This year the department of Learning Design and Technology (formerly Educational Technology) at the University of Hawaii at Manoa is celebrating their 50th anniversary.
The department held an anniversary celebration and reception on August 5, 2017 in Honolulu. The celebration honored the many faculty and staff who have contributed to the department over the past 50 years.
Proclamations from the Governor and Senate were shared and declared August 5, 2017 as University of Hawaii at Manoa Department of Learning Design and Technology 50th Anniversary Celebration day.
Also at the ceremony, the department recognized 50 distinguished alumni who have contributed to their field through professional excellence, inspirational leadership, or innovative service benefiting their communities. A list of the 50 with short bios for each is below.
Dr. Tod Aeby
Dr. Luisa Castro
Leanne Chun Riseley
Sasily Uilani Corr-Yorkman
Dr. Edward Gose
Dr. Kelli Goya
Dr. Lisa Hasler-Waters
Dr. Mary Therese Hattori
Dr. Mark Hines
Dr. Dorothy Hirata
Dr. Susan Jaworowski
Dr. Victoria Lowell
Dr. Kimble McCann
Dr. Rebecca Meeder
Dr. Michael-Brian Ogawa
Dr. Hana Omar
Dr. Tracie Ortiz
Michael H. Pecsok
Dr. Polly Quigley
Dr. Catherine Roma
Dr. Meagan Rothschild
Dr. Andrea Shea
Dr. Hery Yanto The
Dr. Dean Tomita
Dr. Mike Travis
Dr. Angela Wong Foong Lin
Dr. Lilinoe Yong
50 Distinguished Alumni Bios:
Renee Adams (M.Ed., 2011)
Renee Adams taught social studies in Hawaii public schools for 40 years+, both
online and F2F. She recently served as a digital coach supporting
Kalama Intermediate transition to 1:1 iPads and is currently teaching
digital media. A late-comer to graduate education, Renee was awarded
the Burniske Outstanding Master’s Project Award in 2011. She is currently a doctoral student in the LTEC program.
Dr. Tod Aeby (M.Ed., 2013)
Dr. Tod Aeby, M.D. is the Associate Chair for Medical Education at the University of
Hawaii at Manoa John A. Burns School of Medicine. He is a member of the
Committee for Industrial Exhibit for the American College of
Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Leslie Arakaki (M.Ed., 2001)
Leslie Arakaki has worked at St. Andrew’s Schools for the past 12 years as their
Technology Coordinator. She advocated for robotics and engineering in
grades K-12. As one of the STEAM coordinators for the school, she
inspired students and educators to dream big and experience learning in
context (project-based learning). She will soon begin another chapter
in her life as the STEM teacher at Island Pacific Academy.
Stephanie Barry (M.Ed., 2011)
Stephanie Barry is the instructional designer for Google’s Security & Privacy
Education team. She has just celebrated her 1-year “Googleversary”.
According to Stephanie, “Yes, there really is free food, dogs, and
heated toilet seats! Our team trains 70,000 people each year. I use my
LTEC skills daily to improve in-person and online classes.”
Daniel Boulos (M.Ed., 2010)
Daniel Boulos is Associate Professor and Chair of the Academy for Creative Media at UH
Mānoa. A professional animator for 25 years, Dan has taught animation
for 20+ years. He is completing a digital textbook on animation
techniques and will present at the CILECT Congress in Zurich,
Switzerland this October.
Dr. Luisa Castro (M.Ed., 2004; Ph.D., 2016)
Luisa F. Castro, Ph.D. is the Agriculture Farm Food Safety Program Manager for the
Hawaii Department of Agriculture where she utilizes her expertise in
program & organization management, learning design &
technology, and food preservation & food safety training to provide
outreach and education to agricultural professionals. She was recently
certified as a Produce Safety Alliance Lead Trainer in the state to
teach PSA Grower Training to agricultural professionals nationwide.
Kelvin Chun (M.Ed., 1995)
Kelvin Chun is a Math/technology elementary/secondary/district teacher, librarian,
educational specialist, magician, and balloon/kite engineer. Kelvin was
recognized by: Honolulu District Teacher of the Year, Disney American
Teacher Award, All-USA Today Teacher-Team, George Lucas Foundation,
EdTech Leaders of the Year, Japan Fulbright Memorial, Moanalua High
Kina’ole Award. He volunteers as Board of Director for HawaiiUSA FCU.
