David Masunaga

  • David Masunaga

    David Masunaga

    Candidate for President-Elect


    Mathematics Teacher, Iolani School, Honolulu, Hawaii (1979-Present).


    M.Ed. (Mathematics and Science Education), Harvard University (Cambridge, Mass.); B.A. (Mathematics), Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.).

    Professional Memberships

    National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), Leadership in Mathematics Education (NCSM), TODOS: Mathematics for ALL, Benjamin Banneker Association, Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE), American Mathematical Society (AMS), Mathematical Association of America (MAA), National Museum of Mathematics (MoMath), Council of Presidential Awardees in Mathematics (CPAM), Hawaii Council of Teachers of Mathematics, California Mathematics Council, Metropolitan Mathematics Club of Chicago, Association of Mathematics Teachers of New Jersey, Association of Teachers of Mathematics (U.K.), National Science Teaching Association (NSTA), National Council of Teachers of English, National Art Education Association, National Association for Music Education.

    Leadership Experiences in Mathematics Education

    NCTM Chicago Regional Meeting Program Committee (2018); NCTM Board of Directors (2009-2012); NCTM Budget and Finance Committee Chair (2011-2012) and Member (2009-2012); NCTM Emerging Issues Committee (2009-2012); NCTM Nominations and Elections Committee Chair (2003-2004) and Member (2001-2004); NCTM Navigations Series, Committee Member and Writer (2001-2003); NCTM Program Committee, 80th Annual Meeting (2000-2002); NCTM Editorial Panel, Mathematics Teacher (1995-1998); NCTM Editorial Panel, Student Math Notes (1992-1995); Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Invited Symposium Speaker on M.C. Escher (2022); National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.) Lecturer on the Mathematics of M.C. Escher (1992-2019); CPAM President (2015-2019) and High School Director (2014-2015); MoMath/Brookhaven National Laboratories Gifted Student Program Lecturer (2015-2018); NCTM/MoMath Joint Commission on National Mathematics Engagement (2012); Teachers College at Columbia University Invited Colloquium Speaker (2012); Selection Committee, NCSM Glenn Gilbert National Leadership Award (2003); over 400 mathematics talks given at the meetings of NCTM, MAA/AMS, MoMath, Mathematical Sciences Research Institute, National Youth Science Foundation, Textile Society of America, and other professional research organizations.


    Coauthor, “Math Medley,” Mathematics Teacher (MT) November 2020; Writer, NCTM Figure This! Middle School Math Project (1999-2004); Writer, World’s Largest Math Event (2001-2002); Cover art for 5 MT issues (1998-2003); Writer, 7 issues of Student Math Notes (1993-2002), Articles for focus issue on “Proof” in MT (November 1998).


    Northwestern University Distinguished Secondary Teacher Award (2017); Teacher-in-Residence, Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, (2004); MAA Edyth May Sliffe Award (2000); National Mathematics Program Outreach, Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation (1986-1997); GTE Growth Incentives for Teachers Awardee (1995); Fallingwater Educators Residency and Institute in Architecture (1992); Hewlett-Packard Technology Grantee (1992); Tandy Technology Scholars Program for Mathematics Teachers National Awardee (1991); Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (1985).


    I have a passion for mathematics and empathy for the teachers trying to instill that passion in their students. As a classroom teacher I have experienced the painful challenges of the last three years and witnessed the academic and social-emotional costs. While the global pandemic has hindered mathematics learning, our present school teaching situations provide an unprecedented opportunity for NCTM to help math teachers at all levels and with all audiences.  

    One way is to find new ways for NCTM to engage students and teachers through its already rich print and online resources. For example, the Figure This! project, Student Math Notes/Student Explorations in Mathematics, and Illuminations offer widely unknown treasures which are beginning to find new life in classrooms. These resources not only provide for compelling and application-driven mathematics, but have been research-vetted and ready for immediate teacher use.

    Second, the ongoing efforts of NCTM’s skilled teachers, supervisors and teacher educators have provided invaluable guidance in the mathematics classroom by holding webinars which specifically address the challenges of online mathematics teaching, learning and supervision. Over many years I have grown convinced of the power of professional collaboration.  My work with many related and varied organizations like the National Museum of Mathematics, the National Mathematics Festival and the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art has produced resources for teachers, promoted the Council and sustained progress in bringing the best mathematics teaching to all students, regardless of ability level, achievement, socioeconomic status, gender, and location. My memberships in other science and arts education associations have taught me how teachers in other disciplines meet common challenges that all teachers today face.

    In over four decades I have been extraordinarily blessed to be a full-time teacher while serving diverse audiences in many leadership capacities at NCTM and its Affiliates.  These are opportunities that more math teachers should have. If NCTM is to be a viable go-to educational and advocacy organization, it must ensure that it has a growing membership with many possibilities for its members to flourish.  I am committed to making the wonderful pedagogical and leadership opportunities that have benefited me available to new groups of teachers, for our work to provide the highest quality of mathematics to everyone is always growing yet far from complete.