Board of Regents

Recognition

UH System Links

2444 Dole Street, Bachman Hall, Room 209
Honolulu, HI 96822

tel (808)956-8213
fax (808)956-5156
email bor@hawaii.edu

Regents’ Medals of Distinction

The Regents’ Medal of Distinction is awarded by the Board of Regents to Individuals of exceptional accomplishment and distinction who have made significant contributions to the university, state, region or nation or within their field of endeavor.

UH Executive Policy PDF on awarding of medals of distinction.

2009 Recipient

2008 Recipient

2007 Recipient

2006 Recipient

2005 Recipient

1999 Recipient

  • Noel P. Kefford, former College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources dean and author of the Industry Analysis System

1997 Recipients

  • George Chaplin, editor-in-chief of the Honolulu Advertiser for 26 years and honored by three nations for promoting better understanding between countries
  • Elmo Hardy, evolutionary biologist and world authority on big-headed flies important in agro-ecosystems
  • Hiroshi Tanaka, community advocate and education proponent instrumental in the development of UH Hilo
  • Mamoru Yamasaki, a staunch supporter of higher education during 33 years as a legislator
  • Wood Zimmerman, renowned entomologist on O‘ahu and a union activist on Maui

1996 Recipient

  • Gerald Sass, Freedom Forum executive supporting Asian studies fellowships at the University of Hawai‘i

1995 Recipients

  • Ernest Akamine, a UH plant physiologist who laid the foundation for handling tropical crops developed in Hawai‘i
  • Mackay Yanagisawa, the "shogun of Hawai‘i sports," a player, coach, manager, club owner and creator of the Hula Bowl Classic

1994 Recipient

  • Maya Angelou, a writer, educator, humanitarian and social activist hailed as one of the great figures in contemporary literature

Medal Recipient

Abraphama Piianaia photo with medal

Abraham Pi‘ianai‘a

Presented posthumously, Oct. 26, 2006, UH Manoa

A 1953 alumnus of the University of Hawai‘i, Abraham St. Chad Kikiakoi Kalilioku Pi‘ianai‘a was a steward of native Hawaiian legacy, culture and language.

A descendant of Hawaiian aliʻi grounded in Hawaiian and Polynesian protocol and seafaring, he was the inauguaral director of the Hawaiian Studies Program at UH Manoa and a major force in the Polynesian voyaging revival.

Pi‘ianai‘a was a popular professor who taught generations of UH students about the geoography of O‘ahu. He also served the community on various local and national boards and held leadership positions, including chair of the Hawaiian Homes Commission and director of the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands.

He was named a Living Treasure of Hawai‘i in 1999 and received outstanding alumnus honors from both UH and Kamehameha Schools and the 2004 Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Legacy Award from the Order of Ke Ali‘i Pauahi Foundation.