Chamber of Commerce Hawaii
December 30, 2015

In this December 30, 2015 edition:

President's Message
Chamber Finalizes Legislative Package for 2016 Session
MAC 2015 Year in Review
Young Professionals Exec Connect, Jan. 26
Check Out Member Spotlights

President's Message

Happy Holidays!

As we reflect back on 2015, it certainly was a busy year. Starting in January, we held our 2nd Annual Chamber Week, the Military Partnership Conference, and new this year, the Chamber’s Military Affairs Council led the effort to garner more than 40,000 signatures to show support for the Army’s presence in Hawaii.
In an effort to be proactive on the legislative front, we introduced a business package at the Legislature and with the support of the Legislature, the Administration and our Alliance, including Neighbor Island Chambers, many of the package bills passed and were signed into law.
Additionally, in an effort to expand economic and business opportunities beyond our state, the Chamber represented Hawaii and the U.S. on various missions, including in South Korea and Japan, returned to Washington D.C. for Hawaii on the Hill and became a member of the Council of State Chambers, Committee of 100 and the U.S. Japan Council. We also serve on the board of the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives.
As we move forward, the Chamber will continue to seek ways to serve as a catalyst for positive change in our state. We’ve taken enough hits. Competition is real. We need to improve Hawaii’s ranking in “cost of doing business” studies. We shouldn’t let these rankings discourage us, but challenge us.
We humbly ask you to join us in our effort to become BIGGER, BOLDER and BETTER in 2016 so that, together, we can make a positive difference in our state. 

Happy New Year! We look forward to working with and supporting you in 2016. 

Laulima & mahalo,
Sherry Menor-McNamara

President & CEO

Chamber Finalizes Legislative Package for 2016 Session

The Chamber Board approved our 2016 legislative package of bills in support of a positive business climate in Hawaii. The package of bills and initiatives were worked on by the Chamber’s Policy Committees. The package will continue last year’s efforts under three main pillars: spurring economic development, investing in our future and improving the business climate. 
More details about the package will be available early next year. 

Biz Tip: Learn about the Chamber's Manufacturing in Hawaii Initiative which provides resources and seeks to enhance opportunities within the industry. 

MAC 2015 Year in Review

2015 marked an overwhelmingly successful year for the Chamber’s Military Affairs Council (MAC). Through friendship and partnership between business, labor, community, government and military leaders, the MAC was able to accomplish a great deal over the course of the last 12 months. The following are some of the highlights:

  • The MAC and the Chamber spearheaded a successful grassroots Keep Hawaii’s Heroes campaign that brought the community together in supporting Schofield Barracks and Fort Shafter. This campaign helped to minimize a proposed downsizing of approximately 20,000 soldiers at these installations.
  • The MAC advocated for legislative funding and authority to establish a military liaison in the Office of the Governor. Despite the significant economic impact that military spending has in the state, Hawaii has gone without such an official that would deal with military-related issues statewide.
  • The MAC helped to establish local military affairs councils at the Kauai Chamber of Commerce and the Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce. The MAC will work closely with these organizations in an effort to support the military on the neighbor islands.

Thank you to all who have supported the MAC and its efforts throughout the year.  

Click here to learn more about the Military Affairs Council (MAC) and MAC members.

Young Professionals Exec Connect, Jan. 26

The Chamber's Young Professionals (YP) Program will host its first Exec Connect of the year with Hawaii's top leading executives on Tuesday, January 26 at Dave and Buster's. Executives include:

  • Coralie Chun Matayoshi, Regional Chief Executive Officer, American Red Cross Hawaii State Chapter and Pacific Islands
  • Alan Oshima, President & Chief Executive Officer, Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc.
  • Kelly Sanders, Area Managing Director Waikiki, Starwood Hotels and Resorts

This event offers an intimate lunch and "talk story" session with Hawaii's business leaders and is limited to nine YPs per executive. Complimentary for all current YP members. Includes buffet lunch and refreshments. For more information and to register, click here.

Mahalo to Chamber member, Dave and Buster's, for your support of the YP program!

Check out our Member Spotlights and special Member-to-Member discount offers