Digging into anything and everything that makes the CNMI tick beyond politics...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

2012 Businessperson of the Year nominees

FOUR prominent individuals from the community will be vying for the Businessperson of the Year Award for 2012.
The announcement of the winner will be during the installation dinner for the officers and directors of the Saipan Chamber of Commerce in the Hibiscus Hall of Fiesta Resort & Spa on Jan. 21.
Saipan Chamber of Commerce executive director Richard A.  Pierce said the selection will be done by former awardees.
Pierce said the judging will be based on the nominee’s community involvement and contributions, support for the local workforce and active participation in the chamber.
And the nominees are…
James T. Arenovski
Delta Management Corp.
James T. Arenovski President Delta Management Corp.Arenovski has lived in the Marianas since 1987.  Originally from Yarmouth, Massachusetts, he holds a Master’s Degree in Administration from Georgia Southern University.
Arenovski started his career with The Inter-Pacifica Group as special projects manager for Pacific Islands Club-Guam and then became the area manager for Domino’s Pizza Group in Guam in 1989.
Initially hired by Shell Guam in 1991 as commercial area manager, he was promoted to the position of Saipan area manager and eventually became regional manager for Shell North Pacific, which included Guam, Saipan, and Palau.
Arenovski formed Delta Management Corporation with his two partners in 1998, a management company, which currently operates eight Shell service stations. This year Delta Management took over the operations of Shell Puerto Rico and Shell Highway from IP&E.
Delta Management also owns Prime Group Inc., which is an authorized distributor of pre-paid telecommunications products.
Delta Management was awarded Master Distributorship for DataDot for Micronesia in October of 2010, a microdot technology that is applied to objects of value for authentication and identification is stolen.
Arenovski is the principal of Island Training Solutions a full service training company which provides OSHA and EEOC compliance, customer service and other staff and management development training programs. He is also managing director for Restaurant 360.
Arenovski founded The Bridge Project Inc. in 2011, a non-profit organization that provides entry level job readiness training as well as works with employers in assisting them increase the number of U.S. eligible workers.
Arenovski has served on the board of NMI Crime Stoppers for 11 years and as its chairman, and sits on the board of directors of Crime Stoppers International, the steering group that sets standards, policy for its 1200 plus member organizations around the world.
Arenovski has chaired the Chamber membership and small business committee, education committee and scholarship committee.  He has been director, secretary, president and vice president.
Arenovski helped create two of the chamber’s annual programs: The Saipan Chamber of Commerce fundraising golf tournament, and “You are Graduating Soon, Now What?”  where Chamber members spend a Saturday teaching juniors and seniors about their options after high school.
Arenovski has been committed to hiring local staff for his business since Delta Management since 1999. He is active in the local sport community, participating in Xterra, Tagaman, The Hell of the Marianas and various distance swimming events and is a supporter of various sports and charitable organizations. Arenovski is the father of two teenage girls and married to Jill M Arenovski.

Michael S. Johnson
Managing Partner
Deloitte & Touche
Michael S. Johnson Managing Partner Deloitte & Touche  Saipan/PalauMichael S. Johnson is a long-time resident of Saipan who held the position of chamber treasurer for three consecutive terms in the early 1990’s. He has been the treasurer of the chamber since 2005.
Johnson came to Saipan in 1982 after earning masters of business administration (emphasis in accounting) and bachelor of arts degrees at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
He is a certified public accountant, a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, a member of the CNMI Society of Certified Public Accountants and current President of the CNMI Chapter of the Association of Government Accountants. Additionally, Johnson was selected by Bishop Camacho to serve on the financial advisory committee of the Diocese of Chalan Kanoa and is a past chairman of the CNMI Board of Accountancy.
Johnson participates in various sports including golf, kayaking, biking and triathlon. Mike is the current treasurer of the Northern Mariana Islands Triathlon Federation and the Over the Reef Yacht Club.
Johnson is married to Betty Hamilton Johnson. They have three children: Kathleen, Sarah and Andrew.

