ʻIolani School

ʻIolani School, located at 563 Kamoku Street in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi, is a private coeducational college preparatory school serving over 1,800 students.[2] Founded in 1863 by Father William R. Scott, it was the principal school of the former Anglican Church of Hawaiʻi. It was patronized by Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma who gave the school its name in 1870. ʻIolani in the Hawaiian language means "heavenly hawk". Today, ʻIolani School is affiliated with the Episcopal Church in the United States. It is administered by a Board of Governors and is one of the largest independent schools in the United States.[3]

ʻIolani School
Iolani shield
563 Kamoku Street


United States
Coordinates21°17.190′N 157°49.474′W / 21.286500°N 157.824567°WCoordinates: 21°17.190′N 157°49.474′W / 21.286500°N 157.824567°W
TypePrivate, independent preparatory school
MottoOne Team, "humble in victory, gracious in defeat"
DenominationEpiscopal Church
Patron saint(s)Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma
FounderKamehameha IV
CEEB code120040
NCES School ID00326634
Head of schoolTimothy R. Cottrell, Ph.D.
Teaching staff162.8 (FTE)
Number of students1873
 • Kindergarten71
 • Grade 174
 • Grade 268
 • Grade 364
 • Grade 473
 • Grade 570
 • Grade 6122
 • Grade 7176
 • Grade 8205
 • Grade 9261
 • Grade 10235
 • Grade 11231
 • Grade 12224
Student to teacher ratio11.4
Hours in school day6.8
CampusesLower School (K-6), Upper School(7-12)
Campus typeLarge city
Color(s)Black, Red and White
Athletics conferenceInterscholastic League of Honolulu
MascotʻIo (Hawaiian Hawk)
AccreditationWestern Association of Schools and Colleges
NewspaperImua ʻIolani
YearbookKa Moʻolelo O ʻIolani
Distinctions4th largest independent school in the United States[1]


Early years

On October 11, 1862, Lord Bishop Thomas Nettleship Staley arrived in Hawaiʻi by request of Kamehameha IV and Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. The following year Kamehameha IV, a devout member of the Church of England, established the Hawaiian Reformed Catholic Church, also known as the Anglican Church of Hawaiʻi. The school was originally named for Saint Alban.

In 1863, Staley's companion Father Scott purchased land in Lāhaina and established Luaʻehu School, a school for boys. When Father Scott fell ill and returned to Britain, Father George Mason was summoned by Staley to administer the school on Maui. On January 12, 1863, the St. Alban's College was also established in the Pauoa Valley in Honolulu. Mason also seemed to have managed this school as well. Before Staley, too, left the islands for Britain in 1870, Father Mason merged the two schools and relocated it to the St. Alban's campus. Later Bishop Alfred Willis purchased land on Bates Street in Nuʻuanu Valley and moved part of the school there, intending it for students of full or part Hawaiian descent, under the new name of ʻIolani College. The St. Alban's College, intended for white students, separated and continuing operating at Pauoa until 1887.[4][5][6]

With the overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi and annexation to the United States in 1898, the Anglican Church of Hawaiʻi became part of the Episcopal Church United States (ECUSA). ʻIolani School was moved to Nuʻuanu, transferred back to downtown Honolulu and then moved to Nuʻuanu a second time. It remained in Nuʻuanu from 1927 to 1953, when it was moved to the present Ala Wai site.

In 1979, the school became co-educational, ending its all-male enrollment policy.


ʻIolani School grew and refined its program offerings with a standard college preparatory curriculum as a foundation for every student. Religion, performing and visual arts, music and athletics became integral parts of the ʻIolani School education, i.e., in the sixth grade, all students must be involved in a performing art.


Honolulu View
View of ʻIolani Campus with Diamond Head and Waikiki in the background

The campus is divided into Upper and Lower School. Buildings include Castle Building, Weinberg Building, the I-Wing, the art building, and the Nangaku Building. Other facilities include the Upper Gym and the Lower Gym, the Ranzman Library, the Dillingham Pool, and St. Alban's Chapel. ʻIolani School also has a stadium (Kozuki Stadium), a baseball field, an outdoor basketball court (the One Team Field house), and several tennis courts.[7]

The Sullivan Center for Innovation and Leadership was finished at the end of 2012 for the replacement of the Upper School Library. The Sullivan Center was created to emphasize sustainability.

