Climate Change: A Vision for Success with Chris Benjamin (Moderator)

May 1, 2022 in Sustainability

A&B President and CEO, Chris Benjamin, moderated a panel discussion on “Climate Change: A Vision for Success,” a presentation organized by CIFAL Honolulu at Chaminade University and the Hawaii Executive Collaborative.

Panelists included Aimee Barnes (Founder & CEO, Hua Nani Partners), Charles “Chip” Fletcher, PhD (Dean, School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, UH Manoa), Scott Glenn (Chief Energy Officer, State of Hawaii), and Josh Stanbro Policy Fellow, Elemental Excelerator.

The panel of climate experts discussed topics including opportunities for climate change adaptation and mitigation, the barriers and challenges to making progress, the importance of collaboration among all Hawaii stakeholders and actions that individuals could take to combat climate change.



New Mural Honors Kailua’s Rich Heritage

April 19, 2022 in Sustainability


The vibrant, new mural that graces the newly renovated HIC building was designed by Native Hawaiian artist Sara Saffery. Saffery, born and raised in Kailua, was inspired by her heritage and her family’s work on restoring Kawainui marsh. “Being from Kailua, I realized the kuleana of this mural and wanted to paint a picture that honors Kailua’s history and culture from the perspective of the Hawaiian community,” she explained. The majestic Ko‘olau Mountains, the Kawainui fishpond, native flora and fauna, a kalo lo‘i, the Mokulua islets, and a double-hulled voyaging canoe are among the mural’s symbolic depictions of life in the Windward community.

“Kailua is a beautiful town, but much of our Native Hawaiian presence is gone,” said Alani Apio, a noted Hawaiian playwright, artist, and community advocate who advised A&B on the project. “Bringing Kanaka ‘Ōiwi, Native Hawaiian, art to the local landscape is a wonderful opportunity to excite and interest people about our cultural legacy. Sara’s joyous mural is a wonderful example of visual storytelling; there’s a history many people will now discover as a result of this new artwork.”

Dana Harvey Gusman, A&B’s liaison for the mural, says it is one of the most meaningful projects she has been involved in and showcases A&B’s commitment to “walking the talk.” “The mural is the result of meetings with, and listening to, the Native Hawaiian descendants of this culturally significant place,” she explained. “As a company, A&B has forged a partnership with the descendent community and is committed to amplifying their voices and allowing them to tell their own beautiful stories through art. This project has been an absolute privilege to be a part of.”

Nareit Hawaii Donates $130K For Affordable Housing – Kauai Now

March 7, 2022 in Sustainability

Mayor Derek Kawakami, A&B representatives Trinette Kaui and Dan Sargent, A&B retiree Tom Shigemoto and members of the Hawaii REIT community gathered at the site of an under-construction home in Lihue. “On behalf of A&B and personally, I have been involved with Kauai affordable housing efforts for over 30 years. It’s our privilege to underwrite this project, knowing that this home will go to a local family,” said Kaui.

Article originally published on

The nonprofit Kaua‘i Housing Development Corporation was awarded a $130,000 grant from the Nareit Hawai‘i Community Giving Initiative to support the building of a new affordable home for a family on Kaua‘i.

Located at 3310 Kanakolu Street in Līhu‘e, the new four-bedroom, two-bathroom home is under construction and will provide a family with a living space of 1,465 square feet on a lot measuring 3,414 square feet. The home is located next to Isenberg Park and the Līhu‘e Neighborhood Center, offering the family convenient access to sports fields, a playground, open spaces, and community activities.

“The Kaua‘i Housing Development Corporation is truly fortunate and blessed with a most generous donation from the Nareit Foundation,” said Tom Shigemoto, president of the KHDC board of directors, in a news release on the contribution. “This gift will go a long way in assisting KHDC to provide a home for a deserving Kaua‘i family. We cannot begin to express how appreciative we are for benefactors like Nareit, who share our vision of providing affordable housing.”

A video of the presentation is here.

The grant was made possible by donations from REITs in Hawai‘i to the Nareit Foundation, a Section 501(c)(3) organization.

Shigemoto noted that, along with the Nareit Foundation, providing a new, affordable single-family home was a collaborative effort supported by Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative, which offered a discount on the land sale, and the County of Kaua‘i Housing Agency, which granted an affordable housing designation resulting in lower fee waivers and exemptions.

Nareit Hawai‘i Executive Director Gladys Quinto Marrone presented the $130,000 grant to KHDC on behalf of the Nareit Foundation and REITs in Hawai‘i.

“Supporting workforce housing for families is vital to the future of our communities and a priority for our charitable giving program to nonprofits,” said Marrone. “We appreciate the tremendous effort put forth by the Kaua‘i Housing Development Corporation to establish these partnerships that make a new home in Lihue affordable for a family that will ultimately make the community stronger overall.”

