Being a teacher and educator is an often-overlooked profession, but Ron Bright’s perspective is that the rewards and joy a teacher can receive from touching the lives of young students is unmatched.
Bright (shown above with dog pal Mele), who spent 50 years as Castle High School’s theater director starting in 1957, recalls his early days of teaching. “I was located in the ‘metropolis’ of Honolulu, as we called it, and there were no freeways or tunnels, just Old Pali Road. People thought I was crazy for going to the country to teach, especially at Castle High School,” he says. “I remember early saying to myself that I like what I do, that working with kids and helping making a change in the lives of kids gave me joy, and I wanted to bring that to Castle.”
Bright is an educator who always brought an enormous amount of energy and passion to the classroom.
“I could never just do a show, I had to be involved, immersed. People always seem to notice the energy, and that doesn’t just happen,” he says. “You have to drive young people so they know that they can always go beyond what they are comfortable with.”
His sincerity in creating a family atmosphere helped amplify a cohesiveness between him and his students. “It is not the glory of performing that I enjoy, it is creating a family setting, and seeing the camaraderie that goes on throughout each performance” says Bright, who appeared on MidWeek’s cover in April 2005.
In honor of his dedication and commitment to Castle High School, Bright will receive a “Knights of Distinction” educator award Nov.18 at a CHS alumni gala that honors the school’s educators and alumni for their contributions to the school and community.
Bright, 77, who still directs theater productions at Windward Community College, says that besides the theater, he is a baby-sitter of his youngest grandchildren Colton and Drew, who give him absolute pleasure.
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