Over 270 people attended the 2010 Access to Justice Conference:  Access to Justice:  Is This A Promise We Can Keep? at the William S. Richardson School of Law on Friday, June 25, 2010.

During the morning session of the conference, Associate Justice Acoba presented the status of the work of the Commission and the continuing priorities.  He presented Certificates of Appreciation to the Cades Foundation (E. Gunner Schull, trustee) and to the Hawaii Justice Foundation (James Kawachika, president) for the grants that were approved for the Commission’s objectives.

The first morning panel with Derek Kobayashi and Nanci Kreidman was facilitated by Robert LeClair concerning the issues related to meeting the needs of the underserved with the attorneys willing to provide pro bono legal services.  The next panel with legislators, Blake Oshiro, Marcus Oshiro, and Suzanne Chun-Oakland, facilitated by Dean Soifer, examined the funding issues.  The final morning panel consisted of the six committees of the Commission (Increasing Pro Bono Legal Services; Initiatives to Enhance Civil Justice; Maximizing Use of Available Resources; Overcoming Barriers to Access to Justice; Right to Counsel in Certain Proceedings; and Self-Representation and Unbundling), which reported on the particular projects being accomplished by  each specific committee.  The committee representatives also discussed the question of what has really worked to generate momentum within the committees or what should be done to restore or improve momentum within the committees.  Professor Calvin Pang facilitated this group.

The workshops in the afternoon were:
Dealing with Domestic Violence (offered twice) with Judge Michael Broderick, Nanci Kreidman, and Jan Tamura
  Initiatives to Enhance Civil Justice with Judge Greg Nakamura, Elton Johnson, and Linda Krieger
  Show Me the Money: Funding and Other Issues with Chief Justice Richard Guy (ret.), Sen. Suzanne Chun Oakland, Margery Bronster, and David Reber
  Right to Counsel in Certain Civil Proceedings with Mary Anne Magnier, Karen Nakasone, and Shannon Wack
  Self-Representation and Unbundling with Judge Barbara Richardson, Jill Hasegawa, and Nalani Fujimori Kaina
  Increasing Mediation Effectiveness: When Is It Appropriate and What Makes It Work? (offered twice) with John Barkai, Charles Hurd, Elizabeth Kent, and Tracey Wiltgen
  Getting to Yes with Pro Bono with Judge Katherine Leonard, Duane Fisher, Moya Gray, and David Reber
  Elder Law Representation with Lenora Lee, James Pietsch, and Scott Suzuki
  Overcoming Barriers to Access to Justice with Judge Daniel Foley,Dew Kaneshiro, and Jennifer Rose
The Foreclosure Crisis: How to Help with Judge Ronald Ibarra, Judge Greg Nakamura, Alan J. Ma, and George Zweibel


Judge Michael Town, circuit court judge for the First Judicial Circuit, closed the plenary session after the workshops with an inspiring speech.  He explained that a long time ago in the location of Gray’s beach, which fronts the Halekulani Hotel, known as Kawehewehe, people came to heal.  They would leave a seaweed lei of limu kala while asking forgiveness of any misdeeds.  Judge Town described his final perspectives as “take care of the folks in the waiting room!” “love the stranger as yourself as we all were once strangers here!” and “provide free and open access to all so we can fully participate in the manner of Kawehewehe.”