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GOVERNOR’S OFFICE NEWS RELEASE: Governor Ige honors state’s top employees

Posted on May 18, 2017 in Latest Department News, Newsroom, Office of the Governor Press Releases

HONOLULU – Gov. David Ige today recognized winners of the Governor’s Awards, which honors 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 (DHRD).

“Public employees have 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 they do each and every day.”

Here is a list of the awards presented:

  • STATE MANAGER OF THE YEAR: Mark Patterson, corrections manager, Department of Human Services

Mark is directly responsible for the effective delivery of services to youth at the Hawai‘i Youth Correctional Facility. He has worked tirelessly to create a pu‘uhonua, a place of sanctuary for healing, for Hawai‘i’s troubled youth.  Plans are underway to provide a communal space for various faith-spiritual based groups to meet and share their services with the youth and their families.

  • EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR: Lowell Spencer, school custodian, Department of Education

As Head Custodian at Honowai Elementary School, Lowell has transformed  the 50-year-old campus, which now features well-manicured grounds lined with native Hawaiian plants. He has built a team of staff members who have repaired and re-purposed items in innovative ways, keeping the school’s buildings in excellent condition.

  • STATE TEAM OF THE YEAR: NextEra-Hawaiian Electric Merger Evaluation Team, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

This dedicated 15-member team worked tirelessly to process and analyze more than a hundred thousand pages of information in their review of the proposed $4.3 billion merger between NextEra and the Hawaiian Electric Companies. In each and every instance, they upheld the division’s mission to protect and advance the interests of Hawai‘i’s regulated utility consumers.

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

The three winners were selected from 56 exceptional groups and individual nominees.  A volunteer Selection Committee of five prominent members of the community carefully reviewed the 56 nomination packets and rated them according to defined categories.  The committee presented their recommendations for the three awards to Governor Ige.

The five members of this year’s Selection Committee are: Paula Akana, News Anchor, KITV-4; Roy Amemiya, Jr., Managing Director, City & County of Honolulu; Christopher Conklin, Executive Director, Honolulu-Pacific Federal Executive Board; Kim Gennaula, Executive Director of Advancement, Iolani Schools; and Scott Williams, Executive Director, Lex Brodie’s Tire, Brake & Service Company.


Media Contacts:

Jodi Leong

Deputy Communications Director/Press Secretary

Office of the Governor

Office: 808-586-0043

Mobile: 808-798-3929

[email protected]


Cindy McMillan

Communications Director

Office of the Governor

Office: 808-586-0012

Mobile: 808-265-7974

[email protected]


Doreen Kuroda

Department of Human Resources Development

Office: 808-587-1169

[email protected]