50th Anniversary 50 Finest

This special 50th Anniversary commemorative award recognizes the outstanding contributions and service of people who have impacted the quality and success of the community colleges.

These individuals, programs and services were selected by their peers to receive the University of Hawaiʻi Community Colleges "50 Finest " award given to those who have significantly contributed to the growth and innovation of the community colleges over the years.

Automotive Program Automotive Program at Honolulu Community College
Honolulu Community Colleges' Automotive Program is one of the longest running programs since the college opened its doors in 1920, and continues to produce high-quality graduates from its NATEF Master Automobile Service Technology Accredited program—the highest level of achievement recognized by NATEF. Along with the master automobile recertification, Honolulu CC received the new integrated academic certification in the areas of mathematics, science and language arts. This integration provides students with the skills needed to be successful in their major, profession and life. This program has maintained its NATEF certification since 1993 and is certified in all eight Automotive Service Excellence (ACE) areas. For 11 years, the program has been home to the Hawaiʻi High School Summer Auto Academy sponsored by First Hawaiian Bank in partnership with the Cutter Dealership and numerous public high schools. The program also provides training to other industry technicians and instructors in hybrid and electric vehicle technology. Through these accomplishments and new initiatives, the program continues to have a tremendous impact in the industry and in education.

Donald Bourassa, Retired Dean of Instruction at Honolulu Community College and Former PCATT Director
Don Bourassa's colleagues say that his vision, planning and hard work contributed to the tremendous growth and innovation of Honolulu Community College's Career and Technical Education Programs. After teaching and attaining the rank of professor, Bourassa began serving the college as its assistant dean, director of technical program development, dean of instruction, and director of the Pacific Center for Advanced Technology Training (PCATT). He led the transformation of the Electronics program into the CENT program of today. He oversaw the NATEF certification of the Automotive and Auto Body programs. He established PCATT and gave the college national media and industry exposure by serving as president of the National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers. In the words of his nominator: "He touched the professional lives of all personnel in PCATT during his time as director, but most importantly, he was a mentor, colleague and friend to all. Don was truly a visionary who was able to see his visions to fruition through is dedication and especial his hard work."

Manny Cabral Manuel Cabral, Chancellor of Leeward Community College
Manny Cabral has devoted his life to Leeward Community, first as a faculty member, then as division chair, Campus Council chair, and now as chancellor. Under his leadership, the campus enrollment has continued to grow at record levels, donations and scholarships have increased, and faculty/staff support has expanded. His colleagues attribute the forward momentum and re-energizing of Leeward to Cabral's influential leadership, his effective engagement with the community and his honest zeal to get the best for Leeward CC. With his persistence, the new education building has been completed, the first new building on the Pearl City campus in almost 40 years, and the expanded facilities at Leeward CC Waiʻanae are in the works. This past year, he received the first Hawaiʻi State Science Olympiad STEM Appreciation Award. The Middle and High School Spirit Award was renamed as the 'Manuel Cabral Spirit Award' in his honor. He was also nominated by the National Asian/Pacific Islander Council as its representative on the AACC Commission on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for 2014-15. In the words of his nominator: "From his 2006 BOR Excellence in Teaching Award to his many years a math and science division chair and Campus Council chair, Manny is the caring, intelligent leader that we at Leeward have always needed and now have!"

Joseph Ciotti Joseph Ciotti
Professor, Physics, Astronomy, Mathematics; and Director of Center for Aerospace Education, Windward Community College

A professor of physics, astronomy and mathematics, Joseph Ciotti is truly Windward Community College's master innovator. The creation of the Imaginarium, one of only two located on Oʻahu, the Aerospace Education Laboratory, NASA Flight Training Aerospace Education Laboratory and the Lanihuli Observatory were the direct results of Ciotti's outstanding leadership and commitment to the growth of the campus. As a result of his 20+ years of innovation, Windward CC has gained an expansive reputation as a leader in science education, locally and nationally. As one of his nominators said, "These are the activities that meet the public eye, but out of view are the countless hours of design, preparation and continued upgrading of the Imaginarium that Professor Ciotti has contributed. His work is exemplary. For these reasons and more I nominate him as one of UHCC's 50 Finest."

Lillian Cunningham Lillian Cunningham, Retired English Associate Professor, Windward Community College
Lillian Cunningham started teaching English at Windward CC at the beginning of the new campus, and has been a constant supporter of the college ever since. She is the innovator behind Windward Community College's literary journal, "Rainbird," and the inspiration to numerous students who've since launched successful careers in writing. A recipient of the University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents' Excellence in Teaching Award, she was instrumental in bringing renowned Poet Laureate Ted Kooser to Windward Community College in 2006. Even in retirement, Cunningham has continued to support the growth of the college as a member of the Aesthetics Committee where she offers thoughtful advice on improving the campus. She continues to help produce Rainbird, and draws numerous community members to the college through her noncredit "Writing Retreats." In the words of her nominator: "She is a cornerstone of the college and continues to support its growth and improvement. It is clearly a life-long commitment on her part, and the college has become a much better place because of her."

Curriculum Central Curriculum Central at Leeward Community College
Curriculum Central is a collaborative online curriculum management and assessment system developed by the Leeward ICS instructors in 1997 to maintain curricular records and fulfill accreditation standards. The system continued to be improved and expanded over the years. The online database documented current status of curricular deliberations and maintained historical records. Curriculum Central improved efficiency, reduced cost, increased consistency and minimized a paper-based curriculum management system. Courses can now be tracked to verify the authorization process with permanent records archived for historical review. Relevant information can be extracted to create college catalog and course syllabi. The database can easily be accessed online creating cross-platform utilization. The database evolved over the years to include documentation of Student Learning Outcome (SLO) for all courses. In 2006, ACCJC Board Members were impressed with the database's ability to create consistent Course Syllabi that automatically incorporated course SLOs. In 2007, Curriculum Central was re-launched for use by all UH Community Colleges. Plans are currently in the works to incorporate Curriculum Central into a new software application for the entire UH system.

Kathleen Damon Kathleen Damon, Retired Director of the University of Hawaiʻi Center, West Hawaiʻi; and Former Dean of Student Services at Leeward and Honolulu Community Colleges
Her colleagues describe Kathleen Damon as a passionate and staunch supporter of students, a strong advocate for students with disabilities, and a proactive leader who encouraged professional development and goal setting for every employee. In the early stages of distance education, she collaborated in leading a team of administrators to develop a schedule of courses for an associate's degree delivered strictly by distance education. There was a vision and a goal to offer students an opportunity to obtain a college degree no matter where they resided. The opportunity directing the UH Center in West Hawaiʻi also continued to deliver distance education bachelor and master degrees statewide. She has since retired as the director of the University of Hawaiʻi Center, West Hawaiʻi where she served from 1998. In the University of Hawaiʻi System, she spent seventeen years as a dean of student services, first at Leeward Community College and then at Honolulu Community College. Previous to that she was a tenured professor in English at Windward Community College. In the words of her nominator: "There are many of us at Honolulu CC who truly missed her energy, vision, and positive outlook when she moved onward to the West Hawaiʻi campus. She is so deserving of this award."

