CAS Mahiʻs Last Lesson


NHIS Principal Darin Pilialoha, Nānākuli-Waianae CAS Ann Mahi, McKinley High School Principal Ron Okamura.

After 43 years of dedication in the Department of Education, Nānākuli-Waianae Complex Area Superintendent Ann Mahi has retired from the Department of Education and start a new chapter in her life.

 Mahi said, “I will be able to spend more time with my family and would like to pursue my passion to develop and support leadership in our state. I would also like to work with partnerships to support educational projects in the Nānākuli-Waianae community.”

Mahi’s educational career began in 1976 when she taught at schools in Waianae, Aiea, Radford, and Kahuku. Mahi also had roles in school and state leadership positions that included being the vice principal of Heeia Elementary from 1991 to 1993. She became the principal of Kailua Elementary from 1993 to 1997. She moved on to take the position of Kalaheo’s Complex School Renewal Specialist from 1997 to 2000. 

From then on she continued to go into positions in the Department of Education. She moved on to positions such as an instructional services educational director and community leadership director in the Department’s Office of Curriculum Instruction and Student Support. From 2011 to 2012, Mahi was the acting complex area superintendent for the Kaimuki-McKinley-Roosevelt complex and moved on to be the complex area superintendent of the Nānākuli-Waianae complex.

Mahi said, “The last eight years of my career in the Hawaii DOE has been a truly inspiring experience as part of the Nānākuli-Waianae community.  I have seen the work of our school administrators, teachers, staff, and community partners all dedicated to ensuring that the haumana are provided the best educational experiences in order to help each realize their dreams for the future.” 

Mahi sees the challenges that she faced during her career as “opportunities to create positive change and being the CAS of Nānākuli-Waianae has certainly afforded me experiences that have resulted in many accomplishments.”

Mahi had fond memories for NHIS, “What I remember most is the feeling of welcome and aloha from everyone each time I arrived on the NHIS campus. The office staff, security, custodians, teachers, cafeteria led by an incredible administrative team have created a culture of pride, tradition, and aloha for all the students, families, and visitors to this beautiful school.”

She highlighted some school events by saying, “The NHIS Songfest, NPAC performances and Graduation are the highlights for the year as the beauty and pride of the valley are showcased in their accomplishments.”

Nānākuli High and Intermediate Principal, Darin Pilialoha said “Ms. Mahi has been a champion for our Leeward Coast schools and all students.  She has been very supportive and attends school events that showcase our students.  The initiatives that she oversaw within our complex always looked at how we could make all students be more confident and successful.  She loved our community.”

Mahi has great hope for the Nānākuli-Waianae complexes. “ My hope is that the goals of creating our Nānākuli-Waianae A.S.S.E.T continues.” She explained that the goals are to have “achieving students, successful schools, strong families, and engaged partners for a thriving community.”

“It will take everyone in the Waianae Moku to embrace this vision for the haumana and believe that Na Kakou Na Keiki Apau o Nānākuli me Waianae – all of the children of Nānākuli and Waianae belong to all of us.  It is through leading by compassion and keeping what is best for our children at the heart of all decisions that we will truly be successful as a community.”

Mahi said, “I have been truly blessed to have had this opportunity to be part of the Westside Community.  I have met so many wonderful people in our schools and community who care deeply for the children and extend their hands and hearts in order to ensure that we continue to strive for the highest – Kulia I Ka Nu’u. I will miss everyone and thank you all for the very special well wishes for my retirement.  Aloha Nui Loa and A Hui Hou.”