Character. Heart. Excellence
Our talented and committed teachers provide individualized attention to help each student achieve his or her academic and personal best.
Lead Teacher - 4G
Alan Ching has taught a generation of Hawks at Holy Nativity School, teaching since 1996. He enjoys teaching 4th grade and seeing the growth in his students, who take more ownership for their education, start to ask inquisitive questions and take more responsible risks in class. He looks forward to their annual Big Island trip each spring, and enjoys coaching Hawks Athletics. Alan holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Redlands.
Educational Specialist - Kindergarten
Liz Cunningham has been part of the Holy Nativity School family for a major portion of her life. She is a graduate of HNS, and has worked as a teacher here since 1989. Liz finds it especially rewarding providing valuable “TLC” in the classroom and on the playground. Working as an Education Specialist, she finds great satisfaction tending to the smaller, but no less important, needs of the children.
Lead Teacher - PreK
Renee Eveland has been part of the Holy Nativity School family since 2006. Mrs. Eveland received a B.Ed in Elementary Education from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, and has her certification in Early Childhood Education. She loves teaching PreK, providing a safe place where children are free to explore, take risks, make mistakes, and grow!
Lead Teacher - 6G
Ms. McGraw grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana. She attended Mt. St. Mary's University in Maryland for her undergraduate studies and recently graduated from the University of Portland with her master's degree. Ms. McGraw brings a wide breadth of experience having previously been a learning support specialist and teaching middle school social studies.
Educational Specialist - Keiki 3s
Nancy Greenberg is an honor graduate in Family Consumer Science and over twenty years of management and administration experience. She is thrilled to bring her love of early education back to her hometown.
Lead Teacher - Kindergarten
A transplant from New York in 1968, Anna Ruth Peterson Kaneshiro, known as "Petey," graduated with a BA from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. Petey has taught a generation of Hawks at Holy Nativity School, serving as Lead Kindergarten teacher since 1989. She is also a proud alumni parent — her sons Daren and Dean attended HNS from preschool through sixth grade.
Lead Teacher - 5G
Eileen has a BA in Liberal Studies, and graduate studies in both Organizational Management and Secondary English Education. She has been a teacher on O‘ahu for 9 years, and has experience teaching elementary grades, middle school and high school. Eileen has also worked in community colleges and universities so she has insight which helps her to meet her students where they are and help them plot a path towards successfully reaching their long-term educational goals.
Lead Teacher - 1G
Jenna Kieburtz joined the Holy Nativity School team in 2014. She was born here on Oahu, but was raised in the beautiful state of Washington. Jenna received her Bachelor’s in Sociology and Master’s in Teaching from Washington State University. Jenna taught internationally in Shenzhen and Chengdu, China. She is grateful to have the experience working with the international community abroad. Jenna first grade students learn to be kind and considerate members of their community, while also embracing the many opportunities to explore, inquire, and develop their individual passions.
Lead Teacher - Keiki 3s
Staci Overton–Tune moved to Hawai‘i after earning degrees in early childhood education, elementary education, and an endorsement in special education from the University of Northern Iowa. Staci began teaching at HNS in 2006, returning in 2013 after a brief return to the mainland. As Lead Teacher of Fifth Grade in 2017, Staci was awarded the Hawai‘i Association of Independent School’s Teacher-of-the-Future award. Staci is thrilled to return to teaching in Keiki 3s, nurturing our youngest learners at Holy Nativity School.
Educational Specialist - 5G
Destaney holds a BA from Northern Arizona University, and a Master’s Degree in Education with a concentration in School Counseling from Liberty University. This is her 5th year in education and 4th year as a teacher.
Dr. Kirtland Peterson
Lead Teacher - 2G
A graduate of Princeton University and Hahnemann University’s clinical psychology program, “Cat” Peterson believes in academic rigor and lots of fun. A change-of-career elementary-school teacher, Cat spent most of his professional life as a management consultant to Fortune 500 and International 1000 corporations. Arriving at Holy Nativity School in 2014, he felt immediately at home at our little school in the valley. Dr. Cat strives to be good company for the right journey, acknowledging the journey is different at every age, and unique for each and every student.
