Laverne Moore receives inaugural HSTA Pono Award for activism

During the convention, HSTA gave its inaugural 2016 Pono Award for social activism to Laverne Fernandes Moore, a special education teacher at McKinley High School. Moore is president of HSTA’s Honolulu Chapter, is a long time HSTA leader and has taught in the public school system for 46 years.

The award recognizes one exceptional member who demonstrates the ability to lead, organize and engage educators, parents, and the community to advocate for social justice. Social justice issues such as immigration reform, school discipline, equity in education, LGBTQ bias and issues, English language learner advocacy, racial profiling, voter suppression and/or bullying.

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Moore, who was born on the first day of the Hawaii Sugar Strike, is a dedicated social activist and union organizer. She has promoted the rights of English Language Learners and has also worked to provide shelter for the homeless. More than a decade ago, Moore received the National Education Association’s coveted Ellison Onizuka Award, given annually to an individual for his or her work with Asian and Pacific Islanders.

Moore will be submitted as HSTA’s nomination for the NEA Social Justice Activist Award.