Jan Iwase continues to lead with aloha after 45 years in education

Authors new book, "Leading with Aloha: From the Pineapple Fields to the Principal's Office"

Sponsored by Arcadia Family of Companies

Jan Iwase is a retired principal and author of the book, “Leading with Aloha: From the Pineapple Fields to the Principal’s Office.” As an educator of 45 years, she says it was the students, teachers, parents, and her co-workers who made it such a rewarding experience.

“Seeing that we could make a difference in our students’ lives was the best part of my job,” Iwase says. “Seeing our students and teachers excited about learning was truly rewarding. I have never regretted my decision to become a teacher.”

Iwase grew up in Whitmore Village, a small plantation community north of Wahiawa. She was the second of five children in her family, and it was a simple life.

“We did not have a lot of money, but we were rich in experiences, and in the process, we learned values such as perseverance, respect, caring for others, being humble, and setting goals and working hard to achieve them,” she says. These values stayed with Iwase throughout her life, both personally and professionally.

Since her retirement, she wrote a book called, “Leading with Aloha: From the Pineapple Fields to the Principal’s Office.” In the book, she shares her perspective as an innovative educator and student advocate on what works and doesn’t work from her 45 years of experience in Hawaii’s public schools.

Iwase also spends her time supporting the National Kidney Foundation of Hawaii in honor of her son, Jarand. She and her husband Randy have made it a priority to talk about kidney disease after it caused Jarand to pass away unexpectedly in May 2018.

“We share the message about taking care of ourselves so we can take care of others,” Iwase says. “We are honored that the City Council approved the renaming of the tennis courts at the Central Oahu Regional Park after Jarand.”

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