Gov. Ige Honors State’s Top Employees of the Year

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Gov. David Ige recognized winners of the Governor’s Awards on Friday, May 17, 2019, designed to honor state Executive Branch employees, managers and work teams who exemplify the highest caliber of public service and dedication in serving the people of Hawai‘i. The statewide program is administered by the Department of Human Resources Development.

“Public employees have consistently made important contributions to our continuing efforts to improve the efficiency and quality of government services,” said Gov. Ige. “We are honored to work with such dedicated individuals and we appreciate all that they do each and every day.”

Hawai‘i State Manager of the Year, Dr. Ronald Cambra. Courtesy photo.

Gov. Ige presented the following awards:

STATE MANAGER OF THE YEAR: Dr. Ronald Cambra, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Education, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa


Having dedicated over 40 years of service to the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, Dr. Cambra championed four campus-wide initiatives that guide students toward completing their degrees within four years. As a result of his leadership and vision, the UH increased its four-year graduation rate from 16 percent to 32 percent, garnering national attention in the field of higher education.

EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR: Mark Want, Energy Analyst, Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT)

Want has worked tirelessly to ensure that our state’s energy infrastructure is well-prepared to respond to and recover from any infrequent but catastrophic incidents, such as a hurricane.  His ability to navigate the high stress, dynamic emergency management environments are noteworthy.


STATE TEAM OF THE YEARUH Cancer Center Administrative Leadership Team, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa

This dedicated 10-member team improved the efficiency and operational productivity of their individual units, resulting in improved faculty and staff satisfaction, cost savings and achievement of key mission-based objectives. Notably, the UH Cancer Center retained its designation as a National Cancer Institute (NCI) Center.

Top Employees. Courtesy photo.

“These individuals have selflessly given of themselves to enrich the lives of those they serve,” said Gov. Ige. “Their accomplishments perpetuate the aloha spirit and make our state a special place to live and work.”


The three winners were selected from 54 exceptional groups and individual nominees. A volunteer Selection Committee of five prominent members of the community carefully reviewed the 54 nomination packets and rated them according to defined categories.  The committee presented its recommendations for the three awards to Gov. Ige.

The five members of this year’s Selection Committee are: Kurt Fey, executive director, Y. Hata & Co., Ltd.; Lisa Fowler, former president & CEO, Hawaiian Humane Society; James Horton, director of Punchbowl Cemetery, National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs; Lynette Lo Tom, president & CEO, Bright Light Marketing; and Marisa Yamane, formeranchor/reporter, KHON-TV.

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