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Eleven young business executives from Hawaii will travel to Japan to learn about leadership and assist businesses that were affected by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The group will be traveling as part of the Hawaii Asia Pacific Association’s (HAPA) Executive in Residence Program – Japan Experience. The group will be hosted by a group of young business leaders in Japan.
Duane Kurisu, chairman and CEO of aio and HAPA executive committee member, says in a statement, “HAPA’s goal is to build a better future by strengthening Hawaii’s relationship with other Asia-Pacific regions and developing up-and-coming leaders. This Executive in Residence Program is helping to accomplish that by taking some of the most promising young leaders from Hawaii and Asia, connecting them, and letting them experience, firsthand, what is possible when you lead from the heart.” (Disclosure: Hawaii Business magazine is owned by aio.)
According to a statement, HAPA was founded in 2004 and “is comprised of 55 top-level Hawaii executives, business owners and influential community leaders who are interested in increasing their knowledge and expertise of the Asia-Pacific region while identifying opportunities to forge new relationships and strengthen existing ones that will grow Hawaii’s economy and develop future leaders.”
Each year, a new class collaborates with a group from a different country. The 2013 class recently hosted a group of Korean leaders in Hawaii, where they also had cross-cultural leadership training and service projects.
In September 2012, the Hawaii group of young leaders hosted the Japan group for four days here in the Islands. This time, the Japan group will host the Hawaii group in Japan.
The group will take part in sessions to learn about leadership and will participate in service projects. One will be assisting a fishing family collect scallops and other shellfish in Kesennuma, a coastal town devastated by the tsunami. The group will also help make traditional Japanese cosmetics and visit a denim factory.
Some of the Hawaii executives who will be traveling to Japan include Jason Fujimoto, senior vice president and COO of HPM Building Supply; Jason Fujita, VP of consumer sales at Hawaiian Telcom; David Hinazumi, VP at Grove Farm Company; Brandon Kurisu, president of Upspring Media; Marko Miljkovic, floor manager at Servco Pacific; and Kristen Yamane, strategic planner at Queen’s Health Systems.
I will be accompanying the group on this trip. Stay tuned to this blog for updates, as well as story in a future issue of Hawaii Business magazine.