Ask-SmallBiz-Experts

 

Below is our panel of experts who have gladly volunteered their time to respond to your questions.  

 

Gregory Kim is the founding partner of Vantage Counsel LLC, a Hawaii law
firm focusing on building emerging companies and capital sources.  Greg
specializes in corporate and securities laws, mergers and acquisitions,
and business formations, and was the principal draftsperson of the
Hawaii Business Corporation Act.  He received a BS in engineering from
Yale in 1979 and a JD/MBA from UC Berkeley in 1983.  Greg is a founding
member of HiBEAM and the Entrepreneurs Foundation of Hawaii, and teaches
courses in entrepreneurship and small business at UH Law School and
Chaminade. Greg is recognized as a leading corporate attorney by Best
Lawyers of America and Chambers USA.


Kenneth M. Gilbert, is co-founder,with his spouse Jean Santos, of Business Consulting
Resources, Inc. He offers over thirty years of consulting knowledge, and
holds a B.S.B.A. in Personnel and Employee Relations and a Masters
Degree in International Business from the American University in
Washington D.C.

Ken personifies the entrepreneurial spirit, and learned early on that
objectivity is the key to long-term survival. By instilling this
objectivity in BCR clients, he has given them the ability to survive any
trend, obstacle or road block to success they may face.

He has successfully assisted BCR clients in strategic planning,
financial management, human resources, mergers and acquisitions, new
business development, and management development.

Business Consulting Resources, Inc. has assisted over 300 businesses in
these various areas over the years and approximately one third have been
family businesses.  BCR has consulted and coached family business owners
in succession planning and retirement planning, conflict resolution
within the family business circle, strategies for the sale of the family
business, development of family constitutions, life planning and
coaching, family business management and consulting.

Ken has coached numerous family and corporate executives in a variety of
performance improvement areas which include strategy development and
implementation, leadership skill development and building and creating
effective teams.

Ken is on the Board of the Family Business Center of Hawaii, of which he
has been a member for a number of years.  He is past-president of the
Metropolitan Rotary Club of Honolulu and has served several terms as a
member of the club's Board of Directors.


Piia M. Aarma is the founder and president of Pineapple Tweed Public
Relations and Marketing, a full service firm that offers services
ranging from media relations to advertising. She has been involved in
communications for more than 20 years. Her experience includes corporate
communications, marketing, Internet site development, national-level
lobbying and PR, newspaper reporting and editing, magazine writing and
on-line communications. She has broad industry and functional expertise,
with specialties in image and positioning, media relations and crisis
management.

Aarma has a long history of involvement in the community and has served
on numerous boards of directors. She is currently a trustee for KCAA
Preschools, a director for the YWCA of Oahu, serves on the advisory
board for HIBEAM, an organization helping to launch technology
companies, a federally appointed member and past chair of the Hawaii
Pacific Export Council, is an honorary sister for the Women's Fund of
Hawaii and an honorary trustee for La Pietra - Hawaii School for Girls.
Pineapple Tweed provides pro bono services to the Women's Fund of Hawaii
and to Foster Family Programs of Hawaii.


Edward Young is the Project Outreach Coordinator for the Hawaii Technology Development
Venture (HTDV), a project of the Pacific International Center for High
Technology Research.  HTDV provides business, financial and
commercialization plan assistance to Hawaii-based technology companies.
Since 2004, HTDV has funded 60 projects totaling $11.2 million.

Prior to this, Ed was the HTDV Project Manager at Enterprise Honolulu
and a Business Banking Officer and Assistant Vice President at City
Bank.  At City Bank, Ed assisted companies with financial needs and
managed the Targeted Industry Growth Report (TIGR) program.  TIGR
focused on supporting emerging growth industries in Hawaii.  Ed also
mentored companies with various Hawaii entrepreneurship assistance
programs such as the University of Hawaii's business plan competition,
Investor's Choice International Venture Conference, Hawaii Venture
Capital Association and HiBEAM.

Ed currently serves as a member of various business and community groups
such as: Chair, Hawaii Strategic Development Board; Board Member, Hawaii
Procurement Institute; Member, Hawaii Technology Entrepreneurs Network;
Member, Armed Forces Communication and Electronics Association; Member,
National Defense Industrial Association; Treasurer, Hawaii Bicycling
League.


Lynne Woods, co-owner of Keller Williams Realty in Maui, was recently
nominated as the Chair of the Small Business Regulatory Review Board for
the fifth year.  Ms. Woods has a long history with the Review Board as
she began as an appointee on the focus group responsible for writing the
legislation creating the Board in 1998.  Prior to building Keller
Williams consisting of 130 real estate agents and two offices, one on
Maui and one on Oahu, Ms. Woods spent eleven years as president of the
Maui Chamber of Commerce.  Her vast professional background,
demonstrated commitment to the community, her knowledge and
understanding of the power of small business and the need to orchestrate
regulatory relief, have been instrumental in the Review Board achieving
a more effective, respected and stronger presence in Hawaii's small
business community.