KOLOA — Gather Federal Credit Union was not taking any chances with its Koloa Branch on Monday.
“I heard next month is an unlucky month, so we wanted to make sure we were in before August ended,” said Terri Kanioho, the Gather FCU marketing director. “We can do a grand opening celebration in October. The most important thing is that we are operating before the month ended.”
The Koloa Branch opened its doors with three staff members — Lesslie Libunao, Cheryl Domingo and Richel Gusman — in the space formerly occupied by the original Koloa Federal Credit Union. The outlet located across the walkway from the Koloa Variety Store and the Koloa Village complex will be open Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Construction of the new facility was led by Jim Cassel Jr., and his sidekick “Samurai,” or “JJ.”
“He’s still working on some parts of the building,” said Tess Shimabukuro, the Gather FCU CEO and president. “He’s doing the work at all our branches. When we first saw this space, it still had the old Koloa Federal Credit Union sign. Jim’s done a great job working — he was here until 11:30 p.m., last night — this place to what it is.”
The Koloa Branch becomes the sixth branch to open in the Gather FCU network that includes the Kukui Grove West, the Lihu‘e Branch, the Kapa‘a Branch, the ‘Ele‘ele Branch, and the Waimea Branch. Gather FCU also offers ATM at its Kukui Grove West, the Kukui Grove Shopping Center, the Lihu‘e Branch and the Wilcox Medical Center.
It offers the convenience of its range of services like the KASASA free checking account, and savings, and the current Show Aloha Challenge t-shirt campaign, conveniently in the town of Koloa on the island’s South Shore.
The Show Aloha Challenge is a fundraising partnership with Gather FCU and the Show Aloha Challenge Foundation that currently provides 600 meals a week to kupuna from Anahola to Lihu‘e through two restaurants — Mark’s Place, and the Waipouli Deli &Restaurant.
A $20 purchase of a SAC shirt provides two meals for kupuna and, in addition to the shirt, a gift from Gather FCU.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or email@example.com.