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 HONORABLE RIKI MAY AMANO (RET.)
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Judge Riki May Amano (Ret.) served as a judge in the district and circuit courts of the Third Judicial Circuit, State of Hawaii from February 1992 until her retirement in April 2003. During her judicial career, Judge Amano presided over personal injury, negligence, medical malpractice, contract, employment, probate, landlord/tenant, small claims, family and criminal non-jury and jury trials. Her docket included pretrial and post-trial motions, settlement conferences, and probate and guardianship cases. Judge Amano was the Court Annexed Arbitration Programs' Arbitration Judge for the Third Judicial Circuit from 1994 until 2003 and she currently sits on the Judicial Arbitration Commission (2010-present).

Her experience in dispute resolution spans more than thirty-five years.  Judge Amano completed mediation training at the Neighborhood Justice Center (nka Mediation Center of the Pacific) in 1982 and served as a volunteer mediator for the NJC and the Ku'ikahi Mediation Services in Hilo, from 1983 until 1991. Judge Amano received facilitation training in 1990 and has served as a facilitator for several non-profit organizations. 

Judge Amano has been enrolled as a student at the Pepperdine University School of Law since May 2004, working on an LL.M. in dispute resolution.  Among the courses she completed are:  Mediation Seminar, Selected Issues in Dispute Resolution: Mass Torts, Cross-Cultural Negotiation and Dispute Resolution, Domestic Relations Dispute Resolution, and Current Issues in International Dispute Resolution:  Hong Kong/Beijing.  She has 240 hours of externship at the Settlement Facility-Dow Corning Trust in Houston, Texas.

She has been recognized annually as a Best Lawyer in America/Hawai’i in the areas of mediation and arbitration, from 2007 to the present.  In 2012, she was selected as the Lawyer of the Year in Mediation and in 2014, she was selected as the Lawyer of the Year in Arbitration.

Judge Amano served in administrative capacities for two non-profit organizations.  She was the Executive Director for the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai`i from 2005-2007, and for Maximum Legal Services Corporation from October 2013 to October 2016.  In 2016-2017, she served as the Hearing Officer in Case No. BLNR-CC-16-02, In the Matter of Contested Case Hearing Re Conservation District Use Application (CDUA) HA-3568 For the Thirty Meter Telescope at the Mauna Kea Science Reserve, Ka`ohe Mauka, Hamakua, Hawai’i TMK (3) 4-4-015:009.

Judge Amano was born and raised in Hilo; she currently resides in Honolulu. She completed her undergraduate education in 1976 with a BA degree in Political Science and obtained her Juris Doctor degree from the William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawaii in 1979. Prior to her appointment to the bench, Judge Amano was a deputy attorney general assigned to the department of Land & Natural Resources, Transportation and Labor and Industrial Relations from 1979-1981; and in private practice from 1981 until 1991. She is married and has two daughters and four grandchildren.