election, he defeated incumbent Governor Neil Abercrombie in the Democratic primary, and won the general election over Republican nominee Duke Aiona. Ige was reelected in 2018, defeating Republican nominee Andria Tupola.

Early life and college

Ige was born and raised in Pearl City, Hawaii, the fifth of six sons of Tokio and Tsurue Ige, who are of Okinawan descent. During World War II, Tokio served in the 100th Battalion/442nd Infantry Regimental Combat Team and was awarded the Purple Heart and Bronze Star. After the war, Tokio Ige worked as an ironworker on construction projects while Tsurue Ige worked as a nurse and dental hygienist. Tokio Ige died in 2005 at age 86. Tsurue, now retired, resides in Pearl City.

David Ige attended public schools in Pearl City—Pearl City Elementary School, Highlands Intermediate School, and Pearl City High School—and participated in community sports, playing in the Pearl City Little League for eight years. At the newly built Pearl City High School, Ige excelled in many activities. In his junior year he was elected student body vice president, and he served as senior class president the next year. His campaign for student body president stressed diversity and an end to bullying. Ige also led his varsity tennis team to a championship and was honored as the "Scholar-Athlete of the Year." He graduated fifth in his class of more than 500 students in 1975.

Ige was accepted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, but attended the University of Hawaii at Manoa, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering. At UH he served as student body secretary and an officer of several honor societies as well as treasurer and vice-president of his fraternity, Phi Delta Sigma.

Ige met his wife, Dawn, at the University of Hawaii. They have three children: Lauren, Amy, and Matthew.

Engineering career

After college, while working for GTE Hawaiian Tel, Ige took graduate courses at UH and earned a Master of Business Administration degree in decisions sciences. In 1986 Hawaii Business Magazine named him one of the university's Top 10 MBA students.

Before being elected governor of Hawaii, Ige served as project manager with Robert A. Ige and Associates, Inc., Vice President of engineering at NetEnterprise, and senior principal engineer at Pihana Pacific, which established the first world-class data center and carrier-neutral Internet exchange in Hawaii and the Pacific. Before that, he worked as an engineer for GTE Hawaiian Tel for more than 18 years.

Hawaii legislature

Ige was originally appointed to the Hawaii House of Representatives on December 2, 1985, by Governor George Ariyoshi after Representative Arnold Morgado resigned to run for a seat on the Honolulu City Council. He served in the Hawaii State Senate from 1995 to 2015. During his legislative career, Ige served as chair of nine different committees. He focused much of his career as a legislator on information and telecommunications policy, and co-authoried the Hawaii Telecommunications and Information Industries Act that established the state information network and created the Hawaii Information Network Corporation. Ige was at the center of Hawaii's efforts to diversify its economy. He was responsible for establishing seed capital and venture capital programs, software development initiatives, and technology transfer programs. Ige was a member of the inaugural 1997 class of the Pacific Century Fellows.

2012 reelection campaign

Ige was reelected to the Hawaii State Senate in 2012, defeating Republican challenger and former U.S. Naval Air crewman, Army Captain, and small business executive Mike Greco. Greco was the first challenger Ige faced in a general election in over a decade.

Governor of Hawaii

2014 campaign for governor

Ige ran against incumbent Neil Abercrombie in the Democratic primary for the 2014 gubernatorial election, after Abercrombie upset the supporters of late US senator Daniel Inouye by ignoring his wish to be replaced by Colleen Hanabusa. Though outspent in the race, Ige defeated Abercrombie, 66% to 31%. Ige's victory made him the first candidate to ever defeat an incumbent governor of Hawaii in a primary election.

Ige faced Republican Duke Aiona and Independent Mufi Hannemann in the general election. He won by 12 percentage points.


David Ige 2014 Inauguration
Inauguration of David Ige as 8th Governor of Hawaii

Ige was sworn in as the eighth governor of Hawaii on December 1, 2014, with Lieutenant Governor Shan Tsutsui, in the Hawaii State Capitol Rotunda. Ige is the first person of Okinawan descent to be elected governor of a U.S. state.

