Newsletter Title
President's Message
By David Honma, President


Since the holiday season is now upon us, I would like to wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy holiday season. For my family, the holiday season is one of the most special times of the year. It's a time we share to be together, a time to give thanks for what we have, and a time to evaluate what is most important to us. In partly answering the latter, what is most important to us also includes many unrecoverable acts we do or don't do in our lives, such as:

The Stone.............after it's thrown
The Word.............after it's said
The Occasion...... after it's missed
The Time..............after it's gone
A Person...............after they die

Simply put, life is precious and short. Please remember to take care of your loved ones, reach out to those in need, and enjoy life each day.

As Chamber President, I along with my wife Victoria, had the honor and privilege to represent your chamber during the president's annual October visit to our sister city, Higashi-Hiroshima. Vicki and I truly enjoyed our visit to Higashi-Hiroshima. During our visit, we were continuously treated like royalty with exquisite Japanese cuisine, excellent sake and great fellowship. While in Higashi Hiroshima, we participated in an executive meeting with Mayor Arata, his cabinet, and members of the Higashi-Hiroshima Chamber of Commerce to discuss our business and friendship relationship, participated in the festivities of the Chamber's signatory Sake Festival, participated in numerous tea ceremonies, visited and toured Takehara City, Miyajima Island, Peace Memorial Park and many other cultural and historical sites. To sum it all up, our journey was truly a once in a lifetime experience.

Upon concluding our visit in Higashi-Hiroshima, and at the invitation of Mayor Miyawaki of Yurihama, my wife and I headed to the 10-year celebration of Yurihama Town creation. At this celebration, we were joined by Donn Mende, Deputy Director of Research and Development from the County of Hawaii. As with our visit to Higashi-Hirosima, we were continuously treated like royalty during our stay. 
2014 Visit to Higashi-Hiroshima Sake Festival
2014 Visit to Higashi-Hiroshima Sake Festival

While in Yurihama, we participated in executive meetings with the Mayor, his cabinet, and members of the Yurihama Chamber of Commerce and discussed perpetuating our on-going relationship including the student exchange program. It should be noted this business and friendship relationship goes back some 18 plus years and is spearheaded by the County of Hawaii with support from Japanese Chamber of Commerce, Japanese Community Association and East Hawaii Kiiwanis. We also participated in an 8 kilometer hike with Vice Mayor Senga, visited and toured numerous businesses including three intermediate schools, toured and visited numerous historical temples and other cultural sites. 

In a nutshell, Yurihama Town and Hawaii have a lot in common including white sandy beaches and a strong agricultural industry. Not to mention, Yurihama Town markets itself as the Hawaii of Japan. In the future, we look forward to supporting our friends at Yurihama Town with the student exchange program and with their marketing image as the Hawaii of Japan.

During the course of my travels, the 16th Annual Taste of Hilo was held on October 21st at Sangha Hall. Similarly to years past, the event was a great success and sell out. This year's theme was locally raised range beef from Hawaii Beef Producers, managed by Honokaa's own Jill Andrade-Mattos. The choice cuts of beef were prepared by Chef Scott Hiraishi of "The Feeding Leaf," a new Kailua-Kona catering company. Scott has been in the culinary industry for some 20 years and received his culinary degree from UHH Hilo West Hawaii Campus.

The success of this year's Annual Taste of Hilo would not have been possible without our hardworking committee members led by co-chairs Russell Arikawa and Craig Shiroma, our generous vendors and chefs who volunteered their time and services, and Hawaii Community College.

I highly encourage you to maximize your Chamber membership by your active participation, and I hope to see you at our future events. As always, thank you for your continued support of your Chamber.

Domo Arigato Gozaimasu




2015 Shinnenkai & 
General Membership Meeting 
JCCIH Social & Cultural Committee presents

2015 Shinnenkai 
 General Membership Meeting

Thursday, January 22, 2015
Nani Mau Gardens & Restaurants, Garden Lanai
5:00 pm Registration
6:00 pm Dinner

More information and invitation will be out soon



Journey Through the Universe

Journey Through the Universe
Astronomy Educators Reception

Monday, March 2, 2014
5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
The Hilo Yacht Club

More information forthcoming!

