ARCS Angel and ARCS Light Honorees

Recognizing Substantial Support for the ARCS Foundation Mission

The ARCS Angel Award is presented at the discretion of the Honolulu Chapter president to an individual who has provided extraordinary support to the ARCS Foundation Honolulu Chapter's mission of advancing Science in America. Recipients include:

Elizabeth AsteriadisElizabeth “Liz” Asteriadis, 2019

Liz Asteriadis is recognized for her generous support of ARCS Scholar Awards. She has funded the Kai Bowden ARCS Scholar Award anually since 2019. The award, named in honor of her grandson, who survived major brain injury, has been awarded in medicine and molecular bioscience. Liz taught in Nevada’s Washoe County School District for 20 years and was a community college instructor in Reno. She lives in Kailua and volunteers with Boys and Girls Club.

Mona Elmore headshotMona Elmore, 2009

Originally from California, Mrs. George (Mona) Elmore moved first to Kaua‘i and then relocated to O‘ahu in 1986. ARCS was a natural fit for Mona, who loves to learn and explore new frontiers. Since retiring from a career in education, she has traveled the world seeking new cultures and adventures that most of us can only imagine. When at home “resting” in Hawai‘i, Mona maintains a busy schedule of social and cultural events. She is a strong supporter of local arts in addition to her active participation in ARCS field trips and fundraisers. She demonstrates keen interest in the work of University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa scientists through her enthusiastic and intelligent questions. She has generously sponsored the ARCS Foundation Honolulu Chapter's Scientist of the Year and Scholar of the Year awards for a number of years and shares her enthusiasm for ARCS Foundation, Inc., by hosting friends at luncheons and other events.

Rewarding Exceptional Service to the Honolulu Chapter

The ARCS Light Award is presented by the Honolulu Chapter president to a member in recognition of remarkable and/or long-term service to the organization. Awardees have been active members for at least three years, served in a variety of committee and board roles, given continuous service that has had a positive impact on the chapter and been an exemplary representative of ARCS Foundation, Inc. to fellow members and the community. Recent honorees include:

Cheryl Ernst Cheryl Ernst, 2023, 2008

Learning and writing about scientific research was Cheryl Ernst's favorite activity during 30+ years as a University of Hawai‘i public information officer and Malamalama magazine editor. It lead to involvement in ARCS in 1998, and the amazing annual crop of new scholars has kept her active ever since. Besides numerous positions on the Honolulu board (including an extended term as co-president), she is a Council of Presidents representative to the National Board and has served on communication and information strategies committees. Born in Seattle, Cheryl studied journalism at the University of Washington and worked as newspaper reporter in Spokane unrtil marriage brought her to Hawai‘i. In 2019 she established the H. Keith and Sue A. Ernst ARCS Scholar Award to honor her parents for providing her with a college education and encouraging her curiosity and writing. She dances hula, volunteers with Friends of the Library of Hawaii, and enjoys spending time with her four grandchildren.

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Patricia “Patty” Lee, 2022, 2012, 2009

Geologist Patricia "Patty" Lee is an indispensable and  irrepressible force of nature. She has held nearly every position on the board, recruited most of the current board members, cajoled significant donations from friends and acquaintances and offered O‘ahu geology field trips as silent auction donations. Attending 13 grammar schools as an "Air Force fledgling" and serving in the Peace Corps in Thailand may explain why no one is a stranger. Raising three children while earning her master's degree from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa is a testament to her intellectual curiosity and determination. Retired from teaching at UH, she remains fascinated by the research that ARCS Scholars do. She also enjoys golf, bridge, opera and thought-provoking books. The ARCS Toby Lee Award in Earth Sciences was establsihed by investment club friends in memory of her late son and has been continued through annual donations from her daughter Niki.

Roslyn Pearson headshotRoslyn "Roz" Pearson, 2021

Seeing what ARCS Scholars do and witnessing how scientists make life better for everyone keeps Roz Pearson engaged with the organization. She was here at the beginning—the organizational meeting on Coconut Island in 1974—and she continues to serve as a reliable recording secretary, respected advisor and maker of the island's best lliko‘i jelly. After arriving in Honolulu in with her husband–college sweetheart and new veterinarian Rod–she taught second grade and worked as a Hawaiian Electric home economist before taking time off to raise four children. She was thinking about returning to work when Rod’s need for someone “to collect dead dogs” led her to create, organize and run her own business, O‘ahu Pet Crematory. She fondly recalls hosting an early ARCS fundraiser — “not your typical garage sale,” featuring tuxes and evening gowns – where she snatched up a banquet-sized table cloth with 18 napkins originally purchased for $1,000 by a member who “could only get it ironed if she hired a maid and left town.” Roz still uses (and irons) it.

Mandy Chen headshotMandy Chen, 2020

With a level of commitment remarkable in a 20-something, Mandy Chen has brought a fresh and valuable viewpoint to the ARCS Honolulu Board. She has served as treasurer and provided valuable service in scholar relations in addition to being the chapter's go-to resource on technical issues, all while working fulltime and pursuing her master’s degree in educational administration at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. She is graduate of the animal sciences program in UH's College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources—one of the units supported with ARCS Scholar Awards—and worked as an educational specialist in the college's Academic and Student Affairs Office. She recently started a position with USDA's National Resources Conservation Service.

