Meet our new intern: Keoni James

We’re pleased to introduce you to Keoni James, a new Austin Corps intern in our office who attends Akins High School. We asked Keoni a few get-to-know-you questions so you can learn more about him and his background.


Q: Where are you from and what do you like best about your hometown?

A: I was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, which is known for its beautiful beaches. I moved around a lot because I was in a military family, but what I loved best about Hawaii is being able to hike. When I was younger, I absolutely loved the tropical region and rainy weather. I also loved the people since it just felt like a big family to me.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself and what interested you in joining the Office of Sustainability.

A: I am currently a senior at Akins High School. I am a part of the LGBTQ community and I have a dog and a guinea pig. What interested me in joining the Office of Sustainability was that they acknowledge climate change and equity. I feel like those are the two most important issues that'll help our future as a city.


What are you most excited to accomplish during your time with the Office of Sustainability?

A: I am very excited to accomplish better public speaking skills. I tend to be a shy person at first, so speaking in front of people usually makes me feel hesitant. I'm excited to hopefully speak to other students and learn to have fun with it.


What are some of your favorite things to do or places to go in Austin?

A: My favorite place in Austin is honestly just my neighborhood. It is very green and spacious; I also love how you can sometimes see deer in certain areas. I usually walk with my siblings to the park to just get some fresh air and stay active.


What is your favorite sustainability-related thing you do in your personal life?

A: I think my favorite sustainable thing to do is cook. I like to look up vegetarian or vegan recipes and go shopping at the farmer's market for fresh food. I also know that I want to get into having plants to take care of.


What is your favorite food and why?

A: My favorite food is a Hawaiian dish called Loco Moco, which is white rice topped with a hamburger, a fried egg, and brown gravy. When I was in California I went to a Hawaiian restaurant and the taste was just phenomenal, it just brought back memories of the food from my home.