UH Hilo alumna Janice Ikeda selected as Omidyar Fellow

The local fellowship program cultivates Hawai‘i leaders with the skills to collectively affect societal change.

By Susan Enright

Janice Ikeda
Janice Ikeda

The Hawai‘i Leadership Forum announced Janice Ikeda, an alumnus of the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo communications program, has been selected as one of 16 local leaders joining the eighth cohort of the Omidyar Fellows program. Nine of the cohort are alumni from the University of Hawai‘i.

The fellowship program seeks to cultivate the conditions in which Hawai‘i thrives by equipping leaders with the skills and cross-sector relationships necessary to collectively affect societal change.

“One thing that has become incredibly clear to all of us in the last six months is the importance and impact of thoughtful, credible and intentional leadership,” says Bill Coy, director of Omidyar Fellows. “We see leadership as an activity, not a role, and we have appreciated all of those who have stepped forward to diagnose the real and deeper challenges, engage others and intervene skillfully.”

Ikeda is executive director of Vibrant Hawaiʻi, where she specializes in personal and professional wellbeing through coaching, workshops, and retreats. She graduated from UH Hilo in 2012 with a bachelor of arts in communication. She also holds a degree in information technology from Hawaiʻi Community College. She received her master of arts in organizational leadership and doctor of philosophy in leadership studies from Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA.

Individuals for the Omidyar Fellows Program were selected through a rigorous application process, based on their accomplishments, motivation and ability to make positive change in Hawaiʻi. Their courageous leadership continues to be demonstrated through their response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing health and economic crisis.

“Cohort VIII joins us at a juncture of critical demands and remarkable opportunity,” says Coy.

Read more about the other fellows at UH System News.


Story by Susan Enright, a public information specialist for the Office of the Chancellor and editor of UH Hilo Stories. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.