Leanne Chun Riseley (M.Ed., 1997)
Leanne Chun Riseley is a Professor CC at Leeward CC where she serves as the
Educational Media Center Coordinator. She has a bachelors of
Engineering from the University of Colorado, Boulder and a masters in
ETEC from UH, Manoa. She has taught both face-to-face and online. She
has been working as an educational technologist for nearly 20 years.
She has spearheaded initiatives such as Problem-Based Learning (PBL)
and Open Educational Resources (OER) to enhance teaching and learning.
Sasily U’ilani Corr-Yorkman (M.Ed., 2010)
Sasily U’ilani Corr-Yorkman is a mother of three beautiful keiki and wife of Joshua
Yorkman. She is a graduate of Kamehameha Schools. U’ilani taught for
the Hawai’i Department of Education for 6 years prior to opening
Haloalaunuiakea Early Learning Center. The center, in its 5th year of
operations, prepares keiki for kindergarten so they may have a positive
academic, social, and emotional start to their educational career.
David Cypriano (M.Ed., 2015)
David Cypriano is a Research Analyst at the Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution
(CADR) for the Hawaii State Judiciary. He was honored with the Buddy
Burniske Outstanding Master’s Project Award in 2015 and is currently
pursuing a doctoral degree in the LTEC PhD program at UHM.
Christian Ganne (M.Ed., 2000)
Christian Ganne is a Professor of Digital Media at the University of Hawaii Leeward
Community College (LCC). He designed the Associate of Science degree in
Digital Media program, which was permanently approved by the Board of
Regents in 2005. Between 2005 and 2012, he wrote three PCATT grants
bringing more than $200,000 to the program. Christian was promoted to
Professor in 2013 and was the Division Chair of the Professional Arts
and Technology Division until 2015.
Ryan Garcia (M.Ed., 2010)
Ryan Garcia is a Sysadmin who manages computer systems at the Maui High Performance
Computing Center, a Departmenf of Defense (DoD) Supercomputing Resource
Center. He was involved in the configuration and implementation of the
Center’s first hyper-converged infrastructure. Ryan previously
worked as an IT Coordinator and computer technology lecturer at UH Maui
Dr. Edward Gose (M.Ed., 2006; Ph.D., 2014)
Dr. Edward Gose is an instructional designer for the Distance Course Design and Consulting group (DCDC) in the College of Education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He assists both UH faculty and staff as well as external entities with program and course redesign for online environments. His research interests involve gamification of education.
Dr. Kelli Goya (M.Ed., 2010)
Dr. Kelli Goya is an Assistant Professor & Title III Project Director at the
University of Hawai‘I Kapi‘olani Community College (KCC). She has
served in various positions at KCC in the areas of distance learning,
strategic planning and grant management. She oversees a multi-million
dollar U.S. D.O.E. Title III Native Hawaiian-serving institution grant
to improve student success through learning center innovations,
‘āina-based education and community-based research.
Dr. Lisa Hasler-Waters (M.Ed., 2001; Ph.D., 2012)
Dr. Lisa Hasler-Waters is teaching at George Mason University, College of Education & Human Development Masters in Blended & Online Learning. She continues publishing on the same subjects and was recently a guest editor for JOLR. She also teaches digital literacy, coding and technology integration for Flint Hill School, Northern Virginia.
Dr. Mary Therese Hattori (M.Ed., 1993)
A native of Guam, Mary Therese Perez Hattori holds a BEd, PD, MEd, and EdD.
She serves as Outreach Director for the Center for Pacific Islands
Studies at UHM and is affiliated with the Doctorate in Professional
Education Practice, the Indigenous Politics Program, and the Learning
Design & Technology Program.