Governor Ige's inauguration theme of "honoring the past and charting a new tomorrow" was on display throughout the ceremony, which paid tribute to his father who served in the 100th Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team of the U.S. Army during World War II alongside the late U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye.

Gubernatorial tenure

Dawn Ige and David Ige
Governor David Ige and First Lady Dawn Ige ride in the Kamehameha Day Parade, 2016
John Richardson and David Ige 161207-N-AT895-171 (30656444724)
Governor Ige with U.S. Navy admiral John Richardson at the 75th Commemoration Event of the attacks on Pearl Harbor and Oahu, 2016

In October 2015, Ige declared a state of emergency due to the escalating scale of the homelessness problem; in 2015, Hawaii had the highest rate of homeless persons per capita in the United States. In June 2017, following President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement on climate change, Ige signed two bills that respectively committed the state to meeting regardless its greenhouse gas emission targets under the Paris Agreement and established a carbon reduction and soil health task force.

After an incoming missile alert was erroneously sent to all smartphones in the state and broadcast over local television and radio on January 13, 2018, Ige apologized for the mistake, which he attributed to human error during a shift change at the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency. He pledged to reevaluate the state's emergency procedures to prevent a recurrence of the false alert, which caused widespread panic and confusion in the state.

On February 22, 2019, President Trump appointed Ige to the bipartisan Council of Governors, on which Ige served as co-chair.

In June 2022 Ige signed a transgender rights bill into law, expanding gender affirming care for Hawaii's residents.

Ige has allowed the Thirty Meter Telescope to be built on Mauna Kea.

Electoral history

Hawaii House of Representatives 34th district Democratic primary, 1992
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige 2,907 86.31%
Democratic Gloria "Moana" May 461 13.69%
Hawaii House of Representatives 34th district general election, 1992
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) 5,758 82.55%
Republican Monte Rae Parker 1,217 17.45%
Democratic hold
Hawaii State Senate 17th district general election, 1994
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) 11,866 75.49%
Republican Stef Davis 3,852 24.51%
Democratic hold
Hawaii State Senate 17th district general election, 1998
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) 13,487 84.11%
Libertarian Robert Grayson 2,548 15.89%
Democratic hold
Hawaii State Senate 16th district general election, 2002
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) N/A 100.00%
Democratic hold
Hawaii State Senate 16th district general election, 2004
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) N/A 100.00%
Democratic hold
Hawaii State Senate 16th district general election, 2008
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) N/A 100.00%
Democratic hold
Hawaii State Senate 16th district general election, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mike Greco 3,705 20.74
Democratic hold
Hawaii gubernatorial Democratic primary, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige 157,050 67.35%
Democratic Neil Abercrombie (incumbent) 73,507 31.52%
Democratic Van "Tanaban" Tanabe 2,622 1.12%
Hawaii gubernatorial election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige & Shan Tsutsui 181,106 49.45%
Republican Duke Aiona & Elwin Ahu 135,775 37.08%
Independent Mufi Hannemann & Les Chang 42,934 11.72%
Libertarian Jeff Davis & Cynthia "Lahi" Marlin 6,395 1.75%
Democratic hold


Hawaii gubernatorial Democratic primary, 2018
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige (incumbent) 124,528 51.4%
Democratic Colleen Hanabusa 107,583 44.4%
Democratic Ernest Caravalho 5,659 2.3%
Democratic Wendell Ka'ehu'ae'a 2,293 0.9%
Democratic Richard Kim 1,575 0.6%
Democratic Van Tanabe 775 0.3%
Hawaii gubernatorial election, 2018
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic David Ige & Josh Green (inc.) 244,814 62.7%
Republican Andria Tupola & Marissa Kerns 131,604 33.7%
Green Jim Brewer & Renee Ing 10,112 2.6%
Nonpartisan politician Terence Teruya & Paul Robotti 4,062 1.0
Democratic hold

See also

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