Susan Moore, 2019

With a professionalism and non-nonsense attitude, Susan Moore brought consistency, clear reporting and much-needed expertise to the role of treasurer on the ARCS Honolulu Board. She brought the chapter into the digital age, setting up Quickbooks and PayPal account and saved the money by completing tax reports and filing online. A CPA, Susan holds a BA in psychology from UCLA and a MBA with tax specialization from San Diego State University. After 15 years with Deloitte LLP as a senior tax advisor, she established her own business in 2004. She also on occasion serves as an informal liaison to the University of Hawai‘i School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology’s Department of Earth Sciences via husband Greg Moore, a marine geophysicist.

Dr. Patricia Cooper headshotPatricia "Pat" Cooper, 2017

As a board member in various positions, including president 2000–2002, Pat Cooper was responsible for recruiting many current members, and she can be counted on for sage advice at meetings and delicious baked goods at events. The Short Hills New Jersey native earned her PhD from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa focusing on marine geophysics. She joined the Department of Geology and Geophysics faculty, teaching, doing outreach and participating in numerous research cruises to investigate the formation and composition of the ocean floor. She served as associate dean of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology and as dean of the university’s Graduate Division. During a career-long commitment to education, she advocated for and mentored women in science and served as a co-principal investigator of the NSF-funded Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence program to improve science  literacy about the ocean. Since retiring, she has relished in her more recent role as Gramie.

Sui-Lan Ellsworth

Sui-lan Ellsworth, 2016

A passionate voice for STEM education, Sui-lan Elsworth was born in Lima, Peru, where her father was a construction engineer, traveled the world and settled in Hawai‘i in 1972. As a high school English teacher she advocated writing in all subjects. including science. In a University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa geology class taught by ARCS Foundation Honolulu President Patty Lee, she received an A despite missing a few classes for childbirth. “The whole world opened up and I have been rabid about science ever since,” she says. Being a rough water swimmer for 30 years heightened her awareness of issues related to ocean reefs, and she funded an ARCS Scholar oceanography award in memory of her brother. Sui-lan also created and promotes a Friends of ARCS group for non-member donors and is pursuing an alumni-funded ARCS Scholar award.

MJ Amundson headshot
Mary Jane “M.J.” Amundson, 2015

Veteran board member and treasurer, M.J. Amundson is a clinical nurse specialist and Advanced Practice Registered Nurse with expertise in child, adolescent and psychiatric health and more than 50 years experience in behavioral and community health nursing and education. She is a long-time University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene faculty member and co-founder of The Institute for Family Enrichment, which has provided training and services to Hawai‘i children and families for three decades. She was named the 2010 Outstanding Community Mental Health Leader for development of the first intensive home-based services program for families of children with behavioral disorders and for her role in preparing a cadre of advanced practice psychiatric nurses.

Ann Ho, headshotAnn Ho, 2014

Quietly invaluable, Ann Ho organizes field trips, decorates, calls and tireless promotes ARCS Foundation, Inc. Born in Honolulu to a large family, she has traveled often to the Orient, Europe and across the U.S. She earned a BFA in visual design from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa but insists she always loved mathematics. At her first Heart of Gold luncheon in 2001, Ann was impressed by the Scholar of the Year’s description of teaching school children to capture ants with peanut butter on popsicle sticks as an early warning system for the spread of an invasive species. She joined ARCs because she loves learning about science and believes it is an integral part of our lives. “I believe we play a part in making our world a safer and more healthy place to live,” Ann says. “My part may include encouraging talented science students  to stay in their  fields through the awards that we give. There are others who feel as I do, and we can reach out to them and expect great results.”

Sydney Kenny and family on stepsSydney “Syd” Kenny, 2013

Describing her college paper on whale reproduction embarrassed Syd Kenny’s mother, but marine biology remains a favorite field supported by ARCS Foundation Honolulu chapter. Syd cared for two children, joined Junior League and went to work for Hawaiian Trust Company, advancing from secretary to vice president. A chapter member since the 1980s, she served as president 1996–98. “I joined because of the people I met; I stay active because of them and the work we do to support young scientists,” she says. “I never fail to be impressed by their dedication. They are working to improve the quality of life for all of us. When one comes back to tell us what a difference the ARCS award made in their life, I am very proud and gratified.” She is active in Hawai‘i Education of the ARTS and P.E.O.,  assists an elderly friend with medical and financial matters and delights in her four granddaughters. Lauding the contributions of so many chapter members, she says, “As far as I'm concerned, they all light up my life.”

Doris Pulley headshot
Doris Pulley, 2006

A long-time member of ARCS Honolulu, Doris Pulley arrived in Hawai‘i in 1962 with husband Robert and baby Jenny. The couple, who had met at Miami University of Ohio, were eager to escape cold midwest winters and return to the islands Bob had grown to love as an aircraft carrier pilot. They brought the Burger King franchise to Hawai‘i, invested in real estate and approached life as an adventure. "A lovely part of it has been ARCS," says Doris, who spearheaded many events and inspired younger members. The couple was a strong supporter of their alma mater as well as the ARCS mission, and they  generously hosted ARCS events and sponsored a number of ARCS scholar awards.