Russell Ruderman

Born and raised on U.S. Army bases, Russell Ruderman attended Penn State University and holds a B.S. in biology. He began working in the natural food business in 1975, and was among the pioneers of the modern natural foods industry. In 1998 Ruderman founded Island Naturals Market and Deli in Hilo. Now with three stores including Pahoa and Kailua-Kona and over 200 employees, Island Naturals is committed to supporting local farmers and producers. He served as state senator for Puna district on the Big Island from 2012 to 2020. His focus was on the environment, economic justice, and helping Puna recover from a series of disasters. Ruderman lives in Keaau.

Russell Ruderman: Nobody Wants The First Responders Park. So Why Are We Building It? (Screenshot/Hawaii Technology Corporation)

Russell Ruderman: Nobody Wants The First Responders Park. So Why Are We Building It?

We shouldn't be spending money on an unneeded boondoggle in a powerful senator’s district.

Russell Ruderman: This Year’s Legislature Was Much Worse Than Business As Usual Getty Images/iStockphoto

Russell Ruderman: This Year’s Legislature Was Much Worse Than Business As Usual

It deserves an "F" for failing to pass major ethics reforms that the public expected.

Russell Ruderman: Money Chairs Are King At Conference Committee Crunch Time Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Russell Ruderman: Money Chairs Are King At Conference Committee Crunch Time

House and Senate money committee chairs reign supreme during the last few weeks of session, relishing their power over other lawmakers.

Hawaii’s Bully-Based Legislative System Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2016

Hawaii’s Bully-Based Legislative System

It’s the reason the Legislature serves special interests and fails to serve the public good.

The Hawaii Legislature Resists The Basic Principles Of Sunshine Law David Croxford/Civil Beat/2023

The Hawaii Legislature Resists The Basic Principles Of Sunshine Law

When the public business of democracy is conducted in darkness, shady deals are more common and corruption can flourish.

We Can Take These Steps To Reform Hawaii Police Now Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2020

We Can Take These Steps To Reform Hawaii Police Now

For one, we can change state law to allow the public access to officer misconduct information.
Failure To Enact A Living Wage Will Hurt Businesses Flickr: Navin75

Failure To Enact A Living Wage Will Hurt Businesses

Two Hawaii lawmakers who are also employers say paying a decent minimum wage motivates people to perform well.
Rat Lungworm Disease Demands State Action

Rat Lungworm Disease Demands State Action

The Ige administration should stop belittling the work of UH Hilo’s laboratory and fund it immediately.
It’s Time For A Living Wage In Hawaii Cory Lum/Civil Beat

It’s Time For A Living Wage In Hawaii

We can solve poverty and homelessness if we choose to do so.