Representative Andria Tupola discusses music, civic engagement, karate, and more.
Andria Tupola currently serves in the Hawaii House of Representatives representing District 43 (Māʻili, Nānākuli, Ko Olina, Honokai Hale, Kalaeloa, Ewa). Andria was first elected into the House of Representatives in 2014 on her very first run for office. She rallied the support of community members by
knocking doors, holding meetings, speaking at schools, and organizing events. She was elected in 2014 by 56% of the vote—unseating the only incumbent in the general election. Andria was re-elected in 2016, this time increasing her margin of victory to 65% of the vote. Following re-election, Andria made history
by becoming the first Samoan woman to serve as the House Minority Leader—a position she continues to serve in today.
During her tenure as a Representative, Andria has demonstrated that she is a very different—very grassroots—public servant who encourages community members to: voice their concerns, keep government accountable, and serve in the communities themselves. A true community is not just about being geographically close, it’s about feeling connected and responsible for what happens. Through collaborative efforts Andria has succeeded in identifying and responding to many of the pressing needs in her communities—and in our State.
Andria Tupola formerly taught music at Leeward Community College. She has earned two degrees in music education (a M.A. from the University of Hawaii, Manoa and a B.M. from Brigham Young University) and is currently completing a PhD (also in Music). Andria is an honors graduate of Kamehameha Schools, Kapālama, and is an avid fan of both sports and the performing arts. She enjoys spending time with family—especially her husband, Tavo, and their 2 daughters aged nine and ten.
LINKS FROM THE EPISODE
What does it mean to the Samoan community for you and your family to have occupied such important leadership positions?
What was your strategy for running for office? [3:19]
How do you feel about running for governor of Hawaii? [5:58]
Where does your optimistic personality come from? [7:24]
How did your mother and music influence you? [8:33]
Do parents constrain their children from being open by the way that they talk to them? [12:08]
When you were young, what were your most motivational experiences? [13:36]
How do we give children a sense of their identity? [16:59]
What is the value in having more politicians who have more varied backgrounds? [18:41]
What are your memories about money growing up? [20:24]
What did it mean to you for your grandfather to be able to step in and help your family while your mom and dad were studying? [22:26]
Other experiences in your youth when you learned about money? [26:21]
Any advice for parents today? [28:31]
What is your favorite charitable cause? [31:42]