5 For the Future
Here are five young people we think you will be hearing a lot about in the future.
Aimee Grace, 27
Doctor in training
Aimee Grace just turned 27, but she has already accomplished more than many people do in a lifetime. Grace graduated from the University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine last May and is now working her first year as a pediatric resident at Stanford University.
She has traveled to the Marshall Islands, Tahiti, the Dominican Republic, China, Peru, Europe, Canada, Mexico and most recently Haiti, where she hopes to start a hematology and oncology clinic for Haitian children. She has served as an activist for HIV/AIDS patients, and is currently working on a Stanford Advocacy Track project to raise awareness about human trafficking.
Grace says she wants to be an advocate for needy people and communities. She says she can see herself one day working in the Marshall Islands or the more underserved areas of Hawaii, such as Waianae, Waimanalo and Molokai.
Grace says that she plans to move back to Hawaii and contribute to her home community after she is finished with her medical training. Grace’s other goals for the future include raising a family, enjoying life with friends and family, eating “yummy food,” surfing, running, and soaking up life back home, which she says she misses when she is away.
Ashley Monroy, 26
Hale Kipa Foster Care Program
Ashley Monroy keeps busy. She works full time as a therapist and case manager for Hale Kipa, helping Hawaii’s foster families. She also works part time as a co-facilitator for the Community Assistance Center for Therapy Groups, where she applies her master’s degree in counseling psychology providing therapy for convicted sex offenders at Halawa prison.
She says that she wants to bring awareness to the different populations who are often forgotten by society and “help them make good decisions for themselves.” After Monroy became a mother, she took another part-time job as a toddler reader with the Read Aloud America Program to inspire a love of reading in children. Monroy says eventually she would like to get a marriage therapist license and open a private practice.
Kim Hahn, Ashley’s mom, says that Ashley looks beyond the mistakes people have made and always tries to help people whom society has rejected. “Many young people her age choose a job based on how much they can make in a year,” Hahn says. “Ashley chose her occupation on how much of a difference she can make in a year.”
Race Randle, 28
Development associate, Forest City Hawaii
Race Randle’s grandmother always told him to either become an astronaut and explore space, or to do things that are big enough to see from space. Randle may literally achieve his grandmother’s metaphorical aspiration through the projects he manages for Forest City Hawaii.
He is working with the state to develop a 272-acre, $730-million, mixed-use affordable housing community in Kona that includes more than 2,300 homes. He is also leading Forest City’s plans to develop solar energy farms on Oahu, Maui, and the Big Island, and working with the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and the nonprofit La I Opua to develop a $92-million center for social services and medical care next to Kealakehe High School in Kona.
Forest City Chief Operating Officer Jon Wallenstrom says Randle is “uniquely mature, calm and organized.” Wallenstrom says Randle rarely gets flustered, even under heavy pressure, and that his “organizational strengths allow him to carry the very heavy load I require of him.”
Randle says one of his goals for the future is to “develop communities which enhance the quality of life for Hawaii’s current and future generations.” He says he’s not sure if these communities will be visible from space, “but I hope what I do is big enough to make a positive difference.”
Shanah Trevenna, 36
Leader in sustainability
Shanah Trevenna believes Hawaii will be a model for the world in sustainability. With a degree in mechanical engineering, Trevenna came from Canada to earn a master’s degree in urban planning and a Ph.D. in political science at the University of Hawaii. She has since helped lead the campus’s sustainability movement.
Trevenna led a student group called Sustainable UH to reduce Saunders Hall’s energy bill by $150,000 without spending a cent. “It’s amazing what students have learned to do with nothing,” she says.
Trevenna’s internship class helps Hawaii businesses find savings and she uses her “Sustainability 101” curriculum to train organizations. As a keynote speaker for conferences like Harvard’s Sustainability Institute, she shares UH’s successes with the nation.
Trevenna wants to be a lifelong professor at UH and ultimately create a world-renowned Institute for Sustainability. Trevenna applies her love of surfing to her ocean wave energy research and is writing a book called “Surfing Tsunamis of Change.”
Trevenna says she has fallen in love with the Islands and the thing she loves most about Hawaii is how people support each other. “There is something about Hawaii’s island culture and natural beauty that inspires and reminds everyone of what is important.”
Daniel Zelikman, 25
Director of digital marketing, StarrTech Interactive, a division of Anthology
The world is going digital, and Daniel Zelikman knows the digital world.
Zelikman says his responsibilities at StarrTech are “lead strategy and campaigns for all things digital,” which includes everything from designing Web sites to promoting opportunities for StarrTech’s clients through marketing and advertising, social media and marketing, analytics, viral promotion, mobile applications, mobile advertising, and a list of other emerging technologies.
Zelikman says his goals for the future “are a bit blurry” and he admits he still has much to learn, but he has an interest in working with nonprofit campaigns and high-profile organizations that want to do good things in the community.
“(It’s) a win-win situation when you can get exposure for a great cause that helps people while still letting a branded organization gain some exposure. Combining that type of work with my knowledge of digital could be something I work for in the future. That, or somehow figuring out how to be entrepreneurial while exploring this amazing planet.”