Ashley Mizuo

General Assignment/Community Reporter

Born and raised on O’ahu, she’s a graduate of ‘Iolani School and has a BA in Journalism and Political Science from Loyola University Chicago and an MA in Public Affairs Reporting from the University of Illinois-Springfield.   

Ashley’s first experience in audio storytelling was recording conversations with her grandfather about what it was like to grow up in Japanese internment camps during the second World War. More recently, she has been working as a statehouse reporter in Illinois’s capital city and before that as an editorial fellow at Washingtonian Magazine. She’s also done internships at the CBS Chicago bureau in their Specials and Investigation Unit and at Honolulu Magazine, where she wrote an award-winning feature story. She’s also worked in social media and produced and hosted a podcast asking people about their worst day at work—with the descriptive title “Work Sucks.”

Ways to Connect

Casey Harlow/HPR

Hawaii received another $50 million of federal funding to expand contact tracing and COVID-19 testing. The state Department of Health hopes that about half will be spent on improvements on the state laboratory.

Wikimedia Commons

Hospitals across the state have noticed sharp decreases in the number of patients visiting their emergency rooms since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Wikimedia Commons

Gov. David Ige’s newest emergency proclamation allows more businesses to reopen their doors as early as tomorrow.

Licensed child care services are among the operations that can restart, but parents returning to work at those businesses may find it hard to locate supervision for their kids and to afford the available care.

Suevon Lee

Hawaii’s public preschoolers have not had in-person classes since mid-March due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Instead, teachers have been using both take-home resource packets and the internet to continue to teach the state’s youngest learners. But there's a key part of early learning that's been lost.


Hawaii State Department of Education

In-person classes at Hawaii’s public schools were canceled due to COVID-19, but some students are not checking in online, and the state hasn’t been able to accurately account for those who are missing.


Cory Lum/Civil Beat

The city placed Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s plan to purchase $2 million worth of COVID-19 tests on hold after state Health Director Bruce Anderson wrote a letter criticizing the decision.

AP Photo/Seth Wenig

Antibody tests may be the key to learning how far COVID-19 has spread in Hawaii, and to getting people back to work. However, the state Department of Health doesn’t think the currently available tests are reliable.

University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Hawaii was poised to hit its peak coronavirus medical need as soon as this past weekend, according to one widely cited coronavirus research institute. Yet the local numbers continue to climb and are likely to exceed 500 this week, begging the question: why doesn't the state have a solid idea of when the surge will come and whether it is prepared?

Flickr - Family MWR

Since Gov. David Ige’s stay-at-home order took effect, child care providers are now struggling to stay afloat. Many are unsure if they will reopen.

AP Photo/Eric Gay

The federal government has told state officials they are largely on their own when it comes to finding protective gear for their health care and emergency workers.

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

The state is expected today to get the new rapid coronavirus test kits that can produce results in about 15 minutes.

The state will receive 15 rapid testing instruments and five test kits a week, officials announced yesterday.

Each kit can run 24 samples for a total of 120 weekly tests.

State Health Director Bruce Anderson says it will not be used for community testing because of its limited availability.

Pixabay Commons
Pixabay Commons

The state is scrambling to identify enough medical professionals to care for a potential surge of coronavirus patients in Hawaii. However, some doctors are concerned that the outbreak will further worsen the state's long-standing physician shortage.

Xiao Yijiu/Xinhua via AP

In less than a week, the number of cases of coronavirus in Hawaii increased from 2 to 16. Are Hawaii’s hospitals fully prepared for the influx of coronavirus patients? Two studies say no.

Associated Press

Hawaii senior care facilities are preparing for a coronavirus outbreak in Hawaii, spurred on by the nursing home deaths in states like Washington.

Michele Smith via AP

Updated: 3/6/2020, 1:04 p.m.

Twenty-one people including 19 crew members aboard a mammoth cruise ship off the California coast that had a four-day stay in Hawaii in late February have tested positive for the new coronavirus, Vice President Mike Pence announced Friday.

Michele Smith via AP

Updated: 3/6/2020, 6:02 p.m.

The state of Hawaii has its first case of coronavirus, officials announced Friday. Gov. David Ige said this was not a case of community spread but rather a passenger on the cruise ship Grand Princess who had been on a trip to Mexico. The patient, a resident here, tested positive and is now under quarantine.

Ashley Mizuo/HPR

Updated: 3/4/20, 10:12 a.m.

Hawaii health officials say six samples that were tested locally for coronavirus have come back negative. The cases involved patients on Oahu, Hawaii Island and Maui. The results come as officials ramp up preparations for a possible virus outbreak in the islands.

Ashley Mizuo/HPR

Frustrated by the Hawaii Department of Education's delays in completing capital improvements, state lawmakers hope a measure creating a school facilities agency will speed up the projects.

Casey Harlow/HPR

Updated: 2/28/20, 4:55 p.m.

Kauaʻi County Council member Arthur Brun pleaded not guilty Friday to 10 felony charges -- two with a maximum punishment of life in prison -- after he was arrested with 11 others by Kauaʻi police and federal agents as part of an islandwide drug sweep.

Associated Press

Updated 2/27/20 5:45 p.m.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has given Hawaii the go-ahead to start preparing for coronavirus testing locally, a process that could begin as early as next week.


State lawmakers are weighing a measure that would make verbally threatening to harm a sports official a Class C felony instead of a misdemeanor.

Catherine Cruz/HPR

University of Hawaii economists expected 2020 to be a better year for tourism than 2019, but that may not be borne out because of the coronavirus outbreak.

A measure that would create statewide paid family leave took a step forward at the state Legislature on Thursday.


Four Hawaii residents returned home to the islands after their cruise ship, the MS Westerdam, docked in Cambodia last Thursday. The cruise ship had been turned away from several ports in Asia before being accepted at the Cambodia port. At least one of the ship’s passengers has been diagnosed with coronavirus.

Ashley Mizuo/HPR

Hawaii is scheduled to receive new coronavirus test kits this week from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention after an initial shipment didn't work as expected.

Kazuhiko Teramoto/Wikimedia Commons / Creative Commons 2.0 License

Updated: 2/15/20, 7:30 a.m.

Hawaiian Airlines says it is reaching out to passengers and crew members after a Japanese tourist who came down with symptoms of coronavirus while visiting Hawaii took a flight earlier this month to Maui.

Jae C. Hong/AP

UPDATED: 2/14/20, 8:58 a.m.

Two Hawaii residents have fallen ill with coronavirus while on the Diamond Princess, the quarantined cruise ship, and are hospitalized in Japan.

Ryan Finnerty/HPR

The Hawaii Department of Education has partnered with Island Palm Communities, a private company that leases military homes, in a new initiative that opens military rental housing to public school teachers.

Ashley Mizuo

A Hawaii resident is under mandatory quarantine at Pearl Harbor after arriving from Hubei Province in China on Monday.

Wayne Yoshioka/HPR

State lawmakers have recognized the need for affordable child care in the state, so much so that they’ve made it a part of a joint-legislative package negotiated by the governor and House and Senate leaders.