Dr. Mark Hines (M.Ed., 1997; Ph.D., 2015)
Dr. Mark Hines is the Chair of Mid-Pacific Exploratory and Academic Technology at
Mid-Pacific Institute. Mark is a PBL STEM teacher and former Tech
Coordinator. He frequently plans conferences, runs professional
development across the state, and presents nationally on Teaching,
Learning and Technology. He was awarded the “Teacher of the Future”
award from HAIS in 2016.
Brent Hirata (M.Ed., 2003)
Brent Hirata is an Educational Technologist at Leeward Community College. Brent
regularly presents at the annual Leeward CC Tech-It Out Day, Pacific
Region Learning Summit and Geek Day events to share insights into the
latest educational technology hardware and software for campus or
Dr. Dorothy Hirata (M.Ed., 2002)
Dr. Dorothy Hirata (maiden name So) graduated from the UH Mānoa College of
Education programs (ETEC MEd in 2002, Curriculum & Instruction PhD
in 2014). She currently works at Kamehameha Schools providing strategic
support for online and blending learning initiatives in a K-12
environment. Dorothy is the Educational Technology Services, eLearn
Clinton Iwami (M.Ed., 2003)
Clinton Iwami is a 2003 LTEC graduate and former staff. He is currently a Sr.
Instructional Designer at Kamehameha Schools who most recently led a
cross functional team to successfully design, develop, implement and
evaluate an online Hawaiian language course for 300 KS Preschool staff
Dr. Susan Jaworowski (Ph.D., 2013)
Dr. Susan Jaworowski is a proud member of the first ETEC doctoral program cohort.
She is the Paralegal program director at Kapi‘olani Community College,
where she was recently promoted to the rank of professor. She credits
the ETEC program for her success and for inspiring her 500+ YouTube
Greg Kent (M.Ed., 2002)
Greg Kent is the Technology Coordinator at Kailua Elementary School and an Ultimaker
Education Pioneer. He has been an educator for 17 years. He is
passionate about growing the “maker mindset” and Design Thinking by
focusing on effective technology management and on meaningful
integration of technology into school curriculum with support from
faculty, staff and community. He recently presented at the first
Construct3D conference hosted by Duke University and Ultimaker.
Wendy Laros (M.Ed., 2002)
Wendy Laros was the Director of Education at Jack’s Diving Locker in Kona where she has
worked for 25 years. She co-founded the Manta Pacific Research
Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to research,
education, and conservation concerning manta rays and the marine
environment. Wendy was recently named the Kona-Kohala Chamber of
Commerce’s new executive director.
Dr. Victoria L. Lowell (M.Ed., 2004)
Dr. Victoria L. Lowell is an Assistant Professor in Learning Design and Technology at
Purdue University, Indiana. She has worked in the field of education
for twenty years teaching, researching, advising students and serving
in various higher education administration roles. She is currently the
President-elect for the Division of Distance Learning of the
Association for Educational Communications & Technology. Victoria
is widely published in the ID field and she is co-editor of the book:
Leading and Managing e-Learning: What the e-Learning Leader Needs to
Dr. Kimble McCann (Ph.D., 2015)
Dr. Kimble McCann is originally a Georgia boy, who drove cross-country to join
bands and become a special education teacher in LA. After receiving his
masters, he packed his dogs and music gear and headed to Hawaiʻi to
join the LTEC doctoral program. His recent projects accomplishments
include implementing a tri-campus, cloud-based library system and the
development of a research project on digital signatures for Kamehameha
Dr. Rebecca Meeder (M.Ed., 2006; Ph.D., 2012)
Dr. Rebecca Meeder has worked at various companies and organizations in Washington
State including Nintendo, Seattle University, and the Washington State
Board for Community and Technical Colleges. She is currently an
Assistant Professor at Northwest University’s College of Education and
manages the scheduling and design of its online courses.
William Meinke (M.Ed., 2012)
Billy Meinke is an instructional designer and open education advocate, currently
serving as the OER Technologist for the University of Hawaii-Manoa
Outreach College. He formerly worked at Creative Commons, supporting
stakeholders in the world’s largest OER project. Billy now manages
UHM’s implementation of OER technology and supports faculty adopting
OER textbooks for their courses.
