Fundraising Dinner to Launch Endowment Fund in Honor of Noted Community College Chancellor Joyce Tsunoda

University of Hawaiʻi
Posted: Nov 12, 2003

HONOLULU — University of Hawaiʻi Vice President for International Education Joyce S. Tsunoda, who has given 37 years of service to the University of Hawaiʻi system, including 20 years as chancellor of the UH Community Colleges (UHCC), will be honored at a fundraising dinner on Tuesday, Nov. 18, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, Coral Ballroom. Registration and no-host cocktails begin at 5:30 p.m., with dinner to follow at 6:30 p.m.

Walter A. Dods, Jr., chairman and CEO of BancWest Corp., and Mark H. Fukunaga, chairman and CEO of Servco Pacific Inc., are honorary chairs for the event.

Proceeds from the event will help to establish the Joyce S. Tsunoda UHCC Leadership Development Endowed Fund, which will enable community college faculty, staff, students and administrators to participate in leadership training, professional development and other education-related classes and activities. These include seminars, fellowship programs and formal academic study.

"As I prepare to retire and leave the UH system that I have known, worked for and loved for almost 40 years, I am honored that an endowment fund in my name will continue to help the UH community colleges throughout the state," said Tsunoda.

Joyce Sachiko (Nishimura) Tsunoda has had a distinguished career. She is the daughter of Sueko Higashi and Yukio Nishimura, a professional baseball player who was inducted into Japan‘s Baseball Hall of Fame. Tsunoda has a doctoral degree in biochemistry and a baccalaureate degree in chemistry from UH, and was valedictorian of Leilehua High School‘s Class of 1956.

In 1968, she assumed the lead role in working with architects to design what would become known as Leeward Community College. She developed curriculum and recruited faculty for the college‘s chemistry program, which continues to be known for its teaching excellence. Other roles she held at the Leeward campus include associate dean of special programs and community services and federal grants coordinator.

From 1976-83, she served as provost of Kapiʻolani Community College, during which time she was instrumental in transitioning the campus from its Kapiʻolani Boulevard site to its current location at the foot of Diamond Head.

In 1983, on being appointed chancellor of the entire UHCC system, Tsunoda became the first Asian-American woman to head a multi-campus community college system within the statewide system of higher education in Hawaiʻi. She was also the first Asian-American woman of this rank in the entire nation.

Tsunoda serves on the boards of various local, national and international organizations such as Servco Pacific Inc., Bishop Street Funds, the Hawaiʻi Visitors and Convention Bureau, Hawaiʻi Family Support Center, Omotesenke-Hawaiʻi, the American Council on Education Bureau, and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

For more information about the fundraising dinner, call (808) 956-7471.