Takako Desaki, Retired Personnel Officer at Leeward Community College
For more than 30 years, Takako Desaki provided continuity, stability and leadership in human resources at Leeward Community College. She initiated an in-house computerized information system and established the annual Leeward CC Student Employee of the Year Award to honor outstanding student employees. Her colleagues say that her intelligence, discretion, good judgment and keen analytical skills are characteristics that distinguish her as a leader in her field. She is described as a solid role model in all aspects of service to the university and its community. After retirement, she continued to support the UH System at the human resource offices at Kapiʻolani and Honolulu Community Colleges. Desaki's impact on all the campuses is immeasurable.

Josephine Duvauchelle, Retired Professor, Nursing, Kauaʻi Community College
In 1967, Josephine Duvauchelle was recruited by Kauaʻi CC to establish its nursing division. With her, she brought unique educational and professional experiences, and knowledge of community needs. Not many women, at her time of youth, attended college. With the help of her mother, she enrolled in the University of Cincinnati, the first collegiate school of nursing in the nation. She began her career at the American Hospital in the Philippines and upon accepting an offer to come to Kauaʻi to help immigrant Filipino workers, she became directly involved in building quality healthcare on the island. Duvauchelle went on to earn a master's degree in nursing from UH Mānoa in 1982. At Kauaʻi CC, Duvauchelle designed a program that fit the needs of the community, which at the time, called for nurses aids. The program evolved to include training of students to become licensed practical nurses (LPN) and registered nurses (RN). Today, the college's health education unit boasts a healthy enrollment and consists of nursing, allied health, and early childhood care and education programs. Duvauchelle and her family established one of the college's earliest endowments to fund nursing scholarships and academic awards, which have annually supported numerous students since 1988.

Early Childhood Education Early Childhood Education Program at Honolulu Community College
Long before the Governor made it his goal of providing early childhood education for every preschooler, the Honolulu Community College's Early Childhood Education program has been advocating quality early childhood education for more than three decades. The program has always stood for high quality education for early childhood practitioners, and it shows. Its training facility sets the standard for running an accredited learning center for infants, toddlers and preschoolers is needed. The Early Childhood Education program oversees and manages the children centers at Honolulu, Kapiʻolani, and Leeward campuses. The Keiki Hauʻoli Children's Center is the primary training site for students enrolled in the Early Childhood Education certificate and degree programs at Honolulu CC, and has long provided quality care and learning opportunities for children of Honolulu CC students, employees and the community. Staffed by certified teachers, teacher trainees, and student assistants, Keiki Hauʻoli Children's Center was established in 1981 and continues to maintain its high-quality and high-performance ratings. It has successfully attained accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children since 2004, and most recently has been reaccredited for another five years.

English Department (Represented by Laura Nagle, Eric Engh and Marnie Masuda) at University of Hawaiʻi Maui College
In the words of the nominator: "Our English faculty members have made huge contributions to the UHMC community. Laura Nagle synposized discussions and edited the considerable text responding to recent WASC. Sr. Accrediting Team visit, and initiated funding for a laptop project connected with English writing classes that improved retention and persistence. Eric Engh provided English faculty leadership that markedly improved student retention rates throughout the English classes offered. And Marnie Masuda is an English faculty member who is growing student literary interests through the college literary journal and reading event as well as leading the Hawaiʻi Writing Project that continues to provide professional development for DOE and other teachers of English."

Fashion Technology Program Fashion Technology Program at Honolulu Community College
The Fashion Technology program was founded in the 1920's with a mission to serve the community as a learning-centered, open door program that provides technical training to meet the demands of the fashion industry and the needs of the individual. It not only achieved its mission, but also has evolved into an innovative technologically advanced program launching numerous fashion design careers and garnering wide national attention. The program offers an associate's degree and certificates of achievement to approximately 70 registered students each semester. While the curriculum focuses on theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed for clothing construction—such as industrial sewing, flat pattern making, designing, textiles, fashion sketching, grading, marking and cutting and computerized grading, marking, and pattern making—the program also provides many opportunities for students to highlight their work in fashion shows and other showcases. The outstanding faculty of the Fashion Technology program continues to nurture these talented students in every way they can, and always encourages them to reach for the stars!

Linda Fujikawa Linda Fujikawa, Professor, Languages, Linguistics and Literature, Kapiʻolani Community College
Linda Fujikawa embodies the spirit of Queen Liliʻoukalani by encouraging Kapiʻolani CC students to strive for the highest. Linda does exceptional work reaching out to at-risk students through her International Cafe group, helping to motivate students to reach their potential. Her students have gone on to pursue advanced degrees and work in prestigious programs such as the Japan English Teaching (JET). In the words of her nominator: "I had the pleasure of working with Linda on her dossier, and have first hand knowledge of her volunteer work with community partners as a staff volunteer at her events. Linda is a hands-on mentor who practices kindness while at the same time encourages her students to be engaged citizens. Linda and her husband Robin are both recognizable faces on campus to students and faculty alike. They are the first to greet people on campus and are a reliable source of positive encouragement to those around them."

Hawaiʻi National Great Teachers Seminar (Represented by Professors Larry Fujinaka and Dennis Kaibara)
Now in its 26th year, the Hawaiʻi National Great Teachers Seminar continues to impact the lives of teachers across the nation. Organized by Leeward Community College staff, the Hawaiʻi National Great Teachers Seminar is based on the principle that teachers are the experts in teaching and learn best from one another. High school teachers, community college and university faculty from throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia and the Pacific Rim converge in Hawaiʻi for the annual seminar, most recently held at the Volcano National Park on the island of Hawaiʻi. Nationwide, the growing participation can be credited to the Seminar's proven success in enhancing the classroom performance of tens of thousands of teachers over the past quarter of a century. In the words of the nominator: "We would be remissed if we didn't recognize the leadership of two individuals, professors Larry Fujinaka and Dennis Kaibara, for having the foresight to invest time and energy in establishing the first Great Teachers Seminar 26 years ago in Hawaiʻi. This seminar truly reenergizes teachers and inspires us all to be greater teachers."

Hawaiian Studies (Represented by Kaleikoa Kaeʻo and Kahele Dukelow) at University of Hawaiʻi Maui College
The success and growth of the Hawaiian Studies program at UH Maui College are attributed to the collaborative teamwork of the program and the leadership of Kaleikoa Kaeʻo and Kahele Dukelow. Colleagues say that their foresight, dedication and commitment to grow the program—from improving the curriculum to reaching out to each and every student and supporting fellow kumu's education and learning process—have been felt across the campus. The innovation and wealth of information that they gather, share, teach and pass on to others have steadily grown the campus' presence and accreditation worldwide. In the words of their nominator: "The level of awareness of what is needed to move the next generation forward in a positive environment and with a positive outlook has really broadened the lives of each and every person they have touched. Maui is truly blessed with their collective presence."

Donna Haytko_Paoa Donna Haytko-Paoa, Professor and Coordinator of the Molokaʻi Education Center, University of Hawaiʻi Maui College
A recipient of the Willard Wilson Award in 2008, Donna Haytko-Paoa is the leading force for higher education on Molokaʻi. This year, she celebrates 30 years of commitment and dedication in providing countless residents with the opportunity to achieve their academic and career goals. Through her tireless and relentless efforts, the Molokaʻi Education Center has grown from the former Maui Electric building to a beautiful campus with new buildings, a library, a computer lab and state-of-the-art learning technology. She continues to grow the programs and facilities through her contributions on the Long Range Development Plan. In the words of her nominator: "The community of Molokaʻi is richer for having her at the helm of our canoe."

Nancy Heu Nancy Heu, Retired Head Librarian and Professor, Windward Community College
When the Library Learning Commons (LLC) opened in early Spring 2012, the college was indebted to Nancy's unwavering determination and resolute follow-through to merge a library facility along with a range of academic services. Students, faculty and the broader community are beneficiaries of this gathering place where learning is pursued and intellectual discourse thrives. With a positive, can-do attitude Nancy and a coalition of supporters drawing on students, colleagues and the community lobbied Legislators when a standing room-only crowd of 200 supporters greeted the legislators to express their support, a corner was turned, and $41.6 million was subsequently appropriated. Her follow-through and leadership continued as the LLC's Building Coordinator until her retirement in 2013. Nancy is a consummate organizer, and an educator who knows teachable moments when she sees them. In the words of her nominator: "From her countless hours of assistance and expertise at the reference desk, to her development of Library curriculum to her successful development of a strategy for Library learning and process outcomes assessment that is considered exemplary by her colleagues, Nancy is an educator/leader…and a builder toward a better college."

George Higa, Retired Vice Chancellor for Administrative Affairs, University of Hawaiʻi Community Colleges
During George Higa's 20 years of service with the University of Hawaiʻi, he made significant contributions to the university and in particularly to the community colleges. He started at Kapiʻolani Community Colleges as Provost Fred Haehnlan's administrative assistant, then in 1980 he became the director of administrative services for the UH Community College System. In 1988, his position was retitled to vice chancellor for administrative affairs. In his role as vice chancellor, Higa was instrumental in assisting the senior vice president/chancellor in planning and directing the growth and development of the UH Community College System. He was able to secure legislative support for the development of Kapiʻolani Community College at Diamond Head, and the initial planning funds for Maui College and Windward Community College. His tireless leadership helped enable the UH Community Colleges to enjoy unprecedented growth and prominence in the 1980s in terms of operation and CIP needs.

David Iha, Retired Board of Regents Executive Administrator/Secretary, and Former Provost of Kauaʻi Community College
David Iha was a pioneer whose guidance and foresight facilitated the development of Kauaʻi CC to become one of the leading community colleges in the nation. Iha played a major role in the planning and development of the present Puhi campus. He was the college's force of visibility from Haena to Mana. In his quiet and humble way, Iha's power of persuasion to execute partnerships with community and industry leaders provided financial support; equipment and expertise to further enhance programs at the college. He led the college in being a vital partner in the economic growth of the island. When Kauai experience several major economic disruptions, the college expanded continuing education and training programs to quickly respond to needs. Iha was a visionary and his projections were based on his commitment to build a quality institution for higher education. He worked on promoting Kauai CC as an international education center and established a state-of-the-art Kauaʻi CC Performance Arts Center to promote music, art and Hawaiiana. He established the still ongoing exchange programs with several colleges and universities in Okinawa and Japan. These partnerships enabled Kauaʻi students to have opportunities to study abroad and for international students to visit and study at Kauai. A colleague shared, "David promoted not only the educational credibility of KCC and the UH system, but also the spirit of goodwill and aloha for the state of Hawaiʻi."

Nancy Johnson Nancy Johnson, Professor, Nursing, Allied Health, University of Hawaiʻi Maui College
Nancy Johnson began her career at UH Maui College in 1983 as a nursing instructor and grew to lead the Allied Health department as its department chair. Nancy championed instruction through cable television and led other nursing faculty to recognize the potential for nursing instruction to be extended by technology, introducing the beginnings of distance learning to the Maui campus. As a pioneer of telehealth, Nancy's nursing students benefited directly by her addition of a telehealth module, providing home-bound patients nursing services. Nancy has been a key figure in the nursing program transition to the new systemwide nursing curriculum with the opportunity for associate degree nursing students to continue their pursuit of a BSN degree at UH Maui College. Through Nancy's leadership, the Dental Assisting and Dental Hygiene programs were created when the Maui District Health Director confronted the college with the startling fact that more than a third of Maui County and the state's population have little access to dental services. In the words of her nominator: "It is a privilege to be a part of the difference that Nancy Johnson has made as a community college professor and leader. She is truly someone who has made an impact to the growth and innovation of our college, her colleagues, her students, and the allied health professions."

Roy Kamida, Professor, Accounting, Business Division, Leeward Community College
Roy Kamida's 30 years of dedication to excellence in education and community service sets an example for all of us. A licensed CPA and former accounting program coordinator at Leeward CC, Kamida is a recognized as a generous giver of his time. Roy has served as business division chair, and has served on numerous campus and system committees such as the Faculty Senate, Curriculum Committee, Accreditation Self-Study Committee. He was even called upon and chaired the search committee for one of Leeward CC's chancellors. Roy Kamida's name is synonymous with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site at Leeward CC. He heads a band of over 80 volunteers that provide free income tax preparation services to low and middle income taxpayers in the community. He trains the volunteers in January. From February through March, the VITA site is open every Saturday morning, as well as Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. Roy is there everyday to answer tax questions, to do final reviews on returns, to provide technical support on the computers, and he does all the behind-the-scenes organization so everything runs smoothly. Needless to say, this is an incredible feat and takes a very special person with incredible knowledge, energy, and dedication. As a result, this year, the Leeward VITA site prepared over 800 tax returns, and $1.4 million were returned to the community. The Leeward VITA site has been open for over 25 years.

Pualani Kanahele, Retired Professor, Hawaiian Studies and Language, Hawaiʻi Community College
Pualani Kanakaʻole Kanahele is regarded as a loea (expert) of Hawaiian cultural practices and a living national treasure. The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents awarded her an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree in 2005. Kanahele is widely recognized throughout the state as a scholar, educator and practitioner of Hawaiian culture. She is an accomplished writer; a music, stage and film producer; a dedicated community leader; and a renowned kumu hula. Kanahele has been highly influential in the resurgence of Hawaiian practices and interest in all things Hawaiian, and her impact on Hawaiʻi CC has been tremendous. As professors of history and Hawaiian studies, she and her late husband, Edward Kanahele, provided the vision for Hawaiʻi CC's I Ola Hāloa Center for Hawaiʻi Life Styles and led the effort to acquire the Title III grant that funded the initial activities of the Center. I Ola Hāloa, which was designed to improve access, retention and graduation of Native Hawaiian students, has become a major component of Hawaiʻi CC's academics and campus culture. The college is now the only place in the world where students can earn a college degree in Hula. Students can also obtain associate degrees in Lāwaiʻa (fishing) and Mahiʻai (farming).