Presented by the Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry of Hawai'i and the Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce

JCCIH logo
HICC logo

Happy New Year..........
By Joji-san

"Osechi -Ryori" is the name given to specially-prepared New Year's dishes eaten during the first three days of January.

It is said that these dishes bring good luck into the New Year. In Hawaii, many of us practice this tradition, and we have seen these dishes at the New Year's celebrations.

Here's a list of some of these dishes and their meaning:

  • Ebi ( Shrimp / Prawn) - its bent back and long "whiskers" represent long life
  • Gobo (burdock root) - grows straight and firm symbolizing steadfastness, it is also used in a dish called "kinpira"
  • Kazunoko (herring roe) - represents and symbolizes fertility as well as prosperity for future generation
  • Kohaku Kamaboko (red and white fishcake) - Red and White in Japanese represents auspicious colors
  • Konbu Maki (kelp rolls) - Konbu represents the word "yorokobu" which means to be happy
  • Kuromame(black soybeans) - a wish to work in good health (mame ni) in the new year's. In Hawaii, it has been a tradition for some families to eat the number of beans based upon one's age.
  • Datemaki (rolled fish paste) - "date" means "flamboyant" and "maki" (mono) as in a scroll, symbolizes the wish to better one's knowledge and culture
  • Hasu (lotus root) - The holes in the roots symbolize the ability to see into the future. We often see the "hasu" in the popular dish called "Nishime".
  • Tai (red snapper) - "Tai" is the final syllable in the word medetai meaning auspicious. In Hawaii, Tai is known as "Onaga".
Look for these dishes at your upcoming New Year's celebration. 
Be Safe and enjoy a wonderful and prosperous New Year!




Hilo Medical Center
Presentation luncheon
By Randy Kurohara


In November, the Economic Development Committee organized a luncheon presentation by Hilo Medical Center to an audience of about 50 members and guests. A panel consisting of Interim RCEO Dan Brinkman, CFO-CIO Money Atwal, Board Chair Gary Yoshiyama and Board Strategic Planning Chair Kurt Corbin presented a well-organized and articulated overview of how HMC's business model is unique and why it makes for a very challenging environment combined with the many changes also going on with the federal reform of healthcare.

They spoke about the many improvements in the delivery of customer friendly healthcare and increased quality outcomes for HMC. They also explained how their advanced EMR system has streamlined operations and improved billing, collections and ability to more accurately determine cost of services delivered. They spoke on how the challenges are enormous, with areas they have no control over such as declining federal reimbursements, state negotiated raises and benefits, and an obligation as a safety net hospital to provide care for patients regardless if they can pay or not. And finally, they asked for continued legislative support from JCCIH members in regards to their Primary Care Training Program (Family Practice Residency) as well as funding for collective bargaining shortfalls.

The Economic Development Committee is also planning a presentation in early February on the "State of Agriculture" which will provide an outlook of our Island's agricultural industry. Then coming up in March will be our Luncheon with Mayor Billy Kenoi and cabinet.




Staying Committed to Our Mission
By Stephanie Nagata, The Office of Mauna Kea Management

Stephanie Nagata
In the Japanese culture-as with many cultures around the world-the end of every year is a time to reflect on the past 12 months and to prepare for the New Year. For the Office of Mauna Kea Management (OMKM), this past year was a very memorable one filled with its share of ups and downs, rewards and challenges.

What helped me to place this year in perspective was the publication of the scientific journal, Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research, Volume 46, No. 4 (2014 University of Colorado). This special issue contained an article entitled, "Losing the High Ground: rapid transformation of tropical island alpine and subalpine environments," co- authored by James Juvik, Christop Kueffert, Sonia Juvik and myself.

No, I am not so impressed to see my name in print. Rather, the broader significance of the publication was that it included the papers-all of which were peer reviewed-that were presented at an international symposium that OMKM sponsored on the Big Island in August 2012. The symposium, titled ""Vulnerable Islands in the Sky: Science and Management of Tropical Island Alpine & Sub-Alpine Ecosystems," was hosted by OMKM in collaboration with the UHH Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, with support from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation.

