2018 Charity Walk Celebrates 40 Years with New Record Totals - $2.6 million overall !
This year, I am thrilled to announce that our Visitor Industry Charity Walk has set records across all counties! Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i Island had substantial year-over-year increases with $363,100 and $320,000 raised on each respective island. Maui County continues to set the bar higher as they closed out the 2018 Charity Walk with a grand total of (over) $1.4 million. Finally, with last-minute monies rolling into the HLTA office, Oahu was able to crack the half-million mark with a new record of $507,800 raised. Therefore, the new grand total from our 40th annual Visitor Industry Charity Walk now stands at an unparalleled $2.6 million! I would like to send a very big mahalo to all of our chapters, our members, and to the community for your kokua in this banner year.
That being said, August and September marks the season of giving as we award worthy non-profit organizations from across the state with monies raised from Charity Walk. The Maui Hotel & Lodging Association held their check distribution ceremony on August 9th at the Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas, the Kaua‘i Chapter followed suit this past Wednesday at the Kaua‘i Marriott Resort (Charity Walk takes giant step, The Garden Island), and the Hawai‘i Island Chapter will be holding their distribution event at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa on August 29th. To close out the year, we will be handing out allocations to Oahu’s many deserving charities on September 13th at Roy’s Eating House 1849 Waikiki.
Jon Yoshimura Appointed to State Senate
On Tuesday, I visited the State Capitol where Jon Yoshimura was officially sworn in to the State Senate, filling the vacancy left by Senator Will Espero for District 19. Jon is a former colleague of mine as we served together on the Honolulu City Council. Congratulations on the gubernatorial appointment Jon, and we wish you the best as you serve through the interim.
HLTA Bob Holden Scholarship Recipient, Symphony Broden
HLTA President and CEO Mufi Hannemann, Scholarship Golf Committee Chair Don Takaki, 2018 Bob Holden Recipient Symphony Broden, HLTA Vice-Chair Michael Jokovich, HLTA Vice President Dean Nakasone at our 19th Annual Scholarship Golf Tournament last week.
Through its Hawaii Hotel Industry Foundation, HLTA sponsors scholarships for college students majoring in travel industry management programs and awards outstanding high school students for their leadership in the community. Our philanthropic mission is to provide educational opportunities to students who have a strong motivation to improve tourism in Hawaii and strive to be future leaders in the hospitality industry.
A great example of our scholarship is our 2018 Bob Holden scholarship recipient, Symphony Broden. Broden was presented with her scholarship at our Golf Tournament awards reception. Originally from Texas, Symphony moved to the islands to pursue her dream of becoming a hotel general manager. Symphony is currently a junior at the University of Hawaii-West Oahu and a full-time employee at Four Seasons Resort O’ahu at Ko Olina. In addition to her already demanding schedule, Symphony finds time to volunteer at Lyon Arboretum; a 200-acre botanical garden located in the heart of Manoa Valley.
Our scholarship programs provide financial assistance to nearly 20 students annually like Symphony, in support of their continued educational endeavors. This could not be possible without our partnerships with the University of Hawaii Foundation, the Pauahi Foundation, and most importantly, the generous support of our members through efforts like our Scholarship Golf Tournament.
For more information on HLTA’s scholarships, click here.
2018 Primary Elections
August 11th was a night full of anticipation as our State Office of Elections announced the results of the 2018 primary elections. Throughout the evening, I was at my traditional election night spot: on The Mike Buck Show, offering commentary as the first, second, and third printouts were published. I was joined by UH School of Communications Chair Gerald Kato, OHA Trustee Keli’i Akina, and former Lieutenant Governor Duke Aiona.
I would like to commend all the candidates that participated in this year’s primary election for their willingness to serve, endure the rigors of campaigning and for providing voters with choices.
As we head into the general election, we will be holding another round of endorsements for candidates interested in HLTA’s support. Additionally, we will be keeping a close eye on a few key races - at the state level, the Gubernatorial and Lieutenant Gubernatorial contests, at the county level, the Mayoral competition on Kaua‘i and Maui and some key Constitutional Amendments that will be on the ballot in November.
For information on the 2018 Primary Election results, click here.
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