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Featured press releases below:
  • Hawaiian Electric charitable donations top $1 million in 2019
  • Results of Hawaiian Electric’s 2020 State Middle School VEX IQ Championships hosted on Maui
  • Results of Hawaiian Electric’s 2020 State Elementary School VEX IQ Championships

Hawaiian Electric charitable donations top $1 million in 2019
• Employee volunteers provided 12,189 hours to community service events • Kokua Community Service Champions also award grants to nonprofits


HONOLULU, Feb. 20, 2020 – In 2019, Hawaiian Electric gave a total of $1,024,776 in corporate grants, contributions and sponsorships to nonprofit organizations across Oʻahu, Hawaiʻi Island, and Maui County. Of the total, more than $175,000 supported the advancement of STEM education, curriculum, and initiatives.

Company employees and their family and friends also volunteered 12,189 hours to support science, technology, engineering and math events; highway, stream and beach cleanups; charitable walks and fundraisers; homeless initiatives; military appreciation; environmental stewardship; and social services programs.

Hawaiian Electric also selected six employees to receive the 2019 Kokua Community Champion Service Award, a recognition given to honor individuals who have demonstrated exemplary volunteer service in the community over the past year. The employees were judged on level of involvement and community impact. In turn, each honoree selected a nonprofit of their choice to receive a $1,000 grant from the HEI Charitable Foundation.

On Oʻahu, four employees were honored for their outstanding community service:
Edmund Chang, a consulting engineer based at Waiau Power Plant, is an active volunteer with the Oʻahu Chapter and Hawaiʻi MATHCOUNTS® competitions, Francis R. Montgomery Design Competition, and The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). For more than three decades, Chang has helped promote interest in math and engineering, and inspired hundreds of Hawaiʻi students to pursue STEM careers. The Mililani resident awarded a $1,000 grant to ASME, through which he became involved in MATHCOUNTS and the Francis R. Montgomery Design Competition. ASME promotes the art, science and practice of multidisciplinary engineering and allied sciences around the world.

Conrad “Ray” Higa, operations manager for Kahe Power Plant and Campbell Industrial Park Generating Station, is active in the West Oʻahu community where he serves as chair of the Boys & Girls Club (BGCH) of Hawaiʻi Nānākuli NFL YET Center, delivers meals to the needy, volunteers as a Sunday school teacher, and assists with a program to educate at-risk youth. Last year, Higa also organized Kahe Power Plant’s first community blood drive, which helped draw first-time donors and touched the lives of 75 patients. The Nānākuli resident will split the $1,000 grant between the BGCH NFL YET and Waiʻanae BGCH because of the immense positive impact these clubs have on the children and families of West Oʻahu.

Mehana Hoʻopiʻi, a transmission and distribution engineer, has embraced the service culture at Hawaiian Electric through participation and leadership. Last year, Hoʻopiʻi spearheaded a group of employees to help with a Habitat for Humanity Build Day in Waimānalo where volunteers assisted with general construction and the start of framing and roofing a home for a family in need. A month later, she also led the company’s involvement in the Waiʻanae Parade of Farms. For the past four years, the Mōʻiliʻili resident also has been helping coach the Kaimukī High School Varsity/JV paddling team. Hoʻopiʻi selected Sustain Hawaiʻi’s Hāʻehuola Program to receive the $1,000 grant because she has been inspired by the program that draws upon local Hawaiian values, principles and practices to improve the health and well-being of Native Hawaiians.

Sean Moura, wildlife biologist and senior environmental scientist, has been instrumental in organizing the Environmental Divisionʻs official adoption of a portion of Mānoa Stream and holding twice yearly volunteer cleanup days to pick up trash along the stream and dispose of it. Last year, the Hawaii Kai resident also partnered with the Maunalua Fishpond Heritage Center to organize a workday at Kānewai Springs to help protect one of the last remaining fresh water springs in Honolulu. Moura also partnered with the nonprofits Hikaʻalani and Kauluakalana at Ulupō Nui, bringing together employees from HEI and Hawaiian Electric to help plant native trees and shrubs, clear invasive vegetation, and conduct a fish census at this sacred site in Kailua. The Lihue, Kauaʻi, native awarded the $1,000 grant to Kauluakalana, a Kailua-based nonprofit he supports because their mālama ʻāina-based mission resembles the values of his childhood upbringing.

On Hawaiʻi Island,
Dave Okamura, director of Engineering, was recognized for his ongoing support of the American Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life in Hilo as the coordinator of the company team. Okamura has consistently led the company’s participation, helping to raise funds for cancer research and services to cancer patients in the local community. The Hilo native also serves as an assistant scoutmaster for the Hilo Hongwanji Boy Scout Troop, helping to prepare the scouts for life and instilling the values of the Scout Oath and Law. Okamura awarded the $1,000 grant to the Friends of Scouting, which helps fund the Boy Scouts in Hawaiʻi. “I find it rewarding to see scouts grow from immature, kolohe tweens to responsible leaders,” said Okamura. “It drives me to keep improving our troop’s program and guiding the scouts to be better leaders and teammates, qualities that we value at Hawaiian Electric.”

