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Judiciary Celebrates Law Day 2021

Posted on Jun 8, 2021 in Featured News, News & Reports
A woman judge wearing a black robe and a face mask posing with two young women in front of the judges bench

From left: Sami Ofisa, Fifth Circuit Court Judge Kathleen N.A. Watanabe, and Xhayeani Camarillo. These Kamahameha School sophomores observed courtroom proceedings and interviewed Judge Watanabe for their career day assignment.

The Hawaii State Judiciary commemorated Law Day 2021 in a variety of ways this year.

Judges from each circuit submitted thought-provoking opinion pieces to the local newspapers on the 2021 Law Day theme, “Advancing the Rule of Law Now”:

Column: U.S. Constitution not perfectly just, but never give up on the rule of law
By Intermediate Court of Appeals Associate Judge Daniel Foley (ret.)
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, Sunday, May 2, 2021

Rule of Law remains as important as ever
By Fifth Circuit Chief Judge Randal G.B. Valenciano
The Garden Island, Sunday, May 2, 2021

Rule of Law is as important as ever
By Third Circuit Chief Judge Robert D.S. Kim
Hawaii Tribune-Herald, Sunday, May 9, 2021

Judges required to uphold the rule of law, vital to free and just society
By Second Circuit Judge Blaine J. Kobayashi
The Maui News, Sunday, May 14, 2021

On Kauai, Fifth Circuit Court Judge Kathleen N.A. Watanabe hosted two students from Kamehameha Schools as part of their career day assignment. They had the opportunity to observe the morning criminal calendar, toured parts of the courthouse, and spent time with Judge Watanabe discussing various topics, including court procedures and how the Judiciary provides critical services to the community.

“The students were prepared with insightful questions and showed quite an interest in this field of work,” said Judge Watanabe. “Helping our community understand how the justice system works is one of the important ongoing duties of the Judiciary, and we are always happy to provide educational opportunities for the future leaders of our state,” she added.

On Oahu, the First Circuit held its fifth annual Law Day Art Contest for students in grades 3 to 8. Stay tuned for the winners.


The Supreme Court Law Library on Oahu created a virtual exhibit to help build community understanding of what the Rule of Law means and the vital role each of us has when it comes to promoting justice in our society.

The web page includes short videos created by staff to illustrate how the Rule of Law works in their everyday lives. They also curated a list of online legal resources that explain the Rule of Law and discuss this important legal principle in specific contexts. See:

* Law Day is an annual event, originally conceived in 1957 when American Bar Association President Charles Rhynes envisioned a national day to mark our commitment to the rule of law. The following year, President Dwight D. Eisenhower established the first Law Day. In 1961 Congress issued a joint resolution designating May 1 as the official date for celebrating Law Day.