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In Brief | Island Inc., | 5-19-14

May 19, 2014 - 12:05am

SBA honors award winners

Since 1963, the president of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, recognizing the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. As part of National Small Business Week, on May 7, the SBA Hawaii District Office honored Hawaii’s outstanding small business owners and champions at the 27th annual Statewide SBA Small Business Awards Luncheon.

Hawaii County honorees include:

Small Business Person — Melanie Gross, president and aquatic technician, Wai Kai Inc.

Small Business Exporter — David Bateman, president, Heavenly Hawaiian Ltd. dba Heavenly Hawaiian Farms

Family-Owned Small Business — Robert “Chuck” Porter, owner, Hawaii Tire Co. dba Lex Brodie Tire

Financial Services Champion — James M. Yoshiyama, president, James M. Yoshiyama CPA Inc.

Veteran Small Business Champion — Hazel Beck, acting center director, Hawaii Small Business Development Center Network-West Hawaii 0ffice

Women in Business Champion — Susan Moss, president, Trans Pacific Design

Hawaiian Host introduces new candy

Hawaiian Host Inc. has unveiled its newest taste sensation — Coconut Caramacs. The new flavor is an addition to the Caramacs product line joining the original Maui Caramacs and the Kona Caramacs made with Kona coffee. Coconut Caramacs feature coconut-infused handmade caramel, mixed with dry roasted macadamias and covered in milk chocolate, then sprinkled with toasted coconut flakes.

The entire Caramacs line has also received a new look to its packaging that aligns with the most recently redesigned AlohaMacs product line. All three flavors are available at retailers throughout Hawaii.

— Movers &Shakers —

Credit union board names Buskirk as president, CEO

The Hawaii Community Federal Credit Union Board of Directors has named Tricia Buskirk its president and chief executive officer. Buskirk was previously HCFCU’s vice president of corporate development and marketing.

Prior to working at HCFCU, Buskirk worked in leadership roles at Hawaii State Federal Credit Union, City Bank, International Savings &Loan, and First Hawaiian Bank. While in California, she also worked in leadership roles at Sharp Federal Credit Union and Del Mar Datatrac, a mortgage software company.

Buskirk graduated from Konawaena High School, where her financial career first started as she served as the secretary of the Konawaena Student Credit Union from 1984 to ’87. She went on to the University of Hawaii at Manoa where she earned a bachelor of arts degree in economics.

Buskirk also serves as a volunteer board secretary with the World Youth Network.

Arc of Kona taps Ku for leadership position

Michele Ku has been appointed president and chief executive officer of Arc of Kona. Ku has nine years of direct experience with the organization. She has earned a master’s degree in organizational leadership and is an Army veteran.

Ku will lead the Arc of Kona’s programs to give hope to people with disabilities as they integrate into their communities through work and positive opportunities to help them achieve maximum independence. She will begin her new duties July 1.

HSFCU rolls out new brand and more

Hawaii State Federal Credit Union has rolled out a new brand and advertising campaign as assets and membership continue to grow.

HSFCU, Hawaii’s oldest chartered credit union, reported a 7.1 percent growth in assets and a 5.2 percent growth in members over the past year.

The new HSFCU logo represents the company’s values and commitment to members. The logo’s red, blooming hibiscus, part of the logo since 1978, has been modernized. The hibiscus, which symbolizes growth and optimism, also resembles a heart to represent trust, honesty and integrity. The logo and overall rebrand for HSFCU was developed in partnership with the creative agency 1013 Integrated.

The new brand campaign, “Life’s Lines,” has aired on TV and radio. HSFCU has launched a new website using Responsive Design, a new technology that allows automatic formatting of the website for viewing on any device — desktop computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone.

Kona Brewing unveils new campaign

Kona Brewing Co. has unveiled its first integrated advertising campaign and largest media investment to date. Created by independent agency Duncan/Channon, the new “Dear Mainland” campaign features two Hawaiian brothers commenting on “common mainlander customs,” such as multitasking and the short-lived happy hour. In their own distinctive way, the brothers suggest that viewers should slow down, take a breath, enjoy time with friends and family, and focus on the parts of life that matter most. The campaign includes TV, radio, online and outdoor elements.

“Dear Mainland” broke May 12 in the Orlando, Fla., San Diego and Los Angeles markets and will run throughout the summer. The campaign promotes the Kona Brewing Co. brand and two of its core beers, Longboard Island Lager and Big Wave Golden Ale. To capture the distinct cultural perspective of Hawaii, the TV spots were shot on location on the Big Island with a cast of local actors.

Kona coffee featured in Trader Joe’s truffles

Trader Joe’s, a California-based gourmet grocery chain, is again featuring 100 percent Kona coffee as the coffee flavor ingredient in one of its specialty food offerings — “Trader Joe’s Chocolate Kona Coffee Truffles.”

In 2012, Trader Joe’s was awarded an “Honorary Membership” by the Kona Coffee Farmers Association board of directors for the introduction of “Trader Joe’s Kona Coffee Shortbread Cookies” — and for offering 100 percent Kona ground and whole bean coffee at its stores.

— Milestones —

Hawaiian celebrates Brisbane service

Hawaiian Airlines celebrated a successful 10 years of service from Australia on Sunday, marking the milestone with celebrations for guests onboard the day’s anniversary flights between Sydney Airport and Honolulu International Airport.

Hawaiian, the only U.S. carrier that flies to Brisbane Airport, also announced that beginning Dec. 5 travelers on its Honolulu-Brisbane route will enjoy more legroom and on-demand, seat back entertainment when the airline up-gauges service from the 264-seat Boeing 767-300ERs to the 294-seat Airbus A330-200 aircraft.

Workshop focuses on government contracts

A workshop from 10:15 a.m. to noon June 4 will discuss how the government buys goods and services; how to become certified and registered on the federal, state and local levels and find government contracting prime and subcontracting opportunities. Also covered will be the benefits and requirements for small business participation as 8(a), Small Disadvantaged Business, Disadvantaged Business Enterprise, Historically Utilized Business Zone, Woman Owned, and Veteran‐Owned business enterprises.

The free workshop will be held at Kuakini Tower, Suite 213, 75-5722 Kuakini Highway, Kailua-Kona. To register, visit or call 596-8990, ext. 1008.

Nominations sought by magazine

Pacific Edge Magazine is calling on the community to help recognize the state’s most influential business leaders, organizations and nonprofits by submitting nominations for the fourth annual Pacific Edge Magazine Business Achievement Awards. Nomination categories include: lifetime achievement award, young professional of the year, business executive of the year, educator of the year, commitment to green award, corporate social responsibility award, best new business, best family-run business and best social media campaign.

Nominations will be accepted until July 3; finalists will be announced on or before July 21. Self-nominations are encouraged. Nomination information is available at

By local sources