The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly’s board of directors unanimously voted in favor of endorsing Colleen Hanabusa for governor and officially notified her campaign today. UHPA’s political endorsement committee had recommended Hanabusa to the board for consideration.
“Our endorsement was based on input from faculty as well as Colleen’s solid track record of support for public higher education in Hawaii,” said Lynne Wilkens, president of the UHPA board of directors. “We need a governor who is predictable, driven by consistent values, decisive, collaborative, and has the integrity to keep promises — all of the qualities that Colleen has demonstrated during her years as a leader in the legislature and in Congress.”
In the letter of endorsement to Hanabusa, Wilkens noted that affordable housing, quality child care and elder care, and the cost of living consistently top the list of critical issues raised by UH faculty. These concerns are directly linked to the ability to recruit and retain quality faculty to teach and conduct research at the University of Hawaii’s 10 campuses statewide.
Wilkens also noted the UH has been an economic engine for Hawaii, with faculty members attracting hundreds of millions of dollars in research funding from national sources that create local jobs and the development of practical solutions to pressing issues in the state.
“We believe it is important to maintain this diversity of funding sources to ensure our faculty-led research programs remain resilient to economic challenges and not solely dependent upon state support,” she said.