Kapolei salutes its super achievers
By Rod Ohira
Advertiser Central O'ahu Writer
By Rod Ohira
The co-founder of a company developing a "next generation power source," a community-oriented educator, and a dedicated youth soccer volunteer were honored last night with Kapolei Outstanding Achievement awards at Ko Olina Resort.
Hilo native Dustin Shindo, co-founder of Hoku Scientific Inc., Island Pacific Academy headmaster Daniel E. White and local American Youth Soccer Organization Leeward Region Commissioner Obed Donlin received KOA awards for entrepreneurship, education and community service, respectively.
KOA awards were also presented to 'Ewa Beach 'Ohana for environmental service and the Kapolei High School Interact Club for group community service.
The Estate of James Campbell, which has recognized outstanding Kapolei achievers for 17 years, also presented a $115,000 grant last night to nine area schools to support their technology needs.
Shindo founded the company in March 2001 with his former Waiakea High classmate Kaleo Taft and Michael Gardner to develop and manufacture membrane electrode assemblies for hydrogen fuel cells, a renewable technology seen as a cost-effective power source.
The Kapolei-based company has contracts with Nissan Motor Co., Sanyo Electric and the U.S. Navy.
Success is nothing new to Shindo, who at age 21 founded Mehana Brewing in Hilo, the largest locally owned brewery in Hawai'i.
White was cited for promoting "strength of character, based on such core values as respect for others, generosity of spirit and the power of human kindness" at IPA. Students have done projects such as car washes for tsunami relief, recycling and fundraising for an African orphanage school to obtain technology.
Their 2005 projects included raising more than $750 for tsunami victims in Southeast Asia, assembling and installing benches donated by the Rotary Club of Kapolei near Kapolei High's gymnasium and coordinating a Easter mini-carnival for senior citizens at Kapolei's Ka Punawai Ola.
Faculty advisers are Merry Ifuku and Diana Okamura.
Reach Rod Ohira at email@example.com.