Tapani earned a B.A. in Political Science from UCLA in 1987. Originally from Finland, he arrived in the U.S.A. after his military service to study in the field of business administration and political science. He enjoys and appreciates nature and is passionate about environmental conservation. He also likes to volunteer; clearing out debris from Kahoolawe and doing mock interviews at Maui High among others. He enjoys the ocean, walks in the forest, and reading. He lives with his wife Ellen and their dog Humu.