Hawaii appoints 11 to serve on tourist authority

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HONOLULU -- Hawaii Gov. Ben Cayetano named 11 board members to the new Hawaii Tourism Authority, which will direct the state's tourism policy and marketing efforts.

"We will work with this authority to develop an all-encompassing vision and marketing strategy for Hawaii's tourism industry," he said.

Legislation for the authority, passed last May, included a dedicated source of tourism marketing funding that will more than double promotional dollars. The state's hotel room tax will increase from 6% to 7.25% Jan. 1, with 37.9% of the total room tax -- almost $60 million annually -- going to the authority.

The state provides $25 million for marketing, which goes to the private, nonprofit Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau (HVCB). HVCB, however, has no responsibility for long-term marketing and planning, and the state government has no strategic plan for tourism.

Under the new law, the state's annual contract with HVCB to market Hawaii will run through June, at which time the authority will decide how it will contract for marketing services and disperse funds.

Authority appointees, subject to state Senate confirmation in the 1999 session, are unpaid. They are:

  • Roy Tokujo, president and chief executive officer, Cove Marketing Inc., and current HVCB chairman.
  • Diane Quitiquit, director of research and development, Hawaii County (Big Island).
  • Mark Rolfing, of Rolfing Sports Inc., Maui.
  • Gary Baldwin, a Kauai management consultant.
  • Keith Vieira, vice president and director of operations, Hawaii, Starwood Hotels.
  • Gilbert Kimura, regional sales manager, Japan Airlines.
  • Ron Wright, managing director, sales and marketing, Continental Airlines.
  • John Reed, chairman, Duty Free Shoppers of Hawaii.
  • David Carey, president and chief executive officer, Outrigger Hotels.
  • Shari Chang, senior vice president, sales and marketing, Castle Resorts.
  • Kalowena Komeiji, an event and public relations consultant.
  • All are voting members except Komeiji.

    Appointees were chosen from each of the counties. They are Tokujo (Oahu), Quitiquit (Big Island), Rolfing (Maui) and Baldwin (Kauai). The board will also have two ex-officio members -- the state's director of business (voting) and director of transportation (nonvoting).

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