I am inspired by BYU–Hawaii, its mission, its students, and its host community. Today we are also grateful to present one of Hawaii’s own as the new president in this sacred stewardship. In reviewing the life and progress of President Kauwe, I believe we can learn from his example in ways that will not only bless the students of BYU–Hawaii but also offer insights to the very governance and direction of the university.
President Kauwe’s personal development represents the miraculous impact that education can have in the lives of God’s children. Born in noble but humble circumstances, President Kauwe grabbed hold of education and used it to acquire further opportunities that set him apart as a scientist and as an academic administrator. More important, he did this in ways that involved the Lord and kept prophetic direction central to his purposes. Of course, early on President Kauwe paused his academic career to serve a mission in Fukuoka, Japan. He also allowed the Lord to shape his professional interests. He has repeatedly sought the Lord’s direction in his leadership opportunities. He has done this as a father to his remarkable family, as a husband to Monica, in his Church responsibilities, and in his academic assignments.
Today we inaugurate a bright, educated, and administratively capable president, but above all we inaugurate a president who wants to do what the Lord directs him to do. President Kauwe is interested in the future of this school as he receives prophetic guidance. When we make the Lord our partner and follow prophetic counsel, we can go to places that we could never have imagined on our own. This has been true in the life of our new president. This will be true in the lives of our current and future students. And it is true in the future destiny of this great university. I so testify in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.