The symposium was a resounding success. It brought together leading scientists and professors from around the world who specialize in the study of tropical alpine and sub-alpine systems, shared information to discuss common issues and concerns, and to establish a network for future collaboration.

Participants from England, Scotland, Canary Islands, South Africa, Australia, Japan, and the U.S., including Hawaii, came together to present research on scientific findings being conducted in New Guinea and Southeast Asia, Papua Province, Indonesia, Mount Kinabalu, Dominican Republic, Canary Islands, the uplands of the Piton des Neiges volcano in the southwestern Indian Ocean, West Africa, tropical Andes, Haleakala and Mauna Kea.

The impetus for the symposium was driven by the University of Hawaii's statutory responsibility to manage the Mauna Kea Science Reserve, home to the world's greatest concentration of very large research telescopes. The organizers wished to gain a global perspective on the current state of atmospheric and terrestrial science relative to tropical island high mountains and various best-management practices for these fragile alpine and subalpine environments and the range of associated land use, cultural and environmental conflicts resulting from public use and development. 

Reading the journal reminded me of the new network of communication that was established among scientists dedicated to the study of tropical alpine and sub-alpine ecosystems, research collaborations, and the realization that shared knowledge can play an important role in helping to protect our tropical high mountains including Maunakea. 

OMKM looks forward to future research symposiums that will continue to be beneficial in the mitigating impacts and developing strategies and solutions for protecting, preserving and enhancing the cultural and natural resources in University of Hawaii''s management areas on Mauna Kea.


Hawaii Community College Updates

By Chancellor Noreen Yamane



This year marks the University of Hawai'i Community Colleges' (UHCC) 50th Anniversary. To celebrate a half-century of working together to offer quality, accessible higher education to the people of Hawai'i, the community colleges recently honored individuals from across the seven-campus UHCC system who have made outstanding contributions to the growth and innovation of the colleges. 

After a call for nominations, a Hawai'i Community College (Hawai'i CC) campus committee selected 10 nominees for the "50 Finest" award and three nominees for the "Rising Star" award. A UHCC committee made the final selections for each campus.

I am pleased to announce Hawai'i CC's awardees for the 50 Finest and Rising Star. 

Hawai'i CC 50 Finest Awardees:

* Pualani Kanahele, Retired Professor, Hawaiian Studies and Language

* Shirley Metcalf, Retired Director, Office of Continuing Education and Training

* Trina Nahm-Mijo, Professor, Psychology; and Chair, Social Sciences Department

* Harold Nishimura, Retired Professor, Carpentry Program

* Noreen Yamane, Chancellor


Hawai'i CC Rising Star Awardee

* Grace Funai, Assistant Professor, Counselor

The recipients were honored at a 50th Anniversary Gala Celebration on November 14 at the Dole Cannery in O'ahu. 

Mahalo to the awardees for their contributions and dedication to Hawai'i Community College.





Current Benefits for Members


Please check out the current benefits and discounts that you can take advantage of as a JCCIH member!   






Gina Tanouye, Allstate - Speegle Insurance Agency is dedicated to providing outstanding service with Aloha for your auto, home, renters, life insurance and financial service needs. Contact Gina Tanouye at or 969-7767. For every referral the office receives, the member will receive a $10 gift card for allowing them to provide an insurance quote. 



Kagari Fujita, Ph. D, Big Island Wisteria, LLC is offering members translation services of Japanese to English, or English to Japanese at a discounted price. Contact Kagari Fujita at   



Amelia Hayashi, Bob's Jewelers is offering members 30% off watches; 30% off gold jewelry (Po Son Hon collection excluded); and 30% off sterling silver jewelry.  Contact Amelia Hayashi at 935-8434. 


Diann Horita - With an office in Hilo, Eyewear Hilo has been serving Keaau, Papaikou, Kurtistown and Waimea for more than 4 years. Prior to beginning in Dec. 2008, the staff was employed by Eyewear Hawaii, Inc. and that same respected service is found at Eyewear Hilo.  When you desire superior cutting edge lens technology, call Eyewear Hilo at 935-1119. Members will receive a 20% discount. 


