Maui Business

Women entrepreneurs sought for free financial management program

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WE by Rising Tide 2021 cohort participants and Central Pacific Bank executives at the graduation ceremony for the free financial management program. Photo Courtesy: CPB

Central Pacific Bank Foundation is seeking qualified applicants for “WE by Rising Tide,” a free 10-week financial management program that helps women entrepreneurs shape their future and achieve success in the business community.

The program is sponsored by the CPB Foundation and aio Foundation, in partnership with the Patsy T. Mink Center for Business and Leadership.

“Empowering women business owners with the tools and guidance to grow their companies has a significant impact on the Hawaiʻi economy and creates more vibrant communities for all,” said Susan Utsugi, CPB senior vice president for business banking and a founding member of the program.


“We want to make a positive impact on the lives of the participants and their businesses, and we invite women, including those on the neighbor islands, to apply so they can listen and learn from industry leaders to help take their operation to the next level.”

The WE by Rising Tide program benefits include:

  • Financial management acumen to better manage your business
  • Marketing and branding strategies to help your business grow
  • Exclusive opportunities to network with successful women entrepreneurs and executives
  • Advertising opportunities to promote your business, fully funded by the CPB Foundation and aio Foundation

“My experience with WE by Rising Tide has been invaluable,” said Jalene Kanani Hitzeman, Noho Home president & creative director, who was a cohort participant in the initial program in 2021. “As we continue to grow as a company, the resources provided were relevant and well-timed for our journey. Most importantly, the network of other female entrepreneurs really provided support that continues to grow and provide a safe space for sharing and collaboration.”


Shawna Yee, owner of APEX Physical Therapist Specialists, and 2021 WE by Rising Tide participant, said: “Coming out of the WE by Rising Tide program, I have a greater understanding of the financial health of my business as well as the various financial options available to help with business investment and growth. … Meeting other women who have experienced similar challenges in starting and managing businesses as well as social and family life has been a source of inspiration and support.”

Applicant requirements include:

  • Business must be at least 51% women owned and a for-profit entity
  • Business must be in operation for a minimum of three years and currently open and operational
  • Yearly revenue generation between $250,000 to $5 million (2021)

Applications are accepted from May 1 through June 3, 2022. To apply and for more information, including key dates and the program schedule, click here.

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