Molly Solomon

General Assignment Reporter

Molly Solomon joined HPR in May 2012 as an intern for the morning talk show The Conversation. She has since worn a variety of hats around the station, doing everything from board operator to producer.

She is now the General Assignment reporter and covers a number of important topics including education, tourism, and food sustainability. A California native, Molly joined HPR after graduating from University of California Santa Cruz with a BA in Sociology. At UC Santa Cruz, she volunteered at KZSC as well as the student newspaper, City on a Hill Press. When she's not reporting local news, Molly can usually be spotted riding her bike around Kaimukī or eating her way through Oʻahu's plethora of Japanese restaurants.

Ways to Connect

Flickr / Frank Hamm
Flickr / Frank Hamm

Scientists, lawmakers, and representatives from federal agencies gathered at Hawai‘i’s state capital Wednesday for the first-ever Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death Summit. The fungal disease affecting one of Hawai‘i’s most important trees has killed more than 50,000 acres of native ‘ōhi‘a.

Flickr / Presidio of Monterey: DLIFLC & USAG
Flickr / Presidio of Monterey: DLIFLC & USAG

A bill to award Filipino World War II veterans with the nation’s highest civilian honor is one step closer to becoming a reality.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

As sugar production winds down in Maui, many Hawai‘i businesses are scrambling for a local alternative. Some are even stockpiling the last bags of Maui sugar while they’re still around.

Flickr / Stacy Spensley
Flickr / Stacy Spensley

This Thanksgiving, some families will be getting a side of politics alongside their turkey and mashed potatoes. That’s because this year’s holiday comes on the heels of a particularly divisive election. HPR’s Molly Solomon got some tips from a professional on how to best manage divided feelings at the dinner table.

Flickr / Daniel Ramirez
Flickr / Daniel Ramirez

2016 hasn’t been a great year for the Honolulu Zoo. The city-run facility lost its accreditation back in March and is now looking for its sixth zoo director since 2009. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports.

Oiwi TV / Kaipo Kiaha
Oiwi TV / Kaipo Kiaha

Crew members on board Hōkūle‘a are bundling up this week, as temperatures drop on the East Coast. The voyaging canoe recently departed from Hampton, Virginia and is heading south along the Intracoastal Waterway. We caught up with crew member Shantell De Silva as part of our ongoing series, Hōkūle‘a: Voyage of Aloha.

On the East Coast's chilly weather:

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

The crop that once defined Hawai‘i is facing its final harvest. Next month, Hawai‘i Commercial & Sugar Company will close its operations. For many, the industry was more than just a place to work—it represented an entire way of life. HPR’s Molly Solomon recently visited Maui and has this report.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

More than a hundred people showed up last week at Kaka‘ako Agora, a gathering place in the developing Honolulu neighborhood. They were there to show solidarity with activists in North Dakota who are fighting the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

After a contentious campaign season ending with an unexpected win by Donald Trump, many teachers are faced with a difficult task: how to talk about the results of this election. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports that while the vote may be over, conversations in the classroom are just beginning.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

A group opposing the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea is appealing to the state’s highest court for the second time. The group Mauna Kea Anaina Hou filed a notice of appeal with the Hawaii Supreme Court Monday evening.

Oiwi TV / Naalehu Anthony
Oiwi TV / Naalehu Anthony

After three weeks of dry dock, Hōkūle‘a has a fresh coat of paint and is ready to return to the water. The voyaging canoe will continue on the Intracoastal Waterway and sail next to Miami, Florida. We caught up with crew member Moani Hemuli as part of our ongoing series, Hōkūle‘a: Voyage of Aloha.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

According to the Wall Street Journal, poke is one of the culinary trends of 2016. The popular raw-fish dish has taken the mainland by storm, with poke shops popping up across the country. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports on why this Hawaiian staple is gaining a national following.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

Hawaiian food is having its moment on the mainland. And it’s not all poke shops. HPR’s Molly Solomon reports on how one New York restaurant is elevating island favorites.

Thirty Meter Telescope Corp.
Thirty Meter Telescope Corp.

A $1.4 billion telescope planned for construction on Mauna Kea could move to another site. Officials from the Thirty Meter Telescope have selected the Canary Islands in Spain as the TMT’s alternate location if a permit for Hawai‘i is not granted by early next year.

MAUI MEMORIAL MEDICAL CENTER
MAUI MEMORIAL MEDICAL CENTER

A date has been set for the transition of three state-run medical facilities on Maui. The Board of Directors of the Maui regional Hawai‘i Health Systems Corporation voted that starting July 1, 2017, Kaiser will take over operations. 

