STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1800

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

 

RE: GOV. MSG. NOS. 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, 601, 602, 603, 604, 605

 

 

 

Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi

President of the Senate

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2021

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Labor, Culture and the Arts, to which was referred Governor's Message Nos. 594, 595, 596, 597, 598, 599, 600, 601, 602, 603, 604, and 605, submitting for study and consideration the nominations of:

 

Hawaii Workforce Development Council

 

G.M. No. 594

CHARLES SHIMA,

for a term to expire 06-30-2023;

 

G.M. No. 595

JASON BRAND,

for a term to expire 06-30-2024;

 

G.M. No. 596

KIRA HIGA,

for a term to expire 06-30-2024;

 

G.M. No. 597

IAN KITAJIMA,

for a term to expire 06-30-2023;

 

G.M. No. 598

BRIAN TATSUMURA,

for a term to expire 06-30-2023;

 

G.M. No. 599

CARY MIYASHIRO,

for a term to expire 06-30-2021;

 

G.M. No. 600

CARY MIYASHIRO,

for a term to expire 06-30-2025;

 

G.M. No. 601

KEN LOUI,

for a term to expire 06-30-2024;

 

G.M. No. 602

APRIL CHUN ACQUAVELLA,

for a term to expire 06-30-2024;

 

G.M. No. 603

BRIAN LEE,

for a term to expire 06-30-2024;

 

G.M. No. 604

JASON BRADSHAW,

for a term to expire 06-30-2021; and

 

G.M. No. 605

JASON BRADSHAW,

for a term to expire 06-30-2025,

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

Your Committee reviewed the personal histories, resumes, and statements submitted by Charles Shima, Jason Brand, Kira Higa, Ian Kitajima, Brian Tatsumura, Cary Miyashiro, Ken Loui, April Chun Acquavella, Brian Lee, and Jason Bradshaw for service on the Hawaii Workforce Development Council (Council).

 

CHARLES SHIMA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the reappointment of Charles Shima from the Council, Plumbers and Fitters United Association (UA) Local 675, Plumbing and Mechanical Contractors Association of Hawaii, and one individual.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Shima's qualifications, your Committee finds that Mr. Shima served on the Council from 2016 to 2019. Section 202-001(a)(4), Hawaii Revised Statutes, and title 29 United States Code section 3111(b)(1)(C)(ii) require the Council to have members who represent the workforce within the State, including representatives of labor organizations, apprenticeship programs, and employment and training organizations. Mr. Shima previously served on the Council as one of the workforce/labor members, and if reappointed, will serve in the same capacity. During his time on the Council, Mr. Shima was an active member of the Military and Veterans Affairs Committee. Your Committee finds that Mr. Shima has close to thirty years of experience in the plumbing and mechanical trades in which he began as a licensed plumber after graduating from the Plumbers and Fitters UA Local 675's Apprenticeship Program. He was an instructor for the program for twenty-three years, a UA Certified Instructor for fifteen years, and became the program's Training Coordinator in 2015. As Training Coordinator, Mr. Shima manages all operations of the Apprenticeship Program, including the oversight of approximately six hundred apprentices throughout the State. Your Committee notes the Council's testimony stating that assistance from Mr. Shima, with his vast experience in the construction industry representing the plumbers and pipefitters, is needed to help identify the barriers associated with better preparation and positioning of local labor to fill positions.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Shima's extensive experience in the plumbing and mechanical trade, construction industry, and his proven leadership will be valuable assets to the Council.

