Hawai'i Community College Announces 2020 Faculty, Staff and Community Awards
Hawai'i Community College is proud to honor community partners, alumni, faculty and staff who demonstrate exceptional effort and skill in serving our students, our campus and our wider community. The following awardees were announced during the annual All-College Meeting on Friday, May 8, 2020.
The Food Basket - Mahalo Award
Arthur Sampaga, Jr. - Alumni of the Year
Arthur Sampaga, Jr. is an alumnus of the Hawai'i Community College Nursing Program, earning his Licensed Practical Nursing Certificate in 1988 and his Associate in Science in Nursing Degree in 1991. He also earned his Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from UH Hilo and his Master’s of Science in Nursing from Grantham University. Currently serving as Hilo Medical Center’s East Hawai'i Region Chief Nursing Officer, he also retired from the Hawai'i Army National Guard as a Lieutenant Colonel with 30 years of service. During his two combat deployments, the decorated war veteran served as a Primary Trauma Care Provider, Mass Casualty Leader, Joint Forces Liaison Officer, and EMS Director. As a local healthcare leader, Sampaga has been on the forefront of Hawai'i Island’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Jeff Fujii - Outstanding Service
Jeff Fujii is an educational specialist and lecturer who serves both the Auto Body Repair and Painting Program and the Automotive Mechanics Technology Program. Employed at Hawai'i CC since 2014, Fujii is an ASE Certified Master Technician and a Hawai‘i CC alumnus. In addition to serving students in the two programs, he has been a positive, active member of the Hawai'i CC Kauhale who serves on key committees and has recently served as College Council Vice Chair and is now the College Council Chair. Fujii also participates in and leads outreach events in the community.
Ryan McCormack - Outstanding Lecturer
Described as a charismatic storyteller with deep knowledge of Hawaiian myth, culture, language and hula, Ryan McCormack is a lecturer in the Hawaiian Studies program. He has taught a wide range of courses, and students and fellow faculty praise his knowledge, sincerity, patience and enthusiasm. In addition to teaching duties, he is also called upon to be a leader during kipaepae ceremonies as Hawai‘i CC welcomes guests and new employees to the college.
George Paleudis - Outstanding Staff
George Paleudis is the Physical Plant Manager at Hawai‘i Community College – Pālamanui. Under his leadership, Hawai‘i CC - Pālamanui has created a pleasing campus environment for potential students, their families and visitors from the community. Visitors have commented on the attractive appearance and general upkeep, and the upgrades and improved service have also helped boost campus morale. Paleudis is adept at analyzing and prioritizing projects, is a skilled communicator and cares about the safety and well-being of faculty, staff, and students.
Leanne Urasaki - Chancellor's 'A'ali'i Award
Leanne Urasaki is the Instructional Technology Developer at Hawai‘i Community College, who helps faculty implement online classes. Her expertise was in high demand as the college moved all classes online in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Though she was on sabbatical at the time, Urasaki returned to work and proved to be a vital resource, providing institution-wide as well as personalized assistance for faculty. The spirit of this award is embodied in the attributes of the 'A'ali'i bush. This remarkable bush can stand the worst of gales, twisting and bending but seldom breaking off or falling over. Urasaki’s steadfast service during this time was a great value to our students and our campus community.
Grant Kaʻauʻa – 10 years
Melany Ayudan – 20 years
Sherrie Ann Straslicka-Walker – 20 years
Kenneth Shimizu – 30 years