Through programs, education, networking and advocacy, the Hawaii Rainbow Chamber of Commerce champions the advancement of economic opportunities for Hawaii’s LGTBQ+ community and for those who support equality for all.
We envision a Hawaii where the LGTBQ+ community enjoys equal rights under the law as consumers, as employees, and as business owners. Hawaii will be a model for the world of diversity, respect and inclusion for the LGBTQ+ community.
Hawaii Rainbow Chamber of Commerce sees a world where values of respect, diversity and inclusion of LGBTQ+ owned businesses, employees, customers and their allies in the community are realized as the right values to hold as humans, and because equality is always good for business as well.
Hawaii Rainbow Chamber of Commerce is entirely volunteer and relies on qualified working board members. Please contact us if you are interested in serving on the board or would like to volunteer your time in another capacity like event planning, website upkeep, membership development or other areas you see a need or interest in serving.
• Great Member Events
• Directory Listing
• Member Referrals
• National Conference
Education & Training
• Informative Speaker Events
• Expert & Peer Counseling
• Mentoring Relationships
• Diversity Training
• Diversity Initiatives
• Business & Community Advocacy
• Ability to Sponsor Events
• Access to National Diversity Supplier Market
• Leadership Opportunities
• Member to Member Offerings
• Participation in Advancing Equality
• Awards & Recognition of Excellence
Board of Directors
Sponsorship and Promotions Specialist at UHA
Walter has a deep and committed involvement with the community in Hawaii, having also served several years as President of the HGLCF, which produces the Hawaii Rainbow Film Festival.
Walter grew up in Hawaii and loves our state and community. As a Sponsorship and Promotions Specialist at UHA Health Insurance, Walter primarily works with the Sales Department to brainstorm marketing messages to gain new business leads. Walter also creates direct marketing pieces and marketing ads to feature in magazines and publications. Walter especially enjoys working with numerous non-profit organizations and coordinating company sponsored events such as walks.
Sonja “Sunny” Monteiro
Owner, The Sidewalk’s End
Sonja “Sunny” Monteiro owns The Sidewalk’s End, a web and graphic design company specializing in online brand development, analytics and marketing.
Sunny started TSE in college, designing web sites and graphics to pay for school. Thanks to an incredible internship with Rigor she was able to work with big label companies from the get go. Past projects have included working with Blue Hawaii Surf, Noa Noa Hawaii, Honey Girl Organics Australia, Hippy Chic Designs, Phohana, and Laney Arts. Currently Sunny is the head Barketing Manager for Furever Friends Play & Stay, a local pet board and daycare. Sunny and her wife, Laney Monteiro, have two adorable fur babies, Cookie and Jojo Beasley. Sunny has lived in Hawaii since August 2002.
IT / Cyber Security Instructor, University of Hawai’i–Kapi’olani Community College and Co-Founder, Kapu Technologies, LLC
Dave Stevens is an IT / Cyber Security Instructor at the University of Hawai’i Kapi’olani Community College and the co-founder of Kapu Technologies, LLC; a local Cyber Security company focusing on risk analysis and security governance.
Dave is the faculty advisor of the KapCC Chapter of the Hawai’i Advanced Technology Society (HATS) and arranges for his students to perform penetration tests and vulnerability / risk assessments for local companies. He is a graduate of Hawai’i Pacific University with a Masters in Information Systems, a Certified Information System Security Professional (CISSP), a Project Management Professional (PMP), and is the host of "The Cyber Underground" on ThinkTech Hawaii.
IT Contractor, Mitchell Martin Inc.
Lee Stevens is an experienced Senior Business Analyst, currently serving as an IT Contractor for Mitchell Martin Inc., a talent acquisitions solutions company.
Previously, she served as a contractor for Citi, Vice President & Senior business Analyst for First Hawaii Bank, and Information Technology Manager of Mad Pac Petroleum, LLC. Lee received her Master of Science in Information Systems from Hawaii Pacific University and her Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Principal, Diamond Head Group LLC
Winston Welch is a co-founder of the Hawaii Rainbow Chamber of Commerce. Working with amazingly dedicated and passionate board members to advance the mission of the chamber, he is delighted to advocate with other board members on the mission of the chamber.
Professionally, Winston is a Certified Association Executive and has run local, state and international nonprofit organizations. He holds an MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management, Arizona State University and has traveled, worked and lived overseas extensively. Winston is the Principal of Diamond Head Group LLC, consulting in both association management and meetings/conference venue site selection & hotel negotiations worldwide.
Winston sits on several boards, including the chamber and his local neighborhood board, and hosts a talk show “Out and About" on ThinkTech Hawaii. Fundamentally, he views this whole conversation about LGBTQ+ issues as a larger discussion of humanity coming into its wholeness where people are valued for the unique gifts and qualities of both who they are and what they bring to the world.
Laura A. Young
Financial Advisor, Edward Jones
Laura Young loves her job as a Financial Advisor because she knows she can make a huge impact on the lives of the clients she serves.
Laura’s knowledge and personal success in her own life with saving, investing, budgeting and planning caused friends and colleagues to reach out with questions about her approach, which encouraged her to work with people on their financial goals full time. As a financial advisor at Edward Jones, Laura brings her life experiences and passion for helping others to everything does using a thorough planning process to help my clients build personalized strategies to achieve their financial goals. Laura’s mission is for her clients to feel valued, understood and confident that she has their best interests at heart. Laura received her Bachelor of Arts from California State University-Monterey Bay, and spent many happy years living in the area involved with a number of groups, prior to moving to Hawaii.
Advisory Board of Directors
Co-founder and CEO, Smart Yields
Vincent Kimura is CEO of Smart Yields, a Hawaii-based and globally recognized agriculture technology company that is revolutionizing the way small- and medium-scale farms operate. With more than 15 years of entrepreneurial and industry experience throughout the Asia-Pacific region, Vincent partners with public and private entities worldwide to enhance strategic sustainability management, technology programs, community building and business development.
Born in Honolulu and raised in Hawaii and Asia, Vincent holds an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management and a BS in Environmental Science from Oregon State University. He has also earned certifications in Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) and Government Cost Accounting from George Washington University, and is a certified Food Safety Scheme Practitioner under the Global Food Safety Initiative.
Vincent was named the 2016 Clean Tech/Ag Entrepreneur by the Hawaii Venture Capital Association and a 2016 finalist in the Pacific Business News Business Leadership Awards. He was also named to the Pacific Business News 2016 40 Under 40 cohort, which recognizes outstanding young business professionals in Hawaii. He lives in Honolulu with his wife Lisa and their three children.
Travis Knott is a co-founder of the Hawaii Rainbow Chamber of Commerce. He previously served for four years as Board Member and Co-Chair for Equality Hawaii Foundation. "Seeing the unity of the community during the final years of the legislative battle for marriage equality was truly inspiring. Working with the Rainbow Chamber is another way to strengthen our local LGBT community."
“We want to be so much more than just a membership group, we hope to foster prosperity for our community with the Hawaii Rainbow Chamber. I have two areas of primary focus for our new Hawaii Rainbow Chamber of Commerce. The first is to help locally owned companies to uncover new business by tapping into the Supplier Diversity initiatives in place across the country. This will bring new dollars into our Hawaii market and could expose local businesses to new and unexpected sources of business. The second area is to help local companies to develop their own LGBT Employee Resource Groups. An Employee Resource Group helps to create an environment where you can bring your full self to work. It is a very powerful way to show your employees and your customers that happy employees leads to more productive employees, and better quality in service and products overall.”
Travis and his husband D.J. moved to Hawaii in 1999. They celebrate their 25th anniversary this year.