Gov. Neil Abercrombie appointed Ford Fuchigami as interim director of the state Department of Transportation Friday. The nomination is subject to state Senate confirmation.
Fuchigami is replacing Glenn Okimoto, who has served as DOT director since 2010. Okimoto is returning to the University of Hawaii, where he formerly served as the university budget director. As the administrative affairs program officer, Okimoto will address the capital improvement and repair and maintenance needs of the UH Manoa campus. He will report to the vice chancellor of administration, finance and operations.
Fuchigami was appointed DOT deputy director in December 2010 to oversee the state’s 15 commercial and general aviation airports. Tasked with the development and improvement of a safe, attractive and efficient airports system, he has played an important role in bringing new airlines and new direct routes to Hawaii.
Working for more than three decades in the hospitality industry, Fuchigami has extensive experience in business development, employee relations and operations management.
Fuchigami is a graduate of Damien Memorial High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from UH Manoa.