Kirstin Downey

A Kailua girl, Kirstin Downey is a special correspondent for Civil Beat. A longtime reporter for The Washington Post, she is the author of "The Woman Behind the New Deal," "Isabella the Warrior Queen" and an upcoming biography of King Kaumualii of Kauai. She can be reached at kdowney@civilbeat.org.
Honolulu Council Elections Are A Hot Topic For Neighborhood Board Members Natanya Freidheim/Civil Beat

Honolulu Council Elections Are A Hot Topic For Neighborhood Board Members

With four of the nine Honolulu council seats in play, local community groups are paying attention to what a shift in power may mean in their backyards.

Is Honolulu’s Chinatown On The Brink Of A Turnaround? Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

Is Honolulu’s Chinatown On The Brink Of A Turnaround?

Residents say new city programs and the dispersal of River of Life’s meal distributions are bringing peace and safety back to a historic neighborhood.

Supreme Court Declines To Hear Kaneohe Soil Contamination Case Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2018

Supreme Court Declines To Hear Kaneohe Soil Contamination Case

The High Court’s decision paves the way for service members and their families to bring their claims about toxic contamination to Hawaii state court.

Oahu Lifeguards Say They Need Help. But City Officials Are Stonewalling Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022

Oahu Lifeguards Say They Need Help. But City Officials Are Stonewalling

A resolution that would let voters help chart the future course for the city Ocean Safety division has stalled in City Council chambers.

Loi Hou ʻIa Ke Kumukūʻai Pipiʻi No Kahi Lāʻau Hoʻopakele Ola No Nā Mimikō Courtesy: Shelsea Deng/2021

Loi Hou ʻIa Ke Kumukūʻai Pipiʻi No Kahi Lāʻau Hoʻopakele Ola No Nā Mimikō

ʻO kahi mea hoʻomaʻi i hoʻolaha nui ʻia ma Hawaiʻi, ke nānā pono ʻia nei ua mea hoʻomaʻi nei ma Wakinekona. 

Hawaii Avoids Port Backups But Some Goods Are Scarce Brittany Lyte/Civil Beat/2022

Hawaii Avoids Port Backups But Some Goods Are Scarce

Businesses from health care to restaurants have struggled to get some back-ordered items.

New Scrutiny On The High Price Of A Life-Saving Drug For Diabetics Courtesy: Shelsea Deng/2021

New Scrutiny On The High Price Of A Life-Saving Drug For Diabetics

A disease that has an outsized impact in Hawaii is getting top-level attention in Washington.

Military Families Who Sued Over Kaneohe Soil Contamination Get Another Day In Court Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2018

Military Families Who Sued Over Kaneohe Soil Contamination Get Another Day In Court

After a federal judge rejected most of their claims, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sent the case to state court.

Ke Kani Koʻele Nei Ka Uaki Ma Ko Ka Hawaiʻi Kali ʻAna I Ka Hoʻohuli Hoʻoili ʻĀina Kūʻonoʻono Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2021

Ke Kani Koʻele Nei Ka Uaki Ma Ko Ka Hawaiʻi Kali ʻAna I Ka Hoʻohuli Hoʻoili ʻĀina Kūʻonoʻono

Ua ālai ʻia ka hana ma Wakinekona e hiki ai i nā keiki a me nā moʻopuna Hawaiʻi a nā ʻona home ke ili i ko lākou mau ʻāina ponoʻī.