 

JASON BRAND

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the appointment of Jason Brand from the Council, American Savings Bank, Kunia Country Farms LLC, Ulupono Initiative, and one individual.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Brand's qualifications, your Committee finds Mr. Brand's professional experience and background in development and management of sustainable farming operations, production of derivative products, as well as knowledge in global finance, qualify him to be nominated for appointment to the Council. Section 202-001(a)(3), Hawaii Revised Statutes, and title 29 United States Code section 3111(b)(1)(C)(i) require the Council to have members who represent the businesses in the State, including business owners and business executives. If appointed, Mr. Brand will serve as one of the Council's business executive members. Your Committee notes that Mr. Brand is currently the President of Brand Industrial Group Inc. (BIG), a Hawaii corporation established in 2010. Mr. Brand and BIG holds active equity positions in eight ventures in Hawaii in industries such as sustainable farming, aquaculture, craft distillery, digital media, digital payments, pro-gaming, and film production. Mr. Brand is the co-founder and active manager of multiple companies in Hawaii, including Kunia Country Farms, LLC, a major supplier of aquaponic lettuce in the State; Manulele Farms, LLC, a sugar cane farming company; and Manulele Distillers, LLC dba Ko Hana Distillers that produces Ko Hana Hawaiian Agricole Rum, a high-end rum produced from freshly pressed cane juice. Before moving to Hawaii in 2008, Mr. Brand retired as the President of Merrill Lynch Asia, overseeing a multi-billion-dollar business with over five thousand employees, operating across many cultures, languages, and countries. Your Committee notes that Mr. Brand graduated from Cornell University and received his chartered financial analyst designation in 1997.

 

Your Committee also notes that Mr. Brand, utilizing his experiences in finance and agriculture, currently chairs the USDA Advisory Committee on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers under the Secretary of Agriculture. He also serves as the President of the Hawaii Foundation for Agriculture Research. Your Committee notes the Council's testimony regarding Mr. Brand's service on the Council as an interim member and its intent to create an Agriculture Committee under his leadership to address matters such as sustainable farming and aquaculture, agriculture modernization, and economic opportunities.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Brand's knowledge and experience in entrepreneurship, finance, management, and agriculture, and his commitment to Hawaii will continue to be valuable assets to the Council.

 

KIRA HIGA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the appointment of Kira Higa from the Council; Brown and Brown Pacific Insurance Services, Inc.; Hawaiian Telcom, Inc.; Patsy T. Mink Center for Business and Leadership, Women's Business Center; and seventeen individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Ms. Higa's qualifications, your Committee finds that Ms. Higa's professional experience and background in human resources management and workforce development strategies and tactics qualify her to be nominated for appointment to the Council as one of its business executive members. Your Committee notes that Ms. Higa has more than a decade of experience in the telecommunication and technology sector, with the majority of such time spent in progressively responsible roles in the field of human resources (HR). She is currently the Director of HR for Hawaiian Telcom, Inc., and is responsible for duties such as effectively designing, implementing, and executing HR programs and initiatives throughout the company; directing the day-to-day operations of the HR department; and plans, directs, and carries out policies relating to all phases of personnel activity. Ms. Higa held various positions within the company since 2009, including Senior HR Manager, Senior Manager - Benefits, Labor Relations Manager, Benefits Coordinator, and Wholesale Collections Analyst. Ms. Higa was also employed as a Trustee Secretary by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs from 2005 to 2009. Your Committee notes that Ms. Higa graduated magna cum laude from Concordia University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Behavioral Science Psychology and minor in Business Administration. Your Committee notes the Council's testimony regarding its intent to have Ms. Higa serve on its Employer Engagement Committee and share her knowledge and experience in training and upskilling workers, and successful employee-employer business practices.

 

Your Committee finds that the breadth and depth of Ms. Higa's experience and knowledge in human resources management, workforce development strategies and tactics, effective communication, and proven leadership skills will be valuable assets to the Council.

