Mahalo Award - Legislator of the Year

2014 Legislator of the Year

From left: FLH Director Sam Callejo, FLH Executive Director Nainoa Mau, FLH Director Susan Li, Governor David Ige, Senator Russell Ruderman, FLH President Marlene Booth, FLH Director Lynnae Lee, FLH Director Alan Yamamoto

Photo courtesy of Paul Mark, Information Specialist III - HSPLS


 

The Friends of the Library of Hawai'i (FLH) has awarded Senator Russell Ruderman, representing legislative District 2, with the Mahalo Award as the FLH Legislator of the Year. The award was presented at the FLH Legislative Breakfast held January 14th at Washington Place in Honolulu.

Governor David Ige was the featured speaker with First Lady Dawn Amano-Ige welcoming invited guests from the Hawai’i State Legislature, Board of Education, Hawai’i State Public Library System, and Friends of the Library of Hawai‘i Affiliates and volunteers. 

The Mahalo Award is presented annually to a State legislator who has demonstrated exemplary support of Hawai‘i’s public libraries during the prior legislative session. Senator Ruderman continues to advocate for a regional library in his Puna district of the Big Island of Hawai’i and his office has worked closely with library staff.

In the past year, Senator Ruderman’s office has worked tirelessly with many agencies, including the Hawai‘i State Public Library System, to ensure the continuation of service for his area in the midst of a number of natural events including Hurricane Iselle and the Kilauea lava flows. Library services were expanded to include 24/7 wireless-internet access during hurricane clean-up and extending through today at the Pahoa Public Library for residents effected by the lava flow.

Elected in 2012, Senator Ruderman serves on the Agriculture, Health, Water and Land, as well as the Ways and Means committees.

The Legislative Breakfast provides a unique opportunity for supporters of the Friends of the Library of Hawai‘i and Hawai‘i State Public Library staff to discuss the needs and concerns of Hawai’i’s public libraries with their legislators and to thank them for their support.

2011 Legislator of the Year

From left: Byrde Cestare, Susan Li, Senator Donna Mercado Kim, Rosemary Chong, Allene Suemori, and Governor Neil Abercrombie.

Photo courtesy of Paul Mark, Information Specialist III - HSPLS


 

On January 11, 2012, Friends of the Library of Hawai‘i announced and honored State Senator Donna Mercado Kim (District 14-Moanalua, Aiea, Fort Shafter, Kalihi Valley, Halawa Valley) as the 2011 Legislator of the Year. Senator Kim was presented with the Mahalo Award at a Legislative Breakfast for invited guests at Washington Place.    

The Mahalo Award is presented to the State legislator who has demonstrated his or her support of Hawaii's public libraries during the past legislative session.  

Senator Kim currently serves as Vice President of the State Senate, as well as chair of the Committee on Tourism and the Special Committee on Accountability.  In addition, she serves as a member of the Committee on Ways and Means.  Senator Kim chaired the Task Force on Reinventing Government which searched for ways to eliminate government waste and save money without cutting core services. 

Senator Kim, as a member of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, was instrumental in keeping the Hawaii State Public Library System's budget intact and helped minimize reductions over the past few years.  This translated into fewer days when our libraries were closed to our patrons, and fewer furlough days for our employees than the rest of the State.

Senator Kim is an advocate of literacy and life-long learning and continues to be a very strong supporter of the Friends of the Library of Hawaii.  In the tradition of Mahalo Award recipients, Senator Kim donated a copy of one of her favorite books - "Personal Coaching for Results" by Lou Tice - to her local library, the Salt Lake-Moanalua Public Library. In addition, a second copy was donated to the Hawai‘i State Library.

The Legislative Breakfast provides a unique opportunity for members of the Friends of the Library of Hawaii and Hawaii State Public Library System (HSPLS) staff members to discuss mutual concerns about Hawaii's public libraries with their legislators and thank them for their support.  The event also featured an "HSPLS Year in Review" slide presentation.                              

2010 Legislator of the Year

From left: Susan Li, Rep. Marcus Oshiro, Byrde Cestare

 

The Honorable Governor Neil Abercrombie and Mrs. Lauzanne Oshiro

The Friends of the Library of Hawai'i held its annual legislative event Wednesday, January 12, 2011, at Washington Place. All members of the Hawai'i legislature were invited to attend as well as library staff, Friends of the Library members, and the community. Representative Marcus Oshiro was presented with the Mahalo Award as the 2010 Legislator of the Year for being a strong advocate for the Hawai'i State Public Library System.

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