Sony At Home In The Islands

By Naobumi “Ned” Nomura
President of Sony Hawaii

Sony is more deeply connected with the Hawaii community than anywhere I’ve been in my 34-year career with the company – and my tenure has taken me across the United States, Asia, Europe and Africa. I’m very thankful to have spent five years in the Islands as president of Sony Hawaii. Our founder, Akio Morita, believed that a responsible company becomes a part of its community. In Hawaii, combined with our employees’ aloha spirit, I believe an unparalleled extension of that philosophy makes Sony and this community tightly connected, for the benefit of both.

Sony Hawaii

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Sony Hawaii president Ned Nomura and senior vice president Karl Okemura. Nathalie Walker photos

Support from the local community and the Weinberg Foundation makes the Sony Open in Hawaii the state’s largest charity event. It has raised more than $11 million for local nonprofits since 1999. That year it raised just over $250,000 for 43 charities. Now, the Sony Open annually surpasses the $1 million mark and benefits more than 100 nonprofit organizations. Mr. Morita thought it would be a great event to share Hawaii’s natural beauty, world-class activities and, most critically, local people with the world. The tournament telecast reaches more than 450 million homes in some 200 countries and contributes about $100 million to the Hawaii economy.

Also very dear to us is ‘Olelo Community Media’s Youth Xchange Video Competition. It is the state’s largest youth video competition, which Sony Hawaii has supported since its inception in 2003. Now called “Sony Presents the ‘Olelo Youth Xchange Student Video Competition,” we are proud to serve as its first presenting sponsor. We truly believe the children of Hawaii are our future. At last month’s Youth Xchange Awards banquet, we presented high-definition Sony digital video cameras to winning schools in 38 categories. Sony products are used by broadcast and professional media organizations worldwide, and by hundreds of creative, hard-working and deserving island children to share their stories with the community in which we all live. It is, after all, the producer, writer, director and on-camera talent who make the magic.

If Sony Hawaii can help give these island students a voice, we have succeeded in helping to ensure a more vital Hawaii for the future. We sincerely thank Hawaii’s people for their support.

Mahalo and aloha!