Assistant Superintendent, Office of Student Support Services
Heidi Armstrong was appointed in February 2019 as Assistant Superintendent for the Office of Student Support Services after serving in the position on an interim basis since July 2018. Armstrong has been with the Department for 30 years, most recently as Complex Area Superintendent for Campbell-Kapolei Complex Area. Prior to becoming CAS in 2012, she served as principal of Iroquois Point Elementary, where she led continuous improvements in school performance and quality, as comprehensive supports for students helped boost reading and math proficiency. She began her career with the Department in 1988 as a math teacher at Pohakea Elementary, where she became vice principal in 2000. Armstrong also was the vice principal at Waipahu High from 2001-02. She holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, and a master's degree in educational administration from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. The creation of this office was approved by the Board of Education on May 17, 2018.
David Brookshire "Brook" Conner,
Assistant Superintendent & Chief Information Officer,
Office of Information Technology Services
David Brookshire "Brook" Conner was appointed on Sept. 25, 2017 to oversee HIDOE’s information and telecommunication systems, facilities, and services of the public school system and department-wide operations. The Office of Information Technology Services (OITS) ensures that information technology and telecommunications support are being provided efficiently and effectively, and in accordance with laws, policies, and accepted principles of management. The scope of OITS’ technical oversight includes voice, data, video, information systems infrastructure, and support services for schools and for complex areas and state administrative offices. Support services to schools are exercised in collaboration with the complex area superintendent.
Conner has served in high-profile information technology (IT) positions, most recently as the first chief information security officer and vice president for Estée Lauder Companies where he constructed a cyber security program, managed a budget of $22 million and ensured compliance. He also worked for Morgan Stanley as an executive director and global head of vulnerability management, Bloomberg LP, and as an adjunct professor at New York University. Conner has also published numerous books and papers on a variety of IT topics.
Office of Talent Management
Cynthia Covell was appointed on Nov. 7, 2017 to oversee the Department's workforce of 22,000 full-time employees and 20,000 substitute teachers and casual employees.
Covell is a retired two-star Rear Admiral with the United States Navy. She has over 30 years of leadership and human resources (HR) experience with the Department of Defense (DOD) where she served as the Commander of Navy Personnel Headquarters and senior HR executive.
During her time with the DOD, Covell oversaw a team of 4,000 HR professionals that provided services to more than 500,000 military and civilian personnel. She also led remotely dispersed teams overseas in Yokosuka, Japan, and managed remote offices in Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Diego Garcia, Guam and Hawaii. Covell previously served as the U.S. Navy NATO Representative in Athens, Greece as well as diversity advisor to the head of the Navy. She started her career as a communications watch officer serving at the Naval Communications Area Master Station, Wahiawa, Hawaii.
Brian Hallett, Interim Assistant Superintendent and Chief Financial Officer, Office of Fiscal Services
Brian Hallett was appointed as Interim Assistant Superintendent of the Office of Fiscal Services (OFS) and Chief Financial Officer on August 1, 2019, to oversee HIDOE's accounting, budget, and procurement activities and systems serving the needs of the schools, school complexes, complex areas and the state central office. Hallett provides direction and guidance for all levels of the organization in support of sound fiscal management practices.
Hallett has worked in the state government sector for the past 25 years and has served as HIDOE's Budget Director for seven years with a brief stint as Chief of Staff to the Speaker of the Hawaii House of Representatives. Earlier in his career, he served in budget administrator and specialist roles for HIDOE's Budget Execution Section, the Senate Ways and Means Committee, the House Finance Committee and the Department of Public Safety. Hallett holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Washington with a dual major in political science and environmental studies, and studied Urban and Regional Planning and Natural Resource Managment at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Donna Lum Kagawa, Assistant Superintendent, Office of Curriculum and Instructional Design
Donna Lum Kagawa was appointed Interim Assistant Superintendent for the Office of Curriculum, Instruction, and Student Services (OCISS). On May 17, 2018, OCISS was split into the Office of Curriculum and Instructional Design and the Office of Student Support Services. The offices' primary responsibility: development, coordination, and implementation of the DOE/BOE Strategic Plan, that Hawai'i's students are educated, healthy and joyful lifelong learners who contribute positively to our community and global society.
Lum Kagawa most recently served as the Complex Area Superintendent for Farrington-Kaiser-Kalani and was previously an Administrator for the Department's Professional Development and Educational Research Institute. She has a deep history in the HIDOE including: teaching at Kalani High and Ala Wai Elementary in special education, serving as a vice principal and principal of Hokulani Elementary (a distinguished Blue Ribbon School), and serving as principal at Jarrett Middle School leading a turnaround process to raise student achievement. Lum Kagawa holds a master's degree in Special Education and an educational administration certification.
Assistant Superintendent, Office of Strategy, Innovation and Performance
Rodney Luke was appointed Assistant Superintendent for the Office of Strategy, Innovation, and Performance (OSIP) on May 3, 2018. OSIP works to ensure that the aims of equity and excellence in the school system set by the Strategic Plan are systemized and supported. The three branches of OSIP are Assessment and Accountability, Data Governance and Analysis, and Policy, Innovation, Planning and Evaluation.
Luke began his education career as a tutor and special program coordinator. He was hired as a teacher at Aliamanu Elementary in 1990. From 1991 to 1999, he taught at UH Laboratory, Iroquois Point, Kaleiopuu and Holomua elementary schools. He transitioned to Waipahu Intermediate (2000-02), left the school to implement various initiatives as a district resource teacher in Leeward Oahu (2002-03), and later shifted roles to serve as Kapolei Elementary's curriculum coordinator (2003-05). He entered school administration in 2005 and served as vice principal at Kapolei Elementary (2005) and Holomua Elementary (2005-09), before serving as principal of Stevenson Middle (2009-11). Luke then served as Complex Area Superintendent for the Pearl City-Waipahu complex area (2011-17) and as Interim Assistant Superintendent for OSIP from Oct. 1, 2017. Luke has a bachelor's degree and master of education degrees in education administration and teacher education curriculum studies from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Christine Shaw, Interim Assistant Superintendent, Office of Facilities and Operations
Christine Shaw was appointed as Interim Assistant Superintendent for the Office of Facilities and Operations (OFO) on July 16, 2019, to oversee the business, construction and maintenance of facilities, food services, and transportation support for the public school system.
Shaw has worked in the public education sector for the past 25 years, with 17 years in higher education at the University of Hawaii (UH) and eight years in K-12 education with HIDOE. She has served for the past five years as Executive Assistant in the Office of Information Technology Services (OITS) and also served as OITS Interim Assistant Superintendent in 2015 and again in 2017.
She began her career at HIDOE as an analyst for data governance. Her prior work in the UH System included service as an Institutional Research Analyst and later as program manager for the UH student information system. Shaw holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, a bachelor’s degree from Chaminade University, and is a proud graduate of Castle High School.