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  • Ewa Makai Middle School Principal awarded $25,000 Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award

Photo Caption - Left to right: Tyler Tokioka, President of the Island Insurance Foundation; Semi-Finalist, Wade Araki, Principal of Kaimuki High School; Semi-finalist Ernest Muh, Principal of Helemano Elementary; 2014 Award Recipient Edward Oshiro, Principal of Ewa Makai Middle School; DOE Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.

Ewa Makai Middle School Principal awarded $25,000 Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award

$2,000 Semi-Finalist awards given to Wade Araki of Kaimuki High School and

Ernest Muh of Helemano Elementary School

The Island Insurance Foundation presented its tenth annual Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award of $25,000 to Principal Edward Oshiro of Ewa Makai Middle School at the annual Public Schools of Hawaii Foundation Dinner held on May 1st at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Coral Ballroom.

The award, named in honor of the late Masayuki Tokioka, founder of Island Insurance Company, Ltd., is presented to a public school principal who is visionary, community-minded, and has an entrepreneurial spirit -- qualities of leadership that Tokioka exemplified in his own company and in the business community.

"Principal Oshiro exemplifies the type of leadership that can transform our public schools into model learning institutions," said Tyler Tokioka, Island Insurance Foundation President. "By recognizing outstanding principals such as Edward, it is our hope that his accomplishments will inspire others in public education," Tokioka added.

Oshiro received $15,000 for a school project of his choice and an additional $10,000 cash award. The Island Insurance Foundation also presented a $2,000 cash award to the top two semi-finalists, Principal Wade Araki of Kaimuki High School and Principal Ernest Muh of Helemano Elementary in Wahiawa.

Thirteen candidates were nominated for the award. They each received $1,000 and a commemorative plaque, which were presented to them at a recognition ceremony on March 29th.

The other ten nominees are:

  • Duwayne Abe, Salt Lake Elementary (Honolulu, Oahu)
  • Laura Ahn, Kalihi Uka Elementary (Honolulu, Oahu)
  • Chad Keone Farias, Keaau Elementary School (Keaau, Hawaii)
  • Daniel Hamada, Kapaa High School (Kapaa, Kauai)
  • Doreen Higa, Momilani Elementary School (Pearl City, Oahu)
  • Matthew Ho, Laie Elementary School (Laie, Oahu)
  • Robyn Honda, Makawao Elementary School (Makawao, Maui)
  • Kris Kosa-Correia, Waikoloa Elementary and Middle School (Waikoloa, Hawaii)
  • Pua′ala McElhaney, Enchanted Lake Elementary School (Kailua, Oahu)
  • Joe Yamamoto, Maunaloa Elementary School (Maunaloa, Molokai)

With nearly 20 years of experience as a principal, Oshiro spearheaded the opening of Ewa Makai Middle School in 2010. As the school's first principal, Oshiro believes it is his responsibility to ensure that all students are exposed to and challenged by technology everyday in every class in order to improve learning not only in core classes but through electives as well. Based on the school's motto of "Empower, Explore, Excel Together" the schools 21st Century Integrated Tech program is the state's first ever school wide digital media program that puts technology into the hands of students on a daily basis, challenging them to use the technology in means that are relevant to their everyday lives, while exposing them to skills that are the foundation to this digital age. The program was born out of the idea to push educational technology to the next level, while making the curriculum relevant and worthwhile to students in order to increase student learning.

"In looking back to the early months of this newly formed school to the present, I would say that due to Mr. Oshiro's vision the students of Ewa Makai Middle School have experienced a learning environment unlike any other in the state of Hawaii," said Ursula Kawaguchi, Vice Principal of Ewa Makai Middle School. "The impact of his efforts is evident in the growth of student and staff success, innovative new initiatives in the use of technology and promotion of sustainability and the positive effects that have extended beyond the school."

Oshiro plans to use the award to create a Parent/Family/Community center that would be the hub for training, work opportunities, volunteer work, and homework assistance. Partnering with local agencies and organizations, the award would fund a part-time teacher or community person to assist Oshiro in creating a plan that would: assess the needs of the parents and families; provide the services with cooperating agencies and organizations; implement and monitor the plan; and evaluate the results as well as supplies and operating equipment.

About Masayuki Tokioka

An immigrant from Japan, Masayuki Tokioka moved to Hawaii at age 12 and graduated from McKinley High School in 1921. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and a Master of Business Administration degree in international commerce from Harvard University in 1927. His business career spanned 70 years, during which he founded several successful enterprises such as the Island Insurance Companies, International Savings & Loan Association, Ltd. and National Mortgage & Finance Company, Ltd. He was also a driving force in establishing many community-focused entities such as the Hawaii Immigrant Preservation Center, Crown Prince Akihito Scholarship Foundation and the Japanese Cultural Centers in Hawaii and San Francisco.

About the Island Insurance Foundation

The Island Insurance Foundation was established as the charitable arm of Island Insurance, Hawaii's largest locally owned and managed P&C insurance carrier. Island Insurance holds financial strength ratings of "A" by A.M. Best and is the only Hawaii-Based company to be recognized as one of the Top 50 property & casualty insurance companies in the nation by the Ward Group for six consecutive years. For more information, visit its website at:

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