A Hard Ask, A Kauai Invitation and A PHI Update

Please join us this coming Sunday July 9 from 5 until 7pm at the Ha Coffee Bar in Lihue (4180 Rice Street) to learn more about the Pono Hawaii Initiative (PHI).  Kauai friends and residents are welcome to join us for lite pupu and informal yet quality policy and political conversation.  Learn more about PHI!

If you are already familiar with PHI, you might skip to the bottom for “The Hard Ask” and how you can help.

If you are considering running for a Kauai political office in 2018 and/or want to be part of the core Kauai policy and politics PHI team, please email or call me directly 808-652-4279 so we (myself and other PHI Board Members) can meet with you individually (or in a small group) perhaps during the day Saturday July 8, or on Sunday July 9th earlier in the day prior to the Ha Coffee Bar event.

Maui and Big Island – Please stay tuned for your dates/venue!

PHI is a statewide organization focused on policy advocacy (51%) and electoral politics (49%). One of PHI’s primary goal’s is to identify, recruit and support candidates for public office at the State and County level.  We believe that the election of a small number of strong individuals who represent our general world view (economic, environmental and social justice), can significantly “move the needle” toward a more just and sustainable future for Hawaii. Electing just two or three strong individuals in the Hawaii Senate, and four to five in the State House could have a profound impact on Hawaii’s future.

Our plan includes partnering and aligning with other organizations/communities on all islands so that energy and resources are focused on candidates who will effectively represent our common interests, and who can win.

PHI’s policy initiatives will be equally aggressive and includes the development of new policy, proposing citizen driven ballot initiatives at the County level and advocacy for and against policy proposed at the state and county level (statewide).

We believe 2018 is the year to make bold policy and political change happen in Hawaii and are determined to support making that a reality.  PHI is a statewide effort, we are “all in” to win and we ask that you join us!

The Hard Ask

The Pono Hawaii Initiative (PHI) now in its start-up phase needs your support today.  We still need to raise approximately $4,000 to meet our fundraising goal of $8,000 which will pay our start up costs (legal etc) and initial operations.  The PHI plan calls for a single half-time staff person and no physical office.  I am an unpaid full-time volunteer but there are still expenses to deal with.

This is a “hard ask” not in the sense that it is difficult for me to make the request, but that it is especially important that we have your financial support now, prior to July 9 if at all possible. Everyone has the ability to give, at some level.  Some reading this email have the ability to fully fund our entire request at $4,000 and others because of circumstances may only be able to contribute $25 or perhaps less.  All contributions are welcome and the gifting of even $5 demonstrates your support and commitment to this effort.

There, the “hard ask” has been done.  Believe me, if I didn’t have to ask I would not, and again as a volunteer I am paid nothing.  Know also that I understand that the constant asking for donations can wear thin on the recipient and my hope is to soon hit the “pause button”, but that cannot happen until we meet our initial start-up goal 😉

Thank you in advance for your help and mahalo plenty to those who have already stepped up and made a contribution.

Contributions may be made online at: https://www.ponohawaiiinitiative.org/contribute/

Or via mail:
Pono Hawaii Initiative
P.O. Box 871
Honolulu, Hawaii 96808Pono Hawaii Initiative is a 501c4 entity and contributions are NOT deductible as charitable contributions for federal or state income tax purposes.


Gary Hooser
Volunteer Executive Director
Pono Hawaii Initiative

NOTE1: Some have asked about the difference between H.A.P.A. and PHI and why the need to have two organizations.

Below is a very brief summary of the Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action (H.A.P.A.) and the Kuleana Academy.  It is important to note that H.A.P.A. is a 501c3 initiative and the Pono Hawaii Initiative (PHI) is a 501c4.  These organizations while complementary, have totally separate Boards, budgets and administration as each has different legal constraints with regards to lobbying and political advocacy.  I am the volunteer Board President for H.A.P.A. and the volunteer Executive Director for PHI.

NOTE2: Contributions to H.A.P.A. are tax deductible but those made to the Pono Hawaii Initiative are not.

H.A.P.A. Kuleana Academy: http://www.hapahi.org/kuleana-academy

The Kuleana Academy is a three-month leadership development and non-partisan candidate training program hosted by the Hawaiʻi Alliance for Progressive Action (HAPA) in partnership with other leading public interest organizations in Hawai’i.  This program is designed to educate and train grassroots leaders who have a desire to serve in public office.  The program also provides participants from all islands a well-rounded introduction to critical social, economic and environmental issues in Hawai‘i, as well as in-depth leadership development training and the ins-and-outs of campaigning.  H.A.P.A. does not endorse nor support individual candidates, the application process is competitive and there is no litmus test for acceptance.  Applications for the upcoming September program are still being accepted.

*Our recent event at the Cafe Julia on Oahu was a great success!  Mahalo to all for the support and energy.

About garyhooser

This blog represents my thoughts as an individual person and does not represent the official position of any organization I may be affiliated with. I presently serve as volunteer President of the Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action (H.A.P.A.) www.hapahi.org I am the former Vice-Chair of the Democratic Party of Hawaii. In another past life, I was an elected member of the Kauai County Council, a Hawaii State Senator, and Majority Leader, and the Director of Environmental Quality Control for the State of Hawaii - in an even earlier incarnation I was an entrepreneur and small business owner. Yes, I am one of the luckiest guys on the planet. Please visit my website AND sign up for my newsletter (unlike any email newsletter you have ever gotten, of that I am sure) - http://www.garyhooser.com/#four “Come to the edge.” “We can’t. We’re afraid.” “Come to the edge.” “We can’t. We will fall!” “Come to the edge.” And they came. And he pushed them. And they flew. - Christopher Logue (b.1926)
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