Hawai`i Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz has been appointed to the U.S. Senate by Gov. Neil Abercrombie. Schatz is expected to fly to Washington to be sworn into office immediately. He will be an interim replacement for the late Daniel Inouye, who was re-elected to a six-year term in 2010. On Nov. 3, 2014, a special election will be held to fill the remainder of Inouye's term. Schatz has said he will run in that election. With Inouye's death and the retirement of Sen. Daniel Akaka effective Jan. 3, Sen. Schatz will be Hawai`i's senior senator. The junior senator will be freshman Mazie Hirono.
Schatz first become known to the public with his work in founding and operating Youth for Environmental Service in Honolulu in the mid-1990s after attending college on the Mainland. Before being elected as Lt. Governor in 2010, Schatz served in the State House of Representatives, ran for Congress, was CEO of a nonprofit social-service agency, helped to draft Barack Obama into a run for the presidency, and ran Obama's 2008 presidential campaign in Hawai`i. Obama endorsed Schatz in 2008 in his successful bid to chair Hawai`i's Democratic Party.
At 40 years old, Schatz will be the youngest member of the Senate.