Our overarching goal is to improve the quality of public education in Hawaii, so that more children thrive and more professionals reach their full potential as educators. EIH is led by award-winning, lifelong educators, current and retired.
The Institute conducts studies that are independent, objective and nonpartisan, focusing on principles and practices of effectiveness. We also gather the perspectives and insights of principals and other administrators, teachers, parent groups and community leaders through surveys and focus groups; organize and promote public forums; and work directly with media to help ensure news coverage of public education issues that is predictably accurate, comprehensive and timely.
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The Institute is founded on the following beliefs regarding public education in Hawaii:
• The overwhelming majority of public school teachers, principals and other administrators are competent professionals, fully committed to facilitating an outstanding education for every child.
• Too many children and educators are not thriving in the current system.
• While most of Hawaii's public school teachers, principals and other administrators are capable of work at the highest level -- fully committed to facilitating an outstanding education for every child -- they are trapped by "one size fits all" policies that prevent principals as well as teachers from addressing the unique needs of students in their respective schools and classrooms.
• Change must include and engage a wide range of stakeholders: including parents, students, and our communities.
• Any improvement in the education system will be lasting only if school personnel participate fully and feel ownership of the changes that are made—as well as the responsibility that goes with ownership.
• The pursuit of any changes to the existing system should be research-based and reflect best practices.
Board of Directors
Ray L’Heureux, EIH Chairman & President; Former Assistant Superintendent of Hawaii DOE
Stephen Terstegge, EIH Executive Director; Member of Governor’s ESSA team; Hawaii Technology Academy Governing Board; Former Chair Castle High School Community Council; Former member of Castle Complex Community Council; Parent of two public school children
Joan Lee Husted, EIH Vice President Commissioner on The Education Commission of the States; Retired Executive Director and Chief Negotiator of the Hawaii State Teachers Association; Recipient of the 2015 Lifetime Achievement in Labor award from the national Labor Employment Relations Association; Has a Leadership award from the YWCA; Former Chair of the State Commission on the Status of Women; Negotiated fifteen collective bargaining agreements for teachers in Hawaii
Marsha Alegre, Retired after 38 years as a teacher and an administrator in Hawaii public schools; Principal of Washington Middle School lead the transition from a traditional intermediate school to an official middle school; a Cohort Mentor Principal 1989 – 2003; a mentor and coach in the Department of Education New Principal Academy 2003 – 2014; Faculty Supervisor of student teachers University of Phoenix 2004 – 2013
Harry Davis, University of Hawaii Natural Science & Chemistry professor; Past UH Faculty Senate chair; 2001 Recipient of UH Board of Regents Medal for Excellence in Teaching; Parent of two public school graduates
Joan Lewis, Kapolei High School teacher; Hawaii State Teachers Association vice president; 2013 NEA Foundation's Excellence in Teaching Award and 2014 NEA Foundation Global Fellow; Foster parent for eight years whose children attended public schools
Roberta Mayor, EIH Immediate Past-President; Retired teacher and public school principal who served 24 years in the Hawaii DOE and 17 years in California including as a Superintendent of Oakland Unified School District
RandiAnn Porras-Tang, President of Hawaii Association of Secondary School Administrators; Retired principal of Waialua Middle and High Schools
Elaine Simon, Hawaii Technology Academy school information system administrator
Roger Takabayashi, Retired teacher from Niu Valley Middle, Dole Middle, and Farrington High; HSTA President from 2003 to 2009; present member of Charter School Commission
Penelope Tom, Executive Director of the Hawaii Association of Secondary School Administrators; Retired Kaimuki High School principal
EIH Honorary Members
Benjamin Cayetano, Former Hawaii governor
Michael W. Perry, KSSK radio show personality; Board Chair of Takitani Foundation
EIH Senior Advisory Council
Duwayne Abe, Principal of Salt Lake Elementary School; 2014 State Principal of the Year
Brendan Burns, Aina Haina Elementary School principal; 2008 National Blue Ribbon School and International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program World School
Evangeline Casinas, Salt Lake Elementary School vice principal; 2009 National Board certified teacher; parent of three children in public school
Dale Castro, Mililani Waena Elementary School principal; Former State Director of Curriculum and Instruction (Special Education, School Renewal & Redesign, and Focus Schools); Nationally Certified NAESP Principal Mentor; Parent of child who attends public school
Bebi Davis, STEM Resource Teacher; 2005 National Milken Education Award Winner; 2009 Hawaii State Teacher of the Year; 2009 Yale University Educator Award
Aloha Dayton, Personnel Specialist in DOE Office of Human Resources; Formerly principal of Leilehua High School and Waialua Intermediate and High School, High School Principal of the Year in 2011
Lynda Galera, Moanalua Elementary School principal; Parent of a child in public school
Tom Gerrish, Former Director of Enterprise Services Branch of Hawaii DOE
Michael Harano, Washington Middle School principal; 2017 State Secondary School Principal of the Year; Middle School Principals Forum chairperson; 2010 Hawaii State National Distinguished Principal; Washington Middle School 1st AVID National Demonstration School in Hawaii; Parent of three public school graduates
Jan Iwase, Daniel K. Inouye Elementary School principal; 2013 Central District Principal of the Year
Naomi Matsuzaki, Windward Complex Area Personnel Specialist; Retired principal of Kahaluu Elementary; 2013 Hawaii National Distinguished Principal and Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership award nominee; Currently NAESP Hawaii Executive Director
Derek Minakami, Kaneohe Elementary School principal; 2001 State Teacher of the Year, 2001 National Teacher of the Year finalist; parent of two children in public schools
Denise Murai, Parent advocate; Former Parent Community Networking Center Facilitator; Nationally certified facilitator of Parent Project & Loving Solutions parenting program; Parent of three public school graduates
Fred Murphy, Mililani High School principal; Hawaii High School Principals Forum chairperson
Steve Nakasato, Pearl Ridge Elementary School principal; Former Curriculum, Instruction and Student Support state director; 2007 Central Oahu District Principal of the Year; Ed.D. Professional Educational Practice; Parent of three children in public schools
Rick Paul, Principal of Hana High and Elementary School; Former DOE Committee on Weights member
John Sosa, Former EIH Executive Director. Retired principal; Hawaii 2014 NASSP Principal of the Year; Former superintendent of Windward and Honolulu Districts; Former superintendent of a school system in the state of Washington
Art Souza, Complex Area superintendent for Honokaa-Kealakehe-Kohala-Konawaena Area; Former Honokaa High and Waikoloa Elementary Schools principal
Candy Suiso, Waianae High School teacher; Milken National Educator award winner; Founder of Searider Productions
Lisa-Anne Tsuruda, I'olani School teacher; Former Mililani High School teacher; 2009 National Milken Education Award Winner; 2010 Central District Outstanding Educator; National Milken Educators of Hawaii president
Kitty Yannone, Chief Executive Officer at CommPac; Former director at Hawaii Technology Institute