Vanpool Hawaii has new van for Hawaii Kai rideshare group
Hawaii Kai commuters Darrell Bactad and Sonja Kahawaii were surprised with the keys to a new Toyota Sienna CE recently, and all they had did was sign up with Vanpool Hawaii.
To mark the state agency’s 15th year of commuter savings, it awarded its 300th rideshare group the first new van in its fleet. Bactad and Kahawaii, who is the primary driver, commute daily between Hawaii Kai and Hickam Air Force Base to their jobs with Hawaii Air National Guard.
“Many commuters don’t realize they’re paying nearly $1,000 a month on gas, insurance, maintenance fees, depreciation, interest and wear and tear on their personal vehicle,” said Vicki Harris, executive director of the statewide program that claims to remove about 1,700 singleoccupancy cars from the road each year.
Like other Vanpool drivers, Kahawaii drives a seven-passenger van and designs her own route to collect neighbors who pay $65 per month plus fuel and parking fees to share the trip. She also gets the van for personal use after commuter hours and on weekends. Military and Department of Defense civilian workers also get their Vanpool fees and other expenses paid for.
New Vanpool groups that sign up before 2010 will receive a $100 fuel card with their brand-new Vanpool vehicle. For more information, call 596-8267 or go to www.vanpoolhawaii.com.
Chaminade University recently received $6 million in endowments from two widowers that, pending approval by the state nursing board, will allow it to open an undergraduate nursing program next fall.
Dentist Lawrence Tseu, a CU regent, pledged a capital gift of $1 million in honor of his late wife and the nurses who cared for her in her final days. Tseu’s donation will help renovate the nursing education center, soon to be named the Dr. Lawrence and BoHing Chan Tseu Center for Nurse Education. Associate nursing dean Stephanie Genz said this gift will ensure that the center is a stateof-the-art facility with an excellent learning environment.
Dr. Edison Miyawaki, also a Chaminade regent, pledged $5 million toward the Sallie Y. Miyawaki School of Nursing in honor of his late wife, who was an RN. Miyawaki’s gift is the second largest gift the university has ever received from an individual and the first to endow a program.
“We were very excited to hear about these generous gifts,” said Genz.“My initial response
DOT’s Brennan Morioka (left) and Vanpool’s Vicki Harris (right) present Darrell Bactad and Sonja Kahawaii with keys to a new Toyota Sienna CE for their commute from Hawaii Kai. Photo from Keith DeMello.