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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, September 27, 2001

McInerny chief named top Hawai'i retailer

Advertiser Staff

Mike Windsor, president and chief executive of longtime retailer McInerny, was named Hawai'i Retailer of the Year yesterday by the Retail Merchants of Hawai'i, which announced winners of its Ho'okela Awards at its annual conference.

Windsor has been with the InterPacific Group in various positions for more than 25 years and has served as chairman of the boardÊof the Retail Merchants of Hawai'i for the past two years; a memberÊof the board of directors of Manoa Valley Theater; and an ex-officio member of the board of directors of Hawai'i Visitors & Convention Bureau. He is also a member of the Waikiki Business Improvement District.

Other Ho'okela winners:

• Retail Employees of the Year — Kamuela Potter, retail director for Crazy Shirts, and Kathy Wong, store manager of Louis Vuitton Waikiki.

As retail director for Crazy Shirts for 6 1/2 years, Potter helped develop the wholesale division, which places Crazy Shirts in the Pacific and aboard cruise lines.

Wong, who has had more than 19 years of experience in the retail industry, joined the Louis Vuitton family in 1995 as the Ala Moana store manager and is the chairwoman of the Waikiki Ohana Workforce.

• Resort Business of the Year — Blue Ginger, with four stores on Maui and two on O'ahu.

Blue Ginger was started in 1983 by two sisters, Jill Mackie and Becky Erickson, and their grandmother, Nola Hayden. Company sales growth is approximately 20 percent annually.

• Neighborhood Retailer of the Year — Kalapawai Market, Kailua.

In 1991, Don Dymond became the owner-operator of the store after taking it over from Richard and Elsie Wong, who had been there for 54 years.

• Retail Business of the Year, Hawai'i — Fabric Impressions, a retail store that sells fabrics, notions, sewing machines and its own line of handcrafted tote bags, gifts and quilts.

The business was established in 1987 by partners Tammara "Tammy" Hasselfeld, Mary Pierson and Rita Bacher. Bacher moved to the Mainland in 1988, and Hasselfeld and Pierson oversee the operations of the company.

• Retail Business of the Year, Maui — Ka Honu Gift Gallery.

Established in 1967 by Virginia Ka'ai and her husband, the late Sam Ka'ai, the business moved into Whalers Village in 1970, where it remains the most long-standing retail tenant.

• Retail Business of the Year, Kaua'i — Otsuka Sales & Service, the largest furniture and appliance store on the island.

Founded in 1935 by brothers Wallace Y. and Jay J. Otsuka. In 1999, Jeanette Otsuka-Chang, daughter of co-founder Wallace Chang, became president after the deaths of her brother and father earlier that year.

• Retail Business of the Year, O'ahu — Pacific Harley-Davidson, incorporated in 1994 as the exclusive retailer of Harley-Davidson logo apparel and accessories.

The company, wholly owned and operated by Joseph P. Nicolai, is an outgrowth of the retail activity that started in 1991 under sister company Cycle City Ltd.

• The Governor's Ho'okela Award, special acknowledgment of a retailer who has exhibited exemplary dedication and/or contribution to Hawai'i's retail industry — Bob Coe and DFS Hawaii for the organization's commitment and investment in the state in general and to Waikiki and the retail industry specifically.