Peter Kessinger, Retired Chancellor of Honolulu Community College
As Honolulu Community Colleges' provost from 1983 to 1999, Peter R. Kessinger oversaw an enormous growth spurt of the campus—physically, technologically and academically. During his tenure, Kessinger initiated the development of the Early Childhood Education program, advocated for apprenticeship training, led the expansion of programs and facilities, promoted computerization and institutional research. In addition, he also promoted the development of a comprehensive Liberal Arts program. In particular, the Math and Science programs, while still maintaining the traditional strong vocational history of the college. His colleagues saw Peter as the man who'll find a way to get things done. As described by one of his nominators: "Dr. K was a big supporter of early childhood education at HCC and through the system... We saw the need for an early childhood lab and daycare early on, but requests for funding fell on deaf ears in the University and in the Legislature until Pete found a way to make it happen. He saved a temporary building from being returned when Student Services no longer needed it. Then he worked with our Apprenticeship Program to renovate the building as a preschool."

Richard Kosaki, Retired Vice President for Community Colleges
Richard Hiromichi Kosaki was the first vice president of the University of Hawaiʻi Community College system. He researched and wrote the report to the legislature that was the basis for the establishment of the community colleges in Hawaiʻi. Raised, educated, and having lived most of his life in Honolulu, Kosaki understood the enormous impact community colleges would have on the citizens of Hawaiʻi, and the importance of a college education. As a graduate from the University of Hawaiʻi in 1948, he continued his education by pursuing his master and doctorate degrees at the University of Minnesota. Returning to the University of Hawaiʻi to teach political science, he embarked on a distinguished career there that included positions as vice president for community colleges, vice chancellor for academic affairs, chancellor of the West Oʻahu College, acting chancellor for the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, and president of Tokai International University in Honolulu. Along the way, he helped found the East-West Center, and, of course, was the architect of the University of Hawaiʻi's community college system. His favorite maxim is the cornerstone of his educational philosophy: "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn."

Mona Lee, Retired Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, Kapiʻolani Community College
Mona Lee's name is synonymous with student success at Kapiʻolani Community College. She started her career as a counselor 30 years ago, and most recently retired as the vice chancellor for student affairs. With her outstanding team in the student services office, she was able to implement a plan to make student services available, accessible and as easy as possible for students to obtain. She instituted a one-stop facility for student services, introduced the "First Year Experience" to help students transition from high school to college, and initiated the Lunalilo Scholars Project for first-time college students. Her passion for student success and the well being of the college is unparalleled. In the words of her nominator: "I cannot think of anyone who has been a more exemplar administrator, mentor, and colleague. She possesses unlimited grace, professionalism, compassion, vision, and leadership. She has been responsible for overseeing countless initiatives, programs, and projects large and small--always handling herself and the task at hand with aplomb."

Cindy Martin, Professor and Innovation Center Coordinator, Leeward Community College
Leeward CC received the 2011 Institutional Merit Award from the National Council for Staff, Program and Organizational Development (NCSPOD). The Award recognized excellence in the delivery and impact of staff, program and organizational development programs. Cindy Martin, staff development coordinator, accepted the award on behalf of the college, and although she credits many others, the award really highlights all her hard work. NCSPOD stated, "At Leeward, professional development is valued, institutionalized, comprehensive, and inclusive. Faculty, adjunct faculty, and staff all directly plan, organize, and evaluate professional development programs. A comprehensive professional development program that supports all faculty (full-time and adjuncts) and staff has been thriving at Leeward CC for the past 20 years." In addition, Martin has contributed an almost endless list of innovations and creative improvements for Leeward, including more than 20 years of support for Hawaiʻi National Great Teachers Seminar, the creation of the Welcome Committee (for students), Student2Student program, Mid-Semester Evaluations, Teaching Squares, and initiated Discovery Square, which evolved into Discovery Fair—the college's largest community event. In the words of her nominator: "Perhaps her greatest contribution is behind the scenes. She helps makes things happen—from Geek Day to staff organizations. She is the mentor, leader, guide, advisor to faculty, lectures, staff and students."

Joan Matsukawa, Retired Professor, Nursing, Kapiʻolani Community College
For more than 25 years, Joan Matsukawa has been the spark plug of the Nursing Department at Kapiʻolani CC—starting as a nursing instructor, then later as the department chair. Her energy and enthusiasm inspires all to go the extra mile in improving and growing the program. She has had a hand in the instruction and preparation of most of the LPNs and RNs working today and in the recent past. She also mentored many current nursing faculty as they strived to become excellent instructors and strong community leaders. In the words of her nominator: "Joan Matsukawa exemplifies UHCC 50 Finest because of her long-life commitment to the education of all levels of nurses on Oʻahu including nurse aides, care home operators, surgical technologists, practical nurses, and registered nurses. Joan's lasting contribution is her nurture of current nursing faculty and leaders to continue the legacy of excellent nursing education at Kapiʻolani Community College."

Shirley Metcalf, Retired Director of the Office of Continuing Education and Training, Hawaiʻi Community College
Shirley Metcalf's career at Hawaiʻi Community College was a reflection of her commitment to the community college mission and her passion for serving students, the college, the community, and the state. One of her most significant accomplishments was establishing the Office of Continuing Education and Training (OCET) to offer workforce training that benefited community members and local industry. As the director of OCET, she also developed several non-credit international education and cultural programs and partnerships with other community colleges in the UH Community College System. She supervised the Intensive English Program accreditation by the Commission on English Language Program Accreditation (CEA) in 2002. She also established the Distance Learning Program and was the first Hawaiʻi Interactive Television System (HITS) coordinator for both UH Hilo and Hawaiʻi CC. Her administrative leadership positions included dean of instruction, dean of outreach, and director of OCET. She received numerous awards and honors, and served the college in many other capacities related to faculty development, accreditation, and institutional effectiveness. The programs she created exist today and serve credit, non-credit, and international students.

Sanae Moikeha, Professor Emeritus, Health Sciences, Kapiʻolani Community College
If you access health care in Hawaiʻi today, more than likely you'll encounter a graduate of one of Kapiʻolani Community College's Health Sciences programs, which were nurtured during the long and exemplary service of Emeritus Professor Sanae Moikeha. Moikeha's service to the UHCC started in 1974 when she served as provost of Maui Community College, and continued when she served as the department chair for the Health Sciences Department at Kapiʻolani CC from 1980-2007. During her tenure as chair, the department experienced significant growth with the addition of new credit and continuing education programs expanding its outreach to the neighbor islands and the South Pacific to meet workforce development demands. In 1990-1992, Moikeha wrote a Kellogg Foundation grant for the college, which in collaboration with the Schools of Medicine, Nursing, Social Work, and Public Health at UH Mānoa, created a multi-disciplinary team approach to community health. She was also instrumental in the creation of the Waiʻanae Health Academy, which brought Kapiʻolani CC health science programs and courses directly to the residents of Leeward Oʻahu. Moikeha's service to Kapiʻolani continues to have a significant impact on the enrollment increases seen in the health sciences programs today and in the expanded access to workforce development programs throughout the state.

