On Thursday Gov. David Ige said he appointed Damien A. Elefante to lead the Department of Taxation on an interim basis.

Elefante, the agency’s deputy director, succeeds Rona Suzuki, whose nomination to continue leading DoTax was withdrawn by the governor last week in the face of Senate opposition. Her last day was July 10.

Damien Elefante 

Elefante was also recently confirmed by the Senate to serve as chairman on the Labor and Industrial Relations Appeals Board. He will hold both jobs until the appointment of the DoTax director is made. His start date for the DLIR job is pending.

He was previously a compliance coordinator with DoTax and deputy attorney general with the Department of the Attorney General’s Tax Division.

Elefante is also an employer trustee, according to the administration, serving in “a fiduciary capacity” with the Hawaii Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund and as an arbitrator with the Court Annexed Arbitration Program.

Elefante will serve as acting director until the position is permanently filled or until 60 days from July 10, whichever occurs first.

He holds a political science degree from the University of Hawaii Manoa and a juris doctorate from Syracuse University College of Law in New York.

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