Damien president and chief executive officer*
Brother Greg O'Donnell announced his retirement yesterday at graduation ceremonies at the Blaisdell Concert Hall.
Damien president retiring in June
Damien Memorial School's president and chief executive officer*
used the occasion of the school's graduation ceremonies yesterday to announce his retirement June 30.
Brother Greg O'Donnell, 68, said he wants to remain in Hawaii and use his background as an educator to help prisoners better navigate the outside world once released.
"We have a society that has locked away prisoners and not done very much with them," O'Donnell said.
O'Donnell, head of the school since 1997, has been a member of the Congregation of Christian Brothers for 50 years. He is the oldest serving head of a Christian Brothers school in North America and the longest-serving head of Damien.
As chief executive officer he helped put the school on solid financial ground, added a middle school, revitalized the band program and increased the size of the campus by 10 percent. Enrollment this fall will be 600, up from 375 three years ago.
In a news release ahead of the school's graduation at the Blaisdell Concert Hall, O'Donnell said Hawaii's public schools could make gains by hiring uncertified teachers with valuable career experience. He once hired a former Navy test pilot to teach math, for instance.
3 new laws aim to guard kupuna
Gov. Linda Lingle has signed into law three bills aimed at protecting Hawaii's senior citizens from financial abuse and fraud.
"Defrauding our seniors is particularly deplorable since they are more vulnerable than others, as many are retired and living off their life savings," Lingle said Thursday.
"Many seniors may not have a close and active support system to assist and protect them from money scams," she said. "These measures provide additional safeguards and deterrents to help keep our kupuna from becoming victims of unscrupulous individuals."
One measure requires financial institutions to report any suspected financial abuse committed against someone 62 or older to the Department of Human Services or a law enforcement agency.
The other bill allows an additional $50,000 fine to be added to an existing civil or administrative fine levied for securities violations against a senior citizen.
The third law, signed earlier this month, imposes fines of up to $10,000 for each violation committed against seniors by mortgage brokers and solicitors.
The measure aims to deter unscrupulous brokers from persuading elderly homeowners to sign mortgages that cause them to forfeit the equity in their property or to lose their home.
UH smoothes transfers from KCC
The University of Hawaii is making it easier for students to transfer from Kapiolani Community College to UH-Manoa.
Other community colleges are expected to sign similar agreements, the university said in a news release.
The Ka'ie'ie Program allows students to be accepted to UH-Manoa but declare Kapiolani Community College their home institution, take courses there and pay the lower tuition. Students can also apply to UH-Manoa through the program after earning 24 credits and maintaining a 2.0 grade-point average while taking classes at Kapiolani.
"This agreement is designed to encourage Kapiolani students to identify themselves early as Manoa-bound," said UH-Manoa Interim Chancellor Denise Konan.
Communication to staff improves
Prompted by last October's earthquake, the University of Hawaii is trying out new ways to reach staff members in the event of an emergency or crisis.
More than 100 people throughout the UH system received test phone calls and e-mail messages last month during the test of the NTI Connect-ED system.
The test involved emergency coordinators and administrators who are part of crisis response teams on various campuses.
Under a three-year contract, NTI Connect-ED is providing the notification system for about $3,400 annually, said David Lassner, UH's chief information officer.
The university also is looking for ways to provide text messages directly to any of the 60,000 students, faculty and staff on their mobile phones.
Police, Fire, Courts
Woman critically injured in crash
A 70-year-old California woman was in critical condition yesterday after her car was struck by a pickup truck on Maui.
The woman was airlifted to the Queen's Medical Center after she was treated for serious injuries at Wilcox Hospital.
Her husband, 75, was driving on Kuhio Highway at about 8 p.m. Friday and attempted to make a left turn onto South Papaloa Road. A northbound Toyota pickup truck driven by a 28-year-old Lihue man collided with the Toyota sedan.
All three victims were taken to Wilcox Hospital. The woman's husband was treated for minor injuries and released. The driver of the pickup was also treated and released.
Police said speed appears to be a contributing factor.
Juvenile arrested in golf cart theft
Police arrested a juve- nile Saturday for allegedly stealing a man's golf cart from his home in Kapolei.
A 43-year-old man last saw his golf cart on Wednesday. On Saturday he noticed it missing, police said. He later located it and found out a juvenile had been seen riding it.
The juvenile allegedly admitted to the man that he had taken the golf cart without permission. The juvenile was arrested for second-degree theft.
Intruder awakens woman in home
A 28-year-old Waipahu man was arrested for first-degree burglary after allegedly entering a woman's apartment and touching her leg while she slept early Saturday morning.
Around 4:30 a.m. Saturday, police said, the man went into a 41-year-old woman's home in Waipahu. He allegedly went into the bedroom, sat on her bed and touched her leg.
She woke up and called the police. When police arrived, he was still in her apartment.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
» Brother Greg O'Donnell is the president and chief executive of Damien Memorial School. A Page A3 "Newswatch" item yesterday on his announced retirement incorrectly reported that he was also the principal.