Author: Lavonne Leong

Aloha Town

The City and County of Honolulu does a big job – or rather, 10,687 jobs. That’s the number of people the C&C employs, with the responsibility of providing safety and enhancing the lives of Oahu’s 992,605 residents. Every U.S. city…

Immigrants Get The Job Done In Hawaii

Here’s who they are and what they contribute to the local economy. Immigrants have an outsized place in Hawaii’s history. In the 19th and early 20th centuries they came from Japan, China, Puerto Rico and the Portuguese Azores and sustained…

Overtourism and Crowding at our Favorite Spots

The number of tourists coming to Hawaii keeps climbing and many are now crowding into places that were once reserved for locals. It’s a worldwide situation. However, the solution to “overtourism” may not be to cap the number of visitors…

Women at Work

Why are there so few women at the top? Just 5.8 percent of CEOs at Fortune 500 companies are women. Globally, women hold around 15 percent of corporate board seats; in the U.S., it’s just 11 to 12 percent. There…

Talk Story: Richard Vuylsteke

Vuylsteke (pronounced VUL-stek) has had a global career that has carried him through universities, journalism, the military and the business world. He recently left his post as president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong to assume leadership…

Hurricanes: The Other Checklist

The usual prep list does not tell you such things as: Which island is more likely to get hit frequently? Which islands are more likely to get hit severely? (The answers are different.) How can you tell how much damage…

Hawaii: Headquarters of the Future

Richard Kaipo Lum has had plenty of clients that you’ve heard of. To name a few: the European Commission, the city of Stockholm, the governments of Canada, the United Kingdom and Singapore, along with multinationals like PepsiCo, IBM and others…

All Work and No Job

There are a million stories in the white-collar gig economy. Let me introduce you to one. Alison Chock has two jobs: One is in retail, where she works nights at a boutique. Her other job is more unpredictable. The work…

Our Water World

We all know it: Water is life. With California’s drought in the headlines, climate change looming and some troubling local numbers – base stream flow, rainfall and aquifer levels are all down on Oahu – now is a good time to…

Yes, Locally Owned Has a Future

It feels like offshore-owned companies are taking over Hawaii, but the reality is their number peaked in 2007. Meanwhile, the number of locally owned companies has grown seven times faster since 1995. The same forces that ate so many local…

Is Your Job In Danger?

  A reliable cell phone signal is still hard to find in the sleepy town of Kaunakakai, but the robots have arrived. Kim Svetin’s family owns Molokai Drugs, the island’s only drugstore. Behind the counter, it’s Svetin’s Uncle Jon, her…

Facing Future

“There was always something else. When pineapple closed, the resorts were there. When the ranch closed, Monsanto was still there. There was always an answer. We don’t have the answer now.” —Kimberly Mikami Svetin, Store owner To some people, Monsanto…

Doing Business Island Style, 2014 Remix

The world has changed. Is Hawaii still stuck in the past? Or were we ahead of the times all along? Remember 2004?  That year, a BlackBerry was the height of executive cool, while the first iPhone was still three years…

Taking Risks: Aloha Edition

“Have I got enough rope to hang myself with here?”  Venture capitalist Timothy Dick jokes about the length of the microphone cord as he stands in front of 100 entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs-to-be at the Waikiki Yacht Club. Dick came to…

Ninja Skills

Adult’s definition of parkour: a noncompetitive sport that builds coordination, strength, patience and discipline, while emphasizing safety, community and creativity. Kid’s definition of parkour: ninja skills and Spiderman training. Parkour, which originated less than a generation ago in the immigrant-rich suburbs outside of Paris,…

Problem-Solving Workout

Cool Kakaako has been spawning no end of places to eat well. Now there’s another place where you can work it off: the Volcanic Rock Gym on Keawe Street, a 2,000-square-foot bouldering facility that opened in April. Just to be clear, we’re not talking about something you can…

Exceptional Family Outings

The Art of Learning Back when it was The Contemporary Museum, it was an idiosyncratic destination in the hills above Honolulu, a place where you could walk the gardens, grab lunch in the cafe and see intriguing contemporary art that…

5 Great Edu-Apps

Interactive Alphabet What’s Learned? Letters Description: Hawaii-connected app-maker Piikea Street won instant recognition for Interactive Alphabet, which charms your littlest technophile through the early stages of literacy with easy, interactive play. Latest versions offer lower-, upper- and mixed-case letters and…

Returning Home to Hawaii After Years Abroad

OK, so you grew up in Hawaii. You know your spam musubi and hula kahiko. Then you moved away – for education, for work, to prove yourself. You’re having a great time. You visit often, but never stay. Then, maybe,…