Celebrating the Moms Who Do It All
Malika Dudley | From Big Island girl to Miss Hawaii and beyond
Moms are the ultimate multi-taskers. And few moms have more on their plates than Maui Jim ambassador Malika Dudley.
Journalist. Podcaster. Professional singer. Stunt double. CPR instructor. Motivational speaker. That’s just for starters.
How does this “Maui mama” keep it all together?
“As a recovering perfectionist, I’ve adopted a new family motto, which revolves around progress,” Malika says. “It’s not uncommon to hear ‘slow progress is still progress’ and ‘practice makes progress’ in our home.”
From Big Island girl to Miss Hawaii and beyond
Malika was born on the island of Hawaii and grew up near Hilo in the small town of Papaikou. The oldest of four kids, she started karate at age five and learned to surf as a teenager. She competed for the title of Miss Hawaii twice — winning in 2005 — and was recognized by her fellow Miss America contestants as Miss Congeniality.
After that, Malika worked for several years as a broadcast meteorologist, stepping down in 2012 when she and her husband, Kaimi, became parents to son Jackson. Daughter Waipuna (Wai for short) followed in 2015.
Motherhood changed Malika’s life but didn’t slow her down. Far from it. She went back to school to finish her master’s degree in the scientific study of human communication and launched a podcast — Communification — that brings communication research to listeners. She continues to be a sought-after public speaker, social media influencer and consultant.
Choosing to become an Maui Jim ambassador was an easy decision.
“I partner with brands that are an organic fit with my personal values and lifestyle,” Malika says.
Giving back in yoga pants and a mom bun
Malika is also committed to the Maui community she and her family call home.
She’s found innovative ways to raise money and awareness for the Maui Food Bank, which served 48,000 people per month during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. A board member, she donates 10% of affiliate earnings from her social media channels to the organization and finds innovative ways to fundraise over social media (more than 70k raised) and through her podcast pre-roll giveback program (more than 15k raised). In fact, she was recently recognized by the global Anthem Awards with a bronze medal in the category of “Humanitarian Action & Services” for her partnership with the Maui Food Bank.
Malika offers free CPR classes on Maui as well — an effort that stems from what she calls “the scariest day of my life.”
When daughter Wai was just seven months old, she choked, and Malika had to act fast to save her. That led to her decision to become a certified CPR instructor. Together with local paramedic Heidi Voss, she’s taught more than 500 people how to do CPR, use an AED and respond when someone chokes.
And when severe weather strikes, locals turn to Malika for her up-to-the-minute, pro-bono updates — usually delivered in yoga pants and a tita (mom) bun.
“The things I’m most passionate about in life are family, friends and serving my community in whatever small way I can,” Malika says.
She may seem like a superwoman, but Malika is only human. And like all moms juggling multiple responsibilities, she has her escape mechanisms.
“Sometimes,” she admits, “I hide from my children.”