Educational Specialist - 4G
Sakiko Sugihara has started her career at HNS as a counseling intern in 2016. Sakiko serves as both Education Specialist in fifth grade and teaches school-wide weekly Mindfulness to all HNS classes. She loves to help students succeed both academically and interpersonally.
Educational Specialist - 1G
Jana Takemura joined Holy Nativity School in 2016 as an Educational Specialist. For nine years prior, Jana had taught elementary grades at various Honolulu schools. She has a BA in Family Resources from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, and a MEd from Chaminade University. Jana is a dedicated teacher who always looks to personalize education for each child.
Lehua Alo Williams
Educational Specialist - PreK
Lehua Alo Williams has been at Holy Nativity School since 1999. Born and raised in the islands, Lehua graduated from Punahou School, holds a B.S. degree in Early Childhood Education and a Master’s degree in Elementary Education from Chaminade University. Lehua is also a certified member of the American Montessori Society, and enjoys teaching in an environment where children are encouraged to investigate the world around them, while also feeling a sense of belonging and responsibility to their little school in the valley.
Educational Specialist - 2G
Erin Zitz has been part of the HNS community since 2010. Erin was a commercial pilot, has served as a parent volunteer, PTO officer and altar guild member. She brings a deep and varied expertise as the 2G education specialist.
After joining HNS in 2014, Jan Israel now serves as the Religious Studies teacher. She has thirty years of teaching experience, a Master’s in Learning Disabilities, and a family of happy HNS graduates and current Hawks.
Physical Education Specialist and Athletic Director
Pepper, or “Coach Pepper” to students, has been teaching/coaching for 15 years. She’s passionate about developing a love for exercise in children. There are so many life lessons that can be learned through sports and team building!
Digital Citizenship as an integral part of the HNS educational experience. We support, encourage and lead all students to understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science by aligning with the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) standards. In addition to developing these skills, students will be able to evaluate and apply information technology to solve problems analytically. Critical to this skill development is learning responsible, healthy, and creative use of information and communication technology
Visual Arts Teacher
Jane Kim is passionate about teaching and has been in the education field for over 20 years. She believes in motivating students to be lifelong learners, by making creative connections that are applicable to the world around them. Jane has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies with an Elementary Education concentration and Art minor from Concordia University in Irvine, California. She also has a Masters of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and a concentration in Art Therapy from Notre Dame de Namur University. As an educator, she has worked with learners from Preschool to grade 6. She believes all children can succeed in school and is committed to helping them achieve their goals.
Lead Teacher - 3G
Dara Torres was born in California but grew up in Canada. She has over 12 years of teaching experience and has taught in Canada, Chile, South Korea, and Hawai‘i. After teaching internationally, Dara moved to Hawai‘i, where she taught 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade for 6 years before joining Holy Nativity School in 2017. Dara earned Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Education Degree from Vancouver Island University. Dara enjoys teaching in a small and nurturing environment, building upon the qualities of respect and inclusion. Students are celebrated as individuals, but are also encouraged to recognize their role in the global community.
Educational Specialist - 3G
Britne was born and raise in Tennessee. She attended University of Memphis were she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in both teaching and nursing. She also holds an Associates of Arts degree in social work. Britne is dedicated and thrives on creating individual lesson plans for her students as she knows not every student learns the same.
Cindy has a Bachelor of Music Education from Illinois Wesleyan University and a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from the University of California, Berkeley. For more than ten years, Cindy has served students and teachers across the country as a teacher, leader, and educational thought partner. She holds student-centered planning, whole child learning, and equitable outcomes at the core of all teaching and learning practices and believes all students are capable of learning when provided the right tools. She is excited to be working with the vibrant community and students of Holy Nativity School in discovering their passions and talents as musicians and performers.