John Morton, Vice President for Community Colleges, University of Hawaiʻi Community College System, and Former Provost of Kapiʻolani Community College
As a young chemistry instructor at Leeward Community, John Morton understood the impact he could have as a teacher on a student's life. He took that responsibility seriously and cared deeply about the future of students seeking higher education, so much so that he has spent a lifetime dedicated to the growth and innovation of the UH Community Colleges. Today, as vice president for community colleges, Morton has led participation in national initiatives that advance the student completion agenda and Native Hawaiian student success, such as the Achieving the Dream, Postsecondary State Policy Network, RC 2020. He has guided the UH Community Colleges through a growth spurt of record high enrollments, new and improved facilities, and higher graduation and transfer rates. Under his leadership, the community colleges have risen to the challenge of improving student success rates, balancing fiscal concerns with campus needs, addressing workforce and community concerns. His leadership spans several decades, first as a dean of instruction at Leeward CC, then as chancellor of Kapiʻolani CC overseeing the college's rapid growth and development at the Diamond Head campus. Morton also took on a special assignment in a systemwide role to help direct the implementation and ongoing evolution of the first comprehensive/centralized UH student information and online registration system--a massive undertaking. His extensive background in higher education combined with his technological skills and knowledge help to keep UHCC progressive and innovative, always with an eye on the future.

Trina Nahm-Mijo Trina Nahm-Mijo, Professor of Psychology, and Division Chair, Social Sciences, Hawaiʻi Community College
Since Trina Nahm-Mijo began teaching psychology at Hawaiʻi Community College in 1978, she has made it her passion and her life to create programs that keep the college responsive to community needs. In 1984, she received tenure and was awarded the Regents' Medal for Excellence in Teaching. She was part of a team of faculty that brought Learning Communities to the UHCC system in 1986. Her pioneering efforts on numerous projects have earned her three Hawaiʻi CC Innovation of the Year awards. She was the founder of the UH Hilo/Hawaiʻi CC Women's Center in 1990, authoring the proposal and partnering with UH Mānoa. She was the author of the first Women's Studies certificate program and Women's Studies course offered at UH Hilo and Hawai'i CC in 1991, which is now a bachelor's program at UH Hilo. She won a Wo Learning Champions Community Building Award for a collaborative project between UH/Hawaiʻi CC and the D.O.E./Keaʻau High School that targeted at-risk youth. She served as the accreditation liaison officer, assessment coordinator, and division chair for the liberal arts unit and social sciences/humanities division. She was a Fulbright Exchange Scholar from Hawaiʻi CC to University of Tallinn in Estonia where she taught expressive arts and assisted in the accreditation of their program in Health Sciences.

Sharon Narimatsu, Retired Provost of Leeward Community College and Former Vice Chancellor of Student and Community Affairs, University of Hawaiʻi Community College System
Sharon Narimatsu is a living treasure to the University of Hawaiʻi Community College System. From the early 1970s until her retirement in early 2000, Sharon served in several capacities and at different campuses: she was a faculty, assistant dean, director of continuing education, provost, and an associate vice chancellor for the UHCC System. She was phenomenal in all her roles, leaving a legacy among her colleagues, peers, community partners, and corporate and government leaders. Sharon was a pacesetter and an innovator, and she led with integrity, fairness, and with compassion. As an associate vice chancellor for student affairs, she mobilized the campuses to increase student access to quality support services. She also oversaw International Education, and the Continuing Education and Training programs, which continued to grow under her guidance. As a provost at Leeward CC, she worked hard to establish a fine dining restaurant and culinary labs where students could continue to learn in top-notch facilities. She also was a tireless fundraiser at Leeward. She established new fundraising opportunities to support various programs at the campus. In the words of her nominator: "She never started a project she could not finish, and whatever she started, she ended with professionalism and pride. Sharon always put others before herself and is generous to a fault. She is kind, considerate, and possesses a delightful sense of humor. All these qualities, and then some, precede everything that can be said about the finest, because she is the best and fine-tuned."

Harold Nishimura, Retired Professor, Carpentry, Hawaiʻi Community College
Harold Nishimura was the force behind the establishment of one of Hawaiʻi Community College's most well-known and enduring efforts—the Model Home Project. Each year, Hawaiʻi CC students from several Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs perform the design, construction, site preparation, electrical work and landscaping that results in a real home for a Native Hawaiian family. Nishimura's effort and vision made the project what it is today. In 1968, he arranged to move the project to the actual construction site so students could experience all phases of construction from land preparation to finishing. He also established partnerships with local businesses and government agencies that are crucial to the success of the Model Home Project. In addition, he began the collaboration between the CTE programs that is such an important component of the Model Home Project and provides students from numerous programs with hands-on learning that culminates in a home for a local family. In addition, Nishimura was instrumental in establishing Hawaiʻi CC's Staff Development Committee that remains in existence today, offering professional and personal development opportunities to faculty and staff.

Sandra Okazaki, Retired Director of Vocational and Community Education, Windward Community College, and Former Assistant State Director of the Education Training Center, University of Hawaiʻi Community College System
Sandra Okazaki has served her entire career advocating for the underdog. Whether it was a program that needed additional resources or students who needed extra guidance, she was there to help find the support they needed. She began as a counselor at Honolulu CC in 1992 and then became the assistant state director of the Employment Training Center (ETC) in 1997 and eventually interim state director. She truly embodied the values of the community colleges and provided the leadership that was needed at the time. ETC's role was unique in the University system, and its faculty and staff made a world of difference to students who came through their door. ETC success stories are told by individuals with difficult, challenging pasts, who often arrived at the center's doors with little or no hope. ETC took these students into its program and developed their self-esteem, taught them new skills and gave them a better future. When funding to support this systemwide program began to fade, Okazaki found a way to continue helping this particular student population as ETC evolved into the Office of Vocational and Community Education at Windward Community College. Throughout that period of time, Okazaki acquired grants and developed customized contracts with various organizations to continue ETC's mission of helping the at-risk youth, unemployed adults and others who needed that extra help to get them through hard times. The program's educational model continues to reverberate through the CC system.

Mark Oyama, Assistant Professor of Culinary Arts, Kauaʻi Community College
For more than 20 years, Mark Oyama has served as Kauaʻi Community College's chef extraordinaire. Newly hired in 1992, he managed to prepare over 90,000 meals in one month during the aftermath of Hurricane Iniki when the college served as a major shelter for people who sought refuge. During that first year at the college, he also mentored students in the Culinary Arts and Suppliers Exhibition competition on Oʻahu and brought home the Chancellor's Trophy. He subsequently led Kauaʻi CC to receive numerous gold and silver medals in other competitions throughout the following years. He truly embodies the values of the community colleges and provides the highest quality of instruction in culinary arts. He encourages students to be creative while instilling critical thinking in all that they do. Mark is credited for initiating and orchestrating the annual College Spring Gourmet Gala, which has become the premiere event of the year, for the past 12 years. He also promotes sustainable agriculture by establishing an aeroponics garden on campus that produces food that is being prepared in the program's fine dining course. And, when he's not in the kitchen, Mark serves as a member for the Mayor's Agriculture Advisory Board, Kauaʻi Economic Development Food and Agriculture Council, Booster Club, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, and Pacific Island Fisheries. Mark is truly Kauaʻi CC's chef extraordinaire!

