Wednesday, August 8, 2001

Verizon’s Haruki to
be talk of the town

Few stones will be left unturned in the life of Verizon Hawaii President Warren Haruki next Thursday.

People will be talking about him all night.

He may even be put on the spot -- in fact you can bet on it.

Haruki is to be honored by the Aloha Council of Boy Scouts as Hawaii's Distinguished Citizen 2001 for service to humanity Aug. 16 at the Sheraton Waikiki.

He is the 19th president of the public utility formerly known as GTE Hawaiian Telephone. At age 39 he was the youngest to bear the title, which he received in 1992.

Haruki next week joins another noteworthy assemblage of predecessors -- prior honorees, including Sens. Daniel Akaka and Daniel Inouye, Gov. John Waihee, Gov. Benjamin Cayetano, Mayor Frank Fasi and a host of local captains of industry.

It's not his first time among this element. Haruki serves on the boards of directors of First Hawaiian Bank and Pacific Guardian Life, the Hawaii Business Roundtable and the National Japanese American Memorial Foundation.

In his "spare" time, he's the chairman of the University of Hawaii Foundation, VP of the Blood Bank of Hawaii; VP of the 200 Club, which supports slightly taller people in uniforms (police officers and firefighters), and is a board member of the Aloha Council of Boy Scouts. He's a former Eagle Scout.

With tables going for $3,000 or $5,000 and single seats at $250, Haruki said this is the biggest honor of its kind that he's ever received. Asked if employees would receive pay raises to cover the cost of a show of support, Haruki laughed and said, "I think the real support for the dinner comes from all the different businesses that have traditionally supported scouting in Hawaii."

Growing up a Kapaa High School Warrior and working his way from hotel bus-boy to Kauai Resort assistant manager, Haruki never imagined he'd be the star of a testimonial dinner. He said however, "I don't think we ever dreamt that big, but we certainly understood that activities like scouting would help us prepare for whatever challenges lie ahead, and that education was a critical ingredient for success."

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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