James E. Nelson
General Manager,
Docomo-Pacific CNMI
James E. Nelson  General Manager,  Docomo-Pacific CNMIJames E. Nelson was appointed to his position on March 2, 2009.  He is responsible for marketing, sales, administration and the day to day operations of Docomo Pacific in the CNMI.
Prior to his appointment at Docomo Pacific, Nelson was manager of Windward Hills Golf Course and managed golf course operations; as senior business development executive for the Royal Orchid Guam Hotel and was responsible for direct sales of rooms and food and beverage functions before he moved to the Windward Hills Golf Course.
In March 2005, Nelson was the director of marketing and sales for JMSH LLC where he was responsible for the marketing and sales efforts of all JMSH LLC properties, which included the Alupang Beach Tower, Holiday Resort Guam, Garden Villa Hotel, Mai’Ana Airport Plaza and Tumon Horizon Condominiums.
Nelson was the general manager of the Guam Visitors Bureau from 1995 to 2003. His responsibilities also include operational and marketing efforts of the bureau’s branch office in Tokyo, Japan, information desk in Osaka, and marketing representative offices in North America, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and the Philippines.
From March 1988 to January 1995, Nelson served as the director of marketing and government affairs for Continental Micronesia Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Continental Airlines.
He began his 11-year tenure in 1984 with the airline’s in-flight department as a passenger service representative.  Two years later, he transferred to the marketing and government affairs department as a sales and marketing/OnePass representative.
Nelson also directed the airline’s efforts in maintaining favorable relations with the government of Guam, the CNMI and the emerging nations of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of Palau.
Nelson served as president of the Guam Junior Golf League and as a board member for Guam Junior Achievement, Guam Crime Stoppers, Guam Major League, American Red Cross, Guam Chamber of Commerce, and the University of Guam Endowment Foundation.
Nelson served as a member of the board of directors of the Pacific Asia Travel Association or PATA from 1995 to 2000, and as Chairman of the PATA Micronesia Chapter from 1996 to 1999.  He also served as a member of the PATA Environmental Council.
Nelson studied at Fairfield High School (California), Solano Community College (California), and the University of Guam.  He has one daughter, Nicole.

Anthony Pellegrino
Chief Executive Officer
Saipan Sea Ventures, Inc.
Anthony Pellegrino Chief Executive Officer Saipan Sea Ventures, Inc.Anthony Pellegrino started his business ventures on Saipan in 1984. He currently owns and operates Saipan Sea Ventures Inc, a boat operation in tourism; Saipan Ice and Water Co., Inc., which processes drinking water and ice; Saipan Aquaculture Inc., shrimp farming; and the Northern Marianas Trade Institute, a non-profit trade school.
He is president and shareholder of Arctic Circle Air; Cargo airline, Marianas Meat Processing and slaughterhouse. Pellegrino developed several projects on Saipan. He was instrumental in having the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library built, in developing and building the Horiguchi Building, developing and building Outer Cove Mariana. He was also the construction manager for Aqua Resort Club.
Pellegrino was a member of the CNMI Board of Education, and during his term of four years was instrumental in building 60 classrooms and five schools. He started the Advanced Development Institute for high school student dropouts to obtain their diplomas, started the Northern Marianas Trade Institute — a non-profit school for teaching trades to the local people.
He also built a large 85-foot sailing catamaran in 1984 in Saipan and is operating the first shrimp farm on island.
Pellegrino attended Kutztown State Teachers College, Kutztown,   Penn. He got his master of arts in liberal arts at the Temple University, in Philadelphia, Penn.
Pellegrino was a public school teacher for 12 years — six years teaching in the United States and six years teaching in Japan. He was an instructor at the University of Maryland, Japan for four years at the Department of Writing and Literature, and two years in Yokohama University, at the Economics Department in Yokohama, Japan.
Pellegrino is the former president of the Small Business Association in Hawaii, former chairman and director of the CNMI Board of Education, former president of the chamber of commerce, and former member of the Rotary Club
Pellegrino established, owned and operated three businesses in Japan for 16 years, and established and operated two businesses in Hawaii.
He was voted as Businessman of the Year 2010. Pellegrino is married to Milagros P. Pellegrino.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

