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In Memoriam: Bill Wood


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The College is saddened to announce the passing of Sociology Professor and former department Chair “Bill” Donald William Wood on November 24, 2015, in Honolulu. Bill started his career as a social worker in Qu’Appelle Region, Saskatchewan. A move in 1973 put him in charge of the first Rehabilitation Program in Canada’s Yukon. The program still exists as the Challenge Community Vocational Alternatives. In the early 80’s, Bill relocated from the Yukon to the University of Hawai‘i, where he completed graduate degrees in public health and sociology. Initially, he was a faculty member within the School of Public Health before transferring to Sociology.

Dedicated to Teaching, Research and Students

His life was dedicated to public service and a love of teaching, research and mentoring students in our College. Bill’s dry Canadian wit was especially memorable and appreciated by many. He enjoyed travelling, working on projects in many Pacific Islands, and teaching in Bangkok, Australia and Alaska. Bill served on local and national boards, often as chair, as well as in research and international working groups. These experiences motivated Bill to establish the D. William Wood Endowed Scholarship for Pacific Island Health Administrators in 2000. Bill observed a role for our College to provide this cohort with additional training through our graduate Public Administration program. Many students across Polynesia and Oceania have expressed their gratitude for this source of financial support.

In honor of his memory, a scholarship memorial fund has been established. Individuals who would like to contribute to this fund may go to, and select ‘College of Social Sciences’ and search for ‘Wood’. Checks made payable to the University of Hawai‘i Foundation may also be mailed to: University of Hawai‘i Foundation, P.O. Box 11270, Honolulu, Hawai‘i 96828-0270. Please reference gift fund #20365203 in the memo line.

Donald William Wood
“Bill” Donald William Wood