HOLLYN JOHNSON
HOLLYN JOHNSON

Hawai‘i Island Mayor Billy Kenoi testified in his own defense Wednesday. The criminal trial against the Big Island mayor for the alleged misuse of his government issued purchasing card entered its fifth day. Kenoi took the stand, appearing emotional, as he recounted his family and upbringing in Kalapana.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

A 14 year old Hawaiian monk seal is back in the water after a lifesaving surgery to remove a fishing hook he swallowed. Scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released RE-74, also known as Benny, after a two-week recovery period.

Oiwi TV / Kaipo Kiaha
Oiwi TV / Kaipo Kiaha

The voyaging canoe Hōkūle‘a is taking a break from the high seas for routine maintenance. The canoe is spending the next three weeks in dry dock at Newport News, Virginia. We caught up with Hōkūle‘a crew member Nā‘ālehu Anthony as part of our ongoing series, Hōkūle‘a: Voyage of Aloha.

Hokulea will depart from Virginia next month and travel to Miami, Florida. It will then travel through the Panama Canal and sail to the Galapagos before returning to Hawaii in June 2017.

Follow the two voyaging canoes on Google Maps:

Wikipedia Commons
Wikipedia Commons

When it comes to clean energy use, Hawai‘i is in a bit of a rut. That’s according to the Blue Planet Foundation, who released their 4th annual energy report card. HPR’s Molly Solomon explains.

The nonprofit gave the Aloha State a grade of a B-minus, the same as last year. The report card presents a big picture assessment of Hawaii’s progress toward 100 percent clean energy. It focuses on five categories, including transportation, efficiency, economics, renewables, and smart grid.

Oiwi TV / Sam Koipu
Oiwi TV / Sam Koipu

Voyaging canoe Hōkūle‘a is hunkering down off the Hudson River, waiting for stormy weather to pass before continuing down the East Coast. It’s given the crew an opportunity to make connections and get to know the area.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company is closing operations by the end of the year. The legacy of sugar has touched many lives in Hawai‘i. Before the final harvest is in, we’re hearing from a variety of voices. HPR’s Molly Solomon recently spent some time in Maui and has one of those stories.

Flickr / EDMUND GARMAN
Flickr / EDMUND GARMAN

As most of you know, it is hard to break into Hawai‘i’s housing market. The latest census numbers show the state’s median housing value increased 7.4% to nearly $567,000, making it the highest in the nation. But as HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, that’s nothing new. 

AP
AP

Three out of four state counties have now submitted a record detailing the number of untested rape kits. That’s according to the Attorney General’s office who released the inventories from Maui, Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i county police departments.

All counties failed to meet the September 1st deadline, part of a new law passed earlier this year requiring inventories of untested kits.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

Hawai‘i is taking the plunge into virtual reality. State tourism officials are launching a new campaign to promote the islands through this emerging technology.

Molly Solomon
Molly Solomon

For the first time, the Hawai‘i Tourism Conference featured a session on LGBT travel. The islands have long been a destination for gay visitors, but state tourism officials have been slow to advertise it. As HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, many believe it’s an opportunity Hawai‘i can’t afford to pass up.

Eileen Chao
Eileen Chao

A ferry service on Moloka‘i is struggling to stay afloat and may have to shut down. The company that has been operating the service for nearly 30 years says low ridership and competing air fares are to blame. 

Oiwi TV / Sam Koipu
Oiwi TV / Sam Koipu

Voyaging canoe Hōkūle‘a is sailing back down the East Coast and is currently docked in a small town in upstate New York. Students from the Westport school system paid a visit to learn about voyaging traditions and Hawaiian culture. We checked in with Hōkūle‘a crew member Haunani Kāne as part of our ongoing series Hōkūle‘a: Voyage of Aloha.

Follow the two voyaging canoes on Google Maps:

Flickr / LuxTonnerre
Flickr / LuxTonnerre

The U.S. Department of the Interior has finalized a rule that creates a pathway to federal recognition for Native Hawaiians. The process began two years ago, and included thousands of pieces of testimony from listening sessions across the state and on the mainland.

AP
AP

Disney announced it will no longer sell a costume many complained was offensive and compared to blackface. The Halloween outfit depicted Maui, a Polynesian demigod who’s also a character in the upcoming film, “Moana.”

Flickr / US Mission Geneva
Flickr / US Mission Geneva

The largest conservation conference, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, recently wrapped up earlier this month. One thing that was stressed was its commitment to zero waste. But as HPR’s Molly Solomon reports, the conference wasn’t as green as advertised. 

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