Fa'apepele Hunkin is from the beautiful island of Samoa and is affectionately known as "Pele," which means "Sweetheart" in her native Samoan language. She was born in Nu'uuli, American Samoa, and raised by her beloved grandparents, Fa'apepele and Leauma Auva'a, in Vaiusu & Pesega, Samoa. Pele relocated to Nu'uuli to live with her late parents, Malae and Miriama Hunkin, whom she missed and loved so much when her grandmother passed away. She owes her faith, life, and breathtaking journey to her ancestors, who made the ultimate sacrifice and paved the way for her and her twelve siblings.
Pele is a retired United States Army Combat Veteran who served honorably and distinctively for 19 years in various organizations and deployments before retiring as a Sergeant First Class in October 2013. Today, Pele is a dynamic speaker and Bestselling Author, and International Bestselling Author of HEART OF A WARRIOR-The humble journey of a Samoan warrior. She is also a Contributing Author to 8 Bestselling and International Bestselling anthologies and founder of Pele Inspire-Embracing Authentic Love, and a devoted mother of four loving children (Nicole, Dean Jr., Victoria, and Isabella).
Throughout her life, this fearless woman of God faced numerous difficulties, and she gave God the glory for guiding her through those difficulties. She draws strength from telling others about her journey around the world. With a wealth of life experience, Pele is more than qualified to talk authoritatively about God's love and power in her life as she reveals some of her most vulnerable times straightforwardly.
In November 1994, she enlisted in the United States Army and later wed Deanne Ignacio Tajalle, the man she had fallen in love with and the father of her children. Sadly, her spouse had a catastrophic accident that left him in a coma for six months until he died from his injuries. Due to his untimely passing, Pele is now a widow and a single mother, and she is coping with all the challenges that come with such circumstances.
Pele is an ambassador for The Women of Dignity Magazine and the Re-Discover Me community in Columbia, South Carolina. Dr. Renee Huffman, the publisher of "The Women of Dignity Magazine," also gave Pele two honors: she was named one of the Top Fifty Pioneers of Change - Women's History Month 2022 and one of the Top Twenty-five Rising Stars - Watch Her Win 2022. She has won many accolades and been recognized by many groups, including The Wounded Warrior Project.
Pele is a graduate of the University of Management and Technology with a Master's Degree in Health Care Administration (MHA). She is a Life Coach and a certified Power Voice global speaker, having been trained to speak by the world-renowned Global motivational speaker, Les Brown. Les Brown Power Voice Summit featured speakers who showcased Pele's apparent oratorical skills. Additionally, she was recognized by The South Carolina International Festival and Commission of Minority Affairs as the first Samoan to represent the Island of Samoa and the first Samoan to receive the Volunteer of the Year Award by the Mota Crosslinking Business Academy. Pele is also an outstanding cook who frequently prepares the traditional family favorites passed down from the generations before her. She is writing a cookbook to share some of her family's favorite recipes.
Her testament of speaking to hundreds of people worldwide reveals the positivity bestowed upon her journey that always encourages others to work on themselves and become the best version of themselves. Pele's ability to candidly share her story with others through her books and speeches has proven her to be someone who inspires, motivates, and empowers those she encounters. She was the keynote speaker for The Asian American Pacific Islander Observance Celebration 2022 for The United States Army Central Command (USARCENT) Headquarters, Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter County, SC, and also for The Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month Observance Celebration at the United States Army Training Center and Fort Jackson.
Pele is a resilient person who is passionate about making a difference in the lives of those she meets while on her quest to live fully and pass away without regrets. She thinks that having love and unwavering faith in facing life's challenges can motivate individuals to rise and overcome all the challenges and curveballs life throws their way.
Pele's divine purpose is to inspire and empower women to know that they are enough so they can be vessels of love and positivity while fulfilling their God-given purpose. Her guiding philosophy in life is to "Stay Humble, Stay Positive, Stay Strong, And Always Stay Encouraged."