Biz Wrap: Fridge Rebate Reminder; New CEOs Named

April 26, 2013, 12:42 PM HST
* Updated April 29, 3:08 PM
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Green energy business stories abounded this week in light of Earth Day, with an energy conservation program reminding Big Island residents they can still qualify for rebates when purchasing new refrigerators.

And a Hilo-based solar firm is helping car dealerships around the island reduce their energy costs.

It’s also been a busy week in terms of high-profile job changes. Several Hawaii Island businesswomen were recognized as leaders in their field at a ceremony on Oahu.

Hawaii National Bank promoted Donn Mende at its Puainako location while Bay Clinic and YWCA announced the appointments of new CEOs.

And Reed Flickinger, long-time editor of West Hawaii Today, saw his position eliminated this week.


Here’s a look at what’s happening in business news around the island this week:

Refrigerator Rebates Offered


Earth Day may be over (it was April 22), but Hawaii Energy, the conservation and efficiency program for Hawaii County, is still offering rebates for turning in old refrigerators and buying new, energy-efficient models.

Hawaii Island residents can receive up to $125 in rebates from Hawaii Energy if they purchase an Energy Star-approved refrigerator and turn in an old, working refrigerator. Hawaii Energy also offers a separate rebate under its “Bounty Program” offering up to $65 to Big Island residents who turns in an old, full-size, working refrigerator or freezer.

The Bounty Program is offered through this June, or as long as funding lasts. Some restrictions may apply.


For more information, go to To participate in the Bounty Program, call toll-free at 1-877-231-8222 or click here to learn more.

Eight Island Car Dealerships Installing PV Systems

Kyocera Solar announced this week that it has supplied solar modules to Hilo-based ProVision Solar that will power eight car dealerships around the island.

ProVision Solar photo.

ProVision Solar photo.

Since December 2012, four of the photovoltaic systems have been installed and the remaining four will be installed throughout this year.

In a released statement, Marco Mangelsdorf, president of ProVision Solar, said the four installed systems have a generating capacity of nearly 235 kilowatts and provide up to 100% of the power needs of the businesses involved.

So far the photovoltaic systems have been installed at Kama’aina Motors and Kama’aina Nissan in Hilo; Parts Center Hawai’i in Captain Cook; and Parts Center Hawai’i  in Waimea.

Hilo Used Cars, Parts Center Hawaii in Hilo, Kona Nissan, and Kona Chrysler are scheduled to have PV systems installed before the end of the year.

West Hawaii Today Editor Position Eliminated

Stephens Media has eliminated the position of editor at West Hawaii Today. According to a report in the Big Island Chronicle, Reed Flickinger was terminated yesterday as part of management structure changes.

Flickinger worked for West Hawaii Today for 29 years, rising from reporter to management.

David Bock, editor of The Hawaii Tribune Herald, another Stephens property, will serve as news director overseeing both editorial operations.

Kathleen McGilvray Nielsen Named CEO of YWCA

The YWCA of Hawai‘i Island has hired Kathleen McGilvray Nielsen as its new Chief Executive Officer.

McGilvray Nielsen will oversee operations of the service organization, which is directed to women and children. Programs include a 24/7 sex assault crisis hotline and Healthy Start program for mothers and babies.

The YWCA operates two facilities in the Hilo area and one in Kona.

Prior to her appointment at the YWCA, McGilvray Nielsen administered the Workforce Investment Board and its education and training programs for the County of Hawai‘i.

Bay Clinic Names New CEO

Harold Wallace Jr. was recently named chief executive officer of Bay Clinic Inc. by its board of directors.

Wallace has served as the interim CEO since June of last year. The health center is expanding access to medical and behavioral health care with the renovation of its Pahoa Family Health Center and the construction of a new Ka’u Family Health Center.

Prior to joining Bay Clinic, Wallace was CEO of a health center in Texas.

Hawaii National Bank Promotes Donn Mende

Hawaii National Bank announced it has promoted Donn Mende at its Puainako location.

Mende was promoted from assistant vice president to vice president of the Puainako branch. He is also the branch manager.

The bank, which was founded in 1960 in Honolulu, has two branches on Hawaii Island, both in Hilo. 

Big Island Businesswomen Recognized

Several businesswomen from Hawaii Island were recognized last night at the 2013 Businesswoman of the Year award ceremony on Oahu.

Sponsored by Pacific Business News, the women were feted at dinner at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel.

Barbra Pleadwell, partner of Hastings & Pleadwell, which has offices in Hilo and Honolulu, was a finalist in the for-profit category; while Debbie Goodwin, director of advancement for W.M. Keck Observatory, and Brenda Ho, chief executive officer for Hospice of Hilo, were finalists in the nonprofit category.

Nancy Cabral, of Hilo-based Day-Lum Inc., and Michelle Tucker and Michelle Scully, of Sterling & Tucker, which has an office in Hilo, were recognized as among of the top 25 women owning businesses in Hawaii.

If your business has an opening, closing, promotion, retirement, new product release, special event, award, new location, or expansion, please let us know. Email us at [email protected].

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