Who’s Who in AILH?
Roxanne Bolden – Executive Director
A graduate of Hawaii Pacific University with a degree in Psychology, Roxanne began her career in the independent living field in 1992 where she worked as a student intern at Hawaii Centers for Independent Living (HCIL). She was later hired as an Outreach IL Specialist in 1996 where she covered the Leeward and North Shore areas of Oahu. She was then promoted to Outreach Coordinator where she assisted former Executive Director Mark Obatake, with the creation and hiring of staff for the Guam and Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) Centers of Independent Living. After Mr. Obatake’s retirement and under new management, Roxanne became the Special Programs Coordinator as the Liaison for the San Diego State University’s (SDSU) Rehabilitation Community Educational Program (RCEP) and the Coordinator for the National Technical Assistance Center (NTAC) for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders for Employment.
After leaving HCIL in late 2004, she was contracted by Independent Living Waipahu, Incorporated (ILW, Inc.) as the Project Coordinator, where she raised thousands of dollars in fundraising efforts and helped to bring public awareness to Hawaii’s first technically enhanced, accessible environment for persons with significant physical disabilities. Aside from her many years of employment experiences working with individuals with disabilities, Roxanne is a sibling to two brothers that were born with learning disabilities. In addition, she has two other brothers who are US Veterans that have suffered from PTSD, partial deafness, and psychiatric illness.
Royce Makaea – IL Specialist
Royce worked as a caregiver at Kokua Care LLC, an organization established in 2003 that provides home care for Oahu’s “kupuna” (elderly). As a caregiver, he assisted Hawaii’s kupuna with services such as companionship, daily errands, and household chores. He was also a Skills Trainer for troubled youth at two different organizations: Hawaii Center for Children and Rainbow House. He worked with the homeless and those with mental health issues at Mental Health Kokua and Care Hawaii. As a case manager for the Hawaii Drug Court Program, he has worked with numerous drug addicts while being a practicum student. Prior to joining AILH, he worked briefly with HCAP’s LIHEAP program and with Network Enterprises as a Job Placement Specailist, concentrating on homeless veterans.
Thomas Lum – IL Specialist
Tom has worked for over eight years at Lanakila Rehabilitation Center Inc. During his time there, he was responsible for training and monitoring peoples with disabilities, along with coordinating with different social workers, parents and guardians in making plans to prepare and train them to gain work experience and social skills. One of Tom’s fondest moments was assisting a consumer who is visually impaired to learn how to weave a hula skirt. He was asked to take this challenge and wholeheartedly embraced it as he came up with a solution of videotaping himself weaving the skirt and sharing it with the consumer’s mother so that the consumer can continue his lesson at home. He also provided training to other staff members in Lanakila.
Leelynn Harris – Student Intern
Leelynn is a current student at Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) studying in International Relations and Diplomacy and Military Studies. She is also a student employee at HPU in the Files and Data Management Department. She has fulfilled a lifelong commitment to volunteerism for many non-profits, such as Hawaii Centers for Independent Living, Hawaii FiDo, Independent Living Waipahu, INC, St. John’s Apostle and Evangelical Catholic Church, and most currently, Aloha Independent Living Hawaii. This desire to give back to her community is a value instilled in her by her parents and grandparents who have actively participated in community and social organizations, along with her strong faith teachings. Upon her completion of education, she desires to achieve employment as the United States Ambassador to Japan or a Foreign Service Member of the National Security Agency.