Award salutes Cazimero Brothers
By Zenaida Serrano
Advertiser Staff Writer
Award-winning artists the Brothers Cazimero, business leader Ron Jarrett and community advocate Henry Halenani Gomes have been selected as honorees of the 'O'O Awards by the Native Hawaiian Chamber of Commerce. The awards are presented to Native Hawaiians who have contributed to the betterment of Hawaiians, their communities and their professions.
The honorees will be recognized at a dinner and ceremony June 20 at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. The theme of the event, "Lono I Ke Ka'ina O Mua," honors Lono as a provider of bounty in moving forward.
"This year's theme represents the mission of NHCC as we move forward to strengthen Native Hawaiian businesses and business professionals, building a foundation through relationships, resources and Hawaiian values," said NHCC president Stephen Ka'a'a.
The annual event, the chamber's main fundraiser, includes a silent auction with items from Native Hawaiian craftsmen, a Hawaiian-themed dinner, decorative banners by local artist Carl Pao and a choreographed oli by kumu hula Kaleo Trinidad and his halau.
About the 'O'O Awards honorees:
Kumu hula of the Men of Halau Na Kamalei, Robert established one of the first contemporary all-male halau at the request of his kumu hula, Maiki Aiu Lake. Over a span of 30 years, the Men of Halau Na Kamalei have won top honors at the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival.
In March 2008, the Brothers Cazimero received lifetime achievement awards from the Hawai'i Academy of Recording Arts. Later that year, the Brothers Cazimero released "Destiny," their 38th album, which was nominated for a Grammy for best Hawaiian music album.
The Brothers Cazimero are also winners of numerous Na Hoku Hanohano awards.
He is also a founder of Native Hawaiian organization Na 'Oiwi Kane, and JTSI Inc., the first subsidiary 8(a) firm certified under the U.S. Small Business Administration's Native Hawaiian Organization (NHO) Business Development Program. Spending thousands of dollars of his own money, Jarrett pioneered the NHO certification process.
As a business leader and philanthropist, Jarrett believes in helping underserved Hawaiians in the community. Over the past five years, Jarrett has donated more than $1 million to fund the social programs of Na 'Oiwi Kane.
He was instrumental in having Chaminade certified as a "Native Hawaiian serving institution," qualifying the university for millions of dollars in federal funds for programs.
Gomes' community work includes service with the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs, Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum Association, Friends of Foster Gardens Association, Hawai'i Academy of Science and Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu.
Correction: Individual ticket prices for the '÷'÷ Awards, on June 20 at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, start at $90. Incomplete information ran in a previous version of this story.