The University of Hawaiʻi Alumni Association honored last week five distinguished graduates — including Kaua‘i’s Tom Shigemoto — who have used their education to excel professionally and provide service for the benefit of UH and the community.
More than 500 UH alumni and friends recognized this year’s honorees at the UH Distinguished Alumni Awards dinner on May 13 at the Sheraton Waikīkī Hotel.
2015 Distinguished Alumni Award honorees
Tom Shigemoto (BFA ʻ71 UH Mānoa) Shigemoto is vice president of planning at A&B Properties, Inc. on Kauaʻi. He is involved with project planning, real estate and infrastructural development and residential and agricultural subdivision projects.
Born and raised on Kaua‘i, Shigemoto attended Kaua‘i High School and earned his BFA degree in urban and regional design from UH Mānoa. Upon graduation in 1971, he began his professional career as a staff planner with the Kaua‘i County Planning Department.
In 1984, he became the county’s deputy planning director, and in 1988 he was appointed county planning director. In May 1990, he joined Princeville Corporation as director of planning. In August 1991, he assumed his current position as vice president of planning at A&B Properties, Inc., the real estate development subsidiary of Alexander & Baldwin, Inc., a firm that has been on Kaua‘i for more than 125 years.
Shigemoto currently serves on the Kaua‘i Economic Development Board, Kaua‘i Developers Council, American Red Cross, Kaua‘i United Way, and Hawaii Health Systems Corporation – Kaua‘i Region. He is a member of the Kaua‘i Chamber of Commerce, Contractors Association of Kaua‘i, Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau, Kaua‘i Housing Development Corporation, and several others. His past affiliations include: University of Hawai‘i Board of Regents, Kaua‘i County; Boy Scouts of America, Aloha Council, Kaua‘i District; Kaua‘i Community College Rural Development Project; Wilcox Hospital Properties Board; YMCA Campaign Committee; Līhu‘e Baseball League and Līhu‘e Christian Church Council.
Ren Hirose (BBA ʻ85 UH Mānoa) Hirose is the general manager of the W Scottsdale Hotel and has held leadership roles within Starwood Hotels for almost 30 years.
Jillian Inouye (BS ʻ66, MA ʻ80, PhD ʻ87 UH Mānoa) Inouye serves as the associate dean for research for the Schools of Nursing and Allied Health Sciences and the Tony and Renee Marlon Angel Professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Stanford Yuen (BS ʻ66 UH Mānoa) Yuen is principal of SLC Consulting, specializing in strategic engagement, engineering management and intergovernmental affairs with the congressional delegation, state, city, legislature, private businesses, special interest organizations and schools.
2015 UH Founders Alumni Association Lifetime Achievement Award honoree
Associate Justice Simeon Acoba, Jr. (ret.) (BA ʻ66 UH Mānoa) Acoba was appointed to the Supreme Court of Hawaiʻi in May 2000. He served until his mandatory retirement age in 2014. Prior to his appointment to the Supreme Court, he was an associate judge on the Intermediate Court of Appeals from 1994 to 2000, a circuit court judge from 1980 to 1994 and a per diem district court judge from 1979 to 1980. Acoba is a currently a lecturer at the UH Mānoa William S. Richardson School of Law and a member of the University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents.