Crew Profile: Kalepa Baybayan

PVS Member Since 1975

HOMETOWN: Kona, Hawai‘i
PRIMARY DUTY: Pwo Navigator, Captain
Born and raised in Lahaina, Maui, Chad Kālepa Baybayan first sailed on Hōkūleʻa in 1975 and has sailed on all major Hōkūleʻa voyages since. Kālepa has served as captain on Hōkūleʻa as well as voyaging canoes Hawai‘iloa and Hōkūalaka‘i. He was the Site Director of Honuakai, the Exploration Sciences Division of the ‘Aha Pūnana Leo, which teaches the Hawaiian Language to participants that crew aboard the Hōkūalaka‘i. He currently serves as the Navigator in Residence at the ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawai‘i developing wayfinding activities, curriculum materials, and conducting outreach. In 2007, Kālepa was initiated into the order of Pwo, the two-thousand-year-old society of deep-sea navigators in Micronesia, along with four other Hōkūleʻa navigators by their teacher Mau Piailug on the island of Satawal in Micronesia.

Kālepa sees Hōkūleʻa as a vehicle for successful aspirations and a promise for all that is possible. “It is a reminder of all that we have accomplished in the face of enormous adversity,” said Kālepa. “The canoe remains a vehicle for great messages, a symbol for the survival of island earth and humanity.”

Kālepa hopes that the Worldwide Voyage will inspire our communities to proactively solve the pressing issues that confront us. “It is my highest aspiration to be a part of a network of like-minded individuals intent on problem solving.

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