HONOLULU, Hawai‘i – The University of Hawaiʻi is pleased to announce that they have won two of the three Governor’s Awards honoring the top state employees. Governor Linda Lingle named Michael Unebasami, associate vice president for administrative affairs of the University of Hawaiʻi as State Manager of the Year, and Brian Bushe, an insect and plant researcher for the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources as State Employee of the Year. Unebasami and Bushe were both honored yesterday at the Governor’s Awards Ceremony, along with the State Team of the Year, Moanalua Elementary School cafeteria staff.
“We congratulate Michael and Brian on receiving the Governor’s Awards. This truly exemplifies the quality of our staff and our commitment to higher education. We are proud of their accomplishments and dedication to the university,” said UH President M.R.C. Greenwood.
With over 40 years of state service, including 37 years at the University of Hawaiʻi, Unebasami continues to be highly motivated in creating a work environment of integrity, trust and respect for staff, colleagues, faculty and students. He manages a multi-million dollar budget and oversees every aspect in the smooth operation of seven community college campuses by inspiring, mentoring and providing progressive leadership to others. “The state appreciates Michael’s passion and unfailing dedication to the University of Hawaiʻi Community College system and the advancement of higher education in the State of Hawaiʻi,” said Governor Lingle.
For 25 years, Bushe has been identifying insects and nematodes and diagnosing plant diseases for the Agricultural Diagnostic Service Center in Hilo. Operating the one-person clinic, he spends hundreds of hours analyzing tolerance and resistance to chemical control in newly discovered disease organisms. Governor Lingle said, “Brian has made immeasurable contributions to the University of Hawaiʻi and to our local farmers by providing accurate and timely diagnosis and identification of pests to ensure the protection of our plants and the environment.” Known as the “plant doctor”, Bushe also volunteers regularly at open houses and plant sale events to raise public awareness.
The award winners were selected from 47 exceptional group and individual nominees who were chosen by their colleagues as their respective department’s employee, manager, and team of the year. This year, 17 team nominees, 12 manager nominees, and 18 employee nominees vied for the Governor’s Awards for State Team of the Year, Manager of the Year, and Employee of the Year, respectively. The awards are designed to honor the state’s ex