Leon Richards, Chancellor of Kapiʻolani Community College
Chancellor Leon Richards has tirelessly given his time and energy for more than 30 years to the UH community. He has led this campus to worldwide recognition of the Culinary Arts program. The Health Sciences programs are revered and are responsible for providing well-educated medical professionals to the Hawaiian community. The Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) program has garnered multi-million dollar grants from National Science Foundation and the Tribal Colleges and Universities Program (TCUP). STEM students have participated in local and national research competitions and have done exceedingly well against other universities. The Honda International Center has provided a conducive learning environment to students the world over with more than 20 countries represented at commencement exercises. Spearheading the Kaʻieʻie program, Richards paved the way for more students to meet the requirements and transfer from Kapiʻolani CC in pursuit of a baccalaureate degree. In the words of his nominator: "All of this and countless other accolades are the direct products of Richards' outstanding leadership as he has cultivated an environment for great minds to flourish and replenish our community with a renewed workforce. He epitomizes our motto, "Kulia I Ka Nuʻu!"

Michael Rota Michael Rota, Retired Chancellor of Honolulu Community College and Former Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs, University of Hawaiʻi Community College System
As the University of Hawaiʻi Community College System's chief academic officer from 1983 to 2008, Mike Rota had guided the University of Hawaiʻi Community Colleges through several decades of growth and innovation, achieving full ACCJC accreditation, and developing programs to support Hawaiʻi's workforce initiatives. He was a champion in the development of Hawaiʻi's workforce by providing outstanding leadership as an active member of the Oʻahu Workforce Investment Board, State of Hawaiʻi's Workforce Development Council and the Hawaiʻi State Council for Career and Technical Education. He provided exceptional stewardship of higher education locally and nationally, serving as chair of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges. His steadfast commitment to higher education continued at Honolulu Community College, serving as its chancellor from 2008 until his retirement in 2012. In the words of his nominator: "New programs in computer science, STEM fields, sustainability, agriculture and other much needed workforce training programs are the results of Mike's vision to provide Hawaiʻi's citizens with the best opportunity to be well prepared for the new economy in the 21st century and beyond. He is one of UHCC 50 finest!"

Clyde Sakamoto, Chancellor of the University of Hawaiʻi Maui College
Beginning with his service as a Peace Corps volunteer in India, Clyde Sakamoto has dedicated his life to education. His dedication, vision, and leadership have transformed a small community college into a large, multi-faceted educational institution that offers not only associate degrees and certificates, but also baccalaureate degrees. The small community college is now known as University of Hawaiʻi Maui College (UHMC). Throughout his tenure, Sakamoto worked collaboratively with business, county, state, and federal leaders as he created and delivered educational programs that best serve the needs of the rapidly growing tri-isle community. The culinary and allied health programs more than doubled their admissions, and a teaching hotel, a sustainable campus, and three baccalaureate degrees in applied science were realized. The campus enrollment has increased by 74%. Sakamoto led the UH System in distance education, delivering curriculum to Molokaʻi, Lanaʻi, and Hana via interactive television classes. He also generated extramural resources (more than $145 million) for a wide variety of advanced educational technology that is available to students in the classroom and at home. Through Sakamoto's vision, inspiration, and leadership, UH Maui College has major facility development including a campus health center, a Maui oral health center, a LEED certified science facility, the Sustainable Living Institute of Maui (SLIM), and the Hospitality Academy of Maui.

Betsy Sakata, Retired Director of Community Services, Kapiʻolani Community College
During the late 1970s and into the early 1980s, there was a unit at Kapiʻolani CC called the Office of Continuing Education and Training (OCET). In its heyday, OCET was referred to as the money-making arm of the College. One of the first successful directors of this unit was Betsy Sakata. She brought color, life, charm and imagination to the College. Sakata's strength was thinking out of the box, and she thought of ways to use money to make money. One day she thought out loud and wished for an annual fundraiser that would bring the entire college together, for the purpose of raising funds for professional development. She convinced the provost that the college would benefit from a fundraiser and she proceeded to plan a breakfast fundraiser. Instructors, administrators, maintenance workers, clerical staff and all support staff worked side-by-side over several days prepping, serving, and then cleaning up. It brought the campus together in a humane way, and the value-added perk was that dollars were raised for professional development. The breakfast fundraiser began at the Pensacola campus, and it ran for 21 years, giving many professionals an opportunity to travel, to attend conferences, and to bring in guest speakers— opportunities that state dollars did not allow. All this, because one person thought out loud and made a wish for a fundraiser to happen.

Patricia Snyder, Former Director of Development for the University of Hawaiʻi Community Colleges, and Administrative Assistant for the Provost, Kapiʻolani Community College
Back in the early 1980's, when Kapiʻolani Community College at Diamond Head was only arcs and angles on a blueprint page, there was an amazing individual who made sense of the plans before her, and worked with the architects and the contractors to make the drawings come to life. That person was Patricia Snyder. Patricia was the assistant to the Provost, which meant she was the "go to" person for the provost, and for the college. Snyder did not just meet with people; she orchestrated meetings and she worked with community groups, administration, students and faculty—every stakeholder of the college. She worked well under pressure with long hours into the night and on weekends. In the end, the buildings blended with the environment, the carpet and upholstery were pitch perfect and she and the provost made sure that the new campus would maximize nature and the beautiful surroundings. Patricia even provided oversight to fund development. She eventually moved to the UHCC system office to direct fund development for the community colleges. She stoked the fires for capital improvement and for student scholarships. She was responsible for the colleges' development in conjunction with UH Foundation, and helped grow the annual giving to three times what it was.

Francis Takahashi, Retired Assistant Professor, Electronics Technology, Kauaʻi Community College
From the moment he started teaching at Kauaʻi CC in 1985, Francis Takahashi honored his promise to expand the college's technology education program where students would be able to acquire the skill sets needed by major technology-focused entities. He was instrumental in transforming the technology programs that prepared students to enter jobs knowing analog and digital electronics, computer and networking technologies, programming, fiber optics, and telecommunications. The program has provided much-needed technicians at PMRF and supplied the island with well-trained professionals in equipment repairs and for technology-based companies. By joining the New England Board of Higher Education Photon Consortium and with grants from the Directed Energy Professional Society, he developed curriculum and purchased equipment to teach photonics and fiber optic courses. Electronics Technology students built the system for the Kauaʻi CC Solar Car, which successfully placed in competitions nationally and internationally in 1990s. He encouraged students to take part in the Akamai internship program that led to work at the observatories on Maui and the Big Island. He was key to the college's involvement with Space Grant Hawaiʻi and the Hawaiʻi Space Flight Lab. Today, Kauaʻi CC's telemetry equipment and ground tracking system are well poised to support UH Mānoa's effort to build, launch and track satellites. With his expertise in physiology, Takahashi also established the campus bee lab for the purpose of providing education to promote sustainable living, conducting research, and preserving healthy island apiaries for honey production.

