#AlohaWarriors - Pt. 1

Ahhhhhh Aloha. That sweet word that sweeps you away to the blue waters and green palm trees of our beloved Hawaii. The beaches. The mai tais. The sunsets. Yet there is so much more to learn and explore. On this first episode of our “Summer of Aloha” series, travel with us as we check in with our Ambassadors living on the beautiful island of Maui and uncover the strength and sovereignty of our #AlohaWarriors. You’ll never view Hawaii the same again. Aloha!

Guest Profiles


Elyse Ditzel, Director of Marketing, Maui Ocean Center
Elyse was born in California and studied physical geography and hydro-geomorphology at California State University, Northridge. After completing two years of post-baccalaureate studies, she worked for eight years at the Ventura County Watershed Protection Agency. Her love for healthy eating and education eventually lead to joining the Whole Foods Market Hawaii team. After her tenure in retail and community marketing on Maui and O‘ahu, Elyse returned to her environmental roots by joining the team at the Maui Ocean Center. Her new position reinforces the Maui Ocean Center’s renewed focus and commitment to building community partnerships centered on environmental stewardship and education for residents and visitors alike. She currently lives in central Maui with her husband and their small dog. The family enjoys playing at the beach and long hikes around the island. Website | Twitter | Facebook | IG


Tatiana Howard, Founder, The Butterfly Effect
Tatiana Howard was born and raised in Maui, Hawaii. She is a professional windsurfer, founder of The Butterfly Effect Movement, and Hawai'i real estate agent. Her passion for watersports lead her into creating a worldwide non-competitive water sport event for women that inspires, empowers, builds community, and gives back, which she called The Butterfly Effect. Her current goals with The Butterfly Effect are to "Malama 'aina" (respect the land) and become more sustainable by collaborating with eco-friendly brands and by making conscious choices on the products we use. In addition to watersports, she loves to travel, meet new people, share her culture of growing up in the Hawaiian Islands and learn about others cultures! Website | Website | Twitter | Facebook | IG | Instagram


Ekela Kaniaupio-Crozier, Maui Hawaiian Protocol Facilitator, Kamehameha Schools Maui
A Hawaiian-language teacher for more than thirty years, Kumu (teacher) ʻEkela Kaniʻaupio-Crozier was born and raised on Oʻahu. Her roles in “the Hawaiian Language movement” have included that of college instructor, designer of Hawaiian-language online courses, immersion school parent, and hope kahu (assistant pastor) at Ka ʻEkalesia ʻO Kupaianaha, The Church of the Living God in Wailuku, where services are conducted in Hawaiian. ʻEkela, who grew up just prior to the Hawaiian cultural renaissance of the 1970s, is among those few speakers who bridged the generation gap between kupuna concerned that fewer young people were speaking the language and today’s native students who are eager to learn. Kumu ʻEkela is a true ambassador of aloha. Website | Website | LinkedIn | Twitter | Facebook | IG | YouTube


Bran-Dee Torres, Donor Relations & Development Manager, Pauahi Foundation
After 14 years in the Bay Area, Bran-Dee returned home to Hawaiʻi in 2007 to join Pauahi Foundation, a Kamehameha Schools’ non-profit organization whose mission is to provide more educational opportunities for Native Hawaiian learners. She has worked in several roles, all directly responsible for stewarding funds raised and strategically strengthening partnerships with Kamehameha Schools’ beneficiaries within the Hawaiian community. Combining 20 years of philanthropic work in educational institutions with Silicon Valley marketing communications experience, Bran-Dee focuses on creating transformational change in Hawaiʻi nei. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business marketing from Santa Clara University. Bran-Dee proudly dedicates time to serving her alma maters and community organizations. They include the Kamehameha Schools Alumni Association, Santa Clara University Alumni Association - Hawaiʻi Chapter President, Native Hawaiian Chamber of Commerce, Association of Fundraising Professionals Aloha Chapter, and Council for Advancement and Support of Education. Website | Website | LinkedIn | Twitter | Facebook | IG | YouTube


Mari Younger, Bar & Restaurant Consultant
Mari was born at Stanford Hospital, at the tail end of the USA's bicentennial. Just over a year later, Mari's mother decided to escape the hazy Haight days of San Francisco and move to the Big Island of Hawaii, where Mari learned the ways of the Spirit of Aloha. Though a family emergency lead them back to the Bay Area in the mid 80's, the Aloha Spirit never left her soul. Throughout her life, Mari continued helping all who sought her advice and guidance. This spirit of connection has led to Mari’s vision: building a unique distillery in Hawaii, where a portion of sales from the distillery would benefit the people of Hawaii, protect water rights and farmland throughout the US. Marrying the distilling traditions from Mari's heritage of Irish, Scottish, Norwegian and American Indian, the distillery will also use local Hawaiian resources and products. Over the years, Mari has been involved in the bar and restaurant industry in a variety of roles. Currently, Mari manages restaurants on Maui, for a well known and highly respected restaurant family, whose motto is "Practice Aloha." She frequently visits San Francisco. LinkedIn | Twitter | IG

Episode Notes:

Sponsor: Expert tips on making your money work for you! Click here for more from Ask Rickey!

Join the Circle: As a member of The Ambassadors Circle, you are joining like-minded individuals on a mission to inspire and equip all of us to #DoMoreGood. Click here to learn more!

Time For Some Action: Buy a rash guard for the next time you head to the beach! The chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate are not friends of the ocean.

Photo Credit: Check out more escapades in Hawaii by @RandomRob_. Episode photo features @ScoobyMattos.

Production: Sound Design by Courtney Grace, Production Assistance by Jen Huynh with Hosts Becca, Christianne Harder, LT, and j-

What’s the 411:

Top 5 Events:

  • World Oceans Week at Aquarium of the Bay, through June 11. Find out what makes the ocean so special and how we can all do our part to keep it that way! World Oceans Week is free with Aquarium admission.
  • The Soiled Dove, June 9 - July 1 in Alameda. From Vau de Vire Society comes an immersive, circus-infused, dinner-theater experience that will titillate your every sense. Tickets
  • Cannabis Cooking Experience - San Francisco Edition, June 11. Join Bay Area Cannabis Chefs & Happy Hippy Co. for an in-depth, hands on 2 1/2 hour class, detailing basic and advanced cannabis culinary techniques. Learn different methods of infusion and how to perfect your cannabis cooking skills and dosages, all levels welcome!
  • Burning Man Precompression 2017 - A NIMBY Showcase of the Arts, June 17 in Oakland. An evening of art, inventions, and imaginative community. This will be a creative collaboration of artistically epic proportions - from theme camps, art and mutant vehicles to performers and participants of every kind!
  • Rally! Queer Explorations of Resistance and Resilience, June 18 at SOMArt. This evening of dance, drag, multimedia and literary art features performers from the Bay Area and beyond, and is hosted by Kentucky Fried Women and Starr 69. Tickets


Production + Guest Relations:
Sound Design by Courtney Grace with Hosts Becca, LT, Christianne Harder and j
Guest Relations by Andrea Rush with Production Assistance by Jen Huynh 

360BayArea Intro Music 
by Courtney Grace with vocals by ElleT

Featured Music:

Courtney Grace- Ask Rickey Theme Music
Lucky 7 “Breeze
Yanivi “The Monkey Funk
Manni Alade “Let Me Loose
'Aha Mele 2017
K. Solis “Creator

Featured Music:
Mary J Blige “What’s the 411
Drake ft Future “Grammys
Redman “Time 4 sum Aktion
IZ “Hawaii ‘78

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