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First Lady Dawn Ige reflects on her impact to Hawaiʻi's education system

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Washington Place
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Office of Gov. David Ige

On Nov. 24, Gov. David Ige and First Lady Dawn Ige will sit for their last Thanksgiving dinner in Washington Place.

Hawaiʻi’s first couple held a grand reopening of the second floor galleries to mark the 175 year anniversary of Queen Lili’uokalani’s home and the former home of Hawaiʻi governors in March 2022.

First Lady Dawn Ige presided over the festivities and welcomed guests for tours that finally resumed after the pandemic put everything on pause. The upstairs library at Washington Place is now open to the public for research.

The Conversation sat down with Dawn Ige in the room to reflect on the theme: “E Ola Mau I Ke Kumu: A strong foundation to grow and thrive.”

Mrs. Ige is a former teacher and school administrator. And so it was there in the classroom where she felt she left her mark as First Lady over the last eight years.

She expresses gratitude that she could tap into her time in the public schools as an educator to help children in the classroom during the health and economic crisis. She made more than 200 school visits during her time and feels confident about what teachers are doing to help students thrive.

This interview aired on The Conversation on Nov. 21, 2022. The Conversation airs weekdays at 11 a.m. on HPR-1.

Catherine Cruz is the host of The Conversation. Originally from Guam, she spent more than 30 years at KITV, covering beats from government to education. Contact her at ccruz@hawaiipublicradio.org.
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