By Cynthia Wessendorf
With nearly four decades teaching at Punahou and four generations of Punahou alumni dotting the family tree, Scott ’69 and Sharan Power’s ties to the school run deep. In appreciation for those bonds and to continue the legacy left by Scott’s parents – the Lillian Lowrey ’38 Power and Richard W. Power Endowed Scholarship – the couple made a planned gift to support students active in the performing arts.
Scott comes from a long line of Hawai’i movers and shakers. In 1878, his great-grandfather, Frederick Jewett Lowrey, left San Francisco for Honolulu. Frederick landed work with the lumber company Lewers & Cooke and took over as president in 1901. Scott’s great-grandmother Cherilla Lowrey was founding president (1912) of the Outdoor Circle, which was instrumental in banning billboards from the Islands.
Sharan’s Hawai’i roots were planted later. Originally from Texas, she graduated from Texas Tech with a double major in English and Latin. After teaching two years in Texas, she took a hiatus to ski in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, where she met Scott. He had graduated from the University of Denver and worked for Alexander Grant CPAs for a couple of years in Honolulu and also was taking a hiatus.
After a few years, Scott and Sharan moved back to Honolulu. She considers herself very lucky to have found a job at Punahou teaching Latin to middle-schoolers, a language whose practicality and underlying logic sparked a lifelong passion. Over the years, Sharan also enjoyed traveling to Italy with students and parents. “Travel is an important part of a well-rounded education,” says Sharan, who retired from Punahou in June 2018.
Scott works as the president of O’ahu Mortuary, as well as president and trustee of O’ahu Cemetery and Crematory. Founded in 1844, the historic nonprofit cemetery in Nu’uanu is the burial place of many notable figures – including Scott’s own ancestors – and, in collaboration with Hawaiian Mission Houses, is the site of the popular living history series, Cemetery Pupu Theatre.
Sharan and Scott’s two daughters are both graduates of Punahou. Punahou gave Stephanie ’03 the opportunity to live for a year in France and teach for a year in China. Punahou gave Shelby ’05 a group of lifelong friends who still get together as often as possible. When their daughters were in school, Scott served on the Punahou Alumni Association Board and was the president in 1996. As a member of the Class of ’69, he also co-chaired four previous Reunions and is currently co-chair for his 50th Class Reunion.
Sharan and Scott have incorporated community service into their lives. Sharan headed the community service program in seventh and eighth grades until the Luke Center for Public Service was built. Working through Weinberg grants for over 20 years, she recruited and sponsored students to work as caregivers for children at HUGS Respites.
Among Scott’s service commitments, he relishes his role as founding board member of the Ma-noa Heritage Center and Kuali’i Foundation. “I have enjoyed helping Sam ’55 and Mary Moragne ’54 Cooke bring to fruition their shared vision of creating an education center for inspiring people, and children in particular, to be thoughtful stewards of their communities,” Scott said. At the end of the day, Scott and Sharan are most grateful for the myriad of ways that Punahou has influenced their lives.