responsibility

Truly A Privilege

 

A Special Message

By Robbie Alm
Outgoing Chair, PBS Hawai‘i Board of Directors

 

Robbie Alm, Outgoing Chair, PBS Hawai‘iAll of us who serve on the PBS Hawai‘i Board feel so privileged and honored to do so. It begins when we walk toward our new headquarters and pass the wall containing the names of all of you who supported the building of our new home. It is at once humbling and inspiring. And we know that we have a responsibility to honor the trust you have given us with your gifts.

 

As we come into and walk throughout the building, we can see – literally through all the glass – a very special and dedicated group of employees making the mission of PBS Hawai‘i live every day. They are the best at what they do and they approach their tasks with aloha for each other and for all of you who do us the honor of letting us become a part of your lives. And it is our privilege to support them.

 

PBS Hawai‘i President and CEO Leslie Wilcox and Board Chair Robbie Alm untie the maile at this morning’s blessing ceremony and donor thank-you event at the public television station’s new home at 315 Sand Island Access Road in Honolulu. Photo: PBS Hawai‘iHawai‘i President and CEO Leslie Wilcox and Board Chair Robbie Alm untying the maile lei at the grand opening of the station’s new home, September 21, 2016.

 

And as we have watched it grow, we have all come to understand how special and really extraordinary HIKI NŌ has become. The young people of Hawai‘i are now storytellers of nationwide fame and distinction, as they win award after award in national competitions. They show the skills honed through diligent and demanding work, under the guidance of our great HIKI NŌ team, including Executive Producer Robert Pennybacker, Managing Editor Sue Yim, Online Editor Nikki Minamoto and Administrative Assistant Susan Waldman. There were those who said that HIKI NŌ would never happen – and if by chance we got a statewide student news network of public, private and charter schools started, it would most certainly fail. Our young people, mostly from public schools, every day prove them wrong.

 

Alm, during his service as Director of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, with Deputy Director Susan Doyle, circa 1992.Alm, during his service as Director of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, with Deputy Director Susan Doyle, circa
1992.

 

It is also truly a great privilege and pleasure for all of us to support the very special leadership of Leslie Wilcox. She left the bright lights, fame and remuneration of commercial television, where she was one of the top-rated on-air newscasters in town, to join us, and she has been an amazing force since the day she got here. Her excellence as a journalist made a home in a place that features great public affairs programming (such as Insights), the drawing out of our community leaders (Leslie’s own Long Story Short) and showcasing special stories of Hawai‘i, making sure they are shared across our Islands and with the world. Nothing could speak more strongly to that than the 2015 studio concert of Jimmy Borges and the recent Eddie and Myrna Kamae film festival Leslie was entrusted to present. We are so lucky that PBS Hawai‘i turns out to be her life’s passion and we are in awe as we watch her go, and go, and go.

 

We are privileged to work with a great staff: Ashley Aurellano, Paula Biondine, Emily Bodfish, Linda Brock, Brian Bueza, Forest Butler, Meriel Collins, Alison Crabb, Patty Doo, Todd Fink, Paul Hayashida, Sam Hee, Drew Hironaga, Emilie Howlett, Lori Kaya, John Kovacich, Terry Lonokapu, Jill Loving, Karen Maddocks, Mariko Miho, Nikki Miyamoto, John Nakahira, Lawrence Pacheco, Robert Pennybacker, Liberty Peralta, Michael Powell, Richard Reyes, Jason Suapaia, Christina Sumida, Rianne Tsutsui, Susan Waldman and Karen Yamamoto.

 

And our Board members are so lucky to work as a group that brings great community wisdom, an ethic of laboring for love and for Hawai‘i, and an insistence on quality and passion, that includes: Muriel Anderson, Susan Bendon, Jodi Endo Chai, Keola Donaghy, Matt Emerson, Jake Fergus, Jason Fujimoto, Joanne Grimes, Jason Haruki, Noelani Kalipi, Joy Miura Koerte, Kamani Kuala‘au, Mary Ann Manahan, Bettina Mehnert, Cameron Nekota, Aaron Salā, Julie Shimonishi, Ka‘iulani Sodaro, Candy Suiso, Kent Tsukamoto, Huy Vo, Bruce Voss and shortly, Jim Duffy and Ian Kitajima. It is said that one of the best measures of a person is the company he or she keeps, and this company speaks for itself.