 

IAN KITAJIMA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the reappointment of Ian Kitajima from the Council; Oceanit Laboratories, Inc.; HawaiiKidsCAN, and two individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Kitajima's qualifications, your Committee finds that Mr. Kitajima has been the Director/Tech Sherpa at Oceanit Laboratories, Inc. since June 2001. In that position, he is responsible for leading the company into new areas of business, such as energy, nano technology, and robotics; innovative recruitment of talented engineers and scientists; and implementation of new ways of thinking, such as design thinking. Mr. Kitajima has also been co-hosting Geek Beat on Hawaii News Now since August 2018. Prior to his current position, Mr. Kitajima was also a founding member of Hoana Medical, Inc., IBIS Networks, Inc., and Nanopoint, Inc. Your Committee notes that Mr. Kitajima received his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Hawaii with a dual major in Marketing and International Business. Your Committee also notes that Mr. Kitajima has been serving on the Council since 2017, and according to testimony of the Council, Mr. Kitajima has been a very active member. He has taken leadership as a member of the Executive Committee, has been co-chairing the Youth Services Committee, and sharing his design thinking and strategic approaches during recent economically challenging times.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Kitajima's professional experience, knowledge, and background in technology development, start-up entrepreneurship, and public-private partnerships will continue to be valuable assets for the Council.

 

BRIAN TATSUMURA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the reappointment of Brian Tatsumura from the Council and two individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Tatsumura's qualifications, your Committee finds Mr. Tatsumura has over four decades of experience in the retail industry in Hawaii, starting as a Stockperson at Nordstrom, Inc. and working his way up to his final position as Store Manager. Mr. Tatsumura currently works as a consultant at Briant808 LLC, a company he established in August 2017. Mr. Tatsumura has an extensive history of community involvement. He has been on the Board of Directors of the Public Schools of Hawaii Foundation since 2008, and has previously served as a board member of the American Red Cross Hawaii Chapter; board member of the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii and chair of its Workforce Development Education Council; chair of the Ala Moana Center Merchants Association Board of Directors; member of Retail Merchants of Hawaii, Inc.'s board and its Executive Committee; and board member of the Aloha United Way. Your Committee also notes that Mr. Tatsumura has been serving on the Council since 2016. According to the Council, Mr. Tatsumura has been an active board member, serving as the Vice Chair of the Employer Engagement Committee.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Tatsumura's experience and knowledge of the retailing and merchandising industry in Hawaii, which is one of the State's largest industries, and his keen customer service orientation and perspective will continue to be valuable assets to the Council.

 

CARY MIYASHIRO

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the appointment and reappointment of Cary Miyashiro from the Council and eight individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Miyashiro's qualifications, your Committee finds that Mr. Miyashiro's professional experience and background in helping Hawaii's students, young adults, and individuals with disabilities to enter the workforce qualify him to be nominated for appointment to the Council as one of its business executive members. Mr. Miyashiro has been a Community Outreach Representative for the HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union (Credit Union) since January 1990. Your Committee notes that prior to his current position, Mr. Miyashiro co-owned The Sports Villa from 1982 to 1996 and worked in automotive retail sales at Pflueger Lincoln-Mercury Honda, Aloha Motors, Inc., and Airport Volkswagen.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Miyashiro, as the Community Outreach Representative of the Credit Union, has been developing working relationships with the Department of Education (DOE) and various schools and educational institutions in order to create transition pathways for students to eventually enter the workforce and become contributing members of society. In 1994, Mr. Miyashiro established the Academy of Finance program in Hawaii in partnership with Waipahu High School. Mr. Miyashiro also supported the creation of student-operated credit unions by fourth graders at Island Pacific Academy and at Campbell High School to provide opportunities for the students to understand financial literacy and gain real-life work experience. Your Committee notes the Council's testimony stating that Mr. Miyashiro has been instrumental in the development of a pilot project at Kapolei High School to build business partnerships to assist individuals with disabilities to enter the workforce. Mr. Miyashiro also contributed to the development of customer service standards for the Workforce Development Diploma Program which is a key component of DOE's Hawaii Workforce Pathway System, designed to meet the needs of those students entering the workforce with job entry that does not require a high school diploma. Mr. Miyashiro has an extensive history of community involvement. He has been serving on the DOE's Career and Technical Education Advisory Committee for the past sixteen years, and chairs the Adult and Community Education Advisory Council, which provides advice to the Board of Education on DOE's adult and community education programs. Mr. Miyashiro also chairs the School Community Councils at Kapolei High School and McKinley Community School for Adults; and is a member of School Community Councils at Honouliuli Middle School, Central Middle School, Waikele Elementary School, Waimalu Elementary School, Pauoa Elementary School, and Hokulani Elementary School.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Miyashiro's proven wealth of experience and knowledge in assisting and preparing Hawaii's students, young adults, and individuals with disabilities to enter the workforce align well with the work of the Council and will be valuable assets to the Council.

