Gov. Abercrombie to Honor Former Councilman Pete Hoffmann and Shirley Ito for “Older Americans Month”

Gov. Neil Abercrombie will be traveling to Kailua-Kona tomorrow, May 28 to honor Older Americans Month Hawaii County awardee Peter Hoffmann in a ceremony and reception at the County Council Chambers in the West Hawaii Civic Center.

Council Pete Hoffman

Former Councilman Pete Hoffmann

Every year, eight kupuna ‒ one male and one female from each county ‒ are selected as Older American volunteer honorees for the exemplary work they do to aid and support their individual communities. The female honoree for Hawaii County, Shirley Ito of Hilo, will be meeting with the Governor at a later date in Hilo in recognition of her volunteer work.

Hoffman, who is from Waikoloa, was nominated for this award by the Waikoloa Senior Center. He organized the local senior center and was the founding and continuing president through mid-2006. He presided over the monthly meetings, drove the van on monthly outings, arranged for speakers, and took charge of most of the activities. He was the sweat equity of the senior center.

At the youthful age of 72, Hoffman has committed his time and energy to numerous other community programs including the School Supply Drive, the Waikoloa Village Association, the Waikoloa Community Development Corporation, and the 21st Century Learning Center out of the Waikoloa Elementary School. Additionally, he serves as cantor at the Puako Ascension Catholic Church where he was named Island Treasure by the Diocese two years ago.

Wes Lum, director of the Executive Office on Aging, and Alan Parker of the Hawaii County Office on Aging will be joining Gov. Abercrombie in the celebration honoring Hoffmann.

“Older Americans Month celebrations acknowledge the value that older adults continue to bring to our communities by applauding recent achievements of local kupuna and inviting them to share the activities they do to unleash the power of age,” said Wes Lum, director of the Executive Office on Aging.

After proclaiming May as “Older Americans Month” in Hawaii on May 3, the Governor recognized honorees from Honolulu, Betty Goya and John McGuire, and Kauai County, Dr. Lucy Miller and William Neil Rapozo, Sr. at events on their respective islands. Honorees from Maui County, Diane Logsdon and Richard Endsley, will be meeting with the Governor in a ceremony on Maui in July.

This year’s Older Americans Month theme –“Unleash the Power of Age” –emphasizes the important role of our kupuna. Seniors across the nation are being recognized as productive, active, and influential members of society.

For more information and to find ongoing opportunities to celebrate and support older Americans, contact the Executive Office on Aging at (808) 586-0100 or local Area Agency on Aging by visiting the Aging and Disability Resource Center at www.hawaiiadrc.orgor (808) 643-2372.

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