November 2016 OWL Newsletter
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November Newsletter

Volume 30, Issue 6

“Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence
and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.” 

- Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook

November 7 Luncheon


President & Chief Executive Officer
The Chamber of Commerce Hawaii
OWL is very pleased to welcome Sherry Menor-McNamara to our annual luncheon meeting.  As the youngest and first female President and Chief Executive Officer of The Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii in the organization’s 166-year history, Sherry truly exemplifies the women leaders who make up our organization and caps off a great year of guest-speakers with impressive records of firsts in their professions.
Sherry joined the Chamber as Director of Business Advocacy in 2006 and was promoted to Vice President of Business Advocacy and Government Affairs in 2007.  She then served as the organization's Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President of Government Affairs before assuming her current position.  Prior to joining the Chamber, she was events manager for ESPN Sports’ Sheraton Hawaii Bowl. She has lived in several major cities working for a wide variety of companies, such as Sony Corporation, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Estee Lauder Company, Field Group, Elton John Production and “60 Minutes” news magazine show, as well as for the Hawaii State Legislature, U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka and the Executive Office of the U.S. President.
Sherry currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Queen’s Health Systems, Board of Trustees of the JAIMS Foundation, Executive Committee and Board of Directors for Move Oahu Forward, Executive Committee of the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl, Board of Directors for the FILCom Center, Board of Directors for the East-West Center Foundation, Advisory Council of the Center for Tomorrow’s Leaders, Board of Directors for Girls Scouts Hawaii, and on numerous task forces.
Sherry currently is a fellow of the Omidyar Fellows Leadership Program. In 2015, Sherry was selected to represent the United States in the Korea Foundation’s Program for Distinguished Individuals in Economy. In 2014, she was recognized as “Top 10 to Watch” by Pacific Business News and in  2012, she was recognized as a “Top 20 to Watch” by Hawaii Business magazine. Sherry was also inducted as a Laureate into the 2014 Class of the Junior Achievement of Hawaii Hall of Fame. Additionally, in 2014, she was selected and participated in the prestigious Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs leadership program.
Sherry earned a certificate in Expanding Impact in Advocacy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Executive Education. She received her juris doctorate degree from the William S. Richardson School of Law and her MBA from the Shidler College of Business. She also pursued graduate study in public administration at the University of Southern California and holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of California at Los Angeles.
Born in Tokyo, Japan and raised in Hilo, where she graduated from Waiakea High School, Sherry is married to John McNamara. She enjoys golfing, traveling and spending time with her husband and dogs, Bruin and Kuma-chan.

You won't want to miss this wonderful opportunity to gather with your fellow OWL sisters and guests to hear from this remarkable woman leader!

November 7 Annual Meeting

Halekulani Hotel -- Ballroom II
2199 Kalia Road

11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

RSVP due by noon on Wednesday, November 2 at
Check payable to OWL for $45 for each guest.
℅ Cynthia Takenaka
516 Kawaihae St. #E
Honolulu, HI 96825-1240

Phone:  808-394-3451 | Fax: 808-395-4417 | website:

President's Message
Kate Braden


November is fast approaching and so is our Annual Meeting where the OWL leadership is transferred to the new leadership team.  OWL is a networking organization to aid the coming together of Women leaders from the private and public sector to support and promote the issues affecting Women Leaders.  We have had a marvelous year of interesting speakers and special events that we support such as the Women’s Forum and our own Pau Hana Networking event to fulfill our mission.

No Organization runs on just the leadership of one person and with OWL you have a wonderful Board of active, interested women to assure great speakers and wonderful events.  Please join me in thanking the Board for a job well done this past year.

The annual meeting is when we formally vote and approve the Board for 2017 led by our President-Elect, Julie Arrigo.  Julie has a wonderful slate for your approval and I’m sure 2017 will be a great year under her leadership.

We also will present the OWL Women of the Year Awards to one private sector and one public sector OWL member.  The meeting is a great time to bring guests that might be interested in the benefits of OWL membership.  Administration will be sending out the email for your reservations soon.  Our final speaker of the year will be Sheri Menor McNamara, President of the Honolulu Chamber of Commerce; I’m sure you don’t want to miss her talk!