20,000th Russian guest arrives on Saipan

A RUSSIAN couple and their 7-year-old son received a big surprise when they were welcomed as the 20,000th guest to arrive on Saipan at the Pacific Islands Club on Jan. 3.
Contributed photoHotel representatives including Elly Stoilova, PIC marketing manager for web/Russia/CIS said that Anatoly, Irina Nagaytsev and their son Ilya received a variety of gifts and surprises including a nicely decorated room with welcome refreshments, complimentary room nights, discounts, toys and souvenirs for the family, a special event at the Seaside Grill and a tree-planting commemorative ceremony prior to their sunset dinner.
Stoilova said that the 20,000th guest arrival marked another milestone  in 15 years of catering to the Russian emerging market.
She said  the Nagaytsey family from Yakutsk, Russia who are repeater guests to the island will be staying until the end of the month.
“We didn’t know until the very last moment which family would be the lucky ones due to arrival date revisions for many Russian customers as snow storms across Russia have cancelled and delayed flights,” Stoilova said.
She added that they are happy to see Saipan repeater guests were the lucky ones as this is also a great way to thank them for choosing the island as their destination again.
“It allows us another wonderful opportunity to create more unforgettable memories on their Saipan holiday,” Stoilova said.
PIC welcomed its 10,000th Russian visitor in Oct. 2008. Stoilova said it took the hotel only three more years to attract another 10,000 customers from Russia.
She said the celebration of this milestone occurs just two weeks prior to Guam becoming a visa-free destination for Russian tourists.
“We hope the unique qualities that the CNMI has to offer all visitors as a destination will keep attracting valuable Russian guests for the unforeseeable future,” Stoilova said.
PIC thanks all the supporters and establishments that helped to make the Nagaytsey family stay here more memorable.
The Nagaytsevs are invited to enjoy a SandCastle Cocktail show and a “Stars & Stripes” sunset dinner cruise. They will also savor a Sunday Brunch at the Hyatt Regency and a chance to dine at Tony Roma’s, Capricciosa, Truong’s and Restaurant 360.
Hertz Rent a Car donated a Suzuki Grand Vitara for two days so the family can visit their favorite island’s scenic spots. Tasi Tours will also host the family to experience the beauty of Managaha. Pacific Subsea will help them to explore the underwater world of Saipan in the Deepstar submarine.
The Nagaytsevs will be pampered at the Mandi Asia Spa with a massage and they will race the go-carts at the Mariana Resort & Spa.
In addition, Stoilova said DFS has prepared an amazing luxury set and Joeten offered a selection with island souvenirs for the family. Lollipops surprised the Nagaytsev’s son with a set of collectable toy skateboards.
Stoilova said  since 1996, PIC has gone all out in developing the growing Russian tourism market including improving its Russian language website and island guidebook, as well as online social media accounts with current events and promotions with thorough CNMI travel information which provides answers to questions for those seeking a tropical holiday for the family.
PIC is the first hotel to translate into Russian all in-house information and collateral 10 years ago as well as enhance services for the Russian traveler by adding a DVD and book library.
“Today, PIC accommodates the needs of the growing Russian visitors with nine Russian staff,” Stoilova said. PIC, she added, is living the MTEC’s motto, “Tourism is everybody’s business.”
Published HERE

Over $80M worth of advertising exposure for the NMI in 2011

WORD travels quickly by mouth, and the best way to advertise and entice people to come and experience the CNMI as an island resort is to hear it direct from those who have been here.
Photo by Raquel C. BagnolFrom January to December last year, the CNMI through the initiatives of the Marianas Visitors Authority hogged the limelight in several media outlets including newspapers, magazines, and Television shows, resulting in an advertising exposure worth $80 million and more for the year.
TV hosts, writers, photographers all the way from Korea, Japan, Russia and other places had a feast packing as much coverage as they could and dipping into the total island experience from a few days to over a week. The media visitors experienced the island culture, culinary delights, underwater wonders, visited historical sites and everything that the CNMI has to offer.
A look back
In January last year, Happie Nuts Magazine, a popular female fashion magazine held a location shoot and a night club event at the GIG Discotheque. MVA assisted the familiarization, or FAM, tour which was expected to bring over $141,000 in ad exposure value to the CNMI.
In February, showing the movie “Oba: the Last Samurai” which chronicling the story of Sakae Oba, the last member of the Japanese Imperial Army to surrender to U.S. forces more than a year after the Battle of the Marