Board of Directors

Hawaiian Islands Land Trust
Board of Directors

Neil Hannahs, Board Chair
Matt Beall, Vice Chair
Keith Ogata, Treasurer
Sarah Bakewell, Secretary
Peter Merriman, Past Chair
Sam Ainslie
Mary Charles
Mark Hastert
Leahi Hall
Donna Howard
Susan Kean
Peter McKenney
McD Philpotts
Jonathan Scheuer
David Shores
Larry Stevens
Gunars Valkirs

matt-b-bioMATT BEALL, Vice Chair

Matthew Beall started his real estate sales career in Hawai‘i in 1998. He has several years of non-profit experience, largely through Realtor organizations. He’s served as the President of the Kaua‘i Board of Realtors and as a Director-at-Large and Executive Director of the Hawai‘i Association of Realtors. Matthew runs a lucrative company, Hawai‘i Life Real Estate Brokers, with 170 employees.






KEITH K. OGATA, Treasurer

President of 3-K Financial Corp. Former Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of National Education Corporation (Irvine, CA), a global leader in proprietary education, corporate training and publishing (part of the S&P 500 index). Acquired in 1998.

SCORE Association volunteer (a national volunteer organization that mentors and advises small businesses and resource partner of the SBA), member of Board of Directors, Executive Committee, Leadership Committee, Finance Committee and Secretary.

Board member of several not-for-profit entities and for-profit, post-secondary education entities in the U.S. and Asia.




Sarah was born and raised on the island of Kauai. After high school in L.A. and college in Denver, Sarah joined her father in the family real estate business in St. Louis, MO. She successful ran the company from 1985 to 2008, then merging it with another firm to create the largest, independent residential real estate company in St. Louis. She also became engaged in numerous philanthropic endeavors over the years, including serving on various for profit, and not for profit boards. Her love of nature and conservation brought her back to Kauai full-time, and to offer her services on the board of HILT.






Sam Ainslie’s 25 year tenure in the development industry includes an extensive background in residential real estate, golf course, and resort development. Among these include: President & CEO of WB Kukio Resorts, LLC, developer and operator of the Kukio Golf & Beach Club; Developer, Nanea Golf Club, Island of Hawaii; Senior Vice President of Operations and Sales & Marketing, Hualalai Resort, Island of Hawaii; General Manager, Bali Golf &
Country Club, Indonesia; Director of Sports, Ventana Canyon Golf and Racquet Club, Tucson, Arizona.

Sam lives in Kamuela, on the Big Island of Hawaii, with his wife, Laurie, and their children, Hunter and Jessica Ann. He loves adventure and the outdoors. As active members of the Hawaii community, Sam and Laurie have been passionate and committed advocates for improving health and quality of life.


Mary Charles is a 45-year resident of Hawaii with involvement in both the business community and the philanthropic community.  Mary Charles pioneered the corporate incentive and group market in Hawaii’s tourism arena and built one of the leading and most well respected destination management companies in the islands. After selling MC&A, she pursued business interests on Lanai, including the ownership of Hotel Lanai and Lanai City Grille, which she recently sold.   Mary Charles continues to do projects using her event planning and logistics background and recently provided the logistics and production for the Pillars of Peace programs on behalf of Hawaii Community Foundation and The Omidyar Group.  Yoga practitioner, avid golfer and loves to hike.




Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, Mark Hastert attended Dartmouth College (B. A.) and the University of Washington (B. Arch. & M. U. P.).

In 1980, after working for 10 years as Senior Planner for Belt Collins, he co-founded Helber Hastert & Fee, Planners, Inc. and served as President and Chairman, working on numerous planning projects throughout Hawaii and the Pacific Basin.

In 2003, Mr. Hastert retired from HHF to head The Queen Emma Foundation, where he was responsible for overseeing the management of its 12,000 acres and leading its strategic planning initiatives.

In 2008, Mr. Hastert became a Fellow in the American Institute of Certified Planners (FAICP), one of only 8 in Hawaii who have received the honor.

In 2011, Mr. Hastert joined the Board of Directors of the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust and currently heads the Strategic Planning Committee.

donna-howard-bioDONNA HOWARD

Arriving in Honolulu in 1968, Donna Howard has held several fundraising executive positions both here and on the mainland. She has recently mostly retired to Maui where she advises TEDxMaui and Assets School. Donna served as President of the University of Hawaii Foundation, Assistant Vice Chancellor of UC-Irvine College of Medicine and President and CEO of Kapiolani Health Foundation.







Susan began her art career at an early age at the Art Students League in New York City and continued at Pratt University in Brooklyn. After receiving her BFA she opened Fine Art Tile, a business specializing in custom hand-painted ceramic tile. In her 30 years of operating this business, 20 in Hawaii, she completed many commissions for a multitude of restaurants, hotels and private homes. She recently took up oil painting en plein air which has helped strengthen her conviction of preserving iconic landscapes and open space.

An avid hiker, paddler, biker she is passionate about nature and is happy to be affiliated with an organization that works so hard to preserve land.

Susan sat five years as a founding advisory director for BookTrustMaui. She started serving on the board of Maui Coastal Land Trust in 2008. She is currently serving as chair of the governance committee for the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust.

She is married to Jac Kean and they happily share four wonderful children.

peter-bio-picPETER W. MCKENNEY

Background: Tufts University, BA Economics, US Naval Officer, Career in real estate in California and Hawaii.

Married Luanna Farden in Honolulu in 1962. Loving Kama’aina family. Moved to Hawaii from Marin County, CA, in 1974.

Interest in the environment: Love of nature from grandmother, hiking and backpacking in the High Sierra, California and throughout the Hawaiian Islands. Longtime friendship with leading conservationists led to passion for conservation. Concern about Hawaii’s land use practices led to a search for constructive solutions. Trustee, Maui Coastal Land Trust. Helped with merger of other island land trusts as a member of the Interim Board. Became a Director of the new Hawaiian Islands Land Trust.
Strong commitment to Hawaiian Islands Land Trust as the best way to preserve Hawai’i’s most precious lands –forever!

jonathan-scheuerDR. JONATHAN SCHEUER

Dr. Jonathan Likeke Scheuer works as a consultant helping clients manage environmental conflicts involving cultural, economic, and conservation stakeholders.  Born and raised on O`ahu, he holds a B.A. and Ph.D. in Environmental Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a M.E.S. from Yale University, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. He has worked on land conservation, real estate, and water management for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, Kamehameha Schools, the National Park Service, and others.  In addition to serving on HILT’s board since its founding, he currently serves as an a member of the Hawai`i State Land Use Commission. He has previously served on the boards Mālama Mānoa and the O`ahu Land Trust and as a Kona Moku representative and the Vice Chair of the O`ahu Island Burial Council.


david-shoresDAVID SHORES

I was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri and received a bachelor’s degree in finance from Washington University and a masters in Conservation Biology from the University of Missouri – St. Louis. I have been on the board of the Nature Conservancy Missouri Chapter and have done work for Conservation International. I am currently on the Board of the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust . I am an Ambassador for Windward Community College.  I have been a financial advisor for 31 years and currently run the Ameriprise Financial office in Kailua. I have a wonderful family including three daughters and Kimberly Moore. I have paddled for Lanikai for 11 years.





Gunars Valkirs was born in San Diego, CA, and educated at the University of California in San Diego where received a BA in 1974 and a Ph.D. in Physics in 1982.
Gunars went to work for Hybritech Incorporated, one of the first biotechnology companies and invented the first fast and sensitive pregnancy test there. In 1988, Gunars co-founded Biosite Incorporated, a company focused on developing novel medical diagnostic tests. Gunars was responsible for R&D and later for Research while the company grew to 1200 employees and more than $300 million in annual sales. In 2007 Biosite was sold for $1.7 billion and Gunars retired to Maui where he lives with this wife JoRene and their three dogs. Gunars has recently come out of retirement to start a cacao farm and make great chocolate.