I am fully retired as of July 1, 2016 so my focus has changed.  I will be looking for active volunteer efforts to meet my personal mission of support for women and girls rather than networking, but I leave you in very good hands with Julie and the 2017 Board of Directors.

A Hui Hou!


What We Heard
September 12

Debbi Eleneki

Battalion Chief,
Honolulu Fire Department

by Pam Harms

Those ladies who attended the September OWL luncheon were treated to a truly inspirational presentation by Battalion Chief Debbi Eleneki, a twenty-nine year veteran of the Honolulu Fire Department.  Chief Eleneki comes from a family of firefighters - her father, four brothers and brother-in-law have all been firefighters. 

Chief Eleneki's career contains many firsts. In 1987 she became the first female firefighter in Honolulu; she then became the first woman firefighter to make Captain and the first to make Chief. But as she explained, she and the other women firefighters are not female firefighter -- they are just firefighters.

Since OWL has been exploring the topic of women and mentors throughout the year, Chief Eleneki talked about her own mentor experience.  Of course, her family and in particular her father has been her closest mentor.  Her father taught her from a young age to be self-reliant and resourceful, which has served her well as a firefighter.  Debbie also emphasized that to be a mentor is to teach and share knowledge.  Although you will not have all the answers, a good leader and mentor must be willing to share their knowledge with others.

Chief Eleneki inspired all those who were in attendance - only 2% of Hawaii firefighters are women, and Debbie is certainly the standard-bearer for all!

Upcoming Nov. 7 Meeting Items

2016 Outstanding Woman Leader Award

Thank you for your nominations. Awardees of the 2016 OWL Outstanding Woman Leader recognitions will be announced at the Nov. 7 meeting.

2017 Election of Officers and Directors

OWL members will vote to elect the new officers and directors. Nominees are listed below.

President:  Julie Arigo
President-Elect:  Valerie Schmidt 
VP Membership:  Libby Lee-Hobbs
VP Programs:  Kathy Perkins and Julie Inouye
Treasurer:  Ananda Chou
Recording Secretary:  Dori Palcovich
Communications Secretary:  Pam Harms

Directors at Large:
Kristi Bates
Mona Choy-Beddlow
Dr. Liz Elliott
Laura Lott
Stacia Murray
Tracie Young

2017 Membership Renewal and Upcoming Luncheon Meeting Dates

January 9 - Pacific Club

March 13 - Pacific Club

May 8 - Pacific Club

July 10 - Pacific Club

Sept. 11 - Pacific Club

November  6 - Halekulani

Annual dues for Jan. through Dec. 2017 is $260.  Early bird rate is $250 if paid by Nov. 30.  Dues cover the cost of six luncheons including the Annual Meeting luncheon and bi-monthly newsletters. Luncheons and other membership benefits are non-transferable.

Membership luncheons are generally held on the second Monday of January, March, May, July, & September and November 6th from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Meetings are usually held at the Pacific Club, but locations will be confirmed prior to the meeting.  

Link to renewal form
OWL Pau Hana
The OWL Board of Directors would like to thank all of those who attended the OWL annual Pau Hana event at the Outrigger Canoe Club on September 28, 2016 from 5:30-7:30pm.

It is always so great to see our OWL sisters and guests having a fantastic time catching up and networking.  A highlight of the evening again this year was the prize give-aways -- thank you to all who donated items for this wonderful event.  
The Pau Hana is a great way for OWL members and guests to get to know each other, offering an informal evening at a truly beautiful venue on the shores of Waikiki. The OWL ladies were very excited about our last meeting of the year - if you have not done so yet, invite some friends in the community who would appreciate coming to our luncheon. Hope to see you next year at our annual Pau Hana!
Member Achievements
Margaret Dang has been promoted to Executive Vice President and Director of Experience for Employee and Client Experience Group at the Bank of Hawaii.  In her new role, Margaret is responsible for helping to develop and implement strategies to optimize Bank of Hawaii's customer and employee experience across the organization.  

