Chancellor Don Straney hosted a social gathering on Wednesday to welcome new faculty to the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo.
Bios for UH Hilo’s new faculty and staff:
Michelle Agbigay: Administrative and Fiscal Support Specialist, Facilities Planning and Construction.
Previous positions: Project Coordinator, Kamehameha Schools—Hawai‘i Culture-Based Education; Project Support Specialist, UH Hilo, Housing Office; Project Coordinator, SSFM International Inc-Hilo Branch Office.
Academic background: Attending Leeward Community College, Accounting; LEED Green Associate Certification.
Jeanne Batallones: Counselor, Student Support Services Program.
Previous positions: Native Hawaiian Transfer and Career Guidance Counselor, Halaulani Transfer Success Center, Hawai‘i Community College; Counselor/Instructor, Gateway to College Program and Department Chair, Philippine Studies, City College of San Francisco.
Academic background: BA, Asian American Studies, and MS, Counseling (college emphasis), San Francisco State University.
Shugeng Cao: Associate Professor, Pharmaceutical Sciences.
Academic focus: Biologically active natural products from marine and terrestrial fungi and bacteria in Hawai‘i; manipulating silent genes; herbal medicine; small molecules with biological functions in bacteria.
Previous positions: Assistant Professor, University of Hawai‘i Cancer Center; Instructor, Harvard Medical School; Senior Research Fellow, Virginia Tech.
Academic background: PhD, National University of Singapore; Postdoctoral Fellow, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University; Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard Medical School.
George Karvas: Instructor, Pharmacy Practice.
Academic focus: pharmacy practice.
Previous position: Pharmacy Manager, Longs/CVS Punahele.
Academic background: BS, Pharmacy, Oregon State University (1991).
Oscar Larican: Office Assistant, Business Office.
Previous positions: Service Assistant, Big Island Honda–Hilo; Customer Representative, Homestreet Bank Queen Anne, Seattle; Senior Consultant, Usbank Corp.
Academic background: business computer network tech training; financial banking background experience.
Morgan Light: Evening Circulation Supervisor, Mookini Library.
Previous positions: Associate Librarian, Santa Fe University of Art and Design, Santa Fe, NM; self-employed piano tuner, Los Alamos, NM.
Academic background: Support Staff Certification, American Library Association (2014); Library Technology, Northern New Mexico College (2010); AA, Art and Biology, University of New Mexico (2009).
Monica Morita: Compliance Coordinator/Senior Women Administrator, Athletics.
Previous positions: Executive Assistant, University of Hawai‘i Football; Assistant Athletic Director/Director of Student Services, USC Athletics Stevens Academic Center; Assistant to the Head Football Coach, USC; Student Advisor, Masters Programs, USC Leventhal School of Accounting.
Academic background: AB, Journalism–Public Relations, MPA, and EdD, University of Southern California.
Jennifer Naguwa: Admissions Counselor, Student Affairs.
Previous positions: GEAR UP Assistant Project Manager, Hawai‘i P-20 Partnerships for Education; Senior Program Assistant, Hawai‘i Community Foundation.
Academic background: BBA and Masters in Education Administration, Higher Ed (in progress), UH Manoa.
Lukela Ruddle: Cultural Resources Management Plan Manager, Office of Maunakea Management.
Previous position: Community Outreach Coordinator, Office of Hawaiian Affairs.
Academic background: BA, English, UH Hilo.
Timothy Scheffler: Instructor, Anthropology.
Academic focus: human paleoeconomy and historical ecology.
Previous positions: Instructor, Tropical Ecosystem and Agroforestry Management Program (Forest TEAM), Hawai‘i Community College; Independent archaeological and geological contractor, Geohazards Consultants International, Inc.
Academic background: PhD, Penn State University (2008).
Jolene Sutton: Assistant Professor, Biology.
Academic focus: genetics.
Previous position: Postdoctoral Researcher, UH Manoa.
Academic background: PhD,University of Otago; MSc, Acadia University; BSc (Honors), Memorial University of Newfoundland.