On Maui,
Mikey Burke, a commercial account manager, serves as a board member of the Maui Facilities and Enginering Leadership Council, and is involved in two educational nonprofits with a focus on Hawaiian language. At Nā Leo Kālele, a parent and teacher hui for the Hawaiian Immersion program serving West Maui, Burke helped lead the annual Hoʻoulu fundraiser for the past four years, helping to ensure resources and supplies are provided to students. At Pūnana Leo o Lahaina, a Hawaiian language immersion preschool in her hometown, Burke is an engaged parent supporting the school through various volunteer responsibilities.The Lahaina native awarded the $1,000 grant to Pūnana Leo o Lahaina because, “It is everyone’s kuleana to ensure a living Hawaiian language and I chose to ʻauamo that kuleana by putting our ʻohana on the path of Hawaiian language immersion education.”


Results of Hawaiian Electric’s 2020 State Middle School VEX IQ Championships hosted on Maui
Qualified robotics teams advance to 2020 VEX IQ Worlds in Kentucky

KAHULUI, March 12, 2020 – Eight teams earned top spots at the 2020 Hawaiian Electric Hawaiʻi State Middle School VEX IQ Championships hosted at Kamehameha Schools’ Maui Campus on Feb. 29. Based on the award categories and overlapping qualifiers, a total of 11 Hawaiʻi middle school robotics teams have been invited to participate in the 2020 VEX IQ World Championships in Louisville, Ky., April 26-28. The top awards were:

The Excellence Award, the highest award of the competition, was awarded to Lancer Robotics 2437A of Sacred Hearts Academy. The award recognizes the top all-around team that demonstrates overall excellence in all components of the VEX IQ Challenge.

The Teamwork Champions was won by the two-team alliance of Saint Louis Schools’ Crusaders 2470C and 4270A, based on their robot performance in the finals match alliance.

The Teamwork 2
nd Place Award was won by the two-team alliance of Mililani Masters 11173A, Cornerstone Engineering Robotics and Architechs 96768A of Kamehameha Schools Maui.

The Robot Skills Champion, a robot performance award for the team with the highest combined top programming and top driving skills challenge score, was won by Maui Waena Robotics 10698A of Maui Waena Intermediate School.

The Design Award, for the team with the most effective and efficient robot design process, went to the Hawaiʻi Island-based Mechaneers 2718A, Hawaii Science & Technology Museum.

The STEM Research Project Award, presented to the team that shares the most effective STEM Research Project video presentation, was won by Saint Louis Schools’ Crusaders 4270B. Their 4-minute video shared the scientific research undertaken to reduce trash in their school with the aid of their robot. The video was judged on how the team used the scientific method to collect data.

As a result of The Crusaders’ overlapping wins at the Mark Leon Invitational and Pan Pacific VEX IQ Championships, three teams earned a spot at the 2020 VEX IQ Worlds through their skills scores ranking: Waialua High & Intermediate’s Hawaiian Kids 359A and 359C, and Mid- Pacific Institute’s Owl Robotics 2932B.

A total of 39 Hawaiʻi VEX IQ teams from Hawaiʻi Island, Maui, Molokaʻi, and Oʻahu participated in the state middle school robotics championships, which has been sponsored by Hawaiian Electric since 2013. All VEX programs including elementary, middle school, and high school represent 367 teams statewide.

The 2020 VEX IQ Challenge, called Squared Away, is played on a 4’ x 8’ rectangular field. The object of the game is to attain as many points possible by scoring balls in or on cubes, and scoring cubes into corner goals or platforms. Two robots compete in the Teamwork Challenge as an alliance in 60-second matches, working collaboratively to score points. Teams also compete in the Robot Skills Challenge where one robot takes the field to score as many points as possible. The matches involve driving skills, which is entirely driver controlled, and programming skills, which is autonomous with limited human interaction.

For a full list of the middle school team awards, visit:
https://www.robotevents.com/robot- competitions/vex-iq-challenge/RE-VIQC-19-8617.html and click on Awards.

2020 VEX Robotics World Championship Cancelled
Effective 8:00 p.m. EDT, March 12, 2020
To the VEX Robotics Community,

After thoughtful consideration and with the guidance of the World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control, and local and state health officials, the Robotics Education & Competition (REC) Foundation and VEX Robotics have made the decision to cancel the 2020 VEX Robotics World Championship due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. We share this unfortunate news with a heavy heart but unfortunately there is no other acceptable alternative to proceed with the event, as the health and safety of our community is our top priority.

We recognize every team, parent, mentor, coach and volunteer for their steadfast commitment and passion this season to help advance STEM education and robotics around the globe. As we endure these unprecedented circumstances together, our mission to continually engage students around the globe with hands-on, affordable and sustainable robotics engineering programs will not waver.


Although we will not be having a World Championship event this year, we will continue to support our dedicated community of nearly 1 million students worldwide. We will refund all paid registration fees for the 2020 VEX Robotics World Championship and will be sending information on the process soon.