The Harold K.L. Castle Building was dedicated in 1980 to the Castle Family which had donated land to 'Iolani School. The Castle Building also contains most classrooms for the 7th and 8th Grade.[8]


ʻIolani School's athletic program was founded in 1932 by Father Kenneth A. Bray. Over 900, or 70%, of the student body participates in one of over 32 competitive sports. ʻIolani School is a member of the Interscholastic League of Honolulu, an athletic conference composed of Honolulu-area private schools.

Since the formation of the Hawaii High School Athletic Association, ʻIolani has won over 75 state championships in various sports. It is the only school in Hawaiʻi to have won five consecutive state championships in Boys Basketball from 2002 to 2006.[9] ʻIolani has the most consecutive state championships in Boys Wrestling, and is the first ILH school to win a Girls Wrestling State Championship in 2005.[10] They also have eight consecutive D-II football titles, highest in the nation.[11]


ʻIolani School's campus is divided into two sections: Lower School and Upper School.

Lower School is for elementary students, kindergarten through 6th grade.[12]

Upper School is for 7th through 12th grade. The schedule has eight periods, which rotate weekly. Each student normally has one study hall/free period and one elective, although new students who do not take a language normally have a second study hall or elective. Iolani summer school allows students to earn graduation credits; credit courses offered during summer include art, history, science, computers, and language.[13]

Harold Keables

Harold Keables was first a teacher in Denver, where he was named the National Teacher of the Year by Life magazine;[14] in 1965 he started teaching at ʻIolani School.[15][16] Each year his legacy is honored via the Keables Chair, which brings "outstanding teachers, writers, and artists to ʻIolani."[17]

Other activities

ʻIolani students are involved in many extracurricular activities.

Imua ʻIolani

Imua ʻIolani is the school newspaper. It is published monthly,[18] distributed to all students, and is available online. In 2008, Imua ʻIolani was named the best school newspaper in the state.[19]

Science Olympiad

'Iolani has two Science Olympiad Teams, Division B (grades 6-9) and Division C (9-12).

Division B has been a part of Science Olympiad since 2012.[20] They have qualified for the national tournament twice (in 2012 and 2014).[21][22] For every other year they have competed, they have been the runner-up at the states competition.[21] In the 2012 National Competition, Division B placed 5th in Water Quality.[23]

Division C has been a part of Science Olympiad since 2011.[20] They have qualified for the national tournament every year they have competed, except for 2013 when they placed as runner up.[21] At the 2014 national tournament at the University of Florida, the team was the national champions in the trial event Hydrogeology.[24] At the 2015 national tournament at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Division C was the national champions in both Fossils and Geologic Mapping and placed 2nd in the trial event Science Bowl.[25] In the 2016 National competition, the Division C team was the national champions in Fossils, and placed 3rd in Game On and Anatomy and Physiology, and 4th in Geologic Mapping.[26] They also placed 2nd in Game On and 3rd in Indoor Bottle Rocket at the 2017 National competition.[27]

Speech and debate

ʻIolani has an Intermediate Speech Team (grades 7-8) and a Speech and Debate Team (9-12). Both teams have won numerous competitions. Every February, the school hosts the ʻIolani Debate Tournament, one of three State-Qualifying tournaments of the season.[28]

Real World Design Challenge

In 2009, ʻIolani's team "NDC" became the national champions at the U.S. Department of Energy's Real World Design Challenge, out of nine other teams from nine other states.[29][30] In 2010, the ʻIolani ZAMA team took first at the state level. Team members J. Hara, C. Kodama, E. Masutani, M. Muraoka, D. Reiss, T. Van Etten, M. Williams represented the state of Hawaiʻi March 26–29, 2010 at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C., placing second at the national level.[31][32][33]


ʻIolani School also has several robotics teams which participate in competitions organized by FIRST. Iolani has a FIRST Robotics team, a FIRST Lego League team, and a Junior FIRST Lego League team. Besides FIRST related teams, ʻIolani also has a Botball team and a Vex team. ʻIolani's team number for VEX and FRC is 2438.


