Former Hawaii Gov. John Waihee

Former Hawaii Gov. John Waihee

A Hawaii Island boy away from home for the first time, young John wanted to explore the city. However, as a boarder, he was expected to do yard work under Mr. Oshita’s stern supervision.

Hideo Oshita

Hawaiian Mission Academy

Former Hawaii Gov. John Waihee

Former Hawaii Gov. John Waihee

A Hawaii Island boy away from home for the first time, young John wanted to explore the city. However, as a boarder, he was expected to do yard work under Mr. Oshita’s stern supervision.

Hideo Oshita

Hawaiian Mission Academy

Stories About Hawaii Educators

Watch and read stories about the life-changing impact of local teachers and professors.

JoAnn Oshiro

JoAnn Oshiro

I just enjoy making connection with students. I think that was the same with Mr. Ginoza and maybe he modeled that for me in my career.

Former student of Mr. Edwin Ginoza

Maui High School

Tord “Harald” Ivarsson

Tord “Harald” Ivarsson

I had a vision of what a teacher can create in the classroom. Having children explore skills within themselves, I think that’s inspiring.

2021 Hiroshi & Barbara Kim Yamashita HEA Scholarship Recipient

Kapiolani Community College

Pascal “Kawehi” Cabuzel

Pascal “Kawehi” Cabuzel

I'm very grateful for this scholarship knowing that others are very deserving too. I hope to fulfill that role to give back to Hawaii in some way.

2021-22 Graduating High School Seniors Scholarship Recipient

Hawaii Preparatory Academy

Denise K. Karratti

Denise K. Karratti

The Japanese term kaizen means ‘continuous improvement’ and that discipline was ingrained in me from a young age.

2021-22 In-Service Public School Educator Scholarship Recipient

Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School

Jeff Stallman

Jeff Stallman

I only took one class from Jonathan (JP) Price at the University of Hawaii at Hilo, but it sticks with me to this day.

Jonathan (JP) Price

University of Hawaii at Hilo

Yunji de Nies

Yunji de Nies

I was an outspoken, loud and energetic child. And rather than quash that … he really cultivated it and he encouraged my interest in theater and in speech, and in being on stage.

Former student of Mr. Colin More

Honolulu Waldorf School

Natanya Friedheim

Natanya Friedheim

Ms. Alexandra (Armstrong) Taylor made the classroom into an inviting space for learning. You just wanted to be there.

Former student of Ms. Alexandra (Armstrong) Taylor

Kailua Intermediate School

Nicole Tam

Nicole Tam

Ms. Murayama pushed me to challenge myself and take an advanced English course even though it was out of my comfort zone because English is my second language.

Former Student of Shareen Murayama

Kaiser High School

Jessica Pagtulingan

Jessica Pagtulingan

Mrs. Lori Fujimoto was able to see me and my classmates for who we were, and she encouraged each and every one of us to be better.

Former student of Mrs. Lori Fujimoto

Kapalama Elementary School

Kevin Matsunaga

Kevin Matsunaga

It can’t just be about the deadline. It can’t just be about the letter grade. I’m talking about investing in students.

Digital Media Teacher

Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School

#MyAwesomeTeacher

SUBMIT YOUR STORY

Share your story with us! Our teachers are a great source of encouragement, inspiration and positive life transformations. Many of us have had a teacher who has made a major impact on our lives or helped us to simply do better.

HEA wants to showcase testimonials about amazing teachers to highlight the importance of our local educators. These stories will be featured throughout our website, newsletter and social media in 2021 as part of HEA’s 100th anniversary celebration.

SUBMIT YOUR STORY

Community Testimonials

We are honored to share these memories from our community about the impact of Hawaii educators on their students’ lives.

"As a teacher in the MEdT Program, Mary is highly reflective on teaching implementation."

Mary G. Ward

UH Manoa

2021-22 Helen McKay Student Teacher Scholarship Recipient

"She is a leader of innovation and aloha."

Lori Ann Koyama

Lahaina Intermerdiate School

2021-22 Ronald K. Toma Professional Development Scholarship Recipient

"Ever since I have known Mrs. Handley, she has demonstrated tremendous leadership, commitment, and a positive attitude to serving students and our families."

Kari Handley

Lehua Elementary School

2021-22 In-service Public School Educator Scholarship Recipient

"I don’t know what Mrs. Florence Lang at Palisades Elementary School saw in my work, but she forever changed my life when she shared my third-grade short story with a locally produced children’s program."

Francis Duhaylongsod

In honor of Florence Lang

Palisades Elementary School