AAJA Hawai‘i June 2021 Newsletter: Updates on AAJA’s strategic plan, chapter social media and more

June 2021 Newsletter

Welcome to AAJA Hawai‘i’s monthly newsletter! Here, you’ll find chapter updates, upcoming events, member bylines and more.

If you have a story or career update you want to share with our AAJA family, let us know at hawaii@aaja.org!

Chapter Updates and Announcements

The board met virtually on June 8. We briefly discussed AAJA National’s draft strategic plan. The organization’s main goals are to provide year-round programs and a life-long pipeline, to build a strong community for all, to help journalists and newsrooms break down long-standing barriers for journalists and communities of color, and to lead the industry toward greater equity, diversity and inclusion. The document can be viewed here, and members can provide feedback here.

AAJA Hawai‘i and AAJA’s Pacific Islander Task Force have jointly pitched a session topic for this year’s AAJA convention. Our idea is to have a panel that would discuss best practices for covering Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander communities. We are still waiting to hear back from the convention planning committee on whether our pitch has been approved.

We made some updates to our chapter’s Twitter account and website. We will now be sharing current members’ stories through the #aajahi hashtag on our Twitter account. Please email us or direct message us on Twitter if you’d like us to share one of your stories. Our website’s design was updated with a more modern look. We’ll also be publishing our newsletters on the site.

The board also started to discuss potential ways it could support members this year, such as by providing a scholarship for a student who wants to attend AAJA’s convention. This discussion will continue at our next meeting.

Hawai‘i members: Please make sure your membership is up to date! More information about membership benefits can be found here, and you can renew by logging into your AAJA account.

Our next meeting will be held virtually on July 7 at 7 p.m. Please email us at hawaii@aaja.org for the Zoom link.

Member News 

Congratulations to member Cassie Ordonio for being selected as a 2021 student fellow for AAJA’s Voices program!

Member Bylines

“Honolulu Summer Bucket List: The 41 Best Things to Do This Summer on O‘ahu”

Honolulu Magazine’s Christi Young discusses 41 activities residents and visitors can do on O‘ahu. “A whole new batch of ice cream makers have been churning out frosty, sweet and surprising frozen treats in the past year. As the temperature soars, scoop up a pint of Chadlous Vietnameses Coffee from Sage Creamery, a crack seed sundae topped with kaki mochi from Double Fat Ice Cream, ice cream-and-cake pies by the slice from HB Baking or one of these other chilly ideas.”

“3 Factors Shift Hawai‘i’s Real Estate into Overdrive”

Hawaii Business Magazine’s Noelle Fujii-Oride speaks with realtors and home buyers about Hawai‘i’s competitive residential real estate market. “Realtors say bidding wars are common on homes that are reasonably priced and cash offers are also common for certain kinds of homes, putting ordinary families at a disadvantage.”

“Overwatch Tournament Gives ‘Once In A Lifetime Experience’ For UH Students”

Hawaii Public Radio’s Casey Harlow reports on how an international esports tournament highlights educational programs available to University of Hawai‘i students. “This gives UH students an opportunity to gain real-world experience with industry professionals in charge of organizing, producing and broadcasting the tournament to millions of people around the world.”

“Hawai‘i Hopes New Commission Will Improve Civic Engagement And Respect For Democracy”

Honolulu Civil Beat’s Suevon Lee reports on the new Commission to Promote and Advance Civic Education, which was formed through the adoption of a Hawai‘i Supreme Court rule earlier this year. “House Rep. Amy Perruso, the vice chair, said by way of example that people could learn how to impact the conversation at a neighborhood board meeting or persuade city and county officials to patch a pothole.”

“Audit calls for more data on domestic violence on O‘ahu”

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s Ashley Mizuo reports on an audit that called on the Honolulu Police Department and Department of the Prose­cuting Attorney to implement data collection practices that would integrate both departments to reduce redundancy. “One of the recommendations called on both departments to create an official understanding of ‘categories to be reported under domestic violence; and provides consistent and uniform definitions, terms, and jargon that facilitate domestic violence reporting and communications.”

“Hawai‘i’s Hot Housing Market Is Squeezing Out Renters”

Honolulu Civil Beat’s Anita Hofschneider writes about the renters who are being forced out of their rentals as their landlords look to take advantage of the state’s hot real estate market. “The frenzy is fueling seller incomes, realtor commissions and tax coffers. But it sometimes means renters are collateral damage as they are forced to find a new home.”

“Hawai‘i residents disappointed over decision to drop KIKU-TV’s popular Japanese and Filipino shows”

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s Jayna Omaye reports on Hawai‘i residents’ disappointment over KIKU-TV’s decision to drop its Japanese and Filipino shows. “For many residents, the cultural programming isn’t just entertaining, it’s educational too. U.S. Census data shows that Tagalog, Ilocano and Japanese are among the top languages other than English spoken in Hawai‘i homes.”

Updates and Announcements from AAJA National, Chapters and Affinity Groups

AAJA’s Pacific Islander Task Force is hosting a two-hour virtual data training on June 25 at 2 p.m. HST. The training will begin with an overview of newsroom stories that were made possible by data analysis and reporting. Attendees will then do some basic analyses together using Google Sheets. Register here.

Early bird registration is now open for #AAJA21. The rate for professional members is $175. For student members, it’s $50. Early bird registration ends July 31.


AAJA’s Pacific Islander Task Force held a virtual event on May 28. A panel of Pacific Islander journalists and storytellers discussed reporting in the Pacific, their individual career journeys, and gave advice to aspiring AAPI journalists who want to cover Oceania. Watch the replay here.

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