Maui Business

CPB announces initiative to empower women

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Graduation ceremony for the 2023 WE by Rising Tide participants. Photo courtesy: Central Pacific Bank

Central Pacific Bank is accepting applications for the WE by Rising Tide program, a free initiative empowering women entrepreneurs to thrive.

The 10-week program, led by CPB and the aio Foundation and in partnership with Patsy T. Mink Center for Business and Leadership, equips women with the tools and confidence to propel their businesses forward.

“We’ve been deeply inspired by the women in our past cohorts,” said Susan Utsugi, CPB Group senior vice president Business Banking and a WE by Rising Tide founding member. “We’re eager to welcome a new group of talented women and provide them the knowledge and resources for greater success.”


The program offers a comprehensive curriculum, including:

  • Financial Management: Gain expertise in managing finances for establishedbusinesses.
  • Marketing and Branding Strategies: Develop a personalized growth plan withindividual consultations.
  • Networking: Build valuable connections with successful women entrepreneurs andexecutives.

Travel assistance is available for participants from neighboring islands.

“The mentors who came in were all really successful business owners who were all women, and they were just so inspirational, and so open to talking with us and giving their time. That was really impactful and it made me want to be able to do the same thing if I could get that successful,” said Katie Bennett, Family Mediation Hawaiʻi. “At the end of the day, relationships in Hawaiʻi are so important and the relationships that we were able to build in our cohort were life-changing.”


“The WE by Rising Tide program is so worth it,” said Alice Kim, Hanalei and Elizabeth Mott. “I think it’s so important for female entrepreneurs to connect, especially on island, and I think it’s a really great program and everyone should take advantage of it if they have the chance.”

  • Eligibility: Business must be at least 51% women-owned, for-profit, operational for a minimum of three years, and have annual revenue between $250,000 and $5 million (as of 2023).
  • Application period: Apply through May 31, 2024.
  • Program dates: Weekly sessions begin in August 2024, culminating in graduation in October 2024.

For more information, click here.


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