Moriso Teraoka Moriso Teraoka, Creator and Founder of the Cactus Garden at Kapiʻolani Community College
Moriso Teraoka is the creator and founder of the world famous Kapiʻolani Community College Cactus Garden. The garden has received many accolades from the Outdoor Circle, in newspaper articles and on television programs. The garden serves as a living symbol of the values of the service and community enrichment of the UH Community Colleges. Teraoka was an early pioneer of organic farming at Kapiʻolani Community College and using campus-grown produce for the culinary program. He is a living example of the life-long learning espoused by the mission of the UH Community Colleges.

Joyce Tsunoda Joyce Tsunoda, Chancellor Emeritus, Retired Senior Vice President, University of Hawaiʻi, and Chancellor for Community Colleges
As the longest serving vice president for community colleges, Joyce Tsunoda earned a strong reputation for innovation and solid administrative management locally, nationally and internationally. She worked diligently and tirelessly to promote and enable UHCC to be at the forefront entering the 21st century. In her high-level, high-visibility role at the University, she directly influenced the advancement of education in Hawaiʻi, while overseeing the growth of the campuses from humble beginnings to the well-respected strong colleges of today. Her professional activities in the realm of higher education have also been extensive, resulting in comprehensive local, national and international networks that have directly benefited our students, faculty, staff and community. Her colleagues have praised her for being proactive, optimistic and a forward thinker. Her leadership has spanned four decades, starting as a founding faculty member and dean of special programs and community services at Leeward CC, then provost of Kapiʻolani CC. She spent the remainder of her career leading the community colleges as its vice president until her retirement in 2004. Today, Tsunoda continues to have a positive impact as an educator in Japan and liaison between US and international education programs, serving students & promoting inter-cultural understanding via her extensive experiences.

Michael Unebasami, Associate Vice President of Administrative Affairs, University of Hawaiʻi Community College System
With more than 40 years of service at the university, Mike Unebasami continues to be highly motivated in creating a work environment of integrity, trust and respect for staff, colleagues, faculty and students. He is responsible for budget and financial management, human resource management, facilities planning and legal and legislative affairs. He manages a multi-million dollar budget and oversees the smooth operation of seven community college campuses by inspiring, mentoring and providing progressive leadership to others. Since joining the University of Hawaiʻi in 1968, Unebasami has held various fiscal and management positions. His association with the UH community colleges began in 1980 as the director of administrative services at the Leeward campus. In 1983 he was promoted to vice chancellor for administrative affairs in the Chancellor's Office for Community Colleges, and assumed his current role as associate vice president for administrative affairs, where he continues to oversee the integration of new technology in the colleges' fiscal and campus operations. In addition, Mike has served nine years on the National Association of College and University Business Officers Board of Directors and served as the president of the Western Association of College and University Business Officers. He has actively represented the University of Hawaiʻi in these two national organizations since 1983. In the words of his nominator: " We are all especially proud that Mike was honored by being named the 2009 recipient of the Governor's State Manager of the Year."

Waiʻanae Education Center and Walterbea Aldeguer, Leeward Community College
The Leeward Community College Waiʻanae Education Center has been serving the residents of the Waiʻanae Coast for more than 40 years. It has provided credit and non-credit courses and training to an area that historically had little higher education resources. The center also provides counseling and academic advising to students. In the past seven years, enrollment has more than doubled, from 240 registered students in Fall 2007 to over 500 in Fall 2013. It will be moving from its current leased space into a permanent campus location on 2015-2016. Through the years since its inception, there is one person who is synonymous with the Waiʻanae Education Center. That person is Walterbea Aldeguer. She has been the clerk at Waiʻanae Education Center since the 1970s and continues to be the touchstone for the program and the Waianae community. In the words of the nominator: "Everyone knows and loves her."

Ingelia White Ingelia White, Professor, Botany and Microbiology, Windward Community College
Ingelia White works tirelessly and selflessly for her students, her program and her college. She is responsible for many great botanical, scientific and educational resources on the Windward Community College campus including the Bioprocessing Medicinal Garden Complex (BMGC), Kuhi Laʻau-Tropical Plant and Orchid Identification Facility, the orchid greenhouse as well as the Tissue Culture and Biotechnology Laboratory. She is also an internationally recognized orchidologist and plant scientist and is well known for the achievements of her accomplished undergraduate students. White and her undergraduate student research presentations in national and international scientific conferences have given Windward Community College valuable exposure. Her dedication and passion for the Agripharmatech program continues to inspire many of her students, who have gone on to enter successful careers as horticulturists, botanists, biologists, biotechnologist, medical doctors, and pharmacists. In the words of her nominator: "White recognized my strengths and potential and went out of her way, as she does with many students, to instill in me the motivation to succeed. She inspired my educational future and continues to be someone I respect, admire and hope to emulate."

Brian Yamamoto Brian Yamamoto, Professor and Division Chair, Biological Sciences, Kauaʻi Community College
Brian Yamamoto has served his entire career at Kauaʻi Community College in the Science and Math Divisions. He has helped many students, some of whom did not believe they could ever be successful college students, not only make it through his ethnobotany microbiology courses but enter a STEM track and go on to excel. He also has been instrumental in indigenizing his curriculum, so that his ethnobotany course uses traditional Native Hawaiian ways of learning in addition to relying on western science. He has also served as a Division Chair for many years, tirelessly working with his own faculty but also working across the curriculum to benefit students. In the words of his nominator: "His dedication is truly profound and the campus would not be what it is today without his commitment and competence."

Noreen Yamane, Chancellor of Hawaiʻi Community College
Noreen Yamane has provided consistent, stable leadership for Hawaiʻi Community College for many years, serving the college in various roles starting in 2003 as the interim dean of instruction, then as interim vice chancellor for academics. In 2010, she was appointed the chancellor of Hawaʻi Community College. A true advocate for the college and a passionate leader, Yamane's knowledge of the complexities of shared facilities with UH Hilo provided Hawaiʻi CC with a cachet to work effectively in its inter-campus relationships. She is unabashed about asserting the needs of the college when necessary to ensure the best possible access to facilities. She has successfully guided Hawaiʻi CC through the accreditation processes and requirements of the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) and the campus coordination for the Perkins Act Achieving Standards, and Workforce Development projects. She also was the recipient of the Board of Regents' Excellence in Teaching Award and received the Hawaiʻi CC Chancellor's ʻAʻaliʻi Award, the highest award our college can bestow on a member of our faculty or staff.

Libby Young Libby Young, Professor of Journalism, Windward Community College
As a journalism professor and the advisor of the award-winning Ka ʻOhana student newspaper, Libby Young has truly made a difference in the lives of her students. She has guided her students to win numerous local and national awards for writing, developed internship opportunities, and helped many students establish careers in media throughout the islands. Young started teaching at Windward CC in 1980. Since then, she has also become a champion for the college's physical growth and expansion. Young has coordinated the campaigns to gain legislative and community support for Windward's many new buildings, starting in 1991 with funding to renovate Hale Kuhina and construction of the new science complex, followed by funding for the Imaginarium, Paliku Theatre and Gallery ʻIolani, Hale Palanakila, Hale Akoakoa, and the Library Learning Commons. Along with Mark Hamasaki, she was named by the Honolulu Star-Bulletin as one of "Ten Who Made a Difference" for 1991 in the state for the lobbying efforts on behalf of WCC. Libby is a perfect example of someone who deserves to be recognized as one of UHCCʻs 50 Finest.

