Thank-You Letters

Early in May, the Maui Branch of the American Association of University Women will be awarding the Ruth Deichman Scholarship and other scholarships to deserving students at the University of Hawaii Maui College. We chose to honor Ruth’s memory because of her years of AAUW service and her efforts toward our local scholarship program.

Our members wish to thank all those who contributed to scholarships by buying tickets to our annual whale watch, donating directly to the scholarship fund, providing food and/or door prizes for the whale watch and telling others about it.

We especially wish to thank the Pacific Whale Foundation and the crew members of Ocean Voyager for an outstanding and informative whale watch. We are grateful that PWF has generously supported our scholarship program in numerous ways for many years.

If you would like to support scholarships, contact Maui Branch President Cheryl Bergman at 244-1850. Also, plan to attend next year’s whale watch on the first Sunday in March.

Karen Grafe


whale watch chair

* * *

Nan Inc., T.J. Gomes Trucking Co. Inc. and Hawaiian Cement recently worked at Maui Preparatory Academy to complete a part of their county-required improvements for the subdivision where Maui Prep is located. Nan Inc. donated workers and heavy equipment to complete the work and negotiated with T.J. Gomes and Hawaiian Cement to get reduced pricing for the materials.

Maui Preparatory Academy

* * *

The Maui Family YMCA would like to give a big mahalo to all our sponsors that supported the first annual YMCA Basketball Tournament, making it an enjoyable experience for more than 300 individuals.

Please support our sponsors; they support our community.

Local sponsors: Marmac Ace Hardware, Maui Lani Golf Course, Baldwin High School, The Ritz Carlton, Maui Jim’s Sunglasses, Ka’anapali Beach Hotel, Ruby Tuesday, Sheraton Maui Resort and Monkeypod Kitchen.

Event volunteers: Maui Association of Hawaii Basketball Officials, Valley Hardware, Bill Gearon, Dean Duque, Jeff Anderson and Kalei Houpo.

Maui Family YMCA

* * *

Thank you to the many volunteers who have joined us at our construction sites, ReStore, events and committees!

Highest volunteer hours for January – March “shout out” goes to: Cherice Aguiar, Eddie Auwae, Darryl Banks, Jim Briske, Ken and Mary Corman, Whitney Cabanilla, Richard Carr, Mike Gerry, Timothy Kanehe, David Lundquist, Benjamin Pahukoa, Chanell Paoa, Penn State Collegiate Challenge group of five, Sherry Racadio, Bryce Takabayashi, University of Minnesota Collegiate Challenge group of 11 and Martin Villalpando.

Individual recorded volunteer hours for each location may reflect two hours to more than 100 hours.

More than 300 volunteers produced 4,000-plus volunteer hours. Call us at 242-1140 or email to schedule your day.

Cheryl Pokipala

community relations director

volunteer coordinator

Habitat for Humanity Maui

Thank-You Letters

Somos Ohana Nicaragua sends a big mahalo and gracias to all the individuals, groups and businesses that helped make our annual rummage sale fundraiser on April 6 a huge success and helped fund our summer 2013 projects in rural northwestern Nicaragua: Pukalani Elementary School, Evonuk Farms, Ohana Drapery & Upholstery, Satisha Smith of Da Kine Herbs, Watanabe Vegetable Processing LLC, Akaku Television and Lucienne de Naie, The Maui News, The Maui Weekly, Maui Time, The Lahaina News, The Maui Bulletin, Mana’o Radio, Carlos Hernandez and the Pacific Radio Group and other radio stations, the King Kekaulike High School Spanish Club, and all the generous donors, volunteers and customers at the sale.

Proceeds will help boost our fund for a regional secondary school to serve students from rural communities north of Villanueva, Department of Chinandega.

Other 2013 projects include our second annual day camp for special-needs youth and our scholarships, which include bikes for rural secondary students with very long walking commutes to their school and tuition help for college students studying to become physical and speech therapists.

Mele Stokesberry,

Somos Ohana Nicaragua Board of Directors

* * *

Feline Foundation of Maui, the nonprofit 501-3c organization with a mission to manage Maui’s free-roaming cats, wishes to thank Sue Young and Helen Domer for their time and efforts selling donated items at the garage sale March 30. It takes a village, and these two volunteers have helped before to make money and educate the public on the trap-neuter-return program to help manage Maui’s abandoned and/or feral cats.

Although no longer with us, Doris Pimpillio also is honored for her past assistance at these fundraisers. If you wish to learn more, or to help, go to

Feline Foundation of Maui

* * *

Hale Makua Health Services would like to thank Alton Nakagawa for his years of service to our organization. Mr. Nakagawa joined the Hale Makua Health Services board as a director in 2003 and has fulfilled that duty devotedly for the last 10 years. He has served the last five years as a member of the administration and finance committee of the board, where his expertise and knowledge of finance has been invaluable.

