Gov. David Ige on Wednesday appointed Luella Costales to replace Ty Cullen, who resigned from the Hawaii House of Representatives last month after being caught in a bribery scandal.

Costales, according to a press release, serves as a community and resource manager for the Oahu Economic Development Board.

Luella Costales
Luella Costales. Ashley Smith/2022

She was the director of fund development for the Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific, and the director of development at Kupu.

And Costales also serves on the board of directors for the FBI Honolulu Citizens Academy Alumni Association and is a committee member of the WWII Filipino Veteran Congressional Gold Medal Committee, the Filipino Veterans Recognition and Education Project, and the Federal Law Enforcement Foundation.

“Luella has over 35 years of experience serving her community through the non-profit sector,” said Ige. “One of her main goals is to restore public trust in the legislative process and I believe she’s the right person to help ensure honesty, clarity, and integrity in her role serving the people of Hawaii. I wish her all the best and look forward to working with her.”

Costales will take office to represent District 39 on Oahu once the state House qualifies her and administers the oath of office.

She will serve the rest of Cullen’s term, which expires in November.

The press release does not mention that Costales also served on the Honolulu Police Commission. She resigned in 2017 complaining that the search for a new police chief lacked diversity.

Costales was one of the commissioners that approved a $250,000 severance for former Police Chief Louis Kealoha.

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