Governor appoints bank CEO to BOE

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Gov. Neil Abercrombie has appointed First Hawaiian Bank CEO Don Horner to the Board of Education.

Horner fills the vacancy Oahu-at-Large seat created when Lei Ahu Isa resigned last month.

This is the governor's first appointment to the BOE. In November, voters decided to allow the governor to appoint board members rather then have an elected board.

"Don Horner has the skills and experience to oversee an organization as complex and large as Hawaii's public schools system," Gov. Abercrombie said. "We are looking for people to serve on the Board of Education who are committed to Hawaii's students and who can help bring fundamental change."

Horner, who has been recognized for his community service, is the board chairman and chief executive officer of First Hawaiian Bank.

In 2009, he chaired the State Legislature's Reinventing Government Task Force that examined various government agencies, including the Department of Education.

He was vice chairman of the DOE's Interagency Working Group that implemented Act 51's legislation and served on the Superintendent's Advisory Council.

"I am honored and humbled by the governor's confidence, support, and our shared commitment to education," Horner said. "Governor Abercrombie and I have high expectations for our schools. My priority will be to provide strategic support and a clear vision for our dedicated DOE employees, our students, and their parents."

Horner serves on the board of trustees of Iolani School, and is a trustee-emeritus of Mid-Pacific Institute. He has served on the Advisory Council for both the University of Hawaii at Manoa's Shidler College of Business and the School of Nursing.

He received his Bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and has a Master's in Business Administration from the University of Southern California.

Horner's appointment is effective immediately.

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