Gartley Hall celebrates grand opening with building's blessing

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Theresa Kreif, (808) 956-6120
Myron B. Thompson School of Social Work
Posted: Nov 6, 2014

A blessing preceded the untying of the maile lei at the entrance to Gartley Hall.
A blessing preceded the untying of the maile lei at the entrance to Gartley Hall.

UH Mānoa held a grand opening and blessing ceremony this morning for the renovated Gartley Hall, which serves as home building for the Myron B. Thompson School of Social Work.  The program included remarks by UH Mānoa Chancellor Robert Bley-Vroman, Dean Noreen Mokuau, and Myron Thompson Jr., son of the late Myron “Pinky” Thompson.

Built in 1921, Gartley Hall is the second oldest building at UH Mānoa, and is listed on the Hawai‘i Register of Historic Places.  In 2009, the building was unexpectedly shut down due to health and safety concerns caused by structural damage.  A two-year, $14 million renovation project followed.

Said Chancellor Bley-Vroman, “We have faced a constellation of pressures over the past few years, and certainly one of these has been the need to renovate aging buildings for our students, faculty and staff.   We can be proud that today’s event celebrates the modernization of instructional and office facilities in an energy-efficient, sustainable manner.”

Gartley Hall has earned LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver Certification by: 1) utilizing energy star lighting and equipment, photovoltaic panels and a solar tube system; 2) sending its demolished building materials to recycling centers; and 3) choosing new materials based on the amount of recycled content.

The building is named after Honolulu businessman Alonzo Gartley (1869-1921), first chairman of the UH Board of Regents.  The School of Social Work is named for Myron “Pinky” Thompson (1924-2001), a social worker and strong advocate for Native Hawaiians and all the people of Hawai‘i.