In 2008, ʻIolani's Vex team competed in the VEX World Robotics Competition, held at California State University Northridge.[34]

ʻIolani School typically hosts the East Oahu VEX Robotics Competition.

On December 6, 2008, the Vex team competed in the 2008 VEX Pan Pacific Competition, held at the Hawaii Convention Center. The ʻIolani team (2438a) was part of the winning alliance, and qualified for the 2009 VEX World Robotics Competition, to be held at Dallas, Texas. They won the Community award and the Champion award.

In 2010, ʻIolani's VEX team again qualified for the World Competition by being part of the winning alliance at the Kahala VEX Regional. At the 2010 VEX World Robotics Competition, they won the notable CREATE award for design, as well as placing as division semifinalists.

In the 2011 VRC season, ʻIolani's VEX team again was in the winning alliance at the Pan Pacific Competition.


ʻIolani's FIRST Lego League team won the Hawaiʻi State Championships in 2007.[35] They competed at the World Festival in 2008 as the representative for Hawaiʻi.

Two of the FLL teams competed in the Niu Valley qualifier on December 6, 2008; both teams qualified for the Hawaii State Championships to be held in January 2009. The teams took first and second place, and merged to form one team that traveled to Dayton, Ohio, for the US Open Championships. They won third place in Quality Robot Design and first place in the Alliance Rounds along with the Landroids and the ZBots. ʻIolani's FLL team is the only FLL team to win twice at the Hawaii FLL State Championships.

FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC)

As of October 2017, ʻIolani has 3 FTC teams.

Economics Challenge

Every spring, the Iolani Economics Challenge team led by coach Lance Suzuki competes in the state, regional, and national economics challenge. Iolani has won ten consecutive state championships and has won the national championship in 2005 and 2006 at the A.P. level and in 2007 at the non-A.P. level. In May 2010, the team of Sean Cockey, Andrew Ellison, Jesse Franklin-Murdock, and Mark Grozen-Smith defeated a team from Bellaire High School in Bellaire, Texas, to win another national title. 'Iolani also won the national title in 2013.

Model United Nations

ʻIolani's Model United Nations club competes in various conferences that are held throughout the year. With numerous delegates over the years of the club's founding being sent to compete in other islands, states, or countries, the club and its members have amassed a multitude of awards from many different competitions.

Notable alumni


Authors, editors and journalists


  • Guy Kawasaki '72, one of original Apple employees responsible for marketing of Macintosh in 1984; CEO and author[44]




Notable faculty and coaches


Monarchial government

  • Robert Hoapili Baker (attended St. Alban's; 1860s–1870s), governor of Maui, legislator and friend of King Kalākaua[52]
  • Curtis P. Iaukea (attended St. Alban's; 1863–1871), Hawaiian courtier, diplomat and official of monarchy, republic and territorial governments[53]
  • David Leleo Kinimaka (attended St. Alban's; 1860s–1870s), royal guard captain[54]
  • Samuel Nowlein (attended St. Alban's; 1860s–1870s), royal guard captain and revolutionist[52]
  • William Pūnohu White (attended St. Alban's; 1860s–1870s), lawyer, police sheriff, legislator of monarchy and territory[55]

Territorial government

Federal government

  • Nani Coloretti '87, Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development[57]
  • Jill Otake '91, U.S. District Court Judge nominee, U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii[58]

State government

International government




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  2. ^ "Iolani School". Archived from the original on May 9, 2012. Retrieved August 11, 2009.
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  39. ^ "Sun Settles on Stanford". Swimming World. November 20, 2002.
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  63. ^ "Chelsea Hardin wins Miss Hawaii USA 2016". The Great Pageant Community. 25 November 2015.


External links

Angela Aki

Kiyomi Angela Aki (安藝 聖世美 アンジェラ, Aki Kiyomi Anjera, born September 15, 1977) known professionally as Angela Aki (アンジェラ・アキ, Anjera Aki), is a pop singer, songwriter and pianist born in Itano, Tokushima, Japan to an Italian American mother and a Japanese father.

