Dave and Linda Edwards
Growing up in England, Dave Edwards never imagined he would carve out a career half way around the world in Hawai'i. Here at Punahou School, he discovered a place that allowed him to flourish as an educator and as a person.
Dave and wife Linda, both lifelong math teachers, will create a Punahou endowed scholarship through their estate plan that will give future generations of students the gift of educational opportunity. By leaving a bequest to Punahou, the Edwards know that their special place at the school will live on through the lives of others. "We want to help open the doors of Punahou to deserving students who can't afford to attend," Dave says. "because I know what it feels like to be on the outside."
Dave grew up in a solid, working-class family just outside London. He excelled at academics and eventually landed a scholarship to Oxford University and later taught at an exclusive boarding school. Despite outward success, Dave felt continually thwarted by England's rigid class hierarchy. In 1971, he exchanged jobs with Punahou science teacher Harold Lee for "one year" and never looked back.
"Punahou was very different from what I had known in England," Dave says. "The students were so diverse, I got great encouragement and support from my colleagues and the administration, and there was this wonderful sense of 'ohana."
'Ohana took on added meaning for the young man. In 1982, Dave and Linda, a math colleague, exchanged marriage vows at the Lily Pond. The Edwards became a team around campus: Linda supervised student elections; Dave served as math department chair in the 1980s and participated on the President's Council, the Faculty Salary Committee and the WASC Accreditation Leadership Committee. The couple taught for a combined 47 years at Punahou before retiring in 1998.
The Edwards now live in Scottsdale, Arizona, but keep Punahou close to their hearts. The school not only shaped their love of teaching, it galvanized their belief that talented students from all strata of society deserve a chance at a Punahou education. Dave and Linda say, "There's probably a young child who's thinking, 'I really want to go to Punahou, but my family can't afford it.' Our scholarship will help throw open the doors and welcome that child in."