UH Hilo educator to keynote national convention

Date: Monday, September 8, 2014
Contact: Alyson Kakugawa-Leong, (808) 974-7642

For Immediate Release

Dr. Keiki Kawai‘ae‘a, director of Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke‘elikōlani College of Hawaiian Language at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, will deliver the keynote address at the National Indian Education Association’s (NIEA) 45th annual convention and trade show. The event will be held October 15-18 in Anchorage, Alaska.

Established in 1970, NIEA is recognized as the premiere organization for advancing comprehensive educational opportunities for American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians throughout the United States.

Kawai‘ae‘a and two family members, daughter Kananinohea Māka‘imoku, and granddaughter, Hāweo‘ulakaumaka Māka‘imoku, will speak on the final day of the 2014 convention when organizers honor this year’s theme of Building Education Through the Generations by highlighting the work of Kawai‘ae‘a and her family. As one of the founding families of the Hawaiian language immersion movement, the Kawai‘ae‘a‘s have played a critical role in its development and implementation, and have been principal agents in the re-establishment of Hawaiian medium education.

Kananinohea is a graduate of Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke‘elikōlani College of Hawaiian Language and a teacher at Nāwahīokalani‘ōpu‘u School. Hāweo‘ulakaumaka, age 6, is a second-generation Hawaiian speaker like her mother, a graduate of the Pūnana Leo and a second grader at Nāwahīokalani‘ōpu’u.

“This is a big honor for Hawai‘i and all the work done on Hawaiian language revitalization,” Kawai‘ae‘a said. “I have also been told that this is the first time the NIEA has asked a three-generation panel to address the convention, which makes it even more exciting.”

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