Living Treasure honoree Nola Nahulu, with many lei, and Mitsuyo Saito (photo by Ruth Tokumi)
2013 Living Treasure Nola Nahulu with Mitsuyo Saito. Photo by Ruth Tokumi.
Living Treasures of Hawaii™ recognizes and honors individuals who have demonstrated excellence and high achievement in their particular field of endeavor, and who, through continuous growth, learning, and sharing, have made significant contributions toward enriching our society.

The program was inspired by the Living National Treasures (Ningen Kokuho) of Japan. In 1976, Bishop Yoshiaki Fujitani instituted the program within the Hongwanji at the suggestion of Paul Yamanaka, a local insurance executive. Initially established to honor those involved in the perpetuation of the island’s distinctive cultural and artistic heritage, the recognition has been expanded to include contributions by individuals in all areas of endeavor.

Nominations for 2024

An organization or person may nominate a candidate for this recognition by submitting a nomination form with information on the nominee and up to three letters of recommendation. You may download a nomination form or pick one up at the Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii Headquarters Office (see Contact Us). Completed nominations may be submitted in the following manner:

  • By mail.
  • By fax – (808) 522-9209.
  • By email –
  • Dropped off during office hours.

The completed nomination must be received by the Living Treasures Committee no later than the close of business on August 1. Presentation is made in February of the following year. For additional information, please call our office at (808) 522-9200.

2023 Honorees

The Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii honored the following individuals as the 2023 Living Treasures of Hawai’i™ in recognition of their personal and professional achievements and their contributions to the community. The awards program was held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki on February 11, 2023.

Keakaokalani Cachola, Jr.
Fred Keakaokalani Cachola, Jr.
Hiromi Nakai Peterson
Hiromi Nakai Peterson
Frederick S. Nonaka
Frederick S. Nonaka
Peter T. Young
Peter T. Young

For more information about the 2023 honorees, see the February 1, 2023 press release.

The 2022 honorees, who were profiled in a special TV program that year, were also recognized at the 2023 in-person program.

  • Kenny Endo
  • Dr. Patrick V Kirch
  • Keali’i Reichel

You may view a complete list of honorees since Living Treasures was established in 1976.

Living Treasures Fund

A special fund supports the Living Treasures of Hawai’i™ program. You can easily make a donation online.

Donate to the Living Treasures Fund