Jason Fujimoto

Board Chair Jason Fujimoto Steps Down, But Not Away

 

CEO Message

 

Board Chair Jason Fujimoto Steps Down, But Not Away

Leslie Wilcox, PBS Hawai‘i President and CEOBecause of time constraints in assuming a new business role, PBS Hawai‘i’s Board Chair Jason Fujimoto of Hawai‘i Island has elected to step down from our nonprofit’s chairmanship, while continuing to serve on our Board.

 

At age 38, Jason is the new President and CEO of Hilo-based HPM Building Supply, supporting residential building statewide. He’s the fifth-generation President of the family-founded, employee-owned business.

 

Jason will be succeeded as Board Chair July 1 by current Vice Chair Joanne Lo Grimes, an attorney and Co-Chair of the law firm Carlsmith Ball.

 

Before Jason turns over the reins, I want to honor him for his integrity, skills and steadfastness in supporting and governing this nonprofit through rapid evolution.

 

Board Chair Jason Fujimoto with Leslie WilcoxHe’s had two tours of duty, amounting to a decade of unpaid service, most of them on the Board Executive Committee, including three years as Chair. He joined the first time in 2008, just before the state felt the impact of the Great Recession. In succession came the big switch from analog to digital broadcast transmission; the television equivalent of a heart transplant – high-definition TV; expanded local programming; the birth of HIKI NŌ: The Nation’s First Statewide Student News Network; the rise of social media as a new platform for engagement and video programming; and the successful capital campaign to buy land and build a replacement multimedia home in Kalihi Kai.

 

Jason returned to the Board just after we moved into our new facility. He led the organization in adopting a new three-year strategic plan. In cloudy times for media enterprises and nonprofits, the plan is clear.

 

There’s a feeling we’re all on the same path and same page, in part because different perspectives and ideas can be argued and adopted safely and productively.

 

“As Chair, my style is to create the conditions that foster the greatest amount of collaboration and discussion, and support the CEO,” Jason said.

 

A former Wall Street analyst, Jason is a member of the Omidyar Forum of Fellows and the leadership group Hawai‘i Asia Pacific Association (HAPA).

 

“I really enjoy being with everyone on the PBS Hawai‘i Board. We have a lot to learn from each other,” he said.

 

For me personally, I’ve internalized much of the guidance Jason gave me, and I’m grateful for this lifelong gift.

 

Overall, Jason, thank you from the heart for continuing to strengthen and polish this community treasure that is PBS Hawai‘i.

 

Aloha Nui,

Leslie signature


 

Welcome to Our New Board Chair!

Welcome to Our New Board Chair, Jason Fujimoto

PBS Hawai‘i’s new Board Chair Jason Fujimoto

 

He’s the first Neighbor Islander to head the Board of Directors of statewide PBS Hawaiʻi; he is by far our youngest Board Chair; and he’s the fifth generation of a successful family company, founded by an immigrant.

 

Meet Jason Fujimoto of Hilo, 36, husband of Tobie and father of two children. This summer, he succeeded longtime PBS Hawai‘i Board Chair Robbie Alm.

 

In Jason’s “day job,” he serves as President and Chief Operating Officer of HPM Building Supply, overseeing company business on Hawai‘i Island, Maui and Kauaʻi. His role with nonprofit PBS Hawai‘i is unpaid, and he knows what he’s getting into, as he is our Board’s former Vice Chair.

 

“PBS Hawai‘i is really special because it’s not controlled by big media; it’s really Hawai‘i’s TV station, it’s our station,” Jason says.

 

“When you look at the opportunity we have here as an organization, and it goes beyond media, it’s… bringing people of all cultures and professions together and really looking toward the future and solving some of the key issues and problems that we have as a state,” he said.

 

Jason will tell you that he spent his childhood in Hilo, but that he really grew up on Sesame Street. Public television was on the screen in his family home. His parents, Mike and Thuy Fujimoto, and grandparents Robert and Alice Fujimoto, highly value education. They did everything they could to help Jason deepen his knowledge and broaden his horizons.

 

The horizons he chose included the renowned Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. After earning a degree in corporate finance and strategic management, Jason became an investment banker in New York City, working on mergers and acquisitions for J.P. Morgan.

 

Jason had grown wings but he hadn’t forgotten his roots. In 2004, he was ready to return to Hawai‘i, for the chance to do work that was more entrepreneurial and more fulfilling than what Wall Street offered. He found it at his family’s employee-owned company. HPM Building Supply may be best known for its “package home” program, which makes homeownership more affordable.

 

In 2013, Hawaii Business Magazine named Jason Fujimoto as a business person to watch over the years, one of the “20 for the Next 20.”

 

Earlier this year, Jason led our Board and Staff and other stakeholders in envisioning new strategic goals for PBS Hawai‘i. Everyone felt free to speak and share their different ideas. There was civility and humor and, later, a clear consensus. We’re making our video content more accessible, more quickly, in different forms, on different media platforms; and we’re
taking new steps to address financial sustainability in changing times.

