Maui Business

Two new members join the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority Board of Directors

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Blaine Miyasato (left) and James Kunane Tokioka (right). PC courtesy.

Two new members of the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority Board of Directors were appointed by Governor Josh Green, M.D. Hawaiian Airlines’ Blaine Miyasato and the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism’s James Kunane Tokioka fill seats for four-year terms that expire June 30, 2026.

Blaine Miyasato is the Managing Director, State Government Affairs, at Hawaiian Airlines with nearly 40 years of experience in the airline industry. Miyasato was Hawaiian Airlines’ first Vice President of In-Flight Services and the first rank-and-file employee on its executive team.

“He brings a breadth of experience across multiple disciplines including marketing, advertising, promotions, brand management, product development, and business process improvement,” according to a news release announcement. Born and raised in Hawai‘i, Miyasato began his career at Hawaiian Airlines as a flight attendant in 1985 and thereafter was appointed to key management positions of increasing responsibility.


James Kunane Tokioka is the Director of the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism. Most recently, he served as the Deputy Director for the Department of Transportation’s Airports Division.

Tokioka began his political career as a member of the Kaua‘i County Council in 1996, where he served for 10 years. He then went on to serve for 16 years as a member of the Hawai‘i State House of Representatives.

Prior to his public service, Tokioka worked his way through the hospitality industry, both in Hawai‘i and across the United States, doing everything from bussing tables to managing hotels and owning restaurants. 


Miyasato and Tokioka will succeed HTA Board Chair George Kam and Board Member Keone Downing, whose terms ended June 30, 2022, but remained on the board in a holdover status.

Miyasato’s appointment will be subject to confirmation by the Hawai‘i State Senate. As DBEDT Director, Tokioka will serve as an ex officio voting member per Hawai‘i Revised Statutes Section 201B-2.

The HTA’s Board of Directors is a policy-making entity comprised of 12 members who serve as volunteers to guide the agency’s work on behalf of the State of Hawai‘i.


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