Alberta J.K. Pukahi named first female Campus Security captain University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Posted: Dec 12, 2012
Alberta J.K. Pukahi becomes UH Manoa's first female Security captain
University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa’s Campus Security and Emergency Management Department announces the appointment of its first female captain, Alberta J.K. Pukahi. Capt. Pukahi is a 25-year veteran of the University’s Security office, where for the last eight years she served as a Sergeant and investigated cases of the most sensitive and complex nature, including sexual assaults.
Pukahi came to UH Mānoa in 1987 as a security professional from the private sector and, inspired by the first UHM Commencement ceremony she witnessed, made the commitment to pursue a college degree. She states, “While at Kahuku High School, I was not the most serious student, but the tuition waivers available to University employees gave me the opportunity to go back to school.” Taking a few credits each semester through evening or summer programs, she eventually earned an associate degree in administration of justice from Honolulu Community College in 2000, and a bachelor’s in public administration (concentrations in justice administration and disaster preparedness and emergency management) from UH West Oʻahu in 2010.
From her earliest years in Campus Security, Pukahi aspired to hold one of the top positions in the department. “I knew I could do more,” she says, “and now I’m living proof that it can happen.” Head of Campus Security and Emergency Management Chief Wayne K. Ogino acknowledges that “Alberta was the top choice in a competitive field of very qualified candidates because of her professional growth, work ethic, and special aloha for the Mānoa campus. Campus Security’s philosophy of caring for our community will come alive under her leadership.”
With the many recent new hires in the department, Capt. Pukahi’s immediate focus is on training, operations, and rebuilding a team dedicated to service. She oversees a Security staff of nearly 40, approximately 25% of them women.
Pukahi was recognized as one of Hawaiʻi’s “Top Cop”s in 2011. She is an active member of community organizations the National Coalition Building Institute and the Federal Law Enforcement Foundation, and serves on the UH Commission on the Status of Women and the UH Commission on the Status of LGBTI (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex) Equality.
Capt. Pukahi is a Honolulu resident, Native Hawaiian, and recently married her partner of over 20 years, Josie De La Cruz.
UH Mānoa’s Campus Security and Emergency Management is committed to providing its campus community with a safe and secure environment. Services provided include Security Escort Service, Emergency Call Boxes, Emergency Responders, and more listed at www.hawaii.edu/security.
For more information, visit: http://www.hawaii.edu/security