Margaret is a 29-year veteran of the bank and has held a verity of management positions in the Human Resource Division, including quality and staff development  manager, before moving to the Marketing Department.  Margaret was the first in the State to earn the Direct Marketing Association's Certified Marketing Professional Program certification.
Lorraine Leslie has been promoted to Senior Director of Philanthropy at the YMCA of Honolulu.  Lorraine now oversees day-to-day operations in the Development office to include Donor Relations Management, Annual Giving, Board Development, Grants and Corporate & Foundation relations for the ten branches on Oahu to strengthen the impact of YMCA programs in the community.

Lorraine is also one of only six individuals (out of 100 applicants) to be selected to a three-year term to the YMCA's National Women's Leadership Network Steering Committee.  The YMCA's NWLN strives to empower and fully engage all women within the YMCA movement by providing meaningful connections and experiences.

2016 Treasurer's Report and Estimated Year End Financial Overview 

We’ve had another outstanding year, heard from phenomenal women leaders who mentor others and have mentors in their lives, and bonded with our amazing OWL colleagues.  It has been an honor to serve on your Board as your Treasurer.

Current membership as of October 18, 2016 is 80. Revenue from dues were $3,510 greater than budget and guest lunches were $545 less than budget. Total revenues were more than anticipated, which offset the increased expenses due to increases guest attendance to the luncheons meetings; resulting in a projected net positive of $2,300.

The October Pau Hana Mixer broke even. This networking event is not intended to be revenue generating.

Figures for part of October and all of November and December are estimated amounts.  Estimated End of Year financial statements will be available at the November annual meeting.  Feel free to contact me with any questions.

Respectfully submitted,

Ananda Chou, Treasurer
Julie Arigo - Waikiki Parc Hotel
Mimi Beams - Inkinen & Associates
Judy Bishop - Bishop & Company
Kate Braden - Retired
Ina Chang - Aloha Data Services
Mona Choy-Beddow - Home Street Bank
Margaret Dang - Bank of Hawaii
Elizabeth Elliott, MD - Hawaii Integrative Health
Mary Flemmings - Hawaii Sound Systems, Inc.
Nora Forsythe - Retired
Lynn Grqybeal - AECOM
Jennifer Grems - St. Andrews Priory
Audrey Hidano - Hidano Construction
Josie Ing - First Hawaiian Bank
Julie Inouye - UH Foundation
Suzanne Jones - C & C of Honolulu
Betty Kaneshiro - Hawaii Pacific Health
Yvonne Konia - Hawaii USA FCU
Libby Lee-Hobbs - American Airlines
Laura Lott - Kaiser Permanente
Pamela Bell Martin - Hawaii Department of Labor
Stacia Murray - Ameriprise Financial
Claire Nakamura - Retired
Linda Nakamura - First Hawaiian Bank
Janice Nielsen - Hawaii's Hidden Hideaway B&B
Dori Palcovich - Hawaii DBEDT
Sharon Pang - Care Companions & Consulting
Kathy Perkins - St. Andrews Priory
Barbra Pleadwell - Hastings & Pleadwell
Sarah Marks Richards - Retired
Emily Santiago - University Health Alliance
Sharon Shigemoto - Hawaii Gas
Nancy Evans Tudor - Tudor Wilson & Associates
Zoe M.G. Williams - Hawaii Gas

Tracie Young - Hawaii DBEDT

OWL Mission Statement

The mission of OWL is to develop a network of contacts among women in decision- making positions to promote effectiveness on the job and professional advancement.

The goals and objectives of OWL shall be to establish a network of contacts between the public and private sectors; to establish a professional and interpersonal support system for women professionals; to offer informational opportunities for women in management; to provide career-related ideas and information; and to share job and career advancement opportunities.

We love to hear from you!  Because we know your time is valuable, OWL President Julie Inouye will be reading the member announcements along with her welcome message.  Please email your news to Julie at

You may also share your achievements or any newsworthy items with your OWL sisters through our newsletter.  Email your news along with a photo to Kristi Bates at  

As a courtesy to our speakers, guests and OWL members, please keep side conversations to a minimum during the speaker presentation.

Mahalo!  Ahui Hou Kākou!

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Organization of Women Leaders · 1288 KAPIOLANI BLVD · APT 2208 · HONOLULU, HI 9614 · USA

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