WHMC background

Professional Staff

Eric Paul – Executive Director

Eric joined the WHMC staff in May of 2018. Having moved to Hawaii Island in 2013, he brings experience in community development, conflict resolution, and volunteer management. Eric studied nonviolent movements of social change at Vanderbilt Divinity School. And holds a Graduate Certificate in Conflict Transformation from Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding. Eric serves as the Coordinator for Justice and Compassion for the Church of the Nazarene in Hawaii, and believes that conflict, when engaged in healthy ways, provides opportunities for individuals and communities to grow together and contribute to the health of our Island and its people.

Gina Agustin – Mediation Program Manager

Gina joined WHMC in September of 2014. She’s had various roles, including managing the Foreclosure Mediation Program and her current position as Mediation Program Manager. Gina relocated from Southern California to the Big Island in 2008 and received her bachelors degree in administration of justice at the University of Hawaii at Hilo. As Program Manager, Gina is responsible for conducting intakes for all parties requesting mediation, coordinating mediation dates, assigning mediators and coordinating mediation locations.  Gina also provides Center support performing tasks such as preparing reports, special projects, marketing and outreach, website design, social media campaigns, volunteer management, coordinating trainings and other gatherings.

Jennifer Halley – Finance Manager

Jennifer Halley joined WHMC in May of 2012. She has worked in various areas related to financial reporting and bookkeeping since 1985. Prior to moving to Hawai’i Island in 2005, Jennifer had many years of experience in corporate America including a successful career for a leading members-only warehouse corporation in roles that included Executive Assistant to the President, Financial Analyst, Auditor and Corporate Trainer. She has been focused on bookkeeping since the year 2000, with the last 17 years assisting businesses on the Big Island.

Kate Sims – Mediation Coordinator

Kate has a variety of roles at the Center: mediator, coach/trainer, and coordinator of workplace dispute services.  After a 40 year career in education, she joined WHMC first in 2021 as the case manager and mediator for the Act 57 Landlord Tenant Mediation Program. Outside of her position at the Center, she teaches the graduate course on Mediation at U.H. Manoa.  She has a Masters in Teaching Writing and Literature from U.C. Berkeley and a Graduate Certificate in Conflict Resolution from Spark Matsunaga Institute of Peace and Conflict Resolution at U.H. Manoa.  She has lived in the ahupua’a of Kaloko for 33 years, and is an avid walker and ocean swimmer.  

Katrina Zavalney – Peer Mediation Coordinator

Katrina Zavalney is a change agent with a Masters in Organization Development, and a BA in Education and Community Development. She has 20 years of experience in community building, youth work, facilitation, and sustainable event management. Katrina has worked with youth many years including being a creative arts director at art centers and summer camps, led and created after school programs for middle school youth, assisted teachers in schools, and served as a group leader for at-risk and homeless youth. Katrina has developed programs and curriculum for youth that incorporated art, community, and nature. She is very creative and loves to find ways to unlock the creative potential in others. She is known as a connector and educator and for her can-do attitude. Katrina has a high level of enthusiasm and loves to find creative solutions to challenges. She has a love for expressive arts such as theatre and dance – you can often find her on-stage at Aloha Theatre.

Katrina lives in South Kona and also consults with organizations to become more efficient and effective in upholding their mission, strategic planning, and organizational effectiveness She likes to be involved in local community events, volunteers with Vibrant Hawai’i, gardens and supports local farms, and has a nonprofit of her own, Aranya Solutions, where she hosts workshops on sustainable living. Katrina is delighted to be here and has a passion for emotional intelligence and healthy communication.

Cietta Penn – Restorative Justice Coordinator

Cietta joined WHMC in August of 2023. Prior to joining us she worked as a Victim Witness Counselor at the Prosecutors office on the Kona side for several years. As Restorative Justice Coordinator some of her responsibilities are facilitating Restorative Justice and Victim Offender Conferences; education and outreach to the community; and recruiting, and training new volunteer Restorative Justice Facilitators. Cietta is looking forward to working with the community in this new role.