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Keiki Kawaiaea
Keiki Kawaiʻaeʻa

Keiki Kawaiʻaeʻa has been appointed University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo interim vice chancellor for academic affairs effective August 14, 2023.

Kawaiʻaeʻa is currently the director of the UH Hilo Ka Haka ʻUla O Keʻelikōlani College of Hawaiian Language, a position she has held since 2013. In addition, she is an associate professor of Hawaiian studies, Hawaiian and Indigenous teacher education and graduate courses.

Her career at UH Hilo began in 1992 as an educational specialist and served as founding director of the Kahuawaiola Indigenous Teacher Education Program (1998–2012), director of Hale Kuamoʻo Hawaiian Language and Culture Center (1995–2008) and (2015–18).

“As a senior faculty member with a stellar record and numerous ties to the community, Dr. Kawaiʻaeʻa is well prepared to lead academic affairs at this pivotal moment in the history of our campus,” UH Hilo Chancellor Bonnie D. Irwin said. “I look forward to working with her in this new capacity.”

Kawaiʻaeʻa is also a founding partner of Ulukau, a Hawaiian language digital library of Native Hawaiian reference material for cultural and Hawaiian language studies.

Additionally, she has served as both principal and co-investigator of numerous grant awards and contracts, an active participant in state, national, international, and Indigenous professional activities and services, lead author and co-author of research and artistic publications, and the recipient of professional honors, recognitions, and awards.

Kawaiʻaeʻa earned her PhD in interdisciplinary studies with a specialization in Indigenous education from Union Institute and University, professional diploma in education from Chaminade University, and MEd and BA from UH Mānoa.

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