Leadership

Down, Not Out

There’s no denying it’s been a brutal three years for Central Pacific Bank and its parent company, Central Pacific Financial Corp. The bank’s aspiration of grabbing more market share with its 2004 merger with City Bank has all but disappeared.…

Making a Hobby Your Business

Maui Surfer Girls founder Dustin Tester proves that, with hard work, you don’t need a business degree to own one. Tester’s love of surfing and her Adventure Education degree from Prescott College in Arizona inspired her to start an all-girl…

Ask SmallBiz: Successful Women

Q. How can a woman small-business owner succeed in the male-dominated construction industry? A. Women leaders face unique challenges in the workplace, no matter what industry we are in. Yet, as women, we bring abundant talents to the table and can…

Power Players

Participants in this discussion: Margery Bronster 
Partner, Bronster Hoshibata and 
former state attorney general Shari Chang 
Senior VP, marketing and revenue management, 
Aston Hotels and Resorts Kathryn Inouye 
COO, Kobayashi Group Constance Lau 
President and CEO, 
Hawaiian Electric Industries Janet Liang 
President, Hawaii Region, 
Kaiser…

Make Your Network Work for You

One group of high-powered executives is giving new meaning to the old concept “Ladies Who Lunch.” The Art of Lunch (AOL) is an informal, all-wahine networking group formed on a whim about two years ago when Louise Ing, a shareholder…

SmallBiz Guide to Power

Imagine the huge cost to your small business if the 2010 Legislature had raised the general excise tax or failed to cut unemployment insurance premiums. Every year at the state Capitol, similar make-or-break laws are debated and that’s why it’s…

Talk Story with John Dean

In March, the embattled Central Pacific Bank named John Dean as CEO and executive chairman. He has nearly 30 years of experience in the financial industry, including serving as CEO and chairman of Silicon Valley Bank. Q: You came to…

Pro-Business Legislators

Some Republicans and Democrats stand out as best, but when we tried to ID the worst, business leaders were reluctant to name names. In this time of severe budget cuts, lots of people are unhappy with their state lawmakers. But…

Seeking the Business Vote

Top candidates for governor explain how they would make it easier for businesses to succeed. Those in Hawaii struggling to maintain a business or start a new one can rest easy on one thing: Our next governor has no plans…

Growing by Going Global

Conquering the world was not part of the original plans for many Hawaii businesses that have succeeded in global markets. For some, it was a years-long process of gradual growth and careful planning, while others found their way quickly with…

How to Revitalize Hawaii’s Economy

Participants in this discussion: Kirk Belsby, VP of the endowment for Kamehameha Schools Kyle Chock, executive director of Pacific Resource Partnership Keiki-Pua Dancil, president and CEO of the Hawaii Science and Technology Council State Sen. Carol Fukunaga, Democrat, representing McCully to…

Transformers

As revenues fall and old ways fail, a Hawaiian Electric team tries to turn a power behemoth into a clean-energy matrix. “You can’t run an operational company like this without leadership that’s experienced in operational issues,” says Robbie Alm, executive…

Succeeding in Good Times and Bad

Business consultants tell you opportunities exist whether the economy is shooting skyward or tumbling down. Well-positioned firms can always exploit changes in the business cycle and gain ground on competitors. “A lot of companies do look at a downturn as…

Editor's Note: Making Our Children Pay

People love to blame politicians for the problems our country faces. “They’re all crooks” and “Throw them out” are the most common solutions in casual political conversations between friends and neighbors. The problem is that, Republican or Democrat, all of…

Transforming Hawaii’s Airports

Ask Ernest Nishizaki what the single most important thing is that Hawaii could do to revitalize its visitor industry and economy, and he does not hesitate with his answer: Fix Honolulu International Airport and fast. “We’re talking about the first…

Talk Story with Dwight Kealoha

Kealoha, a retired Air Force brigadier general, has been with Hawaii’s Better Business Bureau since 2006. This year, the Hawaii BBB marks its 65th anniversary and Kealoha says it is strong and healthy. “Who’s getting old?” he asks. Not the BBB, which…

Advice From The Top: Chason Ishii

Chason Ishii, president, Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties. Best advice you received that you live by? My parents stressed that life is about growing inside a little every day. Every time you learn something new you grow a little; every time…

Illegal Sex, Drugs and Gambling

A vast, illegal economy operates just beneath Hawaii’s legitimate society, and many people who earn their money in the legal economy spend part of it in the black one. The narcotics trade serves both street-corner junkies strung out on crystal…

Hawaii’s Underground Economy

One billion dollars a year. That’s the estimated taxes in Hawaii that don’t get paid by contractors and waiters, accountants and attorneys, hairdressers and everyone else who hides all or part of their cash income. Just about everyone contributes knowingly…

Talk Story - Chatt Wright

After 39 years at HPU’s helm, Wright steps down in June 2011 even as he’s helping launch a $100 million expansion at the Windward campus. Though he’s retiring just short of his 70th birthday, he still plans to fundraise for…

The Billion Dollar Gamble

What a difference a billion dollars makes. Until recently, the state treasury – officially, the Treasury Management Branch of the Financial Administration Division of the Department of Budget and Finance – has operated in relative obscurity. With its staff of…