We, the Kānaka Maoli, the Native people of Hawaii, are unique by virtue of our ancestral ties to the āina, our history, language, culture, knowledge and spirituality. The Pūkoa Council, representing Kānaka Maoli within the University of Hawaii system, envisions a University of Hawaii committed to the empowerment, advancement and self-determination of Kānaka Maoli, through distinctly Hawaiian instruction, research and service. Therefore, Pūkoa Council promotes the superior development of all aspects of Kānaka Maoli identity, including a pono spiritual, intellectual, cultural, economic and social well-being.


The purpose of the Pūkoa Council of the University of Hawaii is to provide a formal, independent voice and organization through which the Native Hawaiian faculty, administrators, and students of the University of Hawaii system can participate in the development and interpretation of system-wide policy and practice as it relates to Native Hawaiian programs, activities, initiatives, and issues. Specifically, the Council will:

  1. 1.Provide advice and information to the President of the University on issues that have particular relevance for Native Hawaiians and for Native Hawaiian culture, language, and history.

  2. 2.Work with the system and campus administration to position the University as one of the world’s foremost indigenous-serving universities.

  3. 3.Promote the access and success of Native Hawaiian students in undergraduate, graduate and professional programs, and the increase in representation of Native Hawaiians in all facets of the University.

  4. 4.Encourage and facilitate Native Hawaiian excellence in teaching, research, scholarship, publication, and service in all academic disciplines.

  5. 5.Advocate for fairness and equity in all decisions and resource allocations related to Native Hawaiian programs and services.


2.1 The Pūkoa Council is comprised of Native Hawaiians and those associated with the University of Hawaii System as faculty, staff, adjunct faculty, administration, and students who support Pūkoa Council's mission and values.

2.2Members meet regularly and assume equal responsibility for the work of the Council. Members of the Pūkoa Council shall be admitted or disqualified in the manner specified in the Pūkoa Council Bylaws ("Bylaws").

2.3The Pūkoa Council has no elected officers and reaches decisions on policies  and recommendations through its Executive Council, which consists of 2 representatives from each campus of the University of Hawaii’s 10-campus system chosen by each campus council representing Kānaka Maoli on that campus according to each council’s own internal procedures.


3.1The Pūkoa Council relies on a process where decisions are made by the Executive Council as a whole. The responsibility that normally belongs to a Chair or elected leader rotates throughout the members of the Executive Council as representatives of their member campus organizations. In light of this, this Pūkoa Code of Conduct is adopted to guide the Executive Council members in their responsibilities to themselves, their colleagues and the group as a whole.

3.2The following values are adopted to guide Pūkoa Council actions:

a. Aloha aku, aloha mai. The actions of members of the council shall be founded in respect for each  other and for the integrity of the group.

b. Mālama i kekahi i kekahi. Members will conduct themselves in a manner that promotes and sustains the well-being of Pūkoa and its individual members. Members who have greater experience with the group and understanding of its history have the responsibility to mentor others. Each member has the right to speak on behalf of the member's campus organization with respect for the experience and knowledge of others.

c.  Ma ka hana ka ike. All members should actively engage in the discussion, debate and deliberation of the issues and topics before the Pūkoa Council. Members have a responsibility for seeking positive solutions and accept kuleana for the actions required to realize their outcome. Through active engagement, individual members and Pūkoa as a whole will gain experience, which will build our capacity to deal with future challenges.

d.Kūlia i ka nuu. In continuing the long tradition of our ancestors, Pūkoa strives for excellence in all of its actions.


4.1Any matter not covered by this Charter or in the Bylaws shall be brought before the Council for resolution. This Charter is a living document and shall be reviewed periodically.

4.2This Charter has been ratified by the Pūkoa members and campus councils of all 10 University of Hawaii campuses and adopted by the UH Board of Regents on June 29, 2009.


Left:  Ho‘oulu Program at Maunakea, Pūko‘a No Nā ‘Ewa Council, Leeward Community College

Top Right:  Nā Papa Hawai‘i, Kupu Ka Wai Council, Honolulu Community College

Bottom Left:  Photo courtesy of Nālimakui Council, UH West O‘ahu

Bottom Right:  STEM Programs, Kūali‘i Council, UH Mānoa