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UH Law Library gets grant to process and preserve esteemed professor's papers

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Beverly Creamer, (808) 389-5736
Media Consultant, William S. Richardson School of Law
Ellen-Rae Cachola, (808) 956-2867
Archives Manager, UH Law Library
Posted: May 11, 2017

Jon Van Dyke
Jon Van Dyke

The William S. Richardson School of Law Library has received a grant from the Hawai’i Council for Humanities to process the papers of the late Professor of Law Jon Van Dyke, who passed away November 29, 2011. Van Dyke was an internationally renowned scholar and teacher of Constitutional Law, International Law, International Ocean Law, rights of Native Hawaiians and indigenous peoples, human rights and environmental law.

He was named the “Outstanding Professor” at the Law School in 1984, 1993, 1996 and 2002; in 2006 and 2008 the graduating class selected him to give the faculty Commencement Address; and in 2009 he received the Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research. He was also a Carlsmith Ball Faculty Scholar.

Said Law School Dean Avi Soifer, “Jon Van Dyke was a phenomenon and we miss him immensely. His far-ranging intellect and his passion for justice benefitted not only our students and his colleagues, but also the entire community and many other people far beyond Hawai’i.”

Added Soifer, “It is impossible to understand how Jon did so much, but this archive will help enlighten those who want to know more and, we hope, some who want to follow his lead.”

The grant will focus on processing, indexing and making accessible the papers and research behind Van Dyke’s 13 books and textbooks and hundreds of articles.

Material covers his legal representation in cases involving Native Hawaiian, human rights victims of the late Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos, and constitutional litigation with his wife and partner, attorney Sherry Broder, as well as his participation in various developments in Pacific Island nations and territories advocating for islander rights in ocean law, anti-nuclear issues and self-governance, among other issues.

UH Law Library Archives Manager Ellen-Rae Cachola will coordinate archival processing, under the supervision of Library Director Vicki Szymczak. The program will engage students to learn about Native Hawaiian and Pacific Island history through hands-on archival preservation experience. 

A public event launching the Jon Van Dyke Collection will be held in February 2018.

For more information, visit: