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Each year, an individual is honored for their life-long commitment to the Arts and education in Hawaiʻi. The honor is named for Alfred Preis, founder of the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts (SFCA) and the Hawaiʻi Arts Alliance. Best known as the architect of the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial, Alfred Preis also authored the Art in Public Places legislation, designating 1% of state-building new construction and renovation funds for art.


Tom Klobe

2021 Preis Honors Awardee

Tom Klobe grew up on a small farm near Young America, Minnesota. His parents taught him to believe in the American ideals of freedom and democracy, in the 

rights and privileges of being an individual, and, most importantly, that "all men are created equal." His parents taught him to question authority and to "Always do the right thing, no matter how difficult it is."

When he moved to Hawaii in 1959, a year after finishing high school, he felt he could freely live the American ideals his parents had instilled in him. Freed from the American norm, and realizing that democracy thrives on pluralism and diversity, he could truly be an individual. Foremost, he saw and understood the necessity of equality for all people, and knew that he had to work to ensure that all would have the same opportunities. Though his aptitudes and interests were in art, and he would strive to find ways to mesh his career with his philosophical thought. In the early 1960s, Tom joined the Peace Corps and was posted to Iran which was a life-changing experience.

Philosophically, the people of Alang, Golestān, Iran have been the most important influence on Tom. He learned the importance of the little things in life from them and that every moment must be cherished. It is the people that he works with in community projects, those in the classroom, and those who come to see an exhibition who must be considered first. In a sense the Peace Corps experience became a model for his life.

As a Peace Corps Volunteer, he learned the persuasive qualities of quiet leadership that grounded his 29-year career as Director of the University of Hawaii Art Gallery. Tom was the founding director of the University of Hawai’i Art Gallery and emeritus professor in the UH Mānoa Art Department. Each exhibition Tom designed was like a Peace Corps tour of duty for him; a project that allowed him to learn about the world, himself, and others. Each has allowed him to experience the exultation of discovery that he first experienced as a Peace Corps Volunteer.


Tom organized and designed over 200 exhibitions, five of which received the prestigious Print Casebooks: Best in Exhibition Design Awards. He authored or edited over 35 publications. Tom 

authored two books -- Exhibitions: Concept, Planning and Design, published by the American Association of Museums Press in 2012 and A Young American in Iran, published by Peace Corps Writers in 2014. Exhibitions provides extensive advice on the art of exhibition development, while exploring how significant ideas are communicated to museum visitors through exhibit design. 


In 1999 Tom was honored by the Republic of France as a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres for contributions to the arts in France and Hawaii. He was the recipient of the University of Hawaii Robert W. Clopton Award for Distinguished Community Service in 2003 and named a Living Treasure of Hawaii in 2005. Tom is currently working on a book about the Cappella Palatina, the royal chapel of the Norman Palace in Palermo, Sicily, which he began in the 1970s.


Duane Preble

2020 Preis Honors Awardee

Born  in 1936 in National City, California, Duane Preble

Duane Preble is an American artist and art educator.   He is the son of Bennett and Mary Salome (Williams) Preble and married Sarah Ann Hamilton on March 13, 1961. They have two children, Jeffrey Hamilton and Malia.


Duane completed his B.A. at the University of California at Los Angeles in 1959. He completed his Masters of Fine Arts Thesis entitled “A series of recorded images and sounds taken from everyday life and organized on the basis of creative indeterminacy to be super-imposed in rhythmical sequence” in 1963. He joined as a Lecturer at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu from 1963-1964, and then accepted a teaching position in the UH Mānoa Art Department from 1964-1991. Duane held a Visiting Professor position at the University of Colorado for 1979-80. He retired from the University Art Department in 1991 and in 1993 he accepted an advisory position to the Board of the Honolulu Waldorf School.


Duane also held positions in community organizations in Honolulu.  As a Member and Chair of the City Commission on Culture & the Arts ( 1971-1973); as a Board Member for the Civic Forum for Public Education (1998-2000); as President of the Board for Keiki o ka ʻĀina Family Learning Centers (2004-2006); as a Board member of Mālama o Mānoa (2003-2006); and as a Board member for the Friends of Libraries of Hawaii since 1997. In addition to these positions, Duane was a Trustee for the Honolulu Academy Arts since 1973. He was Chair of the Arts Department at the University of Hawaiʻi (1985-1987) and on the Board of Directors for the Hawaii Alliance Arts Education from 1988-1995.


As an artist, Duane is listed as a notable artist and art educator by Marquis Who's Who. He has authored numerous books including 12 editions of Preble’s Artforms. Other titles include Design with Nature, Man Creates Art Creates Man, We Create Art Creates Us, and Writing On-line Research Guide for Arts Forms. Duane’s passions outside of teaching and creating art are hiking, bicycling, swimming, and music (jug band).

Tom Klobe

2021 Alfred Preis Honoree

Duane Preble

2020 Alfred Preis Honoree

Aaron Mahi

2019 Alfred Preis Honoree

Barbara Barnard Smith

2018 Alfred Preis Honoree

Marilyn Cristofori

2017 Alfred Preis Honoree

Michaael Titterton

2016 Alfred Preis Honoree

Sarah Richards

2015 Alfred Preis Honoree

Henry Akina

2014 Alfred Preis Honoree

Allyn Bromley

2013 Alfred Preis Honoree

Lawrence Tseu

2012 Alfred Preis Honoree

Jean E Rolles

2011 Alfred Preis Honoree

Marie McDonald*

2010 Alfred Preis Honoree

Sam* & Mary Cooke

2009 Alfred Preis Honoree

Preis Honorees

Edith* & Keiji Kawakami*

2008 Alfred Preis Honoree

Satoru Abe

2007 Alfred Preis Honoree

Nancy Bannick*

2006 Alfred Preis Honoree

Beebe Freitas*

2005 Alfred Preis Honoree

Clarence Lee*

2004 Alfred Preis Honoree

Robert R Midkiff*

2003 Alfred Preis Honoree

George Ellis

2002 Alfred Preis Honoree

Henry Miyamura

2001 Alfred Preis Honoree

Irmgard Aluli*

2000 Alfred Preis Honoree

Ronald E Bright*

1999 Alfred Preis Honoree

Agnes Kalaniho‘okaha Cope*

1998 Alfred Preis Honoree

Masaru "Pundy" Yokouchi*

1997 Alfred Preis Honoree

Nona Beamer*

1996 Alfred Preis Honoree

Wendell PK Silva

1995 Alfred Preis Honoree

Clint Marantz*

1994 Alfred Preis Honoree

Ray Okimoto

1993 Alfred Preis Honoree

Jane Campbell*

1992 Alfred Preis Honoree

Eric Chock

1991 Alfred Preis Honoree

William Cupit*

1990 Alfred Preis Honoree

Violet Scott

1989 Alfred Preis Honoree

John Kauffman

1988 Alfred Preis Honoree

Richard Nelson

1987 Alfred Preis Honoree

Paula Luv

1986 Alfred Preis Honoree

Naomi Morita

1985 Alfred Preis Honoree

Alfred Preis*

1984 Alfred Preis Honoree

Marian Kerr

1983 Alfred Preis Honoree

George Kon & Walter Dulaney*

1982 Alfred Preis Honoree

*  deceased

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