First Hawaiian Bank Chairman, President & CEO Robert Harrison is shown seated in front of a portrait of Charles Reed Bishop, founder of FHB’s predecessor Bishop & Co. Today First Hawaiian is the second oldest bank west of the Rockies.

First Hawaiian Bank

December, 2014
First Hawaiian Bank employees (back row, L to R) Vernon Wong, Alan Arizumi, Ken Miller, Neill Char, President & CEO Bob Harrison, and Mike Taylor (front row - L to R) Courtney Kajikawa, Teri Hirata, and Mike Hirai participating in the Bank’s Community Care initiative, the employee driven community improvement and reinvestment volunteer program.

First Hawaiian Bank employees (back row, L to R) Vernon Wong, Alan Arizumi, Ken Miller, Neill Char, President & CEO Bob Harrison, and Mike Taylor (front row – L to R) Courtney Kajikawa, Teri Hirata, and Mike Hirai participating in the Bank’s Community Care initiative, the employee driven community improvement and reinvestment volunteer program.

Few companies can claim membership to the group of those who have survived for 100 years. Even fewer have surpassed 150. But that’s just what First Hawaiian Bank has done.

Since 1858, First Hawaiian Bank has proven its resiliency time and again. It’s faced challenges head-on and has managed to thrive in times of both economic booms and busts. This was evident in the most recent financial crisis.

“When you face a situation like that, what helps is consistency and approaching things with a framework that you don’t change based on what the flavor of the day is,” says chairman, president and CEO Bob Harrison. “You do the right thing for the customer.”

In FHB’s case, the right thing was continuing to do what they do best.

“We were committed to supporting the community, and we grew the bank’s loan portfolio more in 2008 than we ever had” Harrison says. “While others pulled back on lending, we kept going. If projects made sense, we were there to support them. We didn’t change the way we did our underwriting before, during or after the financial crisis. That stability in the community makes a huge difference. People know they can rely on us.”

The focus on people is what Harrison believes is at the heart of the company’s success, and for FHB that focus starts from within. A four-time winner of Hawaii Business Magazine’s Best Places to Work award, FHB has had 175 of its employees surpass the 40-year mark.

Pictured above is the handwritten ledger from Bishop & Co.

Pictured above is the handwritten ledger from Bishop & Co.

The type of people that work at FHB are the type of people who also give back to the community. They organize fundraisers and beach cleanups; they coach soccer teams and serve on the boards of nonprofit organizations. They also give back monetarily, with an almost-unheard-of 98 percent participation rate in FHB’s voluntary employee-giving program.

Consistent with the ideals of FHB’s founder, Charles Reed Bishop, the employees emanate integrity, commitment and caring, and they carry that over to their clients.
“We know that everyone has dreams and aspirations and we want to be the ones to help turn those into realities. That’s what we’ve been doing from the beginning, building lasting relationships with our customers. We are grateful to these loyal customers, many of whom have been with us for generations. Their trust is what has allowed us to grow and still be here today,” Harrison says. “Our roots run deep in this community and we look forward to helping the next generation of customers.”

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First Hawaiian Bank
999 Bishop St.
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813
(808) 525-6340
www.fhb.com

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Hawaii Business magazine