Halena Kapuni-Reynolds is a Native Hawaiian from the Hawaiian homestead community of Keaukaha and the upper rain forest of ‘Ōla‘a on Hawai‘i Island. He comes to UH Mānoa‘s AMST program with a background in Hawaiian Archaelology (B.A., UH Hilo, 2013) and Museum and Heritage Studies (M.A., University of Denver, 2015). Halena is also a past participant of the Smithsonian Institute of Museum Anthropology (2014) as well as the Peabody Essex Museum Native American Fellowship Program (2015). For his dissertation research, Halena hopes to continue ongoing community efforts to preserve the heritage of his community, by writing a comprehensive history of Keaukaha that examines Native Hawaiian homesteader experiences with land, memory, and stories. As part of this research, he intends to develop a community-based model of curation to aid in the preservation of Keaukaha’s tangible past.
Halena is also an amateur singer/songwriter of Hawaiian mele (song). In 2012, he placed third in the annual Kindy Sproat Aloha Festival Falsetto & Storytelling Contest with his rendition of the song Ku‘u Home o Keaukaha.”