 

KEN LOUI

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the appointment of Ken Loui from the Council and five individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Loui's qualifications, your Committee finds that Mr. Loui's professional experience and background in construction project management and business development and management qualify him to be nominated for appointment to the Council as one of its business executive members. Your Committee notes that Mr. Loui has over thirty years of experience in construction project management and engineering, technical research, design, business management, and business development. He is currently the Vice President and Group Manager at Pacific Marine and Supply Inc., with direct oversight of two operating companies, Pacific Shipyards International, LLC and HSI Mechanical, Inc. In that position, Mr. Loui's duties include providing strategic leadership and planning; recruiting, selecting, and training individuals for senior management positions; and developing and fostering positive relationships with industry professionals. Mr. Loui's previous work history includes President and Principal Responsible Managing Employee (RME) of GSI Pacific Inc.; Principal RME and Senior Project Manager at Parsons Corporation's Hawaii office; Chief Engineer at Unitek Solvent Services, Inc.; Engineering Manager at Unit Process Company's Hawaii office; Project Manager at HSI Mechanical, Inc.; and Space Systems Engineer with the United States Air Force Phillips Laboratory. Your Committee notes that Mr. Loui holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Nuclear Engineering and Mechanical Engineering from Northwestern University, and a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Hawaii.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Loui's experience has provided him with a thorough understanding of the knowledge and skills needed for workers in Hawaii's construction and marine industries. Furthermore, according to the Council, Mr. Loui also spent time in Germany, where he learned first-hand how well-planned and implemented trade-related training programs are essential to the success of a nation's economy and society.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Loui's experience and knowledge in construction project management and business development and management, and his understanding of the needs and benefits of a well-trained and educated workforce will be valuable assets to the Council.

 

APRIL CHUN ACQUAVELLA

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the appointment of April Chun Acquavella from the Council, Department of Labor and Industrial Relations Workforce Development Division, Hawaii Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Fund, YouthBuild Waimanalo, and four individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Ms. Acquavella's qualifications, your Committee finds that Ms. Acquavella's professional experience and background in the skilled trades, administering and teaching at apprenticeship programs, and preparing Hawaii's youth to enter the workforce qualify her to be nominated for appointment to the Council as one of its workforce/labor members. Ms. Acquavella is currently a Training Coordinator with the Hawaii Carpenters Apprenticeship and Training Fund (Fund). In that position, Ms. Acquavella administers the registered apprenticeship programs.  In addition to working with current apprentices, Ms. Acquavella also focuses on recruitment of apprentices by working closely with state and federal agencies, including the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations Workforce Development Division, Department of Education (DOE), University of Hawaii System Community Colleges, and other career building organizations such as YouthBuild Waimanalo and the Youth Challenge Academy. Ms. Acquavella also administers the Fund's Career Connections program in partnership with the DOE to bring a work-ready curriculum to local high schools and organizing hands-on experiences with the Fund's summer internship program. Prior to her current position, Ms. Acquavella taught math and print reading within the Fund's apprenticeship program, as well as design and advertising courses as a lecturer for the Apprenticeship Program and Communication Arts Department at the University of Hawaii Honolulu Community College (HCC). Ms. Acquavella's marketing and design expertise was developed through two decades as a designer and art director with companies in Hawaii and California.

 

Your Committee notes that Ms. Acquavella obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Marketing with distinction from the University of Hawaii. An interest in the building industry led her to return to school after twenty years and in 2016, she earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in Carpentry Technology with Honors from HCC. She graduated from HCC as valedictorian and continues to work with the college to provide opportunities for graduates to continue their education and work towards a journeyworkers' certificate. Your Committee also notes the Council's testimony regarding its intent to have Ms. Acquavella serve on its Youth Services Committee to develop more programs and opportunities for Hawaii's youth.

 

Your Committee finds that Ms. Acquavella's experience and knowledge in preparing young adults to enter the workforce and increasing awareness of the skilled trades by active engagement through apprenticeship programs, career fairs, and speaking engagements will be valuable assets to the Council.

 

BRIAN LEE

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the reappointment of Brian Lee from the Council; Hawaii Government Employees Association, AFSCME Local 152, AFL‑CIO, and one individual.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Lee's qualifications, your Committee finds that Mr. Lee is currently the Executive Director at the Hawaii Laborers and Employers Cooperation and Education Trust Fund, which is a partnership between the five thousand statewide members of the Hawaii Laborers Union, Local 368, and over two hundred fifty signatory union contractors. Mr. Lee has previously served in various leadership roles for labor organizations in Hawaii, including the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Hawaii Operating Engineers, and Hawaii Construction Industry Association. Having served on the Oahu Workforce Development Board, Mr. Lee also has a strong understanding of the public workforce in Hawaii. Your Committee finds that Mr. Lee has been serving on the Council since the summer of 2018, initially as an interim appointee until 2019 when he was officially appointed as a member. Your Committee notes the Council's testimony regarding Mr. Lee as a very active member. Mr. Lee serves as a member of the Executive Committee and chairs the Performance Measures and Accountability Committee. Under Mr. Lee's leadership, the Performance Measures and Accountability Committee will be conducting statewide evaluations of training providers and service providers, along with training of training providers.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Lee's comprehensive understanding of the needs of the State's workforce, experience and ability to work with both labor and management sides of employment, and his knowledge of collective bargaining, union, and non-union issues will continue to be valuable assets to the Council.

 

JASON BRADSHAW

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of the nomination for the appointment and reappointment of Jason Bradshaw from the Council; Hawaii Iron Workers' Stabilization Fund; Hawaii State Teachers Association; Hawaii Teamsters and Allied Workers Local 996; I.A.T.S.E. Local 665; International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers Union, AFL-CIO, Local Union #625; International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 142; International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots; United Food and Commercial Workers Union, Local 480; and five individuals.

 

Upon review of the testimony and Mr. Bradshaw's qualifications, your Committee finds that Mr. Bradshaw's professional experience and background in advocating for labor opportunities and workforce development qualify him to be nominated for appointment to the Council as one of its workforce/labor members. Your Committee finds that Mr. Bradshaw is currently a Legislative Representative with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 142 (ILWU). Your Committee notes the Council's testimony regarding the instrumental role the ILWU played after the closure of the Hawaiian Commercial and Sugar Company in 2016, in helping the displaced workers by securing additional federal funds through the U.S. Department of Labor's Trade Adjustment Assistance for Workers Program. Prior to his current position, Mr. Bradshaw served as the Political Director with the Hawaii State AFL-CIO, as a Staff Assistant with United States Senator Daniel K. Inouye, and as an Intern with United States Senator Daniel K. Akaka. Your Committee notes that Mr. Bradshaw obtained his Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science with a focus in Economy and Politics from Northern Arizona University. Mr. Bradshaw's other community involvement includes chairing the Labor Caucus and being a member of the State Central Committee of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, and being a board member of the Labor Education Advisory Council and the AFL-CIO Executive Board.

 

Your Committee finds that Mr. Bradshaw's experience in advocating for labor opportunities and workforce development as well as the knowledge he obtained during his time in the public and private sectors, labor industry, and service as Congressional staff will be valuable assets to the Council.

 

As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committee on Labor, Culture and the Arts that are attached to this report, your Committee, after full consideration of the background, experience, and qualifications of the nominees, has found the nominees to be qualified for the positions to which nominated and recommends that the Senate advise and consent to the nominations.

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Labor, Culture and the Arts,

 

 

 

____________________________

BRIAN T. TANIGUCHI, Chair