A celebrated figure in the field of education, Ladona Beth Schimmelfennig has accrued approximately 50 years of professional experience in her industry, being recognized for working toward attainable goals that empower and encourage students with special needs. Over the course of her vocation, she has
transcended countless roles, transforming the likes of students and colleagues alike. Currently a civil rights compliance specialist in the Office of the Superintendent of the Hawaii State Department of Education, Ms. Schimmelfennig also serves as an adjunct instructor at Hawaii Pacific University.
In preparation for her lauded career, Ms. Schimmelfennig obtained a Bachelor of Science in special education from the University of Tulsa in 1969. She followed this accomplishment with a Master of Arts in education from Pepperdine University in 1976. Subsequent to obtaining her degrees, she worked as a special education teacher
in both Oklahoma and Hawaii before she became the first special education coordinator for the Honolulu Community Action Program (HCAP) on the Island of Oahu, Hawaii. Later, Ms. Schimmelfennig was drawn to American Samoa, where she served as the director of special education for the American Samoa Department of Education, overseeing the Special Education Center as principal and directing services for children with special needs throughout American Samoa. In addition, during this time, she established and was the director for the first American Samoa Special Olympics. Ms. Schimmelfennig has since returned to Hawaii and has acted in countless roles within the education industry, tirelessly dedicating her time and passion to creating a realm where all children are given the tools to succeed.
In recognition of her exceptional achievements, Ms. Schimmelfennig was honored in 2017 with the Hawaii State Department of Education Award and Recognition, the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award, and as an honoree of the State Office Leadership Academy. A contributor of several articles to professional journals in an effort to share her wealth of knowledge with the community, until his passing, Ms. Schimmelfennig was married to Bryan Anapuni Schimmelfennig with whom she shares one daughter, Malia. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, the beach and hiking.
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