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Founder & Executive Director – Kānehūnāmoku Voyaging Academy


Captain Bonnie Kahapeʻa – Tanner is the founder and Executive Director of Kānehūnāmoku Voyaging Academy, a Hawaiʻi based educational nonprofit focused on teaching traditional navigation, voyaging techniques and culture to students across the State of Hawaiʻi. With Captain Kahapeʻa –Tannerʻs extensive background mentoring youth in the art of traditional Polynesian voyaging she hopes to develop leaders in and out of the water, strengthening cultural ties, preserving techniques that have sustained a people for generations and preparing native Hawaiian students for future careers in the maritime industry. Captain Kahapeʻa-Tanner has a bachelorʻs degree in Hawaiian Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi, Hilo, a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology from Chaminade University, Honolulu; and another in Transformative Learning and Change from California Institute of Integral Studies. Her interest in sailing began when she first stepped foot on Hōkūleʻa in 1995. Since then she has sailed aboard multiple vessels including Makaliʻi, Hōkūleʻa, Te Matau a Maui, Adventuress and the SSV Tole Mour. At the center of Kānehūnāmoku Voyaging Academyʻs cultural curriculum and programming is the double hulled, traditionally rigged canoe Kānehūnāmoku. Captain Kahapeʻa-Tanner along with her crew members use Kānehūnāmoku on a daily basis as an outdoor classroom, where students are able to get hands-on experience in sailing.

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