Friday, January 7, 2000

to restore early ed,
outreach: CEO

Kamehameha grad Hamilton
McCubbin is the schools' first
chief executive officer

Judge appoints trustee nominating committee
Stender wanted to see business CEO

By Rick Daysog


The Kamehameha Schools will restore many of the outreach and early education programs eliminated by the trust's previous board, expand its current partnerships with the Department of Education and bring more accountability to many of the educational services that it currently provides, according to the school's new chief executive officer.

Hamilton McCubbin, who becomes the first chief executive in the estate's 115-year history on Feb. 1, also disclosed that the trust hopes to hire a new chief financial officer who would oversee the $6 billion estate's far-flung investments.



Bullet Name: Hamilton McCubbin
Bullet Age: 58
Bullet New job: Chief executive officer, Kamehameha Schools
Bullet Experience: Dean of the School of Human Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1985-99; head of the Family Social Science Department, University of Minnesota, 1980-85; dean of the College of Family Studies at Zayed University, United Arab Emirates, since July 1999
Bullet Personal: Married with three children
Bullet Education: Ph.D., master's and bachelor's degrees, University of Wisconsin

In his first meeting with the local media today, McCubbin outlined his vision for the Kamehameha Schools in the 21st century. The expansion plan, developed in large part by the current interim board of trustees, seeks to restore many of the school's early childhood education programs and programs for at-risk kids which were eliminated by the previous board of trustees.

While Kamehameha Schools will continue to improve its college-prep programs at the school's Kapalama Heights campus, McCubbin believes that the outreach programs also play an important role in fulfilling the mission of the estate's founder, Bernice Pauahi Bishop, and her will.

"The will was intended to make industrious men and women. It didn't say college graduates," said McCubbin, a 1959 Kamehameha Schools graduate. "It didn't specify a lone Kamehameha Schools campus. It said reach the children. That's what my business will be."

McCubbin, 58, knows what he's talking about. A career educator, the former dean of the University of Wisconsin's School of Human Ecology is an expert on the subject of early childhood development.

His academic specialty is a major reason the estate's interim board of trustees selected him after a six-month search.

In 1992, McCubbin was named vice president for academic affairs for the University of Hawaii, the second highest-ranking post. But he abruptly turned down the job, saying the school reneged on the terms of his hiring.

McCubbin also was a finalist for the Kamehameha Schools presidency in 1988 when the board named Michael Chun.

"I have known Dr. McCubbin personally and professionally for more than 40 years. He knows our mission and our goals, and will serve Kamehameha with honor and distinction," said Chun, who remains school president.

Toni Lee, past president of the 3,000-member student, teacher and parent group Na Pua a Ke Ali'i Pauahi, said it is important that the estate named an educator and Kamehameha Schools graduate to lead the trust in the 21st century.

Lee, a high school classmate of McCubbin's, said the new chief executive is a person of high integrity and knows what it means to be touched by the legacy of Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, whose will established the schools 115 years ago.

"He will take us to greater heights now," Lee said. "It's a very happy day for the Kamehameha ohana, a wonderful way to start the year 2000. I'm sure the princess is smiling tonight."

Robin Douthitt, acting dean of the University of Wisconsin-Madison's School of Human Ecology, said McCubbin is a rare breed of academician who is able to juggle his workload as an administrator while remaining productive in his research.

Douthitt noted that during McCubbin's 15-year tenure as dean, the school experienced a steady growth in scholarship.

The University of Wisconsin's Human Ecology School employs about 50 and has an annual budget of about $6 million. For the 1998-1999 year, McCubbin earned about $134,000.

Kamehameha Schools is expected to pay its new CEO between $300,000 and $500,000.

Former trustee Henry Peters, an outspoken critic of the reforms that are being put in place at the Kamehameha Schools, said McCubbin brings "a lot of good qualities" to the job, and said he would be willing to help the new CEO in any way he can.

But Peters, who was a trustee when McCubbin was being considered for the school presidency in 1988, noted that McCubbin will face many challenges in managing daily operations of a trust with billions of dollars in assets.

"Unless you manage those resources properly, the true dream of Pauahi will be diminished or abolished," Peters said. "Without resources, education is simply a concept."

Kamehameha Schools has been under court order to appoint a new chief executive officer and implement a CEO-based management system to replace the much-criticized lead trustee management system that placed the estate's daily operations in the hands of its former board members.

During the past year, the trust also has been the subject of negative publicity: Two trustees -- Richard "Dickie" Wong and Henry Peters -- were indicted for theft only to have the charges thrown out. A third trustee, Gerard Jervis, overdosed on sleeping pills after a female trust attorney committed suicide. Jervis and the lawyer were caught having sex in a Waikiki restroom the day before her suicide.

The three trustees, along with Oswald Stender and Lokelani Lindsey, resigned from their $1 million-a-year posts after the Internal Revenue Service threatened to revoke the estate's tax-exempt status.

As a graduate of Kamehameha Schools, McCubbin said he felt betrayed by some of the events that unfolded under the previous board's watch.

As its new chief executive, his duty will be that it never happens again.

Stender wanted business
person as schools’ CEO

By Gregg K. Kakesako


Former Bishop Estate trustee Oswald Stender believes the first chief executive officer of Kamehameha Schools should have been someone with a business background.

However, Stender -- who resigned his $1 million-a-year job after the Internal Revenue Service threatened to yank the estate's tax-exempt status -- said that he will support Hamilton McCubbin, a former University of Wisconsin-Madison dean and a Kamehameha Schools alumnus.

"My first reaction, honestly, was that I thought he should be a business person. But I didn't interview him, and the interim trustees must have seen something there, and he deserves our support," Stender said this morning.

Stender said he believes "the future for the estate is very bright," following the appointment of McCubbin and the selection of a seven-member committee that will screen applicants and recommend finalists for the five vacant Bishop Estate trustee positions.

"It's been cleansed," Stender said of the situation surrounding the 115-year-old trust. "Now it's got to get focused, and it's getting focused and it's going to be good. For the next millennium and forward, it's going to be good."

Earlier in a speech before the National Association of Industrial and Office Products, Stender said the state Supreme Court at a later date could reinstate its right under the terms of Princess Pauahi Bishop's will to appoint estate trustees.

He also said it would be cost-effective for the estate to enter a partnership with the Department of Education to develop an educational program with Hawaii's 25 public elementary schools.

Stender said there are now 6,000 Hawaiian children attending these public schools and that it costs the DOE $50 million to educate these children.

One of the seven citizens appointed by Chang yesterday to the nominating committee, Roy Benham, Oahu region president of the Kamehameha Schools Alumni Association, said he hopes the new trustees will seriously consider the proposal.

Benham, who attended Stender's speech his morning, added that the estate and the school stand "at the brink of a new beginning.

"We are all enthusiastic."

Bishop Estate Archive

E-mail to City Desk

Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
[Stylebook] [Feedback]

© 2000 Honolulu Star-Bulletin