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Wednesday, January 24, 2001

managers shuffled
in shake-up

An estate spokesman says
the changes are the result of
the trust's strategic plan

By Rick Daysog

Kamehameha Schools' senior management team has undergone a major shake-up.

Rodney Park, former head of the $6 billion charitable trust's administration group, left Dec. 31 after his $160,000-a-year position was eliminated.

Attorney Nathan Aipa recently lost his title as the acting chief operating officer but will remain at the estate in a lesser capacity.

Aipa, who had earned as much as $190,000 a year, had been on paid leave since last May but returned to work earlier this month.

Estate spokesman Kekoa Paulsen said the management changes are largely the result of the estate's strategic plan, which was completed last year.

Paulsen said the estate eliminated Park's position when it merged its administration and operations departments. The new department is headed on an interim basis by retired Gen. Dwight Kealoha, who is the acting chief administrative officer, Paulsen said.

Paulsen noted that the trust has made a number of significant management changes since last year due to the new strategic plan.

Rockne Freitas, former vice president for the trust's education group, and Yukio Takemoto, former state budget director who previously headed the Kamehameha School's office of budget and review, were reassigned several months ago to new positions.

Takemoto is now director of the Kamehameha Schools' facilities development and support division; Freitas is executive director of the Ke Alii Pauahi Scholarship Fund.

Park, Aipa, Takemoto and Freitas were among the trust's top executives during the recent three-year legal battle involving the Kamehameha Schools. Critics have linked the managers with embattled former trustees Henry Peters, Richard "Dickie" Wong and Lokelani Lindsey, who were ousted in 1999.

The trust's current senior managers team includes chief executive officer Hamilton McCubbin, chief legal officer Colleen Wong and chief investment officer Wendell Brooks. Eric Yeaman is chief financial officer and Michael Chun is acting chief educational officer. Park, who had worked at the estate since 1985 and served as head of administration since 1994, could not be reached for comment.

Aipa, meanwhile, has reapplied for a new job at the estate.

The estate's general counsel between 1986 and 1999, Aipa took a voluntary paid leave of absence in May after a report by Robert Richards, the court-appointed special master, charged that several of the trust's outside attorneys conducted questionable legal work and attempted to intimidate critics of the former trustees.

The report prompted the estate to terminate many of its outside law firms, although several firms have since been rehired following a lengthy internal investigation. Aipa supervised the outside law firms' legal work.

The recent shake-up coincides with the completion of an internal investigation into the conduct of the estate's senior managers. Paulsen declined to discuss the report's findings, saying it involves personnel matters.

Bishop Estate Archive
Kamehameha Schools

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