Edward Halealoha Ayau

Ayau Halealoha

Edward Halealoha Ayau is ‘Ōiwi (Hawaiian), a 56-year- old father of four daughters and a son. For the last 30 years, he has led efforts to repatriate iwi kūpuna (ancestral Hawaiian skeletal remains), moepū (funerary possessions) and mea kapu (sacred objects) as the Executive Director of Hui Mālama I Nā Kūpuna O Hawai‘i Nei (Group Caring for the Ancestors of Hawai‘i). Founded by traditional cultural practitioners Edward and Pualani Kanahele of Hilo, they repatriated and reburied over 6,000 remains and items from museums around the world, before formally dissolving in 2015. He continues to work on international repatriation as a volunteer for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.