Wednesday, May 16, 2001

Salmon fishing and
the execs who love it

Amid two of the biggest Hawaii bank stories in recent months, all people want to discuss with American Savings Bank President and CEO Wayne Minami is salmon fishing.

"That's all I've been talking about," he said, in spite of big developments involving the competing Bank of Hawaii and First Hawaiian Bank. His contemporaries know he's an avid fisherman, and that he'll be engaging in that activity after his retirement at month's end.

"We always go (to Alaska) twice a year," he said. "There are four of us from Hawaii that bought a house, so we're going up in July, then again in August."

Minami said in July he fishes for king and sockeye salmon, and in August, the prime target is silver salmon. The record for a king-catch is a 110-pounder and, he said, his wife has caught a 50-pounder. The other varieties are smaller, 10 to 12 pounds for the Sockeye, and up to 20 for the Silver.

While Hawaii's captains of industry are often his guests, he said his first post-retirement trip to his favored fishing grounds in Bristol Bay will likely involve only he and his wife, Colleen, a state Health Department administrator.

In packing for the salmon-sojourns, Minami said he takes four coolers, "I put rice, other things, canned goods so when I'm up there I don't need to go to the store. We eat salmon and whatever we bring, and when we come home, hopefully the coolers will be full. What I used to do, is smoke the salmon while there, salt it and then we bring it home frozen."

Upon his return from fishing trips, he would "bring to the office my salmon niitsuke, and bring a big pot, maybe 15 cups of rice, 8 pounds of lomi salmon, and take to the lunchroom downstairs to share it with the employees." It would last for about an hour, he said.

While employees prepare to bid him aloha at upcoming retirement parties, "I've been encouraged (to visit)," he said, by employees who've told him, "You can always come back right after your trips to Alaska."

Erika Engle is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin.
Call 529-4302, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle,
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210,
Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached

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