The Jurors

Jurors are selected to represent a balanced knowledge of contemporary woodworking and of Hawai‘i forestry. Awards are based on “Inspiration of Design” and “Excellence of Implementation.”

Mark Sfirri, Pennsylvania
Mark ran the Fine Woodworking Program at Bucks County Community College in Newtown, Pennsylvania for 25 years before retiring to pursue his interest in sculpture. Trained in furniture design and production at Rhode Island School of Design, his interest in creative aspects of wood turning led him to pioneer the use of multi-axis spindle turning to create objects that range from sculptural figurative forms to table legs. He has lectured and demonstrated throughout the United States, Canada, Ireland, France, England, and New Zealand, and has written numerous articles about furniture and wood turning.

John Gonczar, Washington
A former pillar of the Hawai`i woodworking community and one of the original participants in HAWAII'S WOODSHOWTM, John Gonczar garnered top Woodshow awards between 1993 and 1997 and took Best of Show in 1997. He has been designing and building fine furniture for more than 30 years focusing on one-of-a-kind functional pieces that add quality and beauty to everyday life and can be used for generations. He built furniture for many years on O‘ahu and now lives in Olympia, Washington where inspiration comes in combining big leaf maple with Hawaiian woods. Though distance separates us, Hawai‘i residents continue to commission him for custom furniture and cabinetwork.

Noe Tanigawa, O‘ahu
Raised in Wailupe Valley, Noe is a multi-media artist who also covers Arts, Culture and Ideas for Hawai'i Public Radio. Her art ranges from ceramics to large scale paintings and from site specific installations to wall art. Noe's studies have ranged from a pottery apprenticeship in Japan, to a BS in Painting from State University of New York and MFA With Honors in Painting from University of Hawai'i at Mānoa. Her artwork includes an 11-foot painting in the US Ambassador's residence, Koror, Palau, completed as part a U.S. Arts in Embassies residency in 2015. She has received awards from the Los Angeles Press Club, Society of Professional Journalists Hawai'i Chapter, and an Edward R. Murrow Regional Award.