A world traveler, a secretly talkative alumni, a hardcore outdoorsman, and a seasoned athlete walk into school on the first day of the school year…

While this may seem like the beginning of a bad joke, it’s actually a description of the four new teachers on the high school campus. HBA welcomes Michelle Hendrick (Social Studies), Risha Mishima (Science), Gray Spainhour (Spanish), and Dawson Vorderbruegge (English) to this year’s high school faculty.

[one_third]IMG_2533[/one_third]Michelle Hendrick (Social Studies)

Social studies teacher Michelle Hendrick is the definition of “multicultural.” Her life can be portrayed by her holding her two favorite dishes, Swedish meatballs and Bibimbap, while the colorful flags of America, China, and South Korea fly in the background. Hendrick has lived in Florida, Georgia, New York, Hong Kong, and most recently South Korea. During her travels, she has had many adventures including hitchhiking with a random Chinese couple and teaching the chicken dance to students in Korea. For now, she has embraced a more relaxed lifestyle on Oahu and enjoys spending her time surfing, reading, drawing, and watching Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday.


[one_third]IMG_2529[/one_third]Risha Mishima (Science)

Although she may appear reserved, biology teacher and 2009 HBA alumna Risha Mishima would rather always say everything on her mind than never be able to speak again. Her favorite song, “Shatter Me” by Lindsey Stirling featuring Lzzy, contains upbeat and expressive violin music accompanied by inspiring and liberating lyrics. She’s helped her dog give birth, giving the term “hands on learning” in biology a whole new meaning. Mishima enjoys sleeping in on weekends like her students and drinking a nice cold glass of root beer.


[one_third]IMG_2531[/one_third]Gray Spainhour (Spanish)

Gray Spainhour, with his salt and pepper gray hair, has visited Spain and teaches Spanish. He’s done almost every outdoor activity possible and loves hiking, playing disc golf, surfing, kayaking, fishing, water skiing, and snow skiing. Not to mention, he’s completed the Appalachian Trail, a 2,100 mile hike from Maine to Georgia that took six and a half months. On his journey, Spainhour discovered God’s calling in his life to teach. Spainhour is also a fan of Finding Nemo and coffee. Did I mention his name is Gray Spainhour?


[one_third]IMG_2526[/one_third]Dawson Vorderbruegge (English)

Towering over most students at six feet tall and crossing the campus quickly with his long legs, Dawson Vorderbruegge is built like a runner, and that’s exactly what he is. In college, he ran Cross Country and Track, and was named two-time All-American runner in the 1500 meter race. Coincidentally, Dawson’s favorite verse has to do with his sport: Hebrews 12:1 concludes with, “…let us run with endurance the race marked out for us.”  This year, Dawson is teaching British Literature, Communication Skills, and Intro to Theater.  When asked if he preferred Coke or Pepsi, the athlete responded with “water.”