Cynthia Reeves begins position as Maui County administrator

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Cynthia Reeves, (808) 244-3242
Maui County Administrator, College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resource
Miles Hakoda, (808) 956-3093
Director, Office of Communication Services, CTAHR
Posted: Sep 25, 2014

Cynthia Reeves
Cynthia Reeves

Cynthia Reeves has begun her duties as Maui County administrator for UH Mānoa’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR). Taking over on September 22 for former interim Maui County administrator Robin Shimabuku, Dr. Reeves will assume responsibility for and coordinate all CTAHR research, community outreach and instruction for Maui County.

She earned her MPH in Nutrition from UH Mānoa and worked as an associate director for Honolulu’s March of Dimes program, before earning her PhD in Community and International Nutrition from the University of California-Davis.  Previously, she served, since 2011, as the national program leader in Nutrition and Health for the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), where she provided strategic planning, policy analysis and leadership for Extension (community outreach) staff and programs in all U.S. states and territories. Before then, she was NIFA’s director of Nutrition and Family Sciences, including having oversight of the $68 million nationwide Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program. She has experience working in the non-profit sector, and prior to that, in academia at the University of Maryland, College Park and University of Otago in New Zealand.

Dr. Reeves is a proven leader and manager of national programs with almost 20 years of experience in Extension, nutrition, and health-related academic and administrative leadership.  She is highly skilled in personnel management, which includes developing, implementing, leading and managing complex, multi-disciplinary and collaborative projects.

CTAHR’s research and outreach in Maui County are focused in the college’s Cooperative Extension offices and research stations: the Maui Agriculture Research Station, Haleakala Agriculture Research Station, Kula Agricultural Park, and Kahului Extension Office on Maui, and the Moloka‘i Extension Office and Moloka‘i Applied Research Farm. Important programs include watershed conservation; battling invasive species; training new farmers on Moloka‘i’s Hawaiian Home Lands; teaching agricultural producers to raise honeybees as pollinators; growing macadamias and koa; and researching best practices for cultivating protea and other ornamentals, taro, cabbage and tomato.

“Maui County Cooperative Extension has a reputation for excellence in providing science-based outreach and education on a variety of agricultural and human science issues throughout the county,” says Dr. Reeves  “My priorities for Maui County are to build on that reputation for excellence by expanding opportunities for faculty research and use of our research facilities, to continue to focus our efforts on issues of local concern and need, and to work toward enhancing the funding base for research, education, and Extension programs throughout Maui County by pursuing appropriate funding opportunities and by collaborating with staff and faculty in these endeavors.”

Returning to Hawai‘i was a strong draw in seeking this position, Dr. Reeves adds. “I am incredibly excited to once again be working in this beautiful state, with UH Mānoa CTAHR, and this time around, in Maui County! Over the years, I've been fortunate to have lived and worked in many places in addition to Hawai‘i, including New Zealand, California and Washington, D.C.  But my heart has always longed to be back in Hawai‘i, and I feel very lucky that this position came along when I was looking for a change, both professionally and geographically. I have worked at both the State and Federal level within the Cooperative Extension System, and I am passionate about Extension, so I look forward to working with staff and faculty throughout Maui County and UH Mānoa, and to enhance and expand our Extension programming.”

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