In the meantime, we encourage you to follow the health and safety precautions as recommended by the World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control and local and state officials to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.




Results of Hawaiian Electric’s 2020 State Elementary School VEX IQ Championships
Qualified robotics teams advance to 2020 VEX Worlds


HONOLULU, Feb. 25, 2020 – For the third consecutive year, the Mānoa Elementary School robotics team 10142Y captured the Excellence Award at the 2020 Hawaiian Electric Hawaiʻi State Elementary School VEX IQ Championships held at Kamehameha Schools’ Kapālama Campus on Feb. 15. The Green Tigers are among 11 Hawaiʻi elementary school robotics teams that qualified for the 2020 VEX IQ World Championships in Louisville, Ky., April 26-28.

Mililani’s
Cornerstone Engineering team 10612A and Pukalani Elementary team 10704B were named the Tournament Champions, while Pukalani Elementary team 101704A and Kaunakakai Elementary team 11516E earned their way to the Teamwork 2nd Place Award.
The Teamwork 3
rd Place Award was won by Waipahu-based teams BSA Aloha Council team 3200S and Island Robotics “Hawaiʻi Girl Power” team 2623H. Hawaiʻi Girl Power also won the Amaze Award, which is given to a team that built an amazing, high-scoring and quality robot. All three Teamwork awards are world qualifying.

Sacred Hearts Academy team 2436A won the Design Award, a world-qualifying award which recognizes a team that implemented the most effective and efficient robot design process. Lancer Robotics also earned the Robot Skills Second Place Award.

The first-place Robot Skills Champion Award went to
Waiʻalae Elementary team 1045A, which previously qualified for the 2020 VEX Worlds through winning the Excellence Award at the Mark Leon VEX IQ Invitational at St. Louis School last July.

The STEM Research Project Award, a video submission that includes delivering a presentation to a panel of judges, was won by
Mililani Mauka Elementary team 241M, which also qualified for the VEX Worlds.

Mānoa Elementary team 10142X will also advance to the 2020 VEX Worlds after winning the Excellence Award at the Pan Pacific VEX IQ Championships at Waialua in November.
A total of 39 Hawaiʻi VEX IQ teams from Hawaiʻi Island, Maui, Molokaʻi, and Oʻahu participated in the state robotics championships, which has been sponsored by Hawaiian Electric since 2013. All VEX programs including elementary, middle school, and high school represent 367 teams statewide.

The 2020 VEX IQ Challenge, called Squared Away, is played on a 4’ x 8’ rectangular field. The object of the game is to attain as many points possible by scoring balls in or on cubes, and scoring cubes into corner goals or platforms. Two robots compete in the Teamwork Challenge as an alliance in 60-second matches, working collaboratively to score points. Teams also compete in the Robot Skills Challenge where one robot takes the field to score as many points as possible. The matches involve driving skills, which is entirely driver controlled, and programming skills, which is autonomous with limited human interaction.

For a full list of team awards, visit:
https://www.robotevents.com/robot-competitions/vex-iq- challenge/RE-VIQC-19-9976.html




About Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO)
For more than 100 years, Hawaiian Electric Company has provided the energy that has fueled the islands' development from a Hawaiian kingdom to a modern state. Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc. (HECO), and its subsidiaries, Maui Electric Company, Ltd. (MECO), and Hawaii Electric Light Company, Inc. (HELCO), serves 95% of the state's 1.2 million residents on the islands of O`ahu, Maui, Hawai`i Island, Lana`i and Moloka`i.

The energy we use is an essential but limited resource necessary to maintaining our quality of life. In a changing world, Hawaiian Electric has evolved to offer more than electricity.

Today, the company also provides energy solutions to help customers save money and use energy more efficiently. Hawaiian Electric also continues to pursue the use of more clean, renewable energy alternatives to help ensure a sustainable future for our islands.

COMMUNITY COMMITMENT

Hawaiian Electric Company is dedicated to our community in which we live, work and serve. Rooted in Hawaii and one of the largest companies in the State, Hawaiian Electric takes the concept of malama pono -- to care for and serve -- to heart. The company and our employees have a long tradition of contributing with dollars, time and talent. Corporate citizenship is crucial to Hawaiian Electric's overall business plan because strong communities are essential to the success of the company, our employees and our customers.

Company and employee volunteerism is encouraged and every month, employees walk, run or provide manpower to dozens of non-profits throughout the State. Hawaiian Electric's corporate giving philosophy gives priority to projects that help families, promote education and protect the environment.

The company also sponsors robotics programs and events that promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) education, as well as the SunPower for Schools program bringing solar electric power to select schools, the Solar Sprint event where students design, build and race cars using solar power, and the Home Energy Challenge, a school-based competition encouraging elementary school students and their families to reduce energy use at home, among other programs.

For nearly a decade, Hawaiian Electric volunteers have provided manpower, bucket trucks and ladders to install Christmas lights at the Kaimuki Community Park and playground before the annual Kaimuki Christmas Parade in December.

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