University of Hawaii announces nominees for 2008 Governor's Awards for Distinguished State Service

University of Hawaiʻi
Carolyn Tanaka, (808) 956-8109
External Affairs & University Relations
Posted: Aug 5, 2008

HONOLULU — University of Hawaiʻi President David McClain has announced the University of Hawaiʻi nominees for the 2008 Governor‘s Awards for Distinguished State Service — Sandra Enoki of UH Mānoa for Employee of the Year and Wayne Nishijima, also of UH Mānoa, for Manager of the Year.

The awards are part of the state‘s employee recognition and incentive program administered by the Department of Human Resources Development, and are designed to honor the state‘s executive branch employees and managers who exemplify the highest caliber of public service and dedication to serving the people of Hawaiʻi.

Enoki, the university‘s nominee for Employee of the Year, has over 30 years of service at UH, including 25 years as secretary to the chair of the American studies department in the College of Arts and Humanities at UH Mānoa. She is described by her colleagues as brilliant, meticulous, dependable, personable, self-effacing and kind. They also see her as extremely dedicated to her job and to the educational mandate of the university. As the only full-time staff servicing up to 12 professors and overseeing the needs of approximately 80 graduate students, Enoki has helped the department, faculty and scholars flourish. She is recognized for her uncanny ability in organizing staff and faculty to work as one team in its mission to educate students, conduct research and promote community development.

The university‘s nominee for Manager of the Year, Dr. Wayne Nishijima has been a part of the university for the past 29 years, and has established himself as a world renowned researcher in plant pathology. As the associate dean and associate director for Cooperative Extension of UH Mānoa‘s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, he serves as the catalyst for the development of informal educational programs in direct response to the needs of stakeholders for Hawaiʻi‘s agricultural community.

Nishijima has been instrumental in controlling the spread of the papaya ring spot virus, bacterial blight of anthurium, black spot of papaya, and the eradication of the chrysanthemum white rust virus. He is a noted authority on tropical plant diseases and has been a contributing author on the most authoritative reference on tropical fruit diseases published by the American Phytopathological Society. Willing to help out wherever it‘s needed, he is found on weekends and holidays conducting research for the local growers or repairing and maintaining the facility. A former lieutenant colonel, Nishijima is active in the Hawaiʻi Army National Guard Retiree‘s Association and volunteers his time to organizations such as Hospice and the Waiakea Lions.

University nominees receive a $300 cash award and personal recognition by the UH Board of Regents. They will also be honored at an awards ceremony and reception where Governor Linda Lingle will announce the state-wide winners chosen by representatives from the Department of Human Resources Development and the Governor‘s Office.