Mayor Victorino honored at Maui’s Virtual Economic Opportunities Gala

Attendees at the Maui Economic Opportunities Gala, honoring Mayor Michael Victorino, pose for a photo at the end of the event on Saturday, August 28. Are (left to right): Rod Antone, Senator Roz Baker, Maui County Council President Alice Lee, Joycelyn and Michael Victorino, State Representative Troy Hashimoto and MEO CEO Debbie Cabebe. PC: Maui’s economic opportunity.

Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino was honored with Maui Economic Opportunity at the organization’s fundraising gala, held on Saturday night, August 28.

The event was broadcast online after being postponed three times due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mayor Victorino was honored for his support for Maui County nonprofit agencies, including MOE, and the county’s safety net for those in need, especially during the pandemic.

Council Chair Alice Lee, State Senator Roz Baker and State Representative Troy Hashimoto joined the event live at the offices of the MOE, along with Mayor Victorino and his wife, Joycelyn.

Maui County Council President Alice Lee makes ironic suggestions to Mayor Michael Victorino on how to deal with overtourism at Maui’s Economic Opportunity ”. . . The “Do What Is Right” fundraising gala broadcast live from the MEO offices in Wailuku on Saturday August 28. PC: Maui Economic Opportunity

Online auction with over 80 items including hotel stays, restaurant certificates and airline miles raised over $ 5,000 for the nonprofit community action partnership which helps low income and disenfranchised members. The MEO is also heavily involved in disbursing aid in the event of a pandemic.


The event was originally scheduled for March 2020, but has been reset due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Saturday’s event was originally scheduled in person, but Cabebe made the decision to switch to a live streaming platform in early August due to the increase in COVID-19 cases.


“We apologize for the inconvenience at the galas caused by the switch to the online presentation, but we have decided to prioritize the health and safety of guests and staff,” Cabebe said. “Delaying the event again was not an option given the events to come. “

Nevah Too Late’s concert was filmed in advance, and the sponsors signed on and made remarks. Highridge Costa President Moe Mohanna spoke about an affordable rental housing collaboration between the developer, Hale Mahaolu and MEO and the pressing need to house ordinary people. Rod Antone, executive director of the Maui Hotel and Lodging Association, served as emcee.

Maui Hotel & Lodging Association Executive Director Rod Antone watches a performance by Nevah Too Late projected on a wall in the Maui Economic Opportunity classroom in Wailuku. Antone was emcee for the MEO fundraising gala on Saturday, August 28. PC: Maui Economic Opportunity.

The gala and concert can be viewed online at


About 175 meals for gala attendees were handed out at a drive-through event at King Kamehameha Golf Club late Saturday afternoon.

The next gala, “We are ‘Ohana”, is scheduled from 5 pm to 9 pm on March 19, 2022 at the King Kamehameha Golf Club.

MEO serves low-income people, kupuna, youth, people with disabilities, immigrants and other disenfranchised communities on the three main islands of County Maui. The agency’s more than 40 programs offer rental / mortgage assistance and utilities; Spanish interpretation and translation services; business planning and development workshops; assisting recently released detainees in their transition to the community; anti-alcohol, -drug and -prevention of harassment among young people; organizational support for kupuna organizations. MEO’s most important programs are Paratransit and Personal Transportation and Head Start Preschool for low-income families.

For more information or assistance, contact MEO at 808-249-2990, email [email protected] or go to

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