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In 2009, Amanda launched her first solo business venture, Under My Umbrella (UMU) Inc. Just a decade later, UMU has become one of the premier communications and event production companies in Hawaii. Though UMU continues to garner distinguished clients and national acclaim, it remains dedicated to elevating the work of community-based organizations who seek to make the world a little bit better every day.

In 2013, Amanda founded Pili Group LLC with life and business partner Chef Mark Noguchi. Pili Group is dedicated to creating a world of food with integrity. The diverse community of farmers, fishermen and other food artisans that Amanda is gathering together with her husband has earned Pili Group national attention for its role in preserving and uplifting native Hawaiian culture and providing support to community organizations. Pili Group’s newest project, Chef Hui, is helping to connect the culinary world with their community and has been on the front lines of feeding people and connecting them with resources during the pandemic. What started as a grassroots network in 2017 as a way to deepen connections between the culinary world and the community, is now operating as a full blown non-profit serving communities statewide. While Chef Hui focuses heavily on the types of projects this group was founded on, such asFarm-To-Table month, Sustainable Seafood Month and championing canoe crops such as ʻulu and kalo, their COVID-19 rapid response programs are what is most impressive right now.

Currently they are producing over 2500 meal kits per week (feeding 10K people each week) in our Feed the People program and serving over 5000 meals weekly prepared by local restaurants who are being paid to create these meals.

Amanda and her team have also trained numerous organizations to carry out similar programs on neighbor islands. To date, this nimble group has raised nearly $3 million in less than 10 months to support COVID relief community efforts with a focus on purchasing local ingredients, employing workers from the hospitality industry and uplifting community leaders.

In addition to their community efforts through Chef Hui, Amanda and her team at UMU have been instrumental in assisting their clients in pivoting during the pandemic and strategizing for the future of marketing, events and community outreach.

Despite the national attention her work has garnered, Amanda maintains that her most important role is being a mother. In her free time, Amanda can be found in the garden, at the beach, or exploring with her daughters Elee and Aki and her husband Mark.

 

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