Brandi Chew KSK’98 and Patrick Simmons KSK’97 welcomed son Kainoa Patrick Lee on Jan. 21, 2016, at the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, WA. Proud aunties include Leanna Chew KSK’96, Annette Chew KSK’00, Christle Chew Kamakaala KSK’03 and Leah Hugo Melrose Yim KSK’04.
With a 4.0 GPA for the Fall 2016 semester, Gabrielle “Gabby” Gleason KSH’16 earned a spot on the President’s List at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, Ark. A freshman majoring in Elementary Education, Gabby has also been awarded the Achievement Scholarship from SAU, which is worth $1,000 per semester with a total value of $8,000.
On Feb. 19, 2017, Menlo College freshman Blaysen Terukina KSK’16 went 3-0 with three consecutive decisions to win the NAIA West Regional wrestling title at 133 pounds. The win qualifies him for the NAIA Wrestling National Championships in March 3-4, 2017, in Topeka, Kan.
In November 2016, pro surfer Ezekiel “Zeke” Lau KSK’12 hosted the inaugural Makahiki games on the lawn of the Turtle Bay Resort on the North Shore of O‘ahu. Zeke saw the importance of sharing his Hawaiian culture with other professional surfers. The event was co-organized by Hawaii Business magazine’s Daniel Ito KSK’99. Zeke is currently preparing for 2017 World Championship Tour—his first year on the WCT. He qualified during the 2016 Pipe Masters in December 2016. The 2017 WCT kicks off in March 2017 at the Quiksilver Pro in Queensland, Australia.
Keola Waiau KSH’11 recently completed basic training at the Naval Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill. He was one of six graduating recruits selected as a ceremonial honor guard in the District of Columbia. Currently, Keola is completing a 10-week training program at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling to prepare for highly visible Navy service in Presidential, Joint Armed Services and public ceremonies in and around the D.C. area, the National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., and other selected global sites.
Former Rainbow Warrior baseball player, Kolten Wong KSHʻ08, had his No. 14 jersey retired by the University of Hawaii—an honor bestowed upon only two other players. An All-American during his playing days at UH, Kolten had a career batting average of .358 from 2009-11, fourth best in UH baseball history. He is top 10 in several career statistical categories including home runs (second, 25), slugging percentage (third, .563), hits (ninth, 245) doubles (10th, 47) and total bases (seventh, 385). His jersey will be on display on Les Murakami Stadium’s outfield wall alongside Coach Murakami’s No. 11 and Derek Tatsuno’s No. 16. Currently, Kolten is preparing for his fourth season with the St. Louis Cardinals.
Celeste White Sagarang KSK’76 is a licensed professional counselor with the Family Ministries Center in Honolulu, under the leadership of Hale Akamine PhD. In 2012, she received her master’s degree in counseling from Wayland Baptist University in Mililani, O‘ahu.
Micah Chow KSK’12 graduated in December 2016 from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa with a Bachelors of Science in Civil Engineering with Chi Epsilon Honors.
Blaise Baldonado, a 2005 Kamehameha Schools graduate, lived a life filled with aloha.
“He enjoyed being around friends and family,” said Blaise’s mother, Felicia Lum. “He was always taking care of others, giving of himself and making sure that everyone was their best person.”
Unexpectedly, Blaise passed away on Aug. 6, 2015 at the age of 28. His aloha will be felt in perpetuity through the Blaise A. Kepo‘okelaokekai Baldonado Scholarship—a new endowment fund at the Pauahi Foundation established by his mother.
The scholarship will support Native Hawaiian students pursuing a degree in the arts or a field related to higher education.
“Blaise had a passion for education and life. This scholarship will bless future college students with the same opportunities that Blaise had,” added Felicia.
As a student at Kamehameha Schools, he was involved in the arts. He was a member of the children’s choir, concert glee and the drama club. He also served as the Song Contest director for the men in his junior and senior years.
After high school, he attended Seattle University and received a Bachelor of Arts in Strategic Communications. He went on to earn a master’s degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs from New York University.
“He felt that education was very important in becoming successful professionally and in the community,” said Felicia. “He was the first in our family to complete a four-year degree, as well as a master’s.”
Blaise later returned home and was hired as the director of student services at Chaminade University, a position that allowed him to help others in their pursuit of a post-high education.
“Although my son had a short-lived life, he most certainly made an impact on many lives. That impact will be felt for generations to come through his scholarship,” said Felicia.
To honor Blaise’s life and legacy, his family and friends are hosting a celebration on Mar. 1, 2017, at Artistry Honolulu in Kaka‘ako, O‘ahu. The event will include ‘ono food, live entertainment by friends of Blaise and a silent auction. The family welcomes any donations, as all proceeds generated from the event will go towards the Blaise A. Kepo‘okelaokekai Baldonado Scholarship.
“Blaise would have wanted to organize this event and would have done a terrific job,” said Felicia, “I wanted to honor his legacy and let the public know of this opportunity for future college students.”
If you are interested in attending this event, you can RSVP by emailing AlohaBlaiseB@gmail.com.
Donations to the Blaise A. Kepo‘okelaokekai Baldonado Scholarship can be made by visiting his scholarship’s giving page.
Aloha mai kākou,
In 1884, Ke Ali‘i Pauahi, through extraordinary foresight and genuine love for her people, founded a legacy that has since helped many Native Hawaiians in their pursuit of a better and enriching life through education.
Today, many have stepped forward to partner with the Pauahi Foundation in creating a legacy of giving of their own or in honor of a loved one. There are over 170 named endowment and scholarship funds at the Foundation. These funds ensure that a loved one’s legacy continues in perpetuity by providing future generations the opportunity to receive a post-high education.
It’s funds like the Blaise A. Kepo‘okelaokekai Baldonado Scholarship, which was recently created by Blaise’s mom, Felicia, to celebrate his life. Blaise, who was a 2005 graduate of Kamehameha Schools, had a passion for educating our young leaders and did so through his work at Chaminade University. He unexpectedly passed away in August 2015 at the age of 28. His legacy and passion for education will live on through his scholarship fund.
With the support and generosity of our donors, the Foundation awarded over $586,000 in scholarships to Native Hawaiian learners in 2016. That equates to over 200 haumāna who now have the opportunity to pursue a post-high education. (See our 2015-2016 Annual Report)
Of course, as the number of our beneficiaries grows, so does the realization that we can do more for our people.
The Foundation and Kamehameha Schools cannot do it alone. It is through funds like Blaise’s scholarship and many others that we can provide more opportunities for future generations of Native Hawaiian students.
If you are interested in creating a scholarship to honor or celebrate a loved one’s life, let us partner with you in making that a reality. Together, we can change lives in our Hawaiian community through education!
Me ka ha‘aha‘a,
Interim Executive Director
Adolph “Keala” Leong of Lahaina, Maui, died on Dec. 31, 2016. He was born in Lahaina.