HDS looking
for new chief

Jonathan Won, president and chief executive officer of Hawaii Dental Service, is leaving the organization at the end of the year, the company said yesterday.

Hawaii Dental Service Won had led the company since July 2000. Before that he was on the HDS board of directors, serving as vice chairman for the last four years of his tenure there.

Won was also executive director of the Hawaii Dental Association and before that executive director of the Hawaii Medical Association.

HDS has hired a national search firm to find Won's replacement.

Won said he is leaving HDS to pursue business opportunities in two other areas. The first is a medical equipment business partnership already under way that involves importing adult diapers from China, Won said. The second is the creation of a television and film post-production facility in Hawaii. Won said he is in the process of trying to put that deal together.

Won said he notified the HDS board in March of his plan after the company was told it had been selected to handle the dental coverage for state and city employees.

"What I was waiting for was to settle the last piece, the contract for state, city and county employees. We were notified in mid-March we got the entire plan so a few days later I told the board," he said.

HDS has 567,000 members.

Won said he has achieved all he set out to do when he first took on the position with HDS and is ready to move on.

"What I told them (the board) was that I intended to leave by the end of the year but if they find someone else in the meantime I can certainly leave earlier," he said.


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