Another Record-setting Visitor Walk

The author, UH football coach Norm Chow and Chris Tatum of Marriott. HLTA photo

Kudos to everyone in Hawaii’s hospitality industry for your support of the annual Visitor Industry Charity Walk.

With donations continuing to be received, the 2012 walk has already exceeded last year’s record-breaking total, with $1,371,817 raised as of the May 19 Oahu event.

Since its inception in 1978, the Charity Walk has raised more than $24 million for Hawaii charities.

The money raised on an island stays on that island to benefit its nonprofit organizations.

Jerry Gibson, this year’s Charity Walk chairman and vice president and managing director for Hilton Hawaii, says, “This is a great day for Hawaii’s nonprofits and the individuals who will benefit from this record-setting gesture by the people and friends of our visitor industry.

“It’s an unprecedented outpouring of kindness and kokua that exemplifies our aloha spirit. A big mahalo to all of the thousands of folks who participated and gave so generously.”

A total of 12,412 walkers on Oahu, Maui, Kaua’i, Moloka’i and Hawaii participated in the fundraiser that generates monies for more than 200 local charities.

Maui raised the most funds of any of the Islands for the second consecutive year with an impressive $530,123 – a record for the Island. The Grand Wailea alone raised a whopping $100,001. On Oahu, Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort raised more than $125,000, which included two Charity Walk benefit concerts on its Great Lawn.

The number of walkers and money raised, by island, are as follows:

Kaua’i, 2,000 walkers and $151,551; Oahu, 6,300 walkers and $471,000; Maui, 2,500 walkers and $530,123; Hawaii Island, 1,375 walkers and $194,266; Lana’i, 107 walkers and $14,899; and Moloka’i, 130 walkers and $10,116.

Pearl Kaohelaulii

This was a wonderful statement on how much the Hawaii Lodging & Tourism Association and our visitor industry care about helping our community.

So much was contributed by the hospitality industry and other members of our tourism community and, on behalf of the HLTA, I extend a heartfelt mahalo to each of you for your enthusiastic and generous support of the Visitor Industry Charity Walk.


Pearl Kaohelaulii

Position: Housekeeping Supervisor
Location: Marriott’s Waiohai Beach Club

Pearl Kaohelaulii joined Marriott’s Waiohai Beach Club as a housekeeper in 2004, but her efficiency, diligence and positive attitude soon earned her a promotion to housekeeping supervisor.

Pearl is always ready to work on any shift, cover for any sick employee and get the job done no matter how difficult.

As one example of her dedication, when several fires in Poipu spread ashes throughout the Waiohai buildings and grounds, Pearl directed her crew in cleaning the mess. She worked side by side with the staff to vacuum the debris, taught them to use new blowers and managed to remove all the ash from eight buildings by that evening. The following morning, she conducted another cleanup of back-of-the-house areas.

Pearl Kaohelaulii spends her days off as a caregiver to her father. She volunteers at her son’s school, is the Waiohai Beach Club’s team captain for the annual Visitor Industry Charity Walk, actively supports the Children’s Miracle Network, assists with the Koloa Day parade and gives generously to anyone in need.