Presidential Search Update

Department: Buff 'n Blue Journal

On May 2, 2017, President Jim Scott ’70 announced his intention to retire at the end of the school year in 2019. Following the announcement, Punahou School embarked on a search for its 17th president, aiming to build on the enduring vision and trajectory achieved under Scott’s leadership.

“Appointing the next president of Punahou School is one of the Board’s most important responsibilities,” said Presidential Search Committee Chair Mark H. Fukunaga ’74, who is also a Punahou School Trustee. “With two years to plan for our leadership transition, President Scott has given us the time to reflect upon where we are today, engage our community for input, thoroughly review candidates, and thoughtfully select our new president.”

In June, the Board of Trustees appointed a Presidential Search Committee comprised of nine trustees and two faculty members, all of whom have additional connections to the School as alumni or parents, or both. The Committee’s initial goal was to oversee the selection of an executive search firm that would produce the best possible pool of candidates and support a robust and thorough process.

After reviewing eight proposals, two finalists were invited tovisit Punahou for in-depth interviews. In August, the Committee selected executive search firm Spencer Stuart to support Punahou’s presidential search.

In October, a team from Spencer Stuart traveled to Honolulu to talk with the Punahou community including faculty, staff, parents, alumni, students, administrative leaders and trustees in a series of individual, small group and large group meetings. The Committee also hosted at least 13 listening sessions on the U.S. continent and internationally.

Track the progress of Punahou’s presidential search at

You may contact the Search Committee at

Confidential candidate nominations may be submitted to


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