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Paddling the Outrigger: Inspirations and Insights From the Journey of a Lifetime

Dr. Richard R. Kelley

Hardcover, 304 pp. 

Dr. Richard R. Kelley, fondly known as ‘Doc’ to friends and business associates, led Hawai‘i’s most iconic hotel company, Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, for over four and a half decades. In Paddling the Outrigger, he compellingly recounts his family’s experiences as hospitality pioneers, operating a family run business in the Hawai‘i of “days gone by” to its place as an iconic hotel brand in one of the world’s most coveted vacation destinations. In frank observations, Kelley shares the philosophy of a successful entrepreneur and businessman, conduct- ing business in Hawai‘i and globally, living and working in the most beautiful island archipelago on Earth.

Readers interested in old Waikīkī will relish stories of some of the characters who inhabited its history and the life changing recollections of a boy eyewitness to Japan’s 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. Students of hospitality will appreciate Kelley’s storytelling, his inside perspective on the development and inner workings of Hawai‘i's visitor industry and its continuing relevance for a range of readers from guests to employees to CEOs. As Outrigger evolved, Kelley traveled the world, shaping a perspective on business, the economy, government, edu- cation and health care that he uniquely applied through the lens of aloha. In a series of “Saturday Briefings” readers will get a feel for the broad range of experiences and responsibilities one encounters in the hospitality industry: “where you never know where the day will take you.”

Paddling the Outrigger transcends the story of a company and its people to illuminate a way of doing business (Ke`Ano Wa`a - The Outrigger Way) in an atmosphere of mutual re- spect that is pervasive in the cultures of Hawai‘i and across the Pacific and Indian oceans. The world has something to learn from it.

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