While most public servants rush to get opportunities off-island, Rita Elementary School Principal Baldwin Robert does the opposite — he turned down a request to travel to Hawaii where he was to be recognized at the recent annual Joint Economic Management and Financial Accountability Committee meeting. Why? He had work to do at RES. The US members of JEMFAC took the rejection as additional proof Baldwin was worthy of recognition, so an Interior Department official flew the award to Baldwin in Majuro last week. US Ambassador Karen Stewart and DOI’s Ryan Edgar presented the unique award to RES Vice Principal Rod Nakamura, Jr. on behalf of Baldwin, who was sick, during a special school assembly. “This is your award,” Ryan told the children and staff gathered in the field. Ryan said recent test scores, improvements and developments from RES are the basis of the special award as he congratulated the assembly. The award recognizes Principal Robert as an “Outstanding Partner in Education.” The plaque also contains a brief biography detailing Robert’s accomplishments as a scholar which included the first WASC accreditation of a public elementary school — Delap Elementary School while Robert was the principal there. “I’m glad the school got the award,” Robert said at his Delap residence hours after the award ceremony.
Read more about this in the October 6, 2017 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.