Russell K. Okata Scholarship

A small town boy from Pepeekeo on the island of Hawaii, Russell K. Okata grew up to lead the largest union in Hawaii and serve as HGEA's executive director for 26 years. During his tenure HGEA became a "full-service" union, offering members an array of benefits, including support for HGEA members and their dependents to continue their education through the Charles R. Kendall Scholarship and Education Fund. To carry on his effort, HGEA now offers the Russell K. Okata Scholarship.


Awards are available to members and their dependents who are attending or plan to attend a community college or vocational, trade or other post-high school study on a full-time basis. Member must be in good standing for at least one year.

NOTE: The application process for the Russell K. Okata Scholarship is the same as the Charles R. Kendall Scholarship. To be considered for the Russell K. Okata Scholarship, you must fill in the checkbox next to “I plan to attend one of the following: community college, vocational or trade school or other post-high school study. If other, please specify:” on the first page of the application, under the APPLICANT section.

Instructions and Criteria:

The following criteria and maximum points for each criterion will be used in making final selections for scholarships. Total maximum points is 100. Applicants will be ranked and recommended for scholarships by the numerical composite score.

  1. Charles R. Kendall Scholarship & Education Fund Application
  2. Financial Need (30 points)
    • Complete the Financial Statement
      • You must provide complete information
      • If a space is left blank or indicated "not applicable," you must explain why
      • You may attach a narrative to further explain your financial condition
  3. Academic Achievement (40 points)
    • Official high school and/or college transcripts should be mailed directly to HGEA and be received or postmarked by the deadline
    • If you are a first-year college student, please submit your high school transcript in addition to submitting your college transcript
    • If you are unable to provide official transcripts due to financial circumstances, please provide a copy and an official transcript may be submitted if your application is selected
  4. Personal Letter (20 points)
    • Compose a personal letter including:
      • What HGEA has meant to you and/or your family
      • How you and/or your family have been involved with HGEA
      • Why you are seeking a scholarship
      • What extracurricular activities you have been involved in and why
    • You must also include a list of HGEA activities, including the year participated, in which you or your parent(s) have been involved
    • There is no minimum or maximum requirement on the length of the personal letter
  5. Recommendations (10 points)
    • Submit the names and contact information for a minimum of three recommenders. Each recommender will receive an email with a recommendation form pre-populated with your application information. They will then fill out and submit their recommendation electronically.
    • Current or past coaches, employers, teachers, or professors may write the recommendations. All others will not be accepted.
    • All forms are due by January 16, 2024.
  6. Photo
    • A headshot photo (high resolution JPEG or TIF digital file) is required.
    • Email to Wesley Aki at or mail a photo with the application materials
    • Photos will not be returned and only used if the applicant is selected

Personal letter and recommendation letters will become the property of HGEA and C.R. Kendall Scholarship & Education Fund once submitted and will not be returned.