Crew Profile: Suzette Hau’oli Smith-Gurtler

PVS Member Since 31/1

HOMETOWN: Anahola, Kaua'i
PRIMARY DUTY: First Mate
OTHER RESPONSIBILITIES: Watch Captain, sails, safety officer, and radio

Hauʻoli Smith-Gurtler graduated from Kamehameha Schools in 1980. She is a maritime captain, adjunct professor at Daniels Business School from Denver University. She is married and has two hanai nieces.

She first heard of Hōkūleʻa when she was 15 when they had just finished building her. In 1976 she saw Hōkūleʻa anchored at Hakipuʻu at her welcoming home celebration. As she looked up at Hōkūleʻa from her six-man canoe she was stroking at the time, she saw herself standing on the deck looking down at herself. A few years later she was training for the 1992 "No Na Mamo Voyage".

She’s looking forward to elevating the confidence of all crewmembers and helping orchestrate 16 bodies working as one, to feel and listen to the waʻa and sailing in harmony with nature.

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