Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Message for the 2017 YWCA Na Wahine Alakaʻi ʻO Kauaʻi Awardees

Aloha kakou,

Mahalo for the opportunity to share a message with all of you as you gather the celebrate the 2017 Na Wahine Alakaʻi ʻO Kauaʻi award recipients—Sabra, Marynel, and Jen. Each of you personifies the qualities for which this award recognizes—striving for excellence, encouragement, generosity, and achievement—each and every day. Whether sharing and perpetuating the gift of Native Hawaiian language, music, dance, values, and culture, running a successful small business and serving on various boards throughout the Kauaʻi community, or serving as head of a top hospital and working to improve the health of our community, each of these women are blazing trails that guide and inspire young women on so many paths of opportunity and in so many important roles. Along with each of their own personal achievements, Sabra, Marynel, and Jen work to help other women throughout the Garden Island community to achieve success in all that they do, and their contributions to our community extend far beyond their daily work responsibilities.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank YWCA staff, board members, and volunteers, for perpetuating your mission of empowerment, peace, justice, and freedom for all. Although progress has been made, there is a still so much work to be done to ensure women’s equality— especially in the workplace when it comes to job opportunities, benefits, and pay. It takes leaders, stewards, role models, and passionate women like Sabra, Marynel, and Jen, to continuously work to break down barriers and create a better future for the next generation. To each of our honorees tonight—hoomaikai, and mahalo nui loa. Your passion for promoting empowerment for all is a shining example of what one woman can do to change the world for the better. I wish you each the very best as you continue your shared mission of service and aloha. 

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