Words of wisdom from Alice Guild, one of Hawaii’s first female executives

"Live in the moment"

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Alice Flanders Guild is a kamaaina of Native Hawaiian ancestry with a record of community service spanning more than half a century. In the early 1970s, she worked with the Junior League of Honolulu and the late Princess Liliuokalani Morris to found The Friends of ‘Iolani Palace. Later, she served as executive director and chairman of the board of The Friends of ‘Iolani Palace.

“Community service is a major cornerstone to personal success,” Guild says. “Most people recognize the importance of financial support for social and cultural causes, but it is those that give of themselves who provide the greatest value to the community.”

One of Hawaii’s first female executives, she served as general manager of Ala Moana Shopping Center in the mid-1980s. During that period, she was recognized with the American Advertising Federation’s prestigious Silver Medal Award for service to the community and the advertising industry. She was the first woman to serve as a director of Central Pacific Bank, retiring from the board in 1994, after more than twenty years.

Although she’s had many careers, Guild says her favorite was as a mother of four children. “They are my pride and joy along with my three grandchildren, Ian, Lia and Ryder.”

She has served on the board of directors of Child and Family Service, Aloha United Way, The Better Business Bureau, Hawaii Visitors Bureau, Hawaii Community Foundation and Honolulu Academy of Arts (Honolulu Museum of Art). In 1970, she was appointed by George Ariyoshi to the Governor’s Conference on The Year 2000. She is also a past president of the Junior League of Honolulu and The Garden Club of Honolulu and served as a trustee of La Pietra, Hawaii School for Girls for over thirty years, stepping down as board chair in 2017.

Guild is an author of a recently published children’s book, “Kōlea and the Chief’s Cloak,” a modern fable, based on a historic event. “I am working on the second book, ‘Kolea and the King’s Crown,'” she says. “Another fable that reveals the secret behind the ‘jewels’ in the royal crowns of Hawaii. The featured artifacts in each story may be seen in Oahu museums.”

When asked what advice she would give to today’s youth, Guild says not to grow up too fast. “It’s a cliché, but you are only young once. You can never go back and recapture those moments that you may have missed because it was too much trouble, too much work or too uncool.”

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