Melissa Bonnin, Director of Upward Bound, University of Hawaiʻi Maui College
Melissa Bonnin, director of the Upward Bound program at UH Maui College, is a tireless leader who has expanded the Upward Bound programs into STEM fields. The program now focuses on preparing students to enter into Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) college programs. Through the program, she has touched the lives of many students who've gone on to pursue careers in science.

Loni Delaplane Loni Delaplane, Mathematics Instructor, Kauaʻi Community College
Loni Delaplane is a rising star at Kauaʻi CC. A community college graduate who earned a master's degree and doctorate in mathematics with a focus on the Matroid Theory, Delaplane was recognized in 2013 as recipient of the UH Board of Regents Medal for Teaching Excellence after three years of teaching at the college. One of her greatest contributions, identified by students, has been to positively change their mindset about mathematics. Students credit her for helping them to emerge well equipped with roadmaps that bring mathematical concepts together to solve a wide range of problems in the real world. Today in Math 26, the rate of student success has risen to a consistent 70%, more than double the success rate of the traditional pathway. The success of this initiative was presented under the title, "Shortening the Math Pipeline for Student Success" at the national Achieving the Dream Conference in Orlando in February 2014 by Delaplane and Kauaʻi CC math colleagues. Delaplane is a UHCC Wo Learning Champion and serves the college as an At-Large representative on Faculty Senate.

Education Program and Bobbie Martel, Leeward Community College
The Education (AAT) program began in 2006 to address the critical shortages in the teacher workforce in Leeward and Central Oʻahu. The program prepares highly qualified para-educators for employment in K-12 schools or as a transfer degree to a baccalaureate programs. The program began with 24 traditional "day" students in 2006 and has grown to over 400 students spring 2014. Courses are offered on campus and online providing access statewide. In 2012 the Alternative Certification for CTE Licensure program was approved to provide teachers for CTE classrooms at the middle or high school level. This post baccalaureate program is offered online providing access to candidates statewide. The program began with 3 candidates in 2012, 2 of whom are now licensed teachers employed at Mililani High School. Spring, 2014 there are 21 candidates, 4 of who will become licensed teachers on Oʻahu and Maui. Enrollment for fall is 28 with candidates on Maui, Kauaʻi and Oʻahu. Guiding the incredible growth and consistent excellence is program coordinator, Roberta "Bobbie" Martel, the 2011 Regents Medal for excellence in Teaching winner.

Grace Funai Grace Funai, Assistant Professor and Counselor at Hawaiʻi Community College
Grace Funai has a proven track record and an even brighter future as a leader at Hawaiʻi Community College. Funai has become a "go to" person on campus for a variety of assignments and projects in her current role in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. She is responsible for an array of short- and long-term projects, personnel and hiring activities, grants and scholarships, community and planning coordination, and general troubleshooting and support, to list a few. Her colleagues say that a sense of reassurance and confidence heightens when Funai is involved. Grace developed and facilitated the first "Passport to College Success Advising and Registration" sessions, and she coordinated the initial development of Running Start Courses offered off campus in an attempt to initiate an early college model with high school students and continue to provide assistance and information as needed. She serves and has served on numerous committees and is the incoming chair of the College Council. Grace was the recipient of the Hawaiʻi CC Chancellor's ʻAʻaliʻi Award, the highest award our college can bestow on a member of our faculty or staff.

Mark Alapaki Luke Mark Alapaki Luke, Division Chair for Hawaiian Studies at Honolulu Community College
Mark Alapaki Luke has made significant contributions to Honolulu CC and its mission towards advancing Hawaiian Studies within the UH system. He is Honolulu's division chair for Hawaiian Studies (Na Papa Hawaiʻi), as well as an instructor for Hawaiian Studies, Hawaiian Language and Geography of Hawaiʻi. Luke has represented the college in the systemwide development of the Hawaiian Studies AA degree and on the Kupoʻa Council. He played a crucial role in helping the college uncover its land history dating back to the 1800's as the campus under went its long-range development plan. Through his research it was uncovered that the land that Honolulu CC now sits on was once a vibrant loʻi field. He obtained a $25,000 grant from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and funding from the campus to build and plant the garden of Niuhelewai. This mala, or taro patch, has more than 20 Hawaiian varieties of Kalo. Throughout the fall and spring semesters, students, campus groups, faculty and staff and groups throughout the community have cared for the mala. The mala serves as an educational platform to teach students using a traditional Hawaiian holistic approach of malama ʻaina. The Garden of Niuhelewai also received the Award of Excellence in the Xeriscape category at the 2012 Betty Crocker Landscape Awards and Luke was Honolulu CC's recipient of the UHCC sustainability award.

STEM Program, Kapiʻolani Community College
The goal of Kapiʻolani Community College's Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program is to improve the quality of education in the STEM fields through various initiatives. The program offers summer bridge programs, undergraduate research experience (URE), and peer mentoring for both recruitment, and retention of STEM students. For the last eight years, with the support of the National Science Foundation's Tribal Colleges and Universities Program (TCUP), a special emphasis has been devoted to Native Hawaiian and under-represented students by regaining the stability of traditional excellence through academia, indigenous learning, and internships with industry and research laboratories. In order to support students' learning, a new Associate in Science in Natural Science (SNS) degree has been created to provide a clear, explicit, and coherent pathway for students intending to transfer into STEM majors at baccalaureate institutions. Since 2006, the program's efforts have prepared students for careers in the STEM disciplines by producing an increasing number of student graduates with the ASNS degree, and by consolidating the number of transferring students to four-year degree programs in STEM. In the past few years, STEM students have represented the college, and consolidated its recognition at National Science conferences as well as engineering international competition by winning numerous awards for the quality of their research.

Lance Uyeda Lance Uyeda, English Instructor, Windward Community College
Lance Uyeda is Windward Community College's "go to guy" for everything. His colleagues say: "If a grant needs to be written, go see Lance because he writes the most complicated grants ever. If people need help with a class, they see Lance because his courses are fun, well-organized and super-engaging. Everyone who needs someone to read and reviews his or her dossier sees Lance because Lance is the only one who seems to understand how to tackle that beast. If students need help on work in any class, they see Lance because he takes his office hours in TRIO where the students hang out. If any of us need to make sense out of data, forms, procedures or assessments, we see Lance because he can do anything, and we know that because he's done everything." Lance is one of the people who reminds us all how to pitch in; the guy raises his hand and in doing so, he reminds us that raising our hands and volunteering for the hurricane of work that comes at us every semester is the only way we're all going to make it out alive at the end. He's also the guy at week 12 who reminds us that week 12 always hurts, and it too will pass. It's the last day of the semester, I'm up to my ears in grading and I can't think of a better way to spend my time than trying to convince you that Lance Uyeda deserves a formal round of applause. Lance is not only a great mentor, he's also and amazingly capable and kind person with whom we're all lucky to work."