Previously John Riggle had managed the Hawaii Music Ambassadors which took band membership from several schools in Hawaii as a touring group for Europe but after 15 tours, he disbanded the group after feeling that the tour fees became too costly for local residents. In 2002, John Riggle had then led the Kamehameha Schools Warrior Marching Band in it's third appearance in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses. He wanted to again find a way to share this experience with other students from Hawaii thus the Na Koa Ali'i - Hawai'i All-State Marching Band (HASMB) was formed.
The initial application there was no band - only a plan to form a composite performing group that represented various schools from the State of Hawaii. The staff included five band directors who had experience with their own groups in the Rose Parade. The group would practice monthly separately on each island with staff visiting between the islands to insure uniformity. The group will not rehearse together until the actually arrived on tour in Southern California -- much like a "gig" band - formed only for the unique occasion and then is disbanded afterwards. Each time the group is formed, it has had different membership and changing directors although the years.
John Riggle, Kamehameha Schools
Michael Payton, Kahuku High School
Eldon Seta, Moanalua High School
Derek Kaapana Mililani High School
Daryl Agena Kapolei High School
Kerry Wasano Maui High School
Siuai Laufou, Kamehameha Schools
Larry MacIntosh, Kauai High School
Randy Skaggs, St Joseph School
Big Island Director
Armando Mendoza, Hilo High School
Big Island Director
Music Arrangement by Siuai Laufou/Michael Payton.
Group Travel Planner
Group Travel Coordinator
Rickey Badua, Kamehameha Schools
In 2016 - The group has grown to 600 performers - at the time was the largest marching band to appear at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
The band has received an invitation to return to Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2021 but had to postpone due to Covid.
Na Koa Ali'i will be celebrating 20 years - making appearances in the biggest televised events in the US: four Pasadena Tournament of Roses parades and three Macy's thanksgiving Day parades. Over 2000 student performers from Hawai'i have participated since the organization's inception.