Committee Members

Travis Brown- President

Travis Brown and Max Robinson created this scholarship to help students follow a similar path to the one they have. After graduating from Konawaena in 1999, Travis studied marketing at San Diego State University. Through his classes and role as a resident advisor, fraternity member, and student athlete, Travis made a diverse yet tight knit group of friends and business partners. A few years out of college, Travis has already worked in the sports marketing industry and as a financial advisor on the US East Coast. Travis is currently working as the outside sales manager in Southern California for Borrmann Metal Center headquartered in Burbank, California. Travis is responsible for daily operations and sales for customers that compete globally in manufacturing, machining, and fabricating.

Jasen Brown- Scholarship

Growing up in Kona and inheriting the Hawaiian traditions has shaped my life in many ways.  After graduating from Konawaena High School in 1997, I furthered my education at Santa MonicaCity College and majored in Fire Science.  I played 2 years on the volleyball team and graduated with an A.A. in Fire Science in 1999.  My dreams came true in July of 2002 when I became a Firefighter/Paramedic.  To this day, I am still continuing my education by pursuing a B.S. degree in Fire Science because I feel education is the cornerstone to success.
Currently, I work for Redondo Beach as a Firefighter/Paramedic and have career goals to move up the promotional ladder and become a Captain.  Growing up in Kona has even sparked my passion to compete in the sport of triathlon and my top goal is to complete the Kona Ironman one day.  To this day Kona still has a very special place in my heart and I enjoy going back every opportunity I have to re-visit family and close friends.

Kelly Jean Brown- Scholarship

A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Kelly attended the Pennsylvania State University and in 2000 graduated with honors with a degree in Nursing.  Kelly moved to Maryland and spent a few years working as a pediatric nurse at Johns Hopkins Hospital.  She eventually became a travel nurse and moved to California but never lost sight of her Pennsylvania roots.  Kelly met both Travis and Max while living in La Jolla, they were all neighbors.  Kelly and Travis were married in 2008 with Max as their best man.  Kelly has traveled back to Kona multiple times with Travis and has fallen in love with the beauty, the culture, and the kindheartedness of the community.  Kelly currently lives in Cardiff and is working as a Nursing Informaticist at Rady Children’s Hospital.  Kelly enjoys yoga, tennis, and time at the beach.

Paul Tralka- Marketing

Paul moved to the Big Island to attend the University of Hawaii at Hilo while on the National Student Exchange Program from the University of Rhode Island.  He earned his degree in Coastal and Marine Policy/Management and a B.A. in Communication Studies.  While in Hilo, he met his wife, Latisha who is from the Big Island. After getting married they restored an old plantation home in Kukuihaele, above Waipio Valley, and settled into life on the Hamakua Coast.  An opportunity to help re-launch a historic Hawaiian Beer called PRIMO brought Paul to Southern California.  He now works as a Marketing Representative for Primo Brewing and Malting Co. and lives in Cardiff with his wife, his dog Kalei and his newborn son, Koa.

Odie Sumi- Hawaii Events

After graduating from Konawaena High School, Odie pursued a degree in Industrial Technology from California Polytechnic State University San Louis Obispo. At Cal Poly he helped organize The Hawaii Club which served as a support organization for home-sick local kids from Hawaii. He has since returned to the Big Island where he owns and operates Pure Paddles. “My experiences in college were essential to the success of my business here in Hawaii. I know first hand the needs and how huge every bit helps for these college bound students. I”m stoked for the opportunity to part of The Kona-California Scholarship and give back as much as I can!”

Michael Hickman- Fundraising

Michael Hickman grew up in Waimea on the Big Island of Hawaii.  Michael went to Hawaii Preparatory Academy from kindergarden till graduation, he left for a year as a sophomore for Massachusetts to a school that specialized in learning techniques. While attending HPA he played Football, Soccer and Baseball.  After graduating from HPA in 2001 he decided to play soccer at Santa Rosa Junior College in Northern California.  When his time was up at SRJC he decided to transfer to San Diego State University where he majored in Criminal Justice.  While at San Diego State University Michael began working in the restaurant business.  He continues to do so at Donovan’s in La Jolla.  Michael is excited to be part of the Kona-Cali crew and help give back to youth where he was so fortunate to be raised.