Awards and Testimonial

2019 Hawaii Island Realtor Of The Year

Featured lot: 28-3188 Beach Rd Pepeekeo, HI.

Even though it sounds like something that might require extra strength antiseptic, being named REALTOR® of The Year (ROTY) is quite an honor. As the 2009 co-selectee, I can attest to how rewarding it is to be recognized. With approximately 700 members, the Hawaii Island REALTORS (HIR) is comprised of members from all over Hawai`i Island. To be selected ROTY, each nominee’s contribution to our industry is scrutinized against other nominees using a broad range selection criteria.

The Nominees Are…

Selectees are nominated by their peers, while the final selection is made by a committee of former winners. Selectees are seasoned agents who dedicate themselves to serving the public, demonstrating the highest ethical standards. They devote countless hours to improving our professional organization at all levels. Consideration is also given for community involvement and promotion of the REALTOR® image. The National Association of REALTORS® requires that its members subscribe to a strict code of ethics. Selection as REALTOR® of The Year underscores a personal and professional commitment above and beyond this already strict professional standard.

The Winner Is…

The 2019 recipient selection of Pat Halpern was an easy choice. As a former President of Hawaii Island Realtors, Pat this past year spearheaded a community project day that resulted in major improvements at Kea`au High School. With over 30 years of dedicated service, her wit is certain to brighten your day, and you’ll instantly understand how she came to be added to the elite group of former recipients below:

  • 2018 Cathy Fedak
  • 2017 Wailani Herbst
  • 2016 Howard Meguro
  • 2015 Julie Hugo
  • 2014 CJ Kimberly
  • 2013 Peggy Yuen
  • 2012 Rochelle Augustin Beck
  • 2011 Julie Ching
  • 2010 Debi Au
  • 2009 Mealoha Kraus and Denise Nakanishi
  • 2008 Gary Rothfus
  • 2007 Heather Hedenschau
  • 2006 Arabel Camblor
  • 2005 Wade Park and Frank Goodale
  • 2004 Gary Davis
  • 2003 Christine Makaweo
  • 2002 Gae Callaway
  • 2001 Mary Begier
  • 2000 Adele Eggel
  • 1999 Chris Brilhante
  • 1998 Helene Tajiri and Donna Herbst
  • 1997 Edith Crabb
  • 1996 Nancy Cabral
  • 1995 John Tolmie
  • 1994 Robert G. Williams
  • 1993 Michael Shewmaker
  • 1992 Glenetta Bennett
  • 1991 Daniel Wilson
  • 1990 Doris Smith
  • 1989 Yukio Takeya
  • 1988 Pat Ito
  • 1986 Paul Ingledew
  • 1985 Patricia Scullary and Delene Osorio
  • 1984 Bill Pendered Jr.
  • 1983 Jerry Hirata
  • 1982 Alvin Inoue
  • 1981 Vern Yamanaka
  • 1980 Alma Prigmore
  • 1979 Elroy Osorio
  • 1978 Doris Smith
  • 1977 Beverly Paplimu
  • 1976 Peter Shayne
  • 1975 Helene Hale
  • 1974 Kenneth Griffin
  • 1973 Edward Araujo
  • 1972 Masashi Yamanaka
  • 1971 Leina’ala Devine
About the Author

Denise Nakanishi

Denise Nakanishi is a REALTOR Broker with Hawai'i Life. Denise Nakanishi is one of Hilo's most acclaimed real estate agents. She reached the rank of Major in the US Army and is now known by many as "Major Mom." The nickname fits–not only does Denise bring the discipline and mission-oriented attitude you'd expect, she's also caring and compassionate, always looking out for her clients like they're her own family. Having made the Big Island her home since 1987, Denise combines her extensive knowledge of the area with a sharp focus on customer service and the results speak for themselves. She's the recent recipient of the Best East Hawai`i, Best of Zillow, Chairman's Circle Award, President's Circle, Top Producing Agent since 2001, and Realtor of the Year awards. Denise stays ahead of the curve because she's passionate about education–she served as Education Chair for Hawaii Island REALTORS® for many years. She's one of Big Island's best real estate resources, known for her weekly article in the Hawaii Tribune Herald. Denise leads Team Nakanishi for Hawai`i Life, who is committed to their family, work, and community. In her little time away from work, Denise is a committed runner and Grandy. She also devotes many hours to various Veterans' Organizations, the East Hawaii Cultural Center, and the Hawaii Island REALTORS®. You can email me at or via phone at (808) 936-5100.

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Beth Thoma Robinson, R(B)

February 13, 2020

You keep the best company, this is a stellar list agents and your name belongs among the best!

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