Esteemed Japanese corporate lawyer to receive honorary degree at School of Law commencement on May 16

ABA president-elect Michael Greco chosen as commencement ceremony speaker

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Posted: May 12, 2005

HONOLULU — Dr. Kaoru Kashiwagi, one of the inspirations behind the establishment of the William S. Richardson School of Law‘s unique LL.M. program for foreign lawyers, will receive an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from the University of Hawaiʻi on Monday, May 16, at the School of Law‘s Commencement Ceremony. The ceremony, to be held at Andrews Amphitheater on the Mānoa campus, will begin at 5 p.m.

The UH Board of Regents approved the granting of an honorary degree upon Kashiwagi in recognition of his extraordinary professional and academic achievements, his abiding commitment to mutual professional understanding and life-long learning, and his wonderful friendship with the School of Law and the University of Hawaiʻi.

"Mr. Kashiwagi has been and remains exceptionally generous and engaged with the world," commented School of Law Dean Aviam Soifer. "His multitude of professional accomplishments only begins to tell his story."

In Tokyo, Kashiwagi is a well-regarded senior international attorney whose firm is among the elite few in Japan involved with international transactions for over 45 years. His international law interest brought him to Hawaiʻi where he became the first international legal consultant licensed to practice in Hawaiʻi in 1982. His long-standing support for the School of Law includes not only generous financial support that enabled the school to establish a program in Japanese law, but also summer and permanent job placements for the school‘s students and alumni.

While continuing his active law practice, Kashiwagi earned his Ph.D. last year at Tsukuba University, a leading university in Japan. His 350-page thesis on corporate governance in the United Kingdom will be influential for Japanese policy makers in their current and ongoing efforts to address critical problems facing the nation‘s business structures.

The School of Law‘s LL.M. program for foreign lawyers was launched in Fall 2003, with four students from Ukraine, China, Korea and Germany. At the School of Law‘s commencement ceremony on May 16, seven international law students from Japan, China and Thailand will receive their LL.M. degree.

Michael S. Greco, president-elect of the 400,000-member American Bar Association (ABA), will be the special guest speaker at the commencement ceremony. A graduate of Boston College Law School, Greco is a trial lawyer with over 30 years of litigation experience in business, employment, and real estate law. He is a partner at the law firm of Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Nicholson Graham LLP in Boston. Greco served as chairperson of the ABA Section on Individual Rights and Responsibilities and has done extensive pro bono work. During a summer while in college, he worked on the construction of a school building in Hawaiʻi.

For further information about Dr. Kaoru Kashiwagi or the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa William S. Richardson School of Law‘s Commencement Ceremony, contact Jamee Kunichika, director of alumni relations, at (808) 956-5516 or Additional information about the William S. Richardson School of Law‘s LL.M. program for foreign lawyers can be found at or by contacting Spencer Kimura, associate director of international programs, at (808) 956-9038 or

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