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Leaders from state, Japan attend JCCIH installation

Continuing the Japanese Chamber of Commerce &Industry of Hawaii mission to promote values-based business and interconnection, JCCIH welcomed state and Japanese leaders of government and commerce to its 67th installation in June.

Audrey N. Takamine of Takamine Construction Inc. was inducted as the 2017-18 president of the JCCIH, becoming the fourth woman to lead the organization.

“When Craig and I founded Takamine Construction, we set our philosophy as ‘building long-term relationships,’ and that’s a major goal I have for the chamber,” Takamine said. “These friendships across the state and with Japanese business leaders foster that goal.”

Lt. Gov. Shan S. Tsutsui gave the keynote remarks, calling on businesses to “acknowledge the rich history of the community and the state and remain grateful for the contributions and sacrifices of generations past.”

From Japan, dignitaries and delegates from sister city Higashi-Hiroshima and its Chamber of Commerce &Industry joined the celebration. Tsutsui noted he was encouraged by the relationship between Higashi-Hiroshima and Hilo business communities “in exploring unique business opportunities while gaining a better understanding of one another.”

Also in attendance was Sherry Menor-McNamara, president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii, which represents statewide business interests. JCCIH works with CoCH to promote mutually beneficial programs and legislation.

Besides Takamine, the other 2017-18 JCCIH Executive Officers include:

• Stephen N. Ueda, Suisan Co. Ltd., first vice president.

• Donn S. Mende, HFS Federal Credit Union, second vice president.

• Joseph F. Skruch, treasurer.

• Russell M. Arikawa, Ginoza Realty Inc., immediate past president.

The installation drew a record crowd of more than 250, requiring a change of venue.

“We are very grateful that the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel opened its doors to accommodate our installation,” Takamine said. “I look forward to working with our new officers. I also welcome the many new members that JCCIH has attracted over the past year. We intend to continue that growth.”

JCCIH now has more than 300 members from businesses and professions.

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