Following the success of last year’s Hawaii on the Hill, plans are underway for another campaign June 9-10 in Washington, D.C.
Sen. Mazie Hirono, who spearheaded last year’s event attended by more than 1,000 people, spent part of her Kauai itinerary Thursday visiting with local businesses that participated and made the gathering a hit. There were stops at Koloa Rum Company, Kauai Kookie Company, Salty Wahine, and Kauai Coffee, where Hirono was enthusiastically welcomed.
“Hawaii on the Hill was an opportunity to showcase and highlight our small businesses and the island,” said Randy Francisco, Kauai Chamber of Commerce president and CEO. “Sen. Hirono was gracious to spend some time thanking the participating businesses for their help as well as learn more about their operation.”
Francisco said of the more than 50 companies represented at Hawaii on the Hill, Kauai was at the forefront. It drew more than five times the normal attendance from the other states that hosted similar events.
“Hawaii had an overwhelming presence,” he said. “We wanted to show Congress that a decision made 5,000 miles away can impact us.”
Hirono invited the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii to once again bring Hawaii’s specialties and industries to the nation’s capital.
During a stop at Kauai Kookie Company, Hirono and Sherry Menor-McNamara, president and CEO for the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii, did not hesitate in literally rolling up their sleeves and joining Mary Jane Kobashigawa and Dominga Vea in fashioning manju.
Hirono also visited the Campus Veteran Support Center at Kauai Community College before wrapping up the island trip at a roundtable forum at the Kauai Veterans Center.