 

For me, this month brings to a close one of the most treasured journeys of my life. Education television was born in the same UH College of Education building in which my parents Dick and Julie Alm taught. As Director of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, the Hawai‘i Public Broadcasting Authority was a key part of my everyday life. And later when PBS Hawai‘i came into being as a community licensee, I joined the Board in 1999 and became Chair, succeeding Neil Hannahs, in 2009. Making sure that we finished the capital campaign, that we built and moved into our new building, and that we set ourselves up in a way that would allow us to lead in this exciting century, were goals for many of us, and certainly for me.

 

And now leadership passes to new and very worthy hands. As part of Hawai‘i Island’s outstanding Fujimoto family, our new Board Chair Jason Fujimoto has the experience, the skills and the youth to lead our great Board and Staff to ever higher levels of achievement and service.

 

It truly has been a privilege and a great honor.

 

Ke Akua pū a hui hou,

Robbie Alm Signature

 

PACIFIC HEARTBEAT
Mele Murals

 

This film is about the transformative power of art through the unlikely union of graffiti and ancient Hawaiian culture. At the center of the story are two renowned street artists – Estria Miyashiro (aka Estria) and John Hina (aka Prime) – a group of Native Hawaiian youth, and the rural community of Waimea on Hawai‘i Island. The story is a look at how public art and Native Hawaiian traditions transform the artists, students and community.

INDEPENDENT LENS
National Bird

 

In this excerpt from the Independent Lens film National Bird, Heather, a former U.S. military drone pilot who is now a masseuse, talks about the emotional distress caused by knowing she was responsible for the deaths of people, something she tried to push out of her mind but found impossible to shake. “You see someone die, because you said it was okay to kill them,” she says.

 

JFK & LBJ: A Time for Greatness

 

For many, President Lyndon Baines Johnson is chiefly remembered for escalating the United States military involvement in Vietnam. But 50 years ago, he engineered two of the most important laws Congress ever passed, the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act. This special examines how LBJ transformed America.

 

HIKI NŌ
Hawaiian Value: Kuleana

 

This episode is the second in a series of six shows in which each episode focuses on a specific Hawaiian value. The Hawaiian value for this show is kuleana, which means responsibility. Each of the following stories reflects this theme:

 

The top story comes from the students at Waianae High School in West Oahu. They feature Waianae High School graduate and UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) fighter Max Holloway, who feels it is his kuleana to represent the Waianae community in the most positive way possible when he competes. Max also takes his responsibilities to his wife and young son very seriously. Having been severely neglected by his own parents, Max wants to make sure his son does not have to suffer the same sort of childhood.

 

Also featured are student-created stories from the following schools:

 

Kamehameha Schools Kapalama (Oahu): A one-day community service event for Kamehameha Schools Kapalama seniors builds character and nurtures lifelong community service.

 

Kainalu Elementary School (Oahu): Student Caleb McCrillis was concerned when his great grandmother became the victim of a phone scam. He felt it was his kuleana to warn other senior citizens about phone scams and produced a PSA offering tips on how seniors can avoid being conned.

 

Aliamanu Middle School (Oahu): Students and teachers at Aliamanu Middle School take responsibility and raise awareness of the hazards for pedestrians jaywalking near a major intersection in Salt Lake.

 

Keaau High School (Hawaii Island): Keith “Brudda Skibs” Nehls starts the non-profit organization, Basic Image, that maintains Honolii and other Hawaii Island parks for free.

 

Ewa Makai Middle School (Oahu): Although it has earned him a reputation as the meanest teacher at Ewa Makai Middle School, science teacher David Wong has made it his kuleana to teach his students what they need to succeed in high school and beyond.

 

Moanalua High School (Oahu): Moanalua High School student Jacob Genovese deals with the responsibilities and challenges of fatherhood, full-time work and school.

 

This episode is hosted by Kaimuki High School in Honolulu.

 

This program encores Saturday, Aug. 13 at 12:00 pm and Sunday, Aug. 14 at 3:00 pm. You can also view HIKI NŌ episodes on our website, www.pbshawaii.org/hikino.

 

Caring for Mom & Dad

 

Americans are living longer than ever before, and soon older adults will outnumber the young. Today, family caregivers are providing 90 percent of parent care, in addition to balancing work and family, a job most cannot afford to do. This phenomenon is faced by millions of baby boomers who are approaching retirement themselves, and who are also grappling with the responsibilities of one or both of their parents’ care. The program explores the emotional, health and financial challenges that many caregivers face every day and offers some solutions and tips to help others embarking on this new future.

 

Insights on PBS Hawaii

INSIGHTS ON PBS HAWAI‘I is Hawaii’s only live, weekly, interactive public affairs show. Your questions and comments are welcome via phone, email, Twitter or live blogging. You may also email your questions ahead of time to insights@pbshawaii.org.