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Chancellor Irwin hosts 2024 Awards and Recognition Celebration; annual awards honor top faculty, staff, and student employee

Honorees at the event were those who won awards given out annually for extraordinary contributions to campus, retirees, and those who have worked at UH Hilo for milestone decades.

Title page UH Hilo logo, 2024 Awards and Recognition Celebration, April 24, 2024.


University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Chancellor Bonnie Irwin on April 24, 2024, hosted the annual Awards and Recognition Celebration. Honorees at the event were faculty and staff who won awards given out annually for extraordinary contributions to the campus, those who retired during the previous year, and those who have worked at UH Hilo for milestone decades. One student award is also bestowed each year.

The 2024 honorees are as follows:


UH System Awards

Two women and one man stand for photo. Kerri is in lei and holding certificate.
From left, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Keiki Kawaiʻaeʻa, Professor of History Kerri Inglis who was awarded a UH Board of Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Teaching, and graduate student and nominator David Freund. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)
Three women stand for photo. Jennifer is in lei and holding certificate.
From left, psychology student and nominator Mia McGrath, Assistant Professor of Psychology Jennifer Turner who received a Frances Davis Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, and UH Hilo Chancellor Bonnie Irwin. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)

 

  • UH Board of Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Teaching: Kerri Inglis, Professor of History
  • Frances Davis Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching: Jennifer Turner, Assistant Professor of Psychology

Click here for descriptions of the awards.


UH Hilo Awards

  • Student Employee of the Year: Nawai Makua, Campus Center
  • Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching: Kevin Emmons, Associate Professor of Nursing
  • Koichi and Taniyo Taniguchi Award for Excellence and Innovation: Kananinohea Mākaʻimoku, Assistant Professor, Kahuawaiola Indigenous Teacher Education program
  • Outstanding Advisor/Mentor Award: Celia Bardwell-Jones, Professor of Philosophy
  • Excellence in Building & Grounds Maintenance Award: Richard Okamura, Building Maintenance Worker I
  • Excellence in Service Award: Francis Cristobal, Junior Specialist in Computer Science
  • Pūlama ʻIke Award: Patsy Iwasaki, Assistant Professor of English
  • Distinguished Service Award for Improving Student Life: Lissa Tsutsumi, Assistant Professor of Applied Agricultural Sciences (did not attend event)

Click here for descriptions of the awards.


Retirees

(as of Dec. 31, 2023)

Three retirees wearing lei hold commemorative bowls. Chancellor Irwin stands at right.
Attending event were retirees, from left, Jacqueline Sales-Iyo, Katharyn Daub, and Tammy Tanaka. Chancellor Irwin at right. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)
  • James Anderson, Department of Geology, 34 years
  • Raymond Busniewski, Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani, Hawaiian Language College, 27 years
  • Charlene Cockett, Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy, 16 years
  • Katharyn Daub, School of Nursing, 26 years
  • Normand Dionne, Computing Center, 29 years
  • Patricia Grossman, Office of Admissions, 39 years
  • Marta deMaintenon, Department of Marine Science, 24 years
  • Michele Kubojiri, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, 29 years
  • Vernon Medeiros, Facilities Planning, 18 years
  • Richard Murray, Campus Security, 12 years
  • Elise Nakamoto, Facilities Planning, 30 years
  • Jacqueline Sales-Iyo, College of Business and Economics, 30 years
  • Althea Sumiki, Auxiliary Services, 17 years
  • Tammy Tanaka, Office of Research, 35 years
  • Lorna Tsutsumi, College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management, 45 years

