Maui Business

Hirono Promotes Hawai’i Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs

August 11, 2016, 12:25 AM HST
* Updated August 15, 1:36 PM
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Senator Mazie Hirono will host two events this week. One will be with the Small Business Administration and the other with the US Patent and Trademark Office as part of her ongoing effort to strengthen small business and entrepreneurship in Hawai’i.

The first event will be on Aug. 11 as Sen. Hirono hosts a roundtable discussion co-hosted with SBA’s Office of Advocacy. The roundtable will focus on how federal resources and national best practices can help small businesses grow across the state. The event will take place between 9 and 11 a.m. at the University of Hawai’i Mānoa Innovation Laboratory.  Among the participants is Chris Speere, Site Coordinator, Maui Food Innovation Center.

US Senator Mazie Hirono. Courtesy file photo.

US Senator Mazie Hirono. Courtesy file photo.

The second event will be held on Friday, Aug. 12 at the Mānoa Innovation Center from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Sen. Hirono will join officials from USPTO to conduct an informational seminar to help small business owners navigate the patent application process.

Sen. Hirono also spoke at a naturalization ceremony on Wednesday, where she welcomed 77 applicants to their new US citizenship.

 77 candidates representing 26 countries are sworn in as new American citizens today at Mission Memorial Auditorium.

77 candidates representing 26 countries are sworn in as new American citizens today at Mission Memorial Auditorium.

“Unlike those who were born here and become citizens automatically, you chose to become a United States citizen. You came to this country leaving everything that was familiar to you, good or bad, behind to come to this country with the hope that you could create a better life for you, your loved ones, and your family,” Senator Hirono told attendees.

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“Tell your stories. Tell people where you come from, what you have gone through because that’s how we learn from each other. That’s how we learn to appreciate the diversity that is our country, the diversity that we celebrate in Hawaiʻi,” she said.

 Senator Hirono and 18-year-old Sharon Sui Yan So of Hong Kong, the youngest naturalized citizen at Wednesday’s (8.10.16) ceremony.

Senator Hirono and 18-year-old Sharon Sui Yan So of Hong Kong, the youngest naturalized citizen at Wednesday’s (8.10.16) ceremony.

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Applicants participating in Wednesday’s ceremony ranged in age from 18-year old Sharon Sui Yan So of Hong Kong to 76-year-old Ansuyaben Metha of India, and came from countries including the Philippines, Brazil, China, Mexico, Pakistan, South Korea and Switzerland.

Sen. Hirono is the only immigrant currently serving in the United States Senate.

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