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Marites Yano to lead KFCC

LIHU‘E — Marites Yano and the 2024 board members were recently installed to lead the Kaua‘i Filipino Chamber of Commerce (KFCC) by Judge Kathleen Watanabe at the Kaua‘i Philippines Cultural Center.

“We want to foster a network of like-minded individuals and business entrepreneurs,” Yano told the sold-out audience of 200-plus people at the KFCC Award and Installation Gala held on Jan. 27. “We want to affiliate with other organizations to build a community who supports the growth and prosperity of each other. Above all, we hope to elevate one another.”

Other board members being installed on the leadership section include Vice President Cristeta Owan, Secretary Mary Jane Akuna, and Treasurer Jett Jasper.

The KFCC immediate past president, Cyndi Ayonon, said the new KFCC leadership team was installed before an audience that included a number of distinguished guests, including Capt. Brett Stevenson, the commander of the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Mana who delivered the night’s keynote presentation.

Other distinguished guests included Senate President Ron Kouchi, Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami, and Kaua‘i County Council member and former mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr., who led the evening’s closing with a rendition of “Hawai‘i Aloha.”

Ayonon, in recapping her two-year term as the KFCC president, expressed her gratitude for the support she received from the community to achieve her list of accomplishments. She expressed her commitment to the organization and willingness to continue to help the community during the transition of the new board leadership.

Adding to the excitement of the new KFCC leadership installation, Ayonon said the highlight of the evening was the surprise presentation of Orly Yadao of Orly’s Patisserie in the Hokulei Village as the recipient of the Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

“Orly was really surprised,” Ayonon said. “He did not even have an idea after preparing all of the desserts for the evening. He’s been doing this for the community for a long time, and truly deserves the recognition.

“One of his student employees, Noah Denbeau who graduated from Kapa‘a High School, and serving delectable desserts at the gala as part of the team sponsorship of the event, is on the Deans List at the Kaua‘i Community College. Noah was the recipient of a $1,000 Culinary Arts scholarship.”
Source: The Garden Island

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