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Inouye Tributes Include Renaming UHH College of Pharmacy

Posted February 22, 2013, 12:42 PM HST Updated February 22, 2013, 01:38 PM HST
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Participants at today's Inouye Tribute Legacy Ceremony included the late senator's son, Ken, shown at left speaking with UH President M.R.C. Greenwood. US Rep. Colleen Hanabusa is shown at center in red. UH photo.

The University of Hawaii at Manoa held a ceremony this morning on Oahu honoring the late Sen. Daniel Inouye.

Participants at the Inouye Tribute Legacy Ceremony included the veteran lawmaker’s son, Ken Inouye, US Rep. Colleen Hanabusa and university President M.R.C. Greenwood.

The ceremony comes on the heels of Thursday’s action by the UH Board of Regents to name four university facilities in honor of Inouye.

They include the University of Hawaii at Hilo College of Pharmacy.

“Building a high-quality college of pharmacy on Hawaii Island was part of Sen. Inouye’s vision to encourage better health care throughout the Pacific region and throughout the neighbor islands of Hawai`i,” UH-Hilo Chancellor Donald Straney said in a statement.

“His vision was that each neighbor island would harbor a center of excellence, that every island should have its own specialty. The specialty for Hawai`i Island envisioned by Sen. Inouye was our own College of Pharmacy.”

An architect's drawing of the building proposed for the UH-Hilo Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy. Image from the 2008 draft environmental assessment.

An architect’s drawing of the building proposed for the UH-Hilo Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy. Image from the 2008 draft environmental assessment.

The school now known as the Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy is the only pharmacy school in the Pacific. A campaign continues to obtain funding to build a permanent home for the school which currently operates out of temporary facilities.

Inouye secured the initial funding for the school in 2000. It opened in 2007, and since then has been ranked in the top five new schools of pharmacy in the U.S. by US News and World Report.

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It has evolved to more than 500 students, faculty and staff. Two classes have graduated, and a doctorate degree program has been launched.

School officials say the college’s statewide economic impact is in excess of $50 million per year.

The other facilities named for Inouye’s legacy are UH-Manoa’s Daniel K. Inouye Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education, also known as C-MORE; UH-Maui College’s Daniel K. Inouye Allied Health Center; and Kauai Community College’s Daniel K. Inouye Electronics Technology Building.

Inouye died Dec. 17 at the age of 88. He had served in the Senate since 1963, making him the second-longest serving senator in US history.

In other university news, former Hawaii Community College Chancellor Rockne Freitas has been named chancellor of the UH-West Oahu campus.

Freitas was in charge of the Big Island community college from 2004 to 2010.

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