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UH President Search

University of Hawai‘i is searching for its next president.

Jean Charlot mural, Bachman Hall

About Our Search

The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents aims to select the next president of the 10-campus system to replace current President David Lassner, who announced in September that he will retire in 2024.

Leadership Profile

The profile provides background on the university and includes the president’s position summary.



  • WittKieffer interviews regents individually for input on candidate profile/position description
  • Presidential Search Advisory Group (PSAG) holds first meeting after completing ethics, financial disclosures and confidentiality agreement
  • PSAG meets with WittKieffer to provide input on candidate profile/position description


  • Public forums in each county (East and West Hawaiʻi Island, Maui County, Honolulu County, and Kauaʻi County) to solicit public input on candidate profile/position description


  • WittKieffer develops a leadership profile that includes the position description based on the collective input from regents, the county forums, PSAG members and the results of the public survey (2,093 completed)
  • Leadership profile is reviewed and approved by PSAG and then by the regents at May 16 BOR monthly meeting

May to August

  • Candidate recruitment period

July to August

  • Review of candidate materials


  • First round of candidate interviews


  • Three to four finalists are named


  • Final selection and negotiation
  • New president is announced


  • New president begins

Search Committee

The board decided that every regent will serve on the selection committee.

Gabriel Lee

Ernest Wilson

PSAG BOR Liaison

Wayne Higaki

William F. Haning III

Diane Paloma

Laurie Tochiki

PSAG BOR Liaison

Laurel Loo

Neil Abercrombie

Lauren Akitake

Abigail Mawae

Advisory Group

The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents unanimously approved the 12 people nominated to serve on the Presidential Search Advisory Group for the search for UH’s next president. The vote came on March 7 during a special meeting of the regents.

Jaret KC Leong

PSAG Co-Chair
Director of Mānoa Academy and Academic Pathways; UH Staff Council Co-Chair

Erin E. Centeio

PSAG Co-Chair
UH Mānoa Associate Professor in the College of Education; All Campus Council for Faculty Senate Chairs (ACCFSC) Co-Chair

Lindsey Millerd

UH West Oʻahu ASUH President; UH Student Caucus Representative

Kamakanaokealoha Aquino

Native Hawaiian Coordinator, Pūko’a Council Representative

Domineque Bonifacio

Leeward Community College ASUH senator

Jerris R. Hedges

UH Mānoa John A. Burns School of Medicine Dean Emeritus

Brandon Marc T. Higa

Former UH regent, Kapiʻolani Community College Grants Office Director

Duane K. Kurisu

Former UH regent, aio Chairman and CEO

Tammi Oyadomari-Chun

Hawaiʻi Department of Education Deputy Superintendent of Strategy

Dirk Soma

Kauaʻi Community College Associate Professor of Business

Noe Noe Wong-Wilson

Hawaiian Civic Club of Hilo President, ʻĀina Aloha Economic Development Futures Initiative Founding Co-Author

Areas of Excellence

International Advantage
Economic Development

students walking

Fast Facts







Mission and Purpose

With a focus on creating a healthy and thriving future for all, the University of Hawai‘i provides broad educational opportunity as the higher education destination of choice in the Pacific that nurtures the personal success, leadership capacity and positive engagement of every resident of Hawai‘i. It achieves global impact by enriching the fundamental knowledge of humankind through engagement in world-class research, scholarship and service that promotes the welfare and sustainability of Hawai‘i’s people and environment. Woven through all it does is an appreciation of and commitment to indigenous Hawaiian people, culture, values and wisdom.

How to Apply

All applications, nominations, and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a CV or resume and a letter of interest addressing the themes in this profile.

WittKieffer is assisting the University of Hawaiʻi in this search. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by July 30, 2024.

Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s candidate portal.

Nominations and inquiries can be directed to:
Zachary A. Smith, Ph.D., Suzanne Teer, and Shelley Arakawa

The University of Hawaiʻi is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution.

Last modified: July 17, 2024
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