Mr. Nakagawa is a longtime employee of VIP Foodservice (formerly Valley Isle Produce) and is the vice president of finance. He has also been involved with AJA Baseball for many years, as a member of the adult league and as a coach for Little League.

We are grateful to Mr. Nakagawa for his years of service to Hale Makua Health Services and on behalf of our residents, staff and community would like to offer him our most sincere mahalo.

Hale Makua Health Services

Thank-You Letters

The Loque Ohana would like to thank all our friends and family for your continued support during this difficult time. We appreciate your prayers, kind words and support as we fight for better health for Kim Loque. We would like to especially thank Jan Jacintho, Diane Loui, Robin Vierra, Althea Oshiro, Priscilla Baloaloa and Gloria Vierra for organizing the wonderful fundraiser. The funds helped defray the costs of travel for treatment.

We know so many other people have helped in different ways, and although we haven’t mentioned them here, please know how grateful and humbled we are.

Kim, Rodney, Kawehi and Colton Loque, Sherri Dodson

* * *

In honor of National Volunteer Week (April 15-21), all of us here at Hospice Maui wish to extend our deep and heartfelt appreciation for our volunteers who share the gifts of their precious time and talents. Your acts of compassion both large and small allow our patients and their families a level of comfort and companionship that make the difference at a very critical point in their lives.

Hospice volunteers often serve patients and families at the bedside, listening and talking story, providing light massage/Reiki or playing music. Volunteers also provide support with food shopping for families, helping in the office, fundraising or carpentry work. Our Hospice Maui volunteers bring compassionate service to our community in these ways and more!

At Hospice Maui, we have more than 60 volunteers donating well over 3,000 hours per year. This is not only a generous gift to those we serve, but also their efforts help keep the cost of health care down. Volunteers play a vital role in the hospice philosophy of care and ensure that a hospice program has roots deep in the community.

For those interested in learning more about Hospice Maui or volunteer opportunities, please visit or call 244-5555.

Connie Castillo-Walsh, coordinator of volunteer services

* * *

H.P. Baldwin High School would like to thank all the businesses/organizations for attending our 2nd annual Bear Affair. The event was held in gym March 8. It was a success, as we had more than 50 booths and 1,200 students who attended. We appreciate you all for giving up your time to educate our students. Thank you again, and we hope to see you all again next year!

Nicole Sardinha and Kiana Tom, co-chairpersons,

and the Bear Affair Committee

* * *

Thank you to Maui Petroleum Inc. for choosing Maui Youth & Family Services as the beneficiary nonprofit organization to receive a portion of the proceeds from sales of its Ohana Fuels gasoline brand from April 1 until June 30. Money from Ohana Fuels sales at the Kahului, Makawao and Pukalani Minit Stop gas stations will help us accomplish our mission of empowering youth and families challenged with behavioral issues to become responsible, self-fulfilled and contributing members of the community. A special mahalo to Maui Petroleum Inc. General Manager Steve Wetter for his support.

Maui Youth & Family Services provides individualized treatment, education and emergency and long-term services, with an emphasis on rebuilding families, to youth affected by substance abuse, addiction and mental health issues. MYFS works with Aloha House and Malama Family Recovery Center to ensure that every individual has the help needed to achieve and maintain a foundation for lasting recovery and well-being. Our work is not possible without the support of individuals and businesses in our community, and we deeply appreciate Maui Petroleum Inc.’s generosity.

Frances Duberstein, development coordinator, Aloha House, Maui Youth & Family Services and

Malama Family Recovery Center

Thank-You Letters

Mahalo to everyone who supported the Mayor’s Kokua Ball (March 9), a fundraiser for the Mayor Arakawa Community Kokua Fund. This nonprofit charity serves those whose dire needs require immediate attention when all other resources are exhausted.

This year’s fundraiser raised the bar of elegance on Maui! Volunteers and guests arrived in full-length gowns and tuxedos.

Celebrity Honorary Chairperson film producer Ryan Kavanaugh flew in for the event, along with celebrity friends: Academy Award-winning actor Adrien Brody; actress Ashley Tisdale; and Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, among others.

Thank you, Mayor and Mrs. Arakawa and MACK directors for allowing me this opportunity! Special mahalo to my outstanding assistants as well as volunteers who gave of their time and talents.

