Mahealani Wendt, community advocate and poet, speaks on “Sovereignty Lives in the Resilience of Kua`āina, the People of the Land.”
She was the executive director of Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation (NHLC) for 32 years before retiring in December 2009. Mahealani was the first Native Hawaiian board member of the Native American Rights Fund. Wendt has been recognized with numerous awards including Outstanding Hawaiian Woman for Community Service; Liberty Bell Award from the Hawai’i State Bar Association; Kalanianaole Award from the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs; Native Hawaiian Advocate Award from the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement; and Hawai‘i Women Lawyers Lifetime Achievement Award. She has published poetry and stories in more than a dozen literary journals and anthologies.