Koran Munafo (M.Ed., 2016)
The 2016 Burniske Outstanding Master’s project award winner, Koran Munafo, is
currently a lecturer at Hawaii Community College teaching her
award-winning eLearning design. In her free time, Koran has been busy
building a professional brand, designing for the American Red Cross,
and working on another degree in healthcare administration.
Patrick Nakamura (M.Ed., 2004)
Patrick Nakamura began working in eGovernment in 2010,. Since then, he helped create 50+
web applications. He was a co-designer on the team that reimagined
Hawaii’s official website, taking it from obscurity to national
recognition in 2013. Patrick is most proud of mentoring his creative
team and nurturing their professional growth.
Shellie Note-Gressard (M.Ed., 2008)
Shellie Note-Gressard works as a school administrator at Parker School, with a
focusing on technology (curricular and educational) and
athletics. She established a 1:1 program (now 1-12), and her
proposal for a technology curriculum strand and design lab was funded
and realized. She coaches cross-country and is five years into her
competitive high school powerlifting team, because she can and it’s
fun. Shellie invites everyone to visit her little school on the Big
Dr. Michael-Brian Ogawa (M.Ed., 2005)
Dr. Michael-Brian (MB) Ogawa is an Associate Faculty Specialist in the
Department of Information and Computer Sciences where he develops
programs, teaches, and conducts research. In 2016, he co-authored an
instructional textbook for McGraw-Hill, Outlook 2016: In Practice. His
current research interests include information ethics and approaches to
Craig Okumura (M.Ed., 2008)
Craig Okumura is a learning systems manager for the University of Southern
California. He oversees its learning management system, which
delivers 6,000+ training titles to faculty, staff and students. Prior
to USC, he worked for ten years at the University of Hawaii. He, his
wife and two sons live in Honolulu.
Dr. Hana Omar (Ph.D., 2014)
Dr. Hana Omar is an engagement and fundraising consultant at Bureau of External
Relations and Advocacy at United Nations Development Program HQ in New
York. Prior to that, she was a diplomat and served in the Saudi
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and participated in different development
projects. She is a reviewer for different international journals and an
international public relation advisor for Global Deaf Muslim
Organization in Virginia.
Dr. Tracie Ortiz (Ph.D., 2014)
Dr. Tracie Ortiz is an Instructional Designer at Old Dominion University in Norfolk,
Virginia. Having an interest in accessibility and online learning, she
was invited to present at the AHEAD conference in Virginia, as well as
other platforms, to share the concept of accessible course design in
online learning environments.
Michael H. Pecsok (M.Ed., 1982)
Michael H. Pecsok recently retired from the position of Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at Leeward Community College.
Jim Petersen (M.Ed., 2013)
Jim Petersen is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley in Anthropology
and Biochemistry. After having been a Police Crime Scene Investigator,
he began his studies at UH Manoa in Secondary Education and
subsequently, Educational Administration. Jim recently retired as a
School Administrator from the HIDOE. He is now an aspiring author of
Mystery novels and an avid SCUBA diver.
Dr. Polly Quigley (Ph.D., 2015)
Dr. Polly Quigley is currently an Educational Specialist in the Hawaii Department
of Education’s Community Engagement Office. She served as Technology
Coordinator at Kalaheo High School for 12 years and as an online
instructor at Waipahu Community School for Adults for 7 years.
Polly recently presented at the 2017 Educational Leadership Institute
on the value of the School Community voice in decision-making in
Hawaii’s public schools.
Meilene Roco (M.Ed., 2012)
Meilene Roco, an associate professor with the Defense Language Institute, loves people,
languages, culture, and lifelong learning. In 2012, she was honored
with the Burniske Outstanding Master’s Project Award. Meilene’s most
recent accomplishments center around advocating sensible and effective
use of technology in teaching Chinese and imparting systematic
strategies that help both teachers and students keep learning ongoing
Dr. Catherine M. Roma (M.Ed.,1984)
Dr. Catherine M. Roma has been a consultant in the field of Performance Technology for
over 30 years and has worked for numerous clients throughout North
America on a variety of projects. She has been a visionary in the use
of technology for training delivery and change initiatives, and has
created enterprise-wide technology solutions that have had significant
impact on the organization’s bottom line. Catherine has been a keynote
speaker at a variety of national and international conferences.