Bern Brostek

Bern Orion Brostek (born September 11, 1966) is a former American football offensive lineman in the National Football League for the Los Angeles and St. Louis Rams from 1990 to 1997.

Chelsea Hardin

Chelsea Keolani Hardin (born September 5, 1991) is an American model, public speaker, and beauty pageant titleholder who was crowned Miss Hawaii USA 2016. She was the first runner-up to Deshauna Barber of District of Columbia at Miss USA 2016.

David Kawānanakoa

David Laʻamea Kahalepouli Kinoiki Kawānanakoa (February 19, 1868 – June 2, 1908) was a prince of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi and founder of the House of Kawānanakoa. He was in the line of succession to the throne of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi around the time of the kingdom's overthrow. Kawānanakoa translates as "fearless prophecy" in Hawaiian.

Edward Abnel Keliʻiahonui

Edward Abnel Keliʻiahonui (1869–1887) was a prince of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi.

Guy Kawasaki

Guy Takeo Kawasaki (born August 30, 1954) is an American marketing specialist, author, and Silicon Valley venture capitalist. He was one of the Apple employees originally responsible for marketing their Macintosh computer line in 1984. He popularized the word evangelist in marketing the Macintosh as an "Apple evangelist" and the concepts of evangelism marketing and technology evangelism/platform evangelism in general.From March 2015 until December 2016, Kawasaki sat on the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees, the non-profit operating entity of Wikipedia.Kawasaki has also written a number of books including The Macintosh Way (1990), The Art of the Start (2004), and Wise Guy (2019).

Jeff Chang (journalist)

Jeff Chang is an American journalist and music critic on hip hop music and culture. His 2005 book, Can't Stop Won't Stop, which won the Before Columbus Foundation's American Book Award, chronicles the early hip hop scene. His writings have appeared in publications such as URB, The Bomb, San Francisco Chronicle, the Village Voice, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, Vibe, Spin, The Nation, and Mother Jones. Chang was the Executive Director of the Institute for Diversity in the Arts + Committee on Black Performing Arts at Stanford University. In June 2018, the Institute announced in a press release that Chang will leave to become the first vice president of Narrative, Arts, and Culture at Race Forward. Chang is of Chinese and Hawaiian descent, and he is a 1985 graduate of ʻIolani School. He was a founding member of the Solesides record label while a DJ at a UC Davis college radio station, which was the home to acts like DJ Shadow and Blackalicious before it was recreated as Quannum Projects without Chang's involvement.

Chang's 2007 book, Total Chaos: The Art and Aesthetics of Hip-Hop, is an anthology of essays and interviews documenting the impact of hip hop beyond music and the "four elements". According to its companion website, following the release of Total Chaos, Chang held a series of public panel discussions to further explore the subject.

In Chang's 2014 book, entitled Who We Be: The Colorization of America, he moves away from hip hop to focus on "the cultural implications of the new American majority" and "the social history, the cultural influence—and the massive selling—of multiculturalism in America over the last thirty years".

John H. Wilson (Hawaii politician)

John Henry Wilson (December 15, 1871 – July 3, 1956), was a civil engineer, insurgent, co-founder of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, and Mayor of Honolulu, Hawaii three times: from 1920 to 1927, from 1929 to 1931, and from 1946 to 1954.

John ʻAimoku Dominis

John Owen ʻAimoku Dominis (January 9, 1883 – July 7, 1917) was the illegitimate son of John Owen Dominis and Mary Purdy Lamiki ʻAimoku, and the adopted (hānai) son of Queen Liliʻuokalani of the Kingdom of Hawai'i. He served as a Trustee of Queen Liliʻuokalani's Trust, in which he was named a beneficiary.

Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole

Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole (March 26, 1871 – January 7, 1922) was a prince of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi until it was overthrown by a coalition of American and European businessmen in 1893. He later went on to become a representative in the Territory of Hawaii as delegate to the United States Congress, and as such is the only person ever elected to that body who had been born into royalty.

Joseph Kaiponohea ʻAeʻa

Joseph Kaiponohea ʻAeʻa (June, 1882 – November 14, 1914) was the adoptive son of Queen Liliʻuokalani under the Hawaiian tradition of hānai. He was considered her favorite hānai son.

