Small Business Administration announces Kaua‘i award winners

HONOLULU — The Small Business Administration has announced the winners of the 2013 annual SBA contest.

“The 2013 winners clearly show tenacity, creativity and the resourcefulness needed to overcome adversity,” said Jane Sawyer, SB district director, in a statement.

Sawyer said these business owners demonstrate the “best of Hawai‘i and the promise for the future.”

Beatrice Allen of Hanalei Dolphin Restaurant, Fish Market and Sushi Lounge was named Small Business Person of the Year for Kaua‘i County.

Patrick Sullivan, CEO of Oceanit Laboratories, was named Small Business Person of the Year for the City and County of Honolulu. Oceanit also has offices on Kaua‘i.

Robert Gunter, president of Koloa Rum in Kalaheo, was named Small Business Exporter Award for Kaua‘i County. Gunter opened markets for his Hawai‘i-made spirits in Canada, across the U.S. and soon in Asia.

Colby Lopaka Ayonon, owner of Kaua‘i Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Inc. in Kapa‘a was named SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Kaua‘i County.

 George Costa, Kaua‘i County’s director of economic development, was named Minority Small Business Champion for his solid support of business and economic development on the Garden Island.

Winners from throughout the state will be honored Feb. 28 at the SBA’s annual luncheon, held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort.

The annual event features the “Winner’s Circle,” a business expo providing small business owners and advocates receiving honors to showcase the special qualities and innovative business practices that set their businesses apart and drive their success.  

Advance reservations for the 26th Annual SBA Awards Luncheon are required due to limited seating and strong demand. Visit to purchase tickets.

For more information on these annual awards, call SBA at (808) 541-2990.


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