HILO —Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce received the 2018 Hawai‘i Community College Mahalo Award at End-of-the-Year Breakfast meeting on Thursday, May 3, 2018.
Dr. Marty Fletcher, director of Hawaiʻi Community College-Pālamanui nominated the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce (KKCC) for the Mahalo Award, citing the Chamber as “…one of many important voices that helped to make the Pālamanui Campus a reality in 2015.”
“Since then, they have not forgotten about us,” Dr. Fletcher continued. “Since we opened the doors here over the past three years, the Chamber has continually engaged and supported us as a primary partner in both strategy and operations, helping us understand and deliver on the workforce needs of key economic players in the community we serve."
Hawai‘i Community College (HawCC) created the Mahalo award in 1995 to recognize community organizations for supporting the college’s educational programs. HawCC Chancellor Rachel Solemsaas, Ed. D. presented the award to KKCC Executive Director, Wendy Laros, M.Ed. along with KKCC Board Member Randy Kurohara of Creative Arts and Parker Ranch Store and KKCC Education and Workforce Development Committee Chair Dr. Farrah-Marie Gomes, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo.
“The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce is honored to be the recipient of the HawCC Mahalo Award!” Laros states. “The relationship we have with HawCC is strong and continues to grow. We can and do play a significant role in creating connections between the college and the business community. Education is one of our Chamber’s core values and continued collaboration with HawCC-Pālamanui is a top priority.”
KKCC Education and Workforce Development Committee Chair Dr. Farrah-Marie Gomes added, “This award brings together the goal for our committee, which is to facilitate connections to promote opportunities between the education and business communities for the development of Hawai‘i Island’s existing and future workforce. We look forward to continued partnership and prosperity for both of our organizations in the years ahead.”
About the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce
The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce is a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization with over 500 member businesses that represent a wide range of industries in the private, non-profit, and public sectors in the Kona and Kohala regions on the West side of the island of Hawai‘i. Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2018, the organization exists to provide leadership and advocacy for a successful business environment in West Hawai‘i.
IMAGE 1: Hawai‘i Community College 2018 Mahalo Award, presented to the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce.
IMAGE 2: From left to right: HawCC Chancellor Rachel H. Solemsaas, KKCC Education and Workforce Committee Chair Farrah Marie Gomes, KKCC Executive Director Wendy Laros and KKCC Board Member Randy Kurohara.