Waiakea Its A Kakou Thing

President’s Message – October 2021

By: David Bock, President

The Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce held a general membership meeting on Friday, Sept. 24.

Our special guest for the Zoom meeting was Lt. Col. Kevin Cronin, who is the new commander at Pohakuloa Training Area. I conducted a fireside chat with Kevin with the goal of getting to know him better. He entertained a variety of questions and shared his priorities for PTA. It was great to learn more about Kevin and the tremendous responsibility that comes with being the commander up there. We wish him success during his next two years as commander.

During the meeting, we also were able to welcome 10 new members to the HICC family. HICC has a membership goal of 333 members, and we’re off to a solid start.

The new members we welcomed are: Creation Swell Photography (Shannon Herbert, owner); International Lunar Observatory (Steve Durst, director); Hawaiian Airlines (Jasmine Tamanaha, sales executive); Meadow Gold Dairies (Bahman Sadeghi, owner, TOPAZ Special Investor); Southwest Airlines, (Kelly Knox, lead communications and outreach, DIAMOND Special Investor); Sky Makai Productions (Sky Makai Doherty, owner); AES Waikoloa Solar (Kirstin Punu, community engagement manager); Johnson “Sonny” Kahili IV (individual member); Lorena A. Owings CPA,; and Flutterfly LLC (Amalia Sumi owner).

Those wanting to watch a video of the general membership meeting can do so here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lW82sjU98mo

In other news, Hawaii’s next primary election is less than a year away. The positions of governor and lieutenant governor are up for grabs, and candidates for both seats are emerging.

Of particular interest to the HICC is Sherry Menor-McNamara’s decision to register a committee with the state Campaign Spending Commission ahead of a potential run for lieutenant governor.

As president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii since 2013, Sherry has been a tireless advocate for the business community and a longtime ally of the HICC.

Sherry, who grew up in Hilo and graduated from Waiakea High, is the first female president and CEO in the history of the statewide chamber.

She currently serves on the board of directors of the Hawaii Tourism Authority and Board of Trustees of the JAIMS Foundation. Nationally, she serves on the board of directors of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Council of State Chambers, the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives, and Western Association of Chamber Executives, as well as on the U.S. Chamber’s Committee of 100. She also has worked for a wide variety of companies.

Sherry will be making an official announcement about her candidacy soon, and we wish her all the best. Hawaii needs more pro-business people in government, so her decision should be intriguing for HICC members.

Aloha, and stay safe. 


David Bock