After serving as the organization’s executive director since 2012, Randy Wong was named President by the HYS Board of Directors in 2018. Mr. Wong oversees all administrative, strategic planning, fundraising, educational, and operational aspects of the organization and is an alumnus of HYS.
A musician himself, Mr. Wong performs professionally in the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra. He studied classical double bass with Todd Seeber (Boston Symphony Orchestra) and Jeffrey Turner (Ret. Principal, Pittsburgh Symphony), jazz bass with Cecil McBee and Keala Kaumeheiwa, and further jazz studies with Michael Cain. He leads The Waitiki 7, an ensemble inspired by midcentury exotica music, and co-founded the label Pass Out Records. His music has been licensed for TV, film, performed by symphony orchestras, acclaimed by national press including Mother Jones, Giant Robot, JazzTimes, and NPR, and has topped college, world, and jazz radio charts. (Apple Music subscribers can find Waitiki’s music under Apple’s curated “Essential Exotica” playlist.)
Mr. Wong holds degrees from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and New England Conservatory. He has published research on music’s essential roles in communities and education and served on the New England Conservatory faculty from 2009-2018. He is also an alumnus of the Emerging Leaders Program (League of American Orchestras), the Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders (Stanford Graduate School of Business), and the AmEx Leadership Academy (Center for Creative Leadership). In 2018, the Hawaii Community Foundation presented him with a Ho’okele Award for nonprofit leadership.
Mr. Wong currently serves on the Executive Committee of the League of American Orchestras’ Youth Orchestra Division, chairs its Professional Development Resources committee, and the Leadership Team of Hawaii Public Radio’s Generation Listen.
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