Letters from the Pa`ani and O-Men Presidents

Department: Athletics

Pa‘ani offers support to girls water polo team

By Noel Pacarro ’98, 2009 – 2010 Pa‘ani President

The end of the school year was a grand finale for Na Wahine Pa‘ani o Punahou. With so many of our athletes receiving both athletic and academic recognition at Punahou as well as across the state and nation, we were proud and excited for our graduating seniors.

Pa‘ani initiated its first-ever lei sale for commencement and sold more than 600 lei. We received positive feedback from students and parents who appreciated a cost-effective and convenient way to get lei for gradua- tion for a worthwhile cause. Thanks to coordinators Kellie James ’01 and Puna Chai ’96, the lei were a hit, and just like the flower booth at Carnival, we have established a new Pa‘ani tradition. Likewise, Lori Untermann, mother of Alexa ’08 and Luke ’10, led Pa‘ani’s hugely successful fundraising efforts at the Alumni Lu‘au, selling Pa‘ani apparel in the merchandise tent.

This summer, Pa‘ani worked behind the scenes planning for the upcoming year by interviewing coaches, athletes and parents to learn how we can continue to support our female athletes in the most effective way.Through these conver- sations came the opportunity to support our state champion girls water polo team as they headed to the Junior Olympics to compete with top athletes from across the country and gain exposure to college recruiting coaches. The Pa‘ani board unanimously voted to make this team one of its sponsored teams for the year and provided the team with a much-needed grant. Pa‘ani is encouraged by the team’s commitment to share experiences from their tournament that will help them lead, coach and mentor other younger female athletes in and out of the pool.

We are looking forward to this school year and are anticipating lots of involvement, fun times and great volunteerism at our Pa‘ani events, whether at girls athletics, Carnival, graduation or Lu‘au. We also are excited to begin new traditions at the Flaming “P,” athletic clinics for the Junior School and more.

Mahalo to everyone. See you in the fall.

New O-Men president seeks to enhance visibility

By Michael T. Pfeffer ’87, 2009 – 2010 O-Men President

First, I want to say a special mahalo to Chris Eldridge ’87, who has finished his term as president of the O-Men. Chris did a fantastic job and helped the organization achieve new heights. Second, I want to thank all the O-Men members who have supported me in becoming the president of this fine organization for the next two years. I look forward to following in the footsteps of past presidents in helping to grow our organization’s membership, endowment and perhaps most importantly, our relevance to the school and our far-flung alumni.

The O-Men has grown over the years from a relatively small group of stalwart supporters, focused primarily on the Kona Safari and Punahou’s football season, to a group that boasts hundreds of members from all over the world who have helped fund scholarships and the myriad campus projects. Every year the O-Men tackles a fundraising campaign to help the school maintain its leadership position as one of the best sports programs in the country (named No. 1 two years running now by Sports Illustrated) by completing a worthy project that might otherwise go unfunded. Notable additions to the school have included outrigger canoes, scoreboards, track and field gear, weight equipment, a jungle gym and much more. In addition, the Kona Safari has evolved from a handful of individuals to a group nearly 30 strong that picks between 15,000 and 20,000 pounds of fresh produce for sale at the Punahou Carnival.

During my tenure, I want to focus on several key areas: membership, endowment, relevance, communication and integration. I believe the O-Men can expand its network to include many hundreds, if not thousands, of alumni who currently do not see the personal relevance of the group. Many live on the mainland or elsewhere and they simply do not understand how their support of the O-Men reaches deep into both the Punahou community as well as the greater community of Hawai‘i.To change this, we need to better communicate with our members and potential members, and educate them about how much more the O-Men is than a small group of Hawai‘i-based guys who pick fruit once a year. Accomplishing this task will have the added benefit of increasing mem- bership and our endowment and will help to make our organization more relevant to the school, the community and our alumni. I will work closely with the school to find ways to enhance our visibility as an organization that plays a crucial role (albeit a small one) in helping to perpetuate the great legacy that is Punahou. An enhanced presence on the school’s Web site, on our own Web site, on Facebook and elsewhere will help us in this endeavor (hint to any great alumni programmers – we can use some free programming time!).

I look forward to working on these and other goals and will do all that I can to lead the O-Men forward and leave it a better organization than when I began my tenure as president.

Our meetings will be at noon on the first Monday of every month at the Pacific Club.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to con- tact me at michael@kolohala.com.


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