 

As CEO, I look forward to working closely with Jason. He places a high value on lifelong learning and integrity, has that old-time Hilo knack for building relationships, and leads from the heart.

 

Leslie signature

 

Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation grants $2 million for PBS Hawai‘i’s new home

PBS Hawaii

 

HONOLULU, HI – A large grant from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation has propelled PBS Hawai‘i to within $200,000 of its $30 million goal for its new home at 315 Sand Island Access Road.

 

The $2 million grant to Hawai‘i’s statewide public television station will provide facilities for education through storytelling, and workforce development. The foundation’s focus is helping those who are vulnerable and at-risk.

 

From left: Ben Nishimoto, PBS Hawai‘i Vice President of Advancement; Corbett Kalama, Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation Vice President of Real Estate Investments and Community Affairs; Leslie Wilcox, PBS Hawai‘i President and CEO; Gailene Wong, Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation Grant Director; Robbie Alm, PBS Hawai‘i Board Chair; Bettina Mehnert, PBS Hawai‘i Board Secretary; Jason Fujimoto, PBS Hawai‘i Board Vice Chair.

 

“Harry Weinberg was thoughtful and considerate of those in our community who are less fortunate,” said Corbett Kalama, Vice President of Real Estate Investments and Community Affairs at the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation. “PBS Hawai‘i provides opportunities for youngsters in Hawaii to be creative and be a part of something that helps them be better people.”

 

The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation is naming the building’s two largest areas: its main Multimedia Studio, where PBS Hawai‘i productions will be produced; and the Learning Zone, the open area at the heart of the second floor built for collaborative projects with filmmakers, students, teachers and others in the community.

 

PBS Hawai‘i staff reported to work at the new building at the beginning of the month, and is currently troubleshooting its new technological systems.

 

PBS Hawai‘i Board Chair Robbie Alm stated: “We share with [the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation] a deep and abiding desire to see those who begin life with less have the greatest opportunities possible to change their lives. At PBS Hawai‘i’s new home, every person and especially every young person can find their own future based on their own talents, dreams and ambitions. Their opportunities are, thanks to this gift, without limit.”

 

Naming opportunities, including spots on our two donor walls, are still available. More information is online at PBSHawaii.org/newhome.

 

Download this Press Release

 

For questions regarding this press release:

 

Contact: Liberty Peralta
Email: lperalta@pbshawaii.org
Phone: 808.973.1383

 

PBS Hawai‘i is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and Hawai‘i’s sole member of the trusted Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). We advance learning and discovery through storytelling that profoundly touches people’s lives. We bring the world to Hawai‘i and Hawai‘i to the world. PBSHawaii.org | facebook.com/pbshawaii | @pbshawaii

 

Board of Directors

FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING
PBS Hawaiʻi
315 Sand Island Access Road
Honolulu, HI 96819

Next meeting: Thursday, 12:00 pm, November 21, 2019

 

STATEWIDE BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING
PBS Hawaiʻi
315 Sand Island Access Road
Honolulu, HI 96819

Next meeting: Tuesday, 12:00 pm, December 3, 2019

 

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING
PBS Hawaiʻi
315 Sand Island Access Road
Honolulu, HI 96819

Next meeting: Tuesday, 8:00 am, February 4, 2019

 

Joanne Lo Grimes, Oʻahu

Joanne Lo Grimes

Board Chair
Oʻahu
Bettina Mehnert, Oʻahu

Bettina Mehnert

Vice Chair
Oʻahu
Joy Miura Koerte, Kauaʻi

Joy Miura Koerte

Secretary
Kauaʻi
Treasurer, Kent Tsukamoto, Oʻahu

Kent Tsukamoto

Treasurer
Oʻahu
Muriel Anderson, Oʻahu

Muriel Anderson

Oʻahu
Susan Bendon, Maui Nui

Susan Bendon

Maui Nui
Jodi Endo Chai, Oʻahu

Jodi Endo Chai

Oʻahu
James E. Duffy, Jr., Oʻahu

James E. Duffy, Jr.

Oʻahu
Matthew Emerson, Oʻahu

Matthew Emerson

Oʻahu
Jake Fergus, Maui Nui

Jake Fergus

Oʻahu
Jason Fujimoto

Jason Fujimoto

Hawaiʻi Island
Jason Haruki, Oʻahu

Jason Haruki

Oʻahu
Noelani Kalipi, Hawaiʻi Island

Noelani Kalipi

Hawaiʻi Island
Ian Kitajima, Oʻahu

Ian Kitajima

Oʻahu
Kamani Kualaʻau, Oʻahu

Kamani Kualaʻau

Oʻahu
Theresia McMurdo

Theresia McMurdo

Oʻahu
Ryan Kaipo Nobriga

Ryan Kaipo Nobriga

Oʻahu
Aaron Salā, Oʻahu

Aaron Salā

Oʻahu
Kaʻiulani Sodaro, Oʻahu

Kaʻiulani Sodaro

Oʻahu
Bruce Voss, Oʻahu

Bruce Voss

Oʻahu
Kūhaʻo Zane

Kūhaʻo Zane

Hawaiʻi Island