President of BYUH to take post in Tonga
The president of Brigham Young University-Hawaii will step down in June to take a position with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Tonga.
Eric Shumway, 67, who has taught at the church-affiliated university in Laie since 1966 and has been president since 1994, will become president of the Mormon temple in Nuku'alofa, the Tongan capital.
The appointment by Gordon Hinckley, president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and his executive advisors also names Shumway's wife, Carolyn, as matron of the Tongan temple.
Shumway is an internationally recognized authority on the Tongan language and was bestowed with a title as Tongan chief by the government of the South Pacific kingdom, according to a BYUH announcement. He was sent to Tonga for a three-year assignment as missionary 46 years ago, and served as president of the Mormon mission in Tonga from 1986-89. He is the author of "An Intensive Course in the Tongan Language," which grew from his work with Peace Corps volunteers to Tonga.
He also previously was interim president of the Polynesian Cultural Center and was president of the Laie Community Association.