Years of Service

10 Years

7 honorees for 10-year milestone stand for photo with Chancellor Irwin.
Attending the event celebrating 10 years of service are, from left, Shugeng Cao, Tanya Ibarra, Donna Ohora, Ryan Perroy, Kalei Rapoza, Michelle Shuey, and Aaron Tresham. At far right is Chancellor Irwin. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)
  • Jay Abiley-DeSa, Building Maintenance Worker 1, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs
  • Jennifer Atkins, Groundskeeper 1, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs
  • Ariana Bassett, Theater Technician, Performing Arts Department, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Shugeng Cao, Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy
  • Gregory Chun, Executive Director, Center for Maunakea Stewardship
  • Jonathon Goebel, Associate Professor of Art, Humanities, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Chelsey Grant, Fiscal Specialist, Student Affairs
  • Jenni Guillen, Instructor of Biology, College of Natural and Health Sciences
  • Lindy Hern, Associate Professor of Sociology, Social Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Tanya Ibarra, Graphic Designer, Graphics Services, Office of University Relations
  • Rachel Hualani Loo, Director, Kīpuka Native Hawaiian Student Center, Student Affairs
  • Brennan Low, Web Developer, Web Services, Office of University Relations
  • Cherie Mehrabian-Sani, Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice, Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy
  • Julie Mowrer, Assistant Specialist, English Language Institute, Academic Affairs
  • Nani Munekata, Financial Aid Specialist, Student Affairs
  • Tracey Niimi, Student Support Specialist, Office of Student Affairs, Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy
  • Kula Oda, Athletic Support Specialist, Intercollegiate Athletics
  • Donna Ohora, University Librarian, Edwin H. Mookini Library
  • Ryan Perroy, Professor of Geography, Social Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Matthew Platz, Professor of Chemistry, College of Natural and Health Sciences
  • Kalei Rapoza, Vice Chancellor of Administrative Affairs
  • Michelle Shuey, Instructor of Geography, Social Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Sang Son Sumida, Senior Fiscal Specialist, Business Office, Administrative Affairs
  • Lauryn Toki, Secretary II, Humanities, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Aaron Tresham, Instructor of Mathematics, College of Natural and Health Sciences
  • Simona Vaduvescu, Instructor of Chemistry, College of Natural and Health Sciences
  • Cynthia Yamaguchi, Educational Specialist, Academic Affairs

20 Years

4 honorees for 20-year milestone stand for photo with Chancellor Irwin.
Attending the event to celebrate 20 years at UH Hilo are, from left, Jean Ippolito, Janice Ho Chee, Kristin Kong-Carvalho, and Lisa Parr. At right is Chancellor Bonnie Irwin. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)
  • Gary Ah Sing, Janitor II, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs
  • Chatney Asato, Administrative Officer, College of Natural and Health Sciences
  • Steven Carreira, Janitor II, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs
  • Davelyn Cruz, Secretary III, College of Arts & Sciences
  • Janice Ho Chee, Janitor II, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs
  • Sydney Ichinotsubo, Janitor II, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs
  • Jean Ippolito, Professor of Art, Humanities, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Kristin Kong-Carvalho, Library Technician V, Edwin H. Mookini Library
  • Carrie Masanda, Fiscal Manager, Business Office, Administrative Affairs
  • Lisa Parr, Instructor of Marine Science, College of Natural and Health Sciences
  • Russel Strong Jr, Groundskeeper I, Auxiliary Services, Administrative Affairs

30 Years

5 honorees for 30-year milestone stand for photo with Chancellor Irwin.
Attending the event to celebrate 30 years of service at UH Hilo are, from left, Bruce Mathews, Darin Igawa, Laura Pajo, Jacqueline Sales-Iyo, and Michael Tanaka. At right is Chancellor Irwin. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)
  • Walter Dudoit, Public Information Specialist, ʻImiloa Astronomy Center
  • Darin Igawa, Media Specialist, Graphic Services, Office of University Relations
  • Bruce Mathews, Acting Associate Vice Chancellor for Research, Academic Affairs
  • Laura Pajo, Library Technician V, Edwin H. Mookini Library
  • Jacqueline Sales-Iyo, Secretary III, College of Business and Economics
  • Michael Tanaka, Fiscal Specialist, Facilities Planning, Administrative Affairs

RCUH Years of Service

(Research Corporation of the University of Hawaiʻi)

Wade Yoshizumi, in lei, with Chancellor Bonnie Irwin.
Wade Yoshizumi and Chancellor Bonnie Irwin at the 2024 Awards and Recognition Celebration, April 24, 2024. (Photo credit: Maria Andaya)

10 Years

  • Gaylen Kalipi, Fiscal Assistant, ʻImiloa Astronomy Center
  • Michael Keliʻi, Scientific Instrument Electronics Technician, Institute for Astronomy

15 Years

  • Wade Yoshizumi, Hale Pōhaku Cook/Service Worker, Maunakea Support Services, Institute for Astronomy

20 Years

  • Ellis Simon, Pacific Coordinator, Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Center, College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management

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