MEDB to present first Daniel K. Inouye Innovation Award

The Maui Economic Development Board will honor the legacy of the late U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye with a presentation of the first Daniel K. Inouye Innovation Award at its annual event Aug. 24 at the Grand Wailea. The Ke Alahele Education Fund Benefit Dinner & Auction raises funds to advance science, technology, engineering and math education in Maui County.

The award will be presented annually to a Maui County project team that demonstrates the most innovative use of STEM tools and capabilities to serve and improve the community.

“This award was inspired by the senator’s unwavering commitment to the application of science and technology to solve challenges around us,” said Jeanne Unemori Skog, MEDB president and CEO. “We are honored that the senator’s widow, Irene Hirano Inouye, has agreed to let us recognize the senator’s contributions to STEM education on Maui and will join us in presenting the award to this year’s winner.”

The theme for the Aug. 24 dinner is the “The Future We Imagine.”

Guests will see firsthand the STEM projects supported by MEDB and talk with their creators. The evening will again offer the Apples for Education Silent Auction, a new version of the Robotics Challenge, and Mayor Alan and Ann Arakawa playing game show hosts for the competitive “Are You Smarter Than a STEM 5th Grader?” game.

A reception will begin at 4:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m.

Special room rates at the Grand Wailea are available for event attendees on a space-available basis. Tickets to the event are $175 per person. Sponsorship tables are also available, ranging in price from $2,500 to $15,000. To reserve a space or get more information, call the MEDB office at 875-2300.