Dr. Meagan Rothschild (M.Ed., 2004)
Dr. Meagan Rothschild is the Director of Design Research at Age of Learning, Inc.
(ABCmouse.com) in Glendale, California. Prior to that, Meagan served as
Associate Researcher (Assessment & Design Specialist) with WIDA
Consortium in Madison, Wisconsin. Meagan’s role at WIDA was to promote
the design of tools for teaching and learning that facilitate
meaningful participation for users.
Dr. Andrea Shea (M.Ed., 1997)
Dr. Andrea Shea teaches in the Computer Science department at Sierra College in
northern California. Previously, Andrea worked as an instructional
designer and technology consultant at CSU, Sacramento. She holds a
bachelor’s degree in computer science, master’s degrees in computer
science and educational technology, and a doctorate in learning
Chris Stark (M.Ed., 2008)
Chris Stark works as the IT Team Leader and Senior Linux Systems administrator for
Gemini Observatory in Hilo. Outside of working at Gemini, he released
his second album of instrumental guitar music “Juxtaposition” in July,
and he is active in Hawaii Island grassroots advocacy for STEM
education and astronomy.
Kimberly Suwa (M.Ed., 2015)
Kimberly Suwa is the current Director of the Radiologic Technology Program at Kapiolani
Community College, and is dedicated to developing and advancing the
only x-ray tech training program in Hawaii. She received her Master’s
degree in LTEC in 2015, and is currently a Ph.D. student in the LTEC
Dr. Hery Yanto The (Ph.D., 2014)
Dr. Hery Yanto The teaches in Zhejiang Yuexiu University of Foreign Languages. For his
excellent in designing training module and teaching Indonesian Language
to Chinese students, he was awarded the outstanding international
teacher in 2015 and 2016. Hery is also an active planning committee
member for the AACE conferences, SITE and E-Learn.
Beth Tillinghast (M.Ed., 2009)
Beth Tillinghast is a librarian at University of Hawaii-Manoa Libraries, managing the
university’s institutional repositories and working on scholarly
communication projects. As part of her work in promoting Open Access,
she helped guide the adoption of the UHM Open Access Policy. Currently,
Beth is working to support the UH Open Educational Resources Initiative
through committee work and research.
Dr. Dean Tomita (M.Ed., 1994; Ph.D., 2014)
Dr. Dean Tomita began his career teaching at Makalapa Elementary School. He received
his M.Ed. in1994, and his Ph.D. in 2014. Today, Dean serves as the IT
Director at Kamehameha Schools. He is married to his beautiful wife
Wendy and has three wonderful boys, Aaron, Kylan and Colby.
Dr. Mike Travis (M.Ed., 2007; Ph.D., 2013)
Dr. Mike Travis teaches Mathematics and Technology classes at Assets School. He is also
an Adjunct Professor at Argosy University teaching online graduate
education classes. Recently, he authored two books, “Faded Jeans to
Army Greens” and “Cooper’s Destiny.” Mike served on the Hawaii Society
for Technology in Education Board from its inception in 2009 until
2016, and was the President in 2014.
Masaru Uchino (M.Ed., 2011)
Masaru Uchino is a third grade teacher at Momilani Elementary School. Masa was
recognized as one of two Hawaii teachers to receive the 2016-2017
Milken Educator Award. He was also recognized as one of five State
Finalists for the 2016 Presidential Award for Excellence in Science and
Math Teaching for Science (PAEMST). In 2014, Masa was honored with the
Leeward District Teacher of the Year award.
Dr. Angela F. L. Wong (M.Ed., 1984)
Dr. Angela F. L. Wong, an associate professor with the Learning Sciences and
Technologies Academic Group, National Institute of Education (NIE),
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, obtained her MEd at the
University of Hawaii and her PhD from Curtin University of Technology,
Australia. She was an Associate Dean at NIE from 2000 to 2009. She
teaches and researches in “instructional technology” and “classroom
Dr. Lilinoe Yong (M.Ed., 2008; Ph.D., 2012)
Dr. Lilinoe Yong works with the Hauula Hawaiian Immersion School.