In Memoriam: Ralph Kam, APR, Fellow PRSA

Ralph Kam, longtime PRSA member, passes away

Ralph Kam, APR, Fellow PRSA, a longtime PRSA member and volunteer leader, passed away on March 25. He was 67.

Kam worked for decades in Hawaii’s PR profession, including government, health care, financial services and education roles. As an instructor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Hawaii Pacific University, Cha­mi­nade University, and the University of Phoenix, he helped form the professional foundations of many communicators.

Kam’s journey with PRSA began in 1982 as a member, and he later assumed several leadership positions. His dedication to the profession was evident in his roles as president of PRSA’s Hawaii Chapter (1991), Assembly delegate (1994 and 1998), Western District chair (1996), and member of the Board of Ethics and Professional Standards (2001-2003). He also served on the Board of Directors in the late 1990s.

For his work and contributions to the Chapter, profession and community, he was recognized as the Hawaii Chapter’s Gregg W. Perry Public Relations Professional of the Year in 2000 and inducted into the PRSA College of Fellows in 2001.

Later in his career, Kam embarked on a new path. He pursued higher education, earning his master’s in American Studies, a Ph.D., and a graduate certificate in historic preservation. His passion for historic preservation led him to participate in outreach with the Hawaii Historic Places Review Board. He then took on the role of executive director at the Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site and Archive.

Kam is survived by his wife, Kathy; his daughter, Emalani; his son, Joshua; and his mother, Tylene Dunbar.

Instead of flowers, his family asks that donations be made to the Hawaiian Historical Society or the Hawaiian Mission Houses.

Photo credit: hawaiian mission houses historic site and archives

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