Mahalo to previous MACK beneficiary Nani Watanabe and our top sponsors: Goodfellow Bros. and Honua’ula Partners, Maui Lani Developers, Maui Disposal, Alexander & Baldwin, Hawaii Operating Engineers Stabilization Fund and Elan Vital.

It is my honor to continue serving the Maui community!

Rita O’Connor, event chairperson

Mayor’s Kokua Ball

* * *

Central Maui Hawaiian Civic Club members extend their gratitude and mahalo to the community, family and friends for support of our Kupa Maka’ainana Awards, continuing the legacy of Prince Kuhio on March 23 – our second annual fundraiser for scholarships.

Prince Kuhio was known as the Citizen Prince because of the work he did on behalf of the Native Hawaiian citizenry. We celebrate his legacy of service by honoring four individuals who emulate the good work of Prince Kuhio.

This year the distinguished Kupa Maka’ainana awardees are Office of Hawaiian Affairs Trustee Colette Machado; Thelma Shimaoka of OHA’s Maui office; Iris Mountcastle, Maui director of Queen Lili’uokalani Children’s Center, and musician Richard Ho’opi’i.

Mahalo to Maui Council Member Mike Victorino and his wife, Joyce, and Council Member Stacy Crivello of Molokai for their support. Music was performed by Kaniela Masoe and wonderful listening and dancing music by DeJa Vu.

Central Maui Hawaiian Civic Club

* * *

The West Maui Mountains Watershed Partnership would like to recognize and thank Skyline Eco-Adventures for their generous donation of $5,000. This gift will be of great help in supporting field activities like fence maintenance and invasive plant control, as well as broadening our public outreach efforts.

This is the third year in a row that Skyline has donated to WMMWP, and we graciously thank them for their continued support of our mission to enhance and protect the watersheds of West Maui.

Skyline’s mission statement speaks to preserving the island’s unique landscape, and true to form, beyond their monetary gifts, the staff have also assisted our crew with fence maintenance in the uplands of Kahoma in West Maui. This work has helped to ensure that the upland native forests remain free of destructive ungulates.

Toward our goal of engaging the local community in forest protection and care of our watersheds, we invite interested parties to visit our website, or email us at We look forward to many more years of service with Skyline Eco-Adventures and the greater Maui community. Many thanks again!

Chris Brosius, program manager

West Maui Mountains Watershed Partnership

Thank-You Letters

I am a substitute teacher and was part of the lockdown at Kahului Elementary (March 11). The principal, Fern Markgraf, was amazing, giving staff and students updates regularly, and calmly giving direction. I was in a grade 2 class, Ms. Ashley Long – she was equally admirable. The response by the Maui Police Department; two officers armed with assault rifles, going to each room before giving the “all clear” – was appropriate given our nation’s recent history with gun violence.

Thank you Fern, every teacher, and the MPD for keeping our children safe.

Christian Seacat



Thanks to 12 Regis University Collegiate Challenge students who joined us for five days to help renovate three apartment units at Harbor Lights. They were: Andra Bickel, Trissanna Burke, Taylor Clapp, Tracy Goettsch, Christina Henzgen, Carolyn Hofmeister, Megan Linder, Will Sabin, Sean Typher, Cassandra Vagher, Leah VanSomeren and Thomas Wells. Construction supervisor Mike Gerry and project leaders Ronson Kanoho and Mark Moniz guided them to paint and install floors and cabinets. Iao United Church of Christ provided lodging, and Debbie Wright provided their first dinner and breakfast. Mike Takamatsu secured a farewell and mahalo BBQ in Kihei for them to enjoy our sunset and watch for whales. Mike Gerry also arranged canoe paddling with Kihei Canoe Club.

Cheryl Pokipala

Habitat for Humanity Maui


Hospice Maui would like to thank Mike O’Dwyer and the staff at Mulligans on the Blue for naming Hospice Maui as the beneficiary of the fourth annual Mulligan’s on the Blue St. Patrick’s Day Golf Tournament. We are humbled by the generous support of all of the event sponsors, volunteers and the 116 golfers who participated. The overcast skies and light winds provided for perfect weather conditions for this afternoon tournament. With the support of the generous title sponsors, Wailea Realty Corp, Guinness, Haleakala Solar, Allstate and Makani Nui and Associates, the event raised over $17,000 for Hospice Maui. Funds raised will enable Hospice Maui to continue to provide quality, compassionate care to Maui’s terminally ill, and support for their loved ones.

Kimber Carhart



Mahalo to the Maui Fire Department and the Maui Police Department for their diligence in extinguishing the recent fire at Hale Kamaole. The men stuck with the fire for about five hours by the time it was finally out. The residents and guests want to give the firemen a pat on the back for their tireless job.

Donna Desmond