Mayor Derek S. K. Kawakami, a strong advocate for affordable, workforce housing on Kaua‘i participated in the grant award presentation.

“Without question, the need for affordable housing on Kaua‘i remains a high priority for us all,” said Mayor Kawakami. “We are grateful to the Nareit Foundation and REITs in Hawai‘i for supporting nonprofit affordable housing initiatives that will benefit our families in need. This incredible effort towards building our affordable housing inventory shows the importance of public-private partnerships in our community, and we thank everyone involved for making this dream a reality here on Kaua‘i.”

Alexander & Baldwin, a REIT whose contribution to the Nareit Foundation helped fund the grant for KHDC, also participated in the grant award presentation.

Chris Benjamin Joins ICC’s Make Climate Action Everyone’s Business Forum

November 16, 2021 in Sustainability

A&B President and CEO, Chris Benjamin, spoke in the International Chamber of Commerce’s Make Climate Action Everyone’s Business Forum, on Friday, November 5th. He joined Hawaiian Electric Industries incoming CEO, Scott Seu, and AHL CEO, Bettina Mehnert, on a “Local Action, Global Goals” panel, discussing how Hawaii’s private sector is making progress in Hawaii and more broadly on sustainable development goals.

Nareit’s REITworks Virtual Conference

October 16, 2021 in Sustainability

A&B President & CEO, Chris Benjamin, spoke at Nareit’s REITworks virtual conference, held on September 20-23, 2021.  In a “Fireside Chat: CEOs’ Perspective and Vision for ESG,” he commented on matters including A&B’s vision and the ways that ESG fits into that vision, ESG topics being discussed in the boardroom, and how ESG can be integrated at every level of the workforce.


2020 Corporate Responsibility Report

September 3, 2021 in Education, Social, Sustainability

A&B is excited to share its 2020 Corporate Responsibility Report, which highlights our environmental, social and governance (ESG) efforts and progress made during the year. While we began 2020 with optimism to celebrate our 150th anniversary and to continue to advance our ESG program, we learned, along with everyone, that the arrival of COVID-19 would dampen our efforts. However, the pandemic provided an opportunity for us to demonstrate our long-time commitment to providing support to the communities we serve throughout Hawaii.

Alyson Nakamura, VP, Governance & Sustainability, shared “The year 2020 provided us a unique opportunity to demonstrate our core values and commitment as “Partners for Hawaii.”

Click here to see the full report.

A&B Partners with Hawaiian Electric to Install EV Chargers on Properties

March 20, 2021 in Sustainability

A&B is committed to incorporating sustainable elements within its commercial real estate portfolio and operations. We have adopted various energy efficiency programs at our properties and continually look for new ways to support Hawaii’s clean energy goals, including incorporating PV systems on our properties.

In the short video below, Brad Santiago, A&B director, management and operations, discusses the installation of EV chargers at our properties through a partnership with Hawaiian Electric‘s five-year pilot program.


A&B and AHL Take Top ICSC Award for Lau Hala Shops

January 6, 2021 in Sustainability

Alexander & Baldwin and AHL took top honors at the annual International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Global Awards North America for Lau Hala Shops in Kailua. The North America Design & Development Gold Award recognized the adaptive reuse of the mid-century modern department store that was built for Liberty House in 1953 and later rebranded Macy’s until its 2016 closure. The large, enclosed building was transformed into an open-air lifestyle center that played a prominent role in the revitalization of Kailua town with its vibrant mix of local and regional retailers, eateries and services.

“We are pleased to share this prestigious award with AHL for the transformation of this iconic building into a gathering place suited for the Kailua community,” said A&B EVP, Chief Real Estate Office Lance Parker. “A&B is grateful for the community’s input during the design process and for how residents are embracing the Center.”

Read the full Pacific Business News article here

NAIOP Hawaii’s 2020 Kukulu Hale Award

October 13, 2020 in Sustainability

A&B’s Lau Hala Shops in Kailua, Oahu was awarded NAIOP Hawaii’s 2020 Kukulu Hale Award for Commercial Renovation!  Lau Hala Shops is an adaptive reuse of the former Liberty House Department Store in Kailua. Transformed from an enclosed building to an open-air lifestyle center that embraces the community’s history and outdoor culture, Lau Hala Shops provides a vibrant mix of retailers, eateries, and services.  In addition, A&B’s Kamalani residential project in Kihei, Maui, which was developed to provide residential workforce housing to the Maui community, was honored as a distinguished entry in the competition.  Congratulations to the Lau Hala Shops and Kamalani teams!

Hawaii Business Article