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Miki Wakai Joins Hawaii Tourism Authority as Tourism Brand Manager

The Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA), the state’s tourism agency, has hired Miki Wakai as a tourism brand manager.

Miki Wakai

Miki Wakai

Wakai will be overseeing Hawai‘i’s largest international market, Japan. She will work collaboratively with the HTA’s contractor, Hawai‘i Tourism Japan (HTJ), to ensure that marketing efforts are in line with the HTA’s strategic plan and drive demand and revenue for the state of Hawai‘i.

“Miki will be a tremendous asset in working with the Japan market and we are pleased to have her join our team,” said Mike McCartney, president and CEO of the HTA. “Her experience will be valuable as we look at innovative ways to grow this mature market and reach two million Japanese visitors by 2016.”

Prior to joining the HTA, Wakai worked at the Hilton Grand Vacation Club overseeing the marketing and sales office in Hawai‘i while reestablishing its presence in Seoul, Korea. She was also responsible for identifying and marketing to potential customers visiting from Japan, Korea and the U.S. mainland for time share opportunities. Wakai received a Bachelor of Arts degree in international studies from Hawai‘i Pacific University.

Established in 1998, the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, the state’s tourism agency, is responsible for strategically managing tourism to optimize benefits for Hawai‘i that integrates the interest of visitors, the community and visitor industry. Tourism is our state’s leading economic driver and largest employer and the HTA continually works to ensure its sustainability well into the future. For more information on the HTA, please visit www.hawaiitourismauthority.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter (@HawaiiHTA).

Congresswomen Tulsi Gabbard to Receive John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award Tomorrow

Congresswomen Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), one of the first two female combat veterans to serve in the U.S. Congress and an emerging leader on veterans’ issues, and Charles Best, Founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org, a pioneering online charity that connects individual donors with public school teachers to meet classroom teaching needs, have been named this year’s recipients of the John F. Kennedy New Frontier Awards. The awards will be presented by Jack Schlossberg, John F. Kennedy’s grandson and a member of the New Frontier Award Committee, at 6:00 p.m. on November 25, 2013 during a ceremony at the Institute of Politics at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.

My son w/ Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard at the State Capital

My son w/ Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard at the State Capital

“We have been told over and over that America is no longer the great country that it was when my grandfather was president,” said Jack Schlossberg. “But Charles Best and Tulsi Gabbard exemplify the spirit of public service that is the heart of President Kennedy’s legacy. From heads of state to community volunteers, from NASA to the Peace Corps, President Kennedy inspired people all over the world to put their time and talent to work on the great challenges of the era. Tulsi Gabbard and Charles Best are carrying that torch into a new era as direct descendants of my grandfather’s New Frontier. They are pioneers and problem-solvers who are stepping up to meet the challenges of our time with creativity, purpose and resolve,” Schlossberg said.

The John F. Kennedy New Frontier Awards were created by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and the Institute of Politics to honor Americans under the age of 40 who are changing their communities and the country with their commitment to public service. The awards are presented annually to two exceptional individuals whose contributions in elective office, community service, or advocacy demonstrate the impact and the value of public service in the spirit of John F. Kennedy.

One of the New Frontier Awards honors an elected official whose work demonstrates the importance of elective service as a way to address a public challenge or challenges.  This award, called the Fenn Award, is presented to a young elected official in honor of Dan Fenn, the Kennedy Library’s first director and a former member of President Kennedy’s staff.  The other New Frontier Award honors an individual whose contributions in the realm of community service, advocacy or grassroots activism have had a positive impact on a broad public policy issue or challenge.

For more information visit the Kennedy Presidential Library’s website at www.jfklibrary.org or the Institute of Politics’ website at www.iop.harvard.edu.

Tulsi Gabbard
U.S. Representative (D-Hawaii)
Fenn Award Recipient

Tulsi Gabbard is one of the first two female combat veterans to serve as a member of the U.S. Congress. An advocate for environmental policy, Gabbard first ran for the Hawaii state legislature in 2002, where at 21 she became the youngest person ever to serve in that body. In 2003, she joined the Hawaii National Guard, and a year later, she voluntarily deployed to Iraq, eventually serving two tours of combat duty in the Middle East. She was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal during Operation Iraqi Freedom, and she continues to serve as a Captain in the Hawaii National Guard’s 29th Brigade Combat Team. Between her two tours of duty, Gabbard worked in the U.S. Senate as a legislative aide to Senator Daniel Akaka, where she advised on energy independence, homeland security, the environment, and veterans’ affairs. In 2010, she was elected to the Honolulu City Council, where she served as Chair of the Safety, Economic Development, and Government Affairs committee and Vice Chair of the Budget committee. In 2012, Gabbard was elected to the U.S. Congress, where she has emerged as a leader on veterans’ issues and a voice for a younger generation of solutions-oriented political leaders. The first piece of legislation she introduced in the House, the Helping Heroes Fly Act, which streamlines airport security screenings for injured and disabled veterans, was enacted with bipartisan support.

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Skydiving Incident in Hawaii Leaves Man Seriously Injured at Pacific Skydiving

A skydiving incident in Hawaii has left a skydiver seriously injured at Pacific Skydiving located at the Dillingham Airfield over on the North Shore of Oahu.

Ambulance arrives at Pacific Skydiving to take away the injured skydiver

Ambulance arrives at Pacific Skydiving to take away the injured skydiver

To make matters worst, their instructor toppled onto him according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser:

A 34-year-old male skydiver suffered serious injury Friday afternoon after a hard landing at Dillingham Airfield.

Department of Emergency Services spokeswoman Shayne Enright said the injury was to his pelvic area and the instructor toppled onto him.

The accident occurred at 12:57 p.m. Friday…

In a video released yesterday, you can see that skydivers at Pacific Skydive have been known to push the limits when it comes to jumping:

[youtube=http://youtu.be/LBngThlt2oE]

Under CFR 14 Part 91.155 conducting VFR parachute operations thru overcast skies is illegal and dangerous. Feel free to contact me for more evidence regarding FAR violations from this company, I have hours worth of footage.

14 CFR Part 105 is based on the assumption that any individual who chooses to skydive has assessed the dangers involved and assumes personal responsibility for his or her safety. The regulations in Part 105 are intended to assure the safety of those not involved in the sport, including persons and property on the surface and other users of the airspace. The skydiving community is encouraged to adopt good operating practices and programs to avoid further regulation by the FAA.