Hawaii Gov. David Ige said that Jade Butay, who is now deputy director of administration for the state Department of Transportation, will become HDOT’s interim director Nov. 1 when current Director Ford Fuchigami joins the governor’s office as its administrative director.
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported that Butay “will have the interim director title pending Senate confirmation during next year’s Legislature” to be the department’s permanent CEO.
Butay assumed his deputy director position in January 2015. He now functions as the HDOT’s chief operating officer, according to his biography website, “working closely with the director in managing and directing the administrative operations and functions” of the department.
He also was the HDOT deputy director of administration in 2011 to 2013, before serving as deputy director at the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations from 2013 to 2014.
The announcement said Fuchigami’s new role in the governor’s office “will include coordinating essential business and discussions between the state and various industries, serving as the lead liaison between the governor’s office, state departments and their directors, and administering management improvement programs.”
Fuchigami will also work with Chief of Staff Mike McCartney and serve as a key contributing member of the governor’s leadership team, it said.
“Ford has repeatedly proven his incredible ability to generate innovative ideas, implement plans and see them through to successful completion,” said Ige. “His ability to negotiate the successful Kapalama Container Terminal project and accommodate an additional major player into Hawai’i’s shipping industry is just one recent example of his impressive leadership skills.”
The governor continued: “Ford has been able to successfully manage a wide range of situations – whether it’s negotiating with billion-dollar companies or listening to the concerns of our citizens. He will bring to the governor’s office his strengths and keen ability to enhance efficiencies throughout our state.”
Fuchigami had joined HDOT in January 2011, and former Gov. Neil Abercrombie appointed him to head the agency in May 2014.
As the agency’s CEO he has overseen modernization and facility improvement projects with an increased focus on sustainability and energy efficiency along state highways, in public airports and at Hawaii’s commercial ports. He was previously an executive in the hospitality industry.
“In my years with HDOT,” Fuchigami said, “we have achieved many impactful accomplishments across all divisions. The department’s success has been in large part because of the collaboration and support from various individuals and organizations.”
The department oversees 15 airports, 10 commercial harbors and 2,500 lane miles of highway.