Meet the Team
Co-Founder and Executive Director
Donavan Kealoha is a venture capitalist at Startup Capital Ventures, an early stage investment firm. In this role, Donavan serves on the board of directors for portfolio companies AreaMetrics and Hobnob; he is also a board observer with Breinify. Donavan is also a co-founder and Executive Director of Purple Mai’a, a 501(c)(3) non-profit EdTech startup, focused on providing indigenized tech education to underserved, high opportunity youth across Hawaii. Donavan is a licensed attorney and a proud product of the Hawaiʻi public educational system. He graduated from Lana’i High School and holds a BA, and JD/MBA from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.
Kelsey is a co-founder of Purple Maiʻa Foundation, where she helped conceive and run the Purple Prize competition in 2016 and 2017. She is also a candidate for the PhD in English at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. A graduate of Mililani High School and New York University, she lives in Puʻunui.
Director of the Purple Prize
Originally from Maui, Hawaii, Wagner attended Saint Mary’s College of California earning his bachelor’s degree in political science. Prior to joining the Purple Maiʻa Foundation, Wagner was appointed as a legislative analyst for the Maui County Council. He also worked at One World Training & Investments, a Bay Area impact investment and consulting outfit. In 2016, Wagner was nominated as a David Rockefeller Fellow of the Trilateral Commission. He has since been a part of the international organization’s Asia-Pacific Secretariat.
Kalei is the newest member of the Purple Prize team. Inspired by the mission of Purple Prize to bridge communities through collaboration and build a robust indigenous innovation ecosystem in Hawaii, she will be documenting the Purple Prize competition. Kalei recently graduated from Dartmouth College with a B.A. in Anthropology modified with Native American Studies and Government. She is also a legal assistant at MaxCorp, a Hawaii nonprofit legal services organization.
Creative Media and Marketing Lead
Naomi is a creative producer with an extensive background in the support of arts and culture. From developing an editorial newspaper with Hawaiʻiʻs leading media publisher to the organizing of Honoluluʻs largest urban markets to managing a Pan-Asia contemporary arts studio, she has helped some of Hawaiʻiʻs most promising cultural institutions today. In more recent years, Naomi made a pivot to venture into the world of tech and entrepreneurship, where she brings her interdisciplinary, world-bridging approach to building community and impact.
CONNECTIONS PHASE APPLICATION DEADLINE - 1/4/2019