Skip to content

Inspiration has a way of popping up at the worst times…but when it comes, you have to heed the call. This year’s Pele Awards honors the true creative spirit—and the people who unabashedly drop everything to capture the idea, nail down the concept, and transform an assignment into award-winning work.

About the Pele Awards

The Pele Awards have been a part of Hawaii’s advertising and design community for more than 40 years. The Pele Awards is one of fifteen National District Competitions for the American Advertising Awards (also known as the ADDYs). The Pele Gold winners in all national categories are sent to the National Finals of the American Advertising Awards Competition to represent District 13. It’s designed to recognize excellence in advertising and design in the State of Hawaii for the past calendar year.

Ad Person Of the Year

2022 AD 2 HAWAII PERSON OF THE YEAR

PRISCILLA ZHENG

Marketing Specialist, Hickam Federal Credit Union

Bio

Despite many challenges during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Priscilla Zheng maintained a positive attitude. Through her leadership and guidance, she rallied the troops and continued to create a sense of community by continuing the AdVise mentorship program, creating online programming and events, and ensuring that the public service campaign continued.

In her spare time, Priscilla gives back to the community as a Speech and Debate coach for Aiea High School and Farrington High School. Her impeccable work ethic is apparent in her day job and through her volunteer activities.

AAF-HAWAII 2022 EXTRA MILE AWARD

DAVID SATO

Director of Photography, UPSTREAM HAWAII

Bio

Born and raised in Hawaii, David Sato has nearly two decades of experience in video production and cinematography. While a student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa, he began his career at KHON where he shot news stories, produced station commercials and edited special interest packages. After college, he joined Pacific Focus, where he worked his way up the ladder as a production assistant, grip to Director/Director of Photography. 

In 2009, David formed his own production company, Upstream Hawaii. Over the years, he has partnered with many advertising agencies, film production companies and global brands to create award-winning commercials, documentaries, and digital content. His client list includes ESPN, Disney, Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, McDonald's, Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Hawaii Pacific Health and more.

AAF-HAWAII 2022 AD PERSON OF THE YEAR

KEVIN YIM

Vice President of Marketing & Communications, FCH

Bio

In his current position, Kevin Yim has led the process of revitalizing the Zippy’s brand through design, new digital services, a new social media presence, and renovations to the locations. He continues to work on the deeper digital transformation of Hawaii’s leading food brand. Before Zippy’s, he led marketing teams at Hawaiian Airlines and Bank of Hawaii. At Hawaiian Airlines, he spearheaded consumer marketing efforts around the globe.

Before Hawaiian Airlines, he led the branding efforts at Bank of Hawaii. He currently serves on the boards of HUGS Hawaii, the Aloha Diaper Bank, Goodwill Contract Services of Hawaii, and the Movers & Shakas program. He is a former director for Goodwill Industries Hawaii, Pacific Islanders in Communications, and the Oahu Visitors Bureau. He is a Kamehameha Schools graduate and the University of San Francisco.

AAF-DISTRICT 13 2022 SPECIAL RECOGNITION OF EXCELLENCE

CHUCK COHEN

Former VP of Media, ANTHOLOGY MARKETING GROUP

Bio

A New York native, Chuck Cohen came to the Islands more than three decades ago and quickly established himself as a force to be reckoned with in Hawaiʻi media. In Honolulu, he served as media director at Ogilvey & Mather, The Schiller Group, Milici Valenti Ng Pak, Starr-Seigle Communications, and for the last 15 years at Anthology Marketing Group.

His formidable New York experience included tenure at famed powerhouses BBDO Advertising, Ted Bates, and Cunningham & Walsh. 

Chuck has long been known by his peers in client, agency and media worlds as an innovative strategist, out-of-the-box thinker, and generous teacher to the next generation of professionals.

He represents the best – if sometimes rough-hewn – of the best in dedication to his craft, his clients, and his teammates.

AAF-DISTRICT 13 2022 SILVER MEDAL AWARD

PAUL LAM

President—Media Buy Paul, LLC

Bio

Paul Lam is the Governor of AAF District 13, is the Hawaiʻi representative on the National AAF Board of Directors and the AAF Council of Governors, and is the immediate past Chair of the AAF Western Region.

 As the Pele Awards chairman, year after year, he is given the daunting task of bringing the industry together to honor the best in Advertising and Design.

Most recognizable is Paul’s commitment to continue the Pele Awards despite the pandemic. Paul also works diligently to ‘grow’ the industry pipeline through the creation of the High School Pele Awards, now in its 5th year. The first and only program of its kind in the nation which helps get youth interested and engaged in Advertising and Design.

 In 2018, he opened up his own media buying and consulting firm. Today, he serves numerous clients including large and small businesses.

2022 Pele Winners Reel

Save the Date

All “Professional” work entered in the 2023 Pele Awards Competition must have first appeared in media between January 1, 2022, and December 31, 2022. 

All “College” work entered in the 2023 Pele Awards Competition must have been created between January 1, 2022 and February 15, 2023.

Please see 2023 Pele Information Guide for specific entry rules, guidelines, and categories (not available yet but to come at a later date)

ONLINE CALL FOR ENTRY ACCEPTANCE DATE
November 2022
FINAL ONLINE ENTRY DEADLINE
Tuesday, February 28, 2023
ALL PAYMENTS DUE
Thursday, March 2, 2023
PELE AWARD JUDGING
March 6 to 19, 2023 (virtual)

This section is for the Professional and College Division.

GO TO HIGH SCHOOL DIVISION