Punahou alumnus and QSC Audio Products and Quilter Labs founder Patrick Quilter has agreed to make a $1.6 million donation over the next five years to his former high school, Punahou School, located in Honolulu, Hawai’i.
Quilter’s generous gift will help support the building fund for a new recital hall, dubbed the Patrick H. Quilter Concert Hall, with additional funds earmarked for the purchase of fretted stringed instruments and traditional Hawaiian instruments for Punahou students.
“My Punahou physics course taught me everything I needed to know to get started in electronics and laid a foundation that allowed me to begin building my first crude circuits in college,” said Quilter, who graduated from Punahou in 1964. “Punahou was the first school where I really blossomed and as a ‘science geek’ I enjoyed my science classes, particularly my physics class because it tended to be about ‘how things work’. I can still recall the many ‘aha’ moments as basic principles were explained and it was from these beginnings that I was able to forge such a long and rewarding career in professional audio.”
Music is an integral part of the K–12 educational experience at Punahou. Through music, students develop and enhance their creativity and appreciation of the arts. The School’s music programs are recognized nationally for excellence in performance and instruction, and for their broad diversity of offerings.
“Punahou is deeply grateful for Pat Quilter’s generous leadership gift, which will benefit students for decades to come,” said Punahou school president James K. Scott. “Our vision is to be recognized as one of the finest music programs in America, one that emphasizes creativity, collaboration and a deep understanding of Hawaiian culture. This gift will help Punahou realize that goal.”
The Patrick H. Quilter Concert Hall, which is in the preliminary planning stage, will provide a new and much-needed acoustically treated performance venue for students. The state-of-the-art facility will allow Punahou to host a variety of more intimate performances such as guitar recitals, jazz ensembles, Junior School children’s choirs, and other small and mid-sized events. The gift also supports other needs of the Punahou music program, which may include student access to fretted stringed instruments and Hawaiian music.
The son of a Marine aviator, Quilter enrolled at the University of Rochester after graduating from Punahou, where he studied Physics and Mechanical Engineering. After two years in New York, Quilter relocated to Southern California to be with this family, where he completed his formal studies at Cal State Long Beach. In 1968, Quilter, along with business partners Barry Andrews and John Andrews, formed Quilter Sound Company and began building power amplifiers and guitar amplifiers to meet the needs of local musicians and artists. Today, QSC is one of the largest and most respected manufacturers of professional audio products in the world with company headquarters located in Costa Mesa, CA and additional locations in Boulder, CO and Hong Kong and a worldwide staff of over 400 audio professionals. In 2011, Quilter returned to his passion of designing and building guitar amplifiers and founded Quilter Labs where he designs and builds guitars amplifiers for some today’s biggest artists in music.
“I was privileged to attend Punahou and I am elated to be able to give something back to an institution that had such a huge impact upon me. I am please that this contribution will support the future of music, Punahou, our industry, and my personal passion for music,” said Quilter.
Groundbreaking on the Patrick H. Quilter Concert Hall will commence within the next five to six years.