HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Colleen Hanabusa officially launched her campaign for Congress on Thursday.
Hanabusa is running for U.S. Rep. Mark Takai's seat, which she previously held.
In a news conference, Hanabusa said she wants to return to Congress because she's driven to serve Hawaii residents.
"I am a legislator at heart," she said. "How can I best serve the people's best interests? Legislating is something that I understand."
Earlier this month, Takai announced he will not seek re-election so that he can instead focus on fighting cancer.
And last week, Hawaii News Now confirmed that Hanabusa would run for the vacated seat. Hanabusa said she delayed her official announcement in deference to Takai and his family.
On Thursday, Hanabusa added her thoughts were with Takai and his family.
Hanabusa spent four years in the U.S. House, before losing a very close U.S. Senate race against Brian Schatz two years ago.
If elected, her prior years' seniority would put her higher in the congressional pecking order than other candidates.
Hanabusa currently serves as chairwoman of the board overseeing Honolulu's rail project.