group of people

Pictured from left, Donna Vuchinich, Bert A. Kobayashi Sr., Senator Daniel K. Akaka, Walter A. Dods, Jr., Carmen Hulu Lindsey, Kama Hopkins, Peter Apo, Joan M. Ohashi and Lawrence S. Okinaga

Friends of Senator Daniel Akaka from Hawaiʻi and around the nation, are commemorating the senator’s outstanding life accomplishments by establishing the Senator Daniel K. Akaka Regents Scholarship Endowment. The co-chairs of the endowment committee are Walter A. Dods, Jr., Bert A. Kobayashi, Sr., Lawrence S. Okinaga and Joan M. Ohashi.

Established in partnership with the University of Hawaiʻi Foundation, the Senator Daniel K. Akaka Regents Scholarship will support outstanding students selected as University of Hawaiʻi Regents Scholars. The Regents Scholarship Program, established by the Board of Regents in 1986, was created to help Hawaiʻi’s most promising students pursue their higher education ambitions right here at home.

“We aspire to increase the number of future Hawaiʻi leaders like Senator Akaka, by expanding these prestigious scholarship opportunities,” said Okinaga. “The scholarship honors the senator’s passionate commitment to growing Native Hawaiian and Hawaiʻi’s scholars and leaders. Throughout his career from public school teacher and administrator to public office, Senator Akaka was intent on finding solutions and strengthening the futures of America’s native peoples through vehicles including education, access to opportunity, and financial literacy.”

Due to generous lead gifts of $300,000 from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and $250,000 from Kamehameha Schools, along with individual gifts from other donors, pledges and gifts totaling more than $1,142,000 have been raised to date.

“Since the 1930s when members of my family first started attending and graduating from the University of Hawaiʻi, it has played a pivotal role in our lives and ability to serve our community with the spirit of aloha,” said Senator Akaka. “This scholarship will help many of Hawaiʻi’s most promising students access the transformational opportunities UH provides, and empower them to be leaders rooted in the spirit of aloha. These are the leaders our world needs.”

Read the University of Hawaiʻi Foundation news release for the full story.

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