June 14, 2017

Senator Hirono, Chamber of Commerce Hawaii Connect Hawaii Businesses with Congressional Leaders & National Policy Experts

Host Fourth Annual Hawaii on the Hill Policy Summit

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Mazie K. Hirono and the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii today welcomed nearly 75 members of Hawaii’s business community to Capitol Hill for the Fourth Annual Hawaii on the Hill Policy Summit. Business leaders representing diverse industries – including manufacturing, health care, transportation, and others – participated in the event.

“Given the uncertainties of the current administration, it has become more important than ever that Hawaii’s business community knows the D.C. landscape and can advocate for themselves. Bringing Hawaii businesses face-to-face with our country’s top decision makers, Hawaii on the Hill continues to play an instrumental role in supporting our local industry,” said Senator Hirono. “I’m pleased that in our fourth year we were able to connect nearly 70 local businesses with top officials.”

“The Policy Summit is an integral part of Hawaii on the hill, connecting national policy experts with Hawaii businesses,” said Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President and CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara. “Engaging with our Congressional delegation and federal leaders provides a unique opportunity for local businesses to receive an inside perspective on important issues impacting Hawaii.”

Senator Hirono, Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President and CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara, Hawaii State Senate President Ron Kouchi, and Representative Tulsi Gabbard kicked off the Policy Summit, which included remarks and question and answer sessions from:

Senator Jack Reed (D-R.I.): Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, who gave a congressional update on defense policy issues.

Sarah Ladislaw: Director and Senior Fellow for the Energy and National Security Program Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS), who answered questions about Hawaii’s renewable energy commitments and the implication of withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement.

Kimberly Flowers: Director of the Global Food Security Project, who shared insights and lessons learned to help Hawaii develop local agriculture that is resilient to drought and climate change. 

Chris Jennings: Founder and President of Jennings Policy Strategies, Inc. and Former Deputy Assistant to President Obama for Health Policy and Coordinator of Health Reform, who discussed potential implications of the American Health Care Act and provided a future outlook of health care in America.

Mike Fullerton: Director of Public Affairs for Brand USA, who discussed his outlook for international visitors to the U.S., including travel and tourism trends.

Michele Jawando: Vice President of Legal Progress at the Center for American Progress, provided a judiciary update.

Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) closed out the Policy Summit by thanking Senator Hirono for her dedication representing Hawaii in the U.S. Senate, and took questions on how business leaders can continue their advocacy for Hawaii.

Hawaii on the Hill, a partnership between Senator Hirono and the Chamber of Commerce Hawaii, is a two-day event in our nation’s capital that gives Hawaii businesses the opportunity to meet with news and policy makers while also showcasing Hawaii businesses and products to Members of Congress, Administration officials, and the Washington, D.C. community.

Click here to watch video from the Policy Summit

2017 Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President and CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara, Senator Hirono, and Democratic Leader Charles Schumer 

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Left to right: Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President and CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara, Senator Hirono, and Democratic Leader Charles Schumer

2017 Hawaii on the Hill participants in the historic Russell Senate Office Building

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Senator Hirono and Chamber of Commerce Hawaii President and CEO Sherry Menor-McNamara with 2017 Hawaii on the Hill participants in the historic Russell Senate Office Building

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