Joy Madriaga, Hawaii Petroleum, Inc., HPI offers dependable bulk fuel and lubricant delivery services to all districts of the island.  HPI's proprietary gas card program - Hawaii Fueling Network - provides a convenient, cost saving way for businesses and consumers to fuel. As a member, when you sign up with HFN, you will receive a discount on your gas purchase.  Contact Joy Madriaga at 969-1405 for further questions.  Applications are available at the Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry of Hawaii.  

Sandy Wilson, Wilson's Trophies, provides awards for sports and academics; signs and banners; corporate awards, gifts & recognition; custom and personalized products (made to order); wood and acrylic crafting (laser engraving and designs); special occasions (Valentine's, Christmas, etc.); jewelry items (earrings, pendants, hair picks and more). Members will receive awards discounts. Contact Sandy Wilson at 969-7077.   




Words of Wisdom 

By Tommy Goya


Tommy Goya


"Problems are a reality.  If your customer has a problem, you have a problem."






back to the top







December 2014 
December Kanji
In This Issue
President's Message
2015 Shinnenkai & General Membership Meeting
Journey Through the Universe Astronomy Educators Reception
Nihongo...Happy New Year...
Hilo Medical Center Presentation luncheon
Staying Committed to our Mission - OMKM
Hawaii Community College Updates
Current Benefits for Members
Words of Wisdom
2014-2015 JCCIH Leadership
Welcome New Members!












What's Happening



December 24 - 26, 2014

December 31, 2014

January 1, 2015

Holiday Schedule - Chamber office is closed 


January 12, 2015

Board of Directors Meeting

Hilo Yacht Club



January 13, 2015

UH Hilo Presentation

More information forthcoming


January 22, 2015

2015 Shinnenkai & General Membership Meeting

Nani Mau Garden's & Restaurants

5:00pm Registration

6:00pm Dinner


March 2, 2015

Journey Through the Universe

Hilo Yach Club



March 4, 2015

16th Annual Golf Classic Tournament

Hilo Municipal Golf Course

More information forthcoming





Officers & Directors  


Executive Officers

David Honma, President

Darren Nishioka, 1st Vice President

Russell Arikawa, 2nd Vice President

Audrey Takamine, 3rd Vice President

Naomi Menor, Japanese Secretary

Donn Mende, Treasurer
Ivan Nakano, Auditor

Carol VanCamp, Immediate-Past President


Directors - term expiring 6/30/15

Barbara Hastings

Randy Kurohara

Amanda Lee

Tracey Miura

Michael Miyahira

Allan Onishi

Debbie Shigehara

Nina Tanabe

Toby Taniguchi


Directors - term expiring 6/30/16
Nobuo Arimoto

Ross Birch

Laurie Correa

Charlene Iboshi

Michael Kaleikini

Ka'iu Kimura

Kimo Lee
Barry Mizuno

Steve Ueda

Nico Verissimo


Directors - term expiring 6/30/17

Jon Arizumi

Tommy Goya

Josie Kiyan

Phoebe Lambeth

Dwayne Mukai

Russell Oda

Joseph Skruch

Arthur Taniguchi

Gina Tanouye

Jere Usui 

Oshirase Newsletter   

Amanda Lee, Editor 
Lei Momi Fujiyama Pillers, Executive Assistant    




Welcome New Members! 


Ray Campainha

State of Hawaii,  Dept. of Human Services

135 Hoaloha St., Hilo, HI  96720

933-8820 & 987-5070


Misty Dawn Carmichael

Assistant Executive Director

University of Hawaii Professional Assembly

19B W. Kawili ST., Hilo, HI  96720



Kyle Wada

HFM Food Service

215 Railroad Ave., Ste. D, Hilo, HI  96720

935-8511 & 960-0130



Seniors Helping Seniors 2013-2014

Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home


Kama'aina Motors 




Direct Link 2013-2014


Kama'aina Nissan

Creative Arts 2013-2014


HELCO 2013-2014
Seniors Helping Seniors 2013-2014

Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home


Kama'aina Motors 




Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Hawai'i


714 Kanoelehua Avenue
Hilo, Hawai'i 96720-4565
Phone: 808-934-0177
Fax: 808-934-0178 


Visit us at: