9th Annual Business Fest to explore links between conservation & - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

9th Annual Business Fest to explore links between conservation & business

KAHULUI, MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) -

The Maui Native Hawaiian Chamber of Commerce will explore the intersection between conservation and business at its 9th Annual Business Fest on Friday, October 30, 2015 at the Grand Wailea in South Maui.  This year's theme is “Pono: Environmental and Social Values in Business.”

“Tourism continues to be the driving force behind Hawai‘is economy and the recent series of tropical storms remind us that climate change is a very real threat to our future as one of the world’s top destinations,” said MNHCoC President Doreen “Pua” Canto. “Our ancestors understood that balance between environment and economy was necessary to ensure a prosperous future. This Biz Fest will encourage discussion about how this cultural value is expressed in the 21st Century.”

To honor both Mother Earth and female leadership, sunrise protocol on Wailea Beach will feature wahine cultural practitioners arriving in double-hulled canoes powered by all-female paddlers. The women will offer ho‘okupu (gifts of nature) to representatives of the ahupua‘a of Pae‘ahu before proceeding to the Haleakala Ballroom for a light breakfast and conference opening ceremonies. Whe the program begins at 7:45 am, guests will enjoy a special hula performance by Halau Ke‘alaokamaile, kumu hula Keali‘i Reichel, followed by words of welcome from Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa, Office of Hawaiian Affairs Trustee Carmen Hulu Lindsey and MNHCoC President Doreen “Pua” Canto.  MNHCoCs past president Kai Pelayo will serve as Master of Ceremonies for the day.

Chipper Wichman, President & CEO of the National Tropical Botanical Garden on Kaua‘i is the Opening Keynote Speaker. He led the successful effort to entice the IUCN World Conservation Congress to convene in Hawaii in September 2016. His session will be followed by the panel discussion, “Why Conservation is Good for Business,” featuring business and conservation professionals Rob Parsons, Penny Levin, John DeFries and Wes Crile. Ramsay Taum is the moderator.

The Lunch Keynote Speaker is ‘Aulani Wilhelm, founder of the company Island Water, Director of Ocean Initiatives Program for NOAA Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and a Social Innovation Fellow of Stanford University. She will speak on balance between commerce, culture, conservation and community.

In between sessions, attendees are encouraged to visit the Biz Fest Exhibit area featuring displays by MNHCoC members spanning health and wellness, community and social services, cultural practitioners, business consultants, designers, artists, restaurants, retail, and more.

Ramsay Taum, the Closing Speaker will summarize the day’s learning with his talk on Hawaiian Values in the Workplace.  The Business Fest will come to an end around 3:30 pm with a Pau Hana reception featuring the music of Na Hoko Hanohano-Award winning Ikaika Blackburn and Friends.

As part of the MNHCoC’s commitment to the next generation of business leaders, 50 students from Kamehameha Schools Maui and King Kekaulike High School will receive scholarships to attend this event.

Event sponsors enable free admission to all Business Fest sessions except for the Keynote Luncheon; the meal cost is $55 per person. Space is limited. To register or for more information, please visit their website here.

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