My family and I made our home in Hawaii in January 2002. My husband, Dr. John Webster, is the Director of the Hogan Program at Chaminade University, and my most important mentor. Zubin and Sheela Jane Menon, my two adult children, make me feel like I am the luckiest mother in the world. I was born in Kerala and at six months, was brought to then British Malaya where I was raised with my three brothers and older sister. Like my father, John Victor Morais, I am glad to claim Trivandrum as my birthplace and greatly cherish my Kerala heritage. But I am so thankful my mother, Gladys (Vaz) Morais, did not yield to my grandmother’s entreaties to leave me with her in India for a bit. My grandmother promised that she would send me along to join my family in Malaya by and by, but my mother feared that day might never come! And thus I had the good fortune of growing up thoroughly Malaysian.
I’ve held communications management positions at Esso and at IBM in Malaysia and subsequently at its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Hong Kong; served as Creative Director of one of Malaysia’s leading advertising and PR agencies and headed the start-up of its Integrated Services business, serving both consumer and corporate accounts.
In Singapore, as an adjunct Associate Professor, I taught marketing, advertising and promotion at Nanyang Business School at Nanyang Technological University.
Through my independent consulting business I served KPMG, YCH Logistics, MPH Bookstore, Wilson Learning, the Nanyang Business School, the Singapore Armed Forces Training Institute (SAFTI) and others.
My professional life in Honolulu began with serving Chaminade University’s late President, Dr. Sue Wesselkamper as her communications consultant and supporting the establishment of the Hogan Entrepreneurial Program.
I became CEO of Loomis-ISC in 2003 when it was in danger of closing down after two and half decades. We chose to evolve from being a traditional advertising agency to one offering truly integrated communications counsel on the use of traditional and social media to build brands such as Innovations Development Group(IDG), Sumitomo Corporation of America, Avis/Budget and ING Direct. The agency paid special attention to the needs of nonprofits and to advocating for issues important to the community, including supporting the work of the Native Hawaiian Hospitality Association (NaHHA), Aloha Harvest and the Hawaii State Bar Association; promoting LGBT rights, B-Corps legislation, environmental protections, rail, and selected political campaigns. The work done for NaHHA has earned several coveted Adrian awards, competing with thousands of entries in the field of international travel marketing.
Having helped orchestrate its merger with Olomana Marketing, to form Olomana Loomis ISC, I left the agency in 2012. I previously served on the Board of the Biographical Research Center at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. I now serve on the board of the Better Business Bureau Hawai`i and the Hogan Advisory Board at Chaminade University. November 2014 was the start of my first term on the Board of Olelo Community Media which is dedicated to strengthening island voices and advancing community engagement.
I blog on faith, culture and politics on my own blog freecatholic808.com and periodically on Feminism and Religion, as well as on Huffington Post Hawaii. As adjunct faculty at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, I teach in the Honors Program, and at the Shidler College of Business. My consulting work has included advancing geothermal energy in Hawaii, promoting mediation, and raising awareness of the national Native Arts and Cultures Foundation in Hawaii. I currently provide communications counsel to Kua’āina Ulu ‘Auamo (KUA).
I earned a First Class Honors Degree in English from the University of Malaya and an M.A. in American Literature at UCLA. I completed my Ph.D. in English at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa in 2008.