Kamuela Kahoano

Kamuela Kahoano (born December 27, 1980) is a singer/songwriter, painter/visual artist and music producer from Honolulu, Hawaii. His music has elements of acoustic, folk, indie and alternative with Hawaiian influences. He performs solo and was formerly the lead singer of the band Analog(ic). He is an accomplished player of both the ukulele and guitar, playing both left-handed; he also plays the djembe. Kahoano claims many influences, including Coldplay, U2 and the Beatles.Kahoano is a board member of the Ryan's Light Foundation.

Kanoa Leahey

James Kanoa Leahey, known as Kanoa Leahey, is a sports reporter for KHON-TV, the Honolulu Fox affiliate. In addition to broadcasting the Monday-Friday sportscasts, he is also a play-by-play announcer for high school sports on Oceanic Cable and for college basketball on the ESPN networks, as well as co-host of Leahey & Leahey, a weekly talk show featured on PBS Hawaii with his father, Jim (Leahey & Leahey Live).Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, the Iolani School alum got his first job as a sports reporter at KITV, Honolulu's ABC affiliate. After several years as the weekend sports anchor, he took over as the sports director at KHON-TV in 2004. In 2012, he stepped down to make more time for his national play-by-play work. He was replaced by Rob DeMello.

Leahey is a third generation sportscaster in Hawaii, and earned a Hawaii Sportscaster of the Year award, like his father, Jim Leahey, and grandfather, Chuck Leahey.

Maile Shimabukuro

Maile S.L. Shimabukuro (born October 1, 1970) is a Democratic member of the Hawaii State Senate, representing the state's 21st district since her election in 2011. The district includes Kalaeloa, Honokai Hale, Ko ‘Olina, Nānākuli, Mā‘ili, Wai‘anae, Mākaha, Mākua on the island of Oahu. She is a graduate of Iolani School, Colorado College and the University of Hawaii William S. Richardson School of Law.

Mike Fetters

Michael Lee Fetters (born December 19, 1964) is an American / Samoan professional baseball pitcher and coach. He is currently the bullpen coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks. He played in Major League Baseball for eight teams during his sixteen-year career from 1989 to 2004. Fetters started his playing career with the California Angels and also played with the Milwaukee Brewers, Oakland Athletics, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates, Arizona Diamondbacks, and Minnesota Twins. Fetters had his best season in 1996 when he finished fifth in the American League in saves with thirty-two with the Brewers. Fetters finished his career with one hundred career saves.

Fetters is of mixed ethnicity, being half-Caucasian and half-Samoan in ancestry.

Mufi Hannemann

Muliufi Francis Hannemann (born July 16, 1954) is an American politician, businessman, and non-profit executive. He was elected twice as Mayor of Honolulu in 2004 and 2008. Hannemann has served as a special assistant in Washington, D.C., with the Department of the Interior, where he was selected for a White House fellowship in the Reagan administration under Vice President George H. W. Bush. He also served as chairman of the Honolulu City Council. He is the first person of Samoan descent and the second member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to serve as Mayor of Honolulu (Neal S. Blaisdell was the first).

Professor Tanaka

Charles J. Kalani Jr. (January 6, 1930 – August 22, 2000) was an American professional wrestler, professional boxer, college football player, soldier, actor, and martial artist who, in fighting rings, was also known as Professor Toru Tanaka, or simply Professor Tanaka.

Richard Sui On Chang

Richard Sui On Chang (November 30, 1941 – August 30, 2017) was bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Hawaii from 1997 to 2006. He was ordained to the diaconate on March 5, 1966, and to the priesthood on September 4, 1966.

Chang was consecrated Bishop of Hawaii on March 30, 1997.

On August 30, 2017 Bishop Chang died in Honolulu following an illness.

Robert Hoapili Baker

Robert Hoapili Kekaipukaʻala Baker (c. 1845/1847 – April 4, 1900) was an Hawaiian ali'i (noble), military officer, courtesan and politician who served many political posts in the Kingdom of Hawaii, including Governor of Maui, Privy Councillor and Aide-de-camp to King Kalākaua.

Christianity in Hawaii
Christian groups
in Hawaii
Historic chapels
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