James “Jimmy” Toledo Scholarship

Announcing the James “Jimmy” Toledo Memorial Scholarship for Union Members and Dependents.

The Next Generation of Leaders

The United Public Workers Foundation is proud to announce the opening of applications for the James “Jimmy” Toledo Scholarship, a testament to the enduring legacy of a revered union leader and advocate for workers’ rights in Hawai’i. This scholarship aims to support the educational aspirations of United Public Workers member dependents, fostering the next generation of leaders and thinkers in the labor movement.

Everything You Need To Know

This is more than just financial assistance; it’s an opportunity to grow, learn, and carry forward the torch of leadership and commitment that Jimmy represented.

The United Public Workers Foundation is proud to announce the opening of applications for the James “Jimmy” Toledo Scholarship, a testament to the enduring legacy of a revered union leader and advocate for workers’ rights in Hawai’i. This scholarship aims to support the educational aspirations of United Public Workers member dependents, fostering the next generation of leaders and thinkers in the labor movement.

To support educational advancement across our diverse membership, the United Public Workers Foundation will award five scholarships, each valued at $1,000. One winner from each Division will be awarded financial assistance designated for higher learning.

The scholarship is available to 2024 graduating high school seniors in Hawaii who are dependents of an active United Public Workers member. The UPW member must be in good standing for at least one year and the dependent must be enrolled in secondary education (college, university, trade, or vocational school).

A key component of the application process is a 500 to 1,000 word essay that addresses the prompt: “How has growing up in a union household influenced your perspective on work and labor rights in Hawai’i?” This question invites applicants to reflect on their experiences within union households and the impact of such environments on their views regarding labor rights and work ethics.

Essays can be submitted now through Monday, May 20, 2024. Applications, criteria, and guidelines for submission can be found on this page or at United Public Workers offices on Maui, Hawaii, and Kauai and the UPW Headquarters on Oahu.

Interested applicants should connect with their Union Representative to learn more.

  • Central idea is clear and developed in answering the prompt question (10 points)
  • Usage of grammar and mechanics (i.e. spelling, punctuation) effectively communicates idea (10 points)
  • Essay demostrates UPW values (10 points)


Each essay will be blind-graded by five judges for a maximum score of 150 points. In the event there are no submissions from a Division, the second-highest score out of all entries will be awarded a scholarship.

The UPW Foundation is a private corporation designated as a 501(c)(3) organization by the Internal Revenue Service. It is a legally separate entity from United Public Workers, AFSCME, and AFL-CIO. However, the UPW Foundation works closely with these organizations and others in the community exclusively to further the education of past and current United Public Workers members and members families by providing scholarships to help with educational programs, opportunities, and schooling as determined by the Board of Directors.

About
James “Jimmy” Toledo

The scholarship honors James Toledo, affectionately known as Jimmy, a figure synonymous with leadership and dedication within UPW. Toledo’s contributions were manifold; as Chief Steward of the Board of Water Supply where he worked for over 30 years, a member of the State Executive Board, and the BU 01 Executive Negotiating Committee. 

He was instrumental in securing protective provisions for working families in the union’s contract legislation. His unwavering commitment to the well-being of UPW members and their families left an indelible mark on our union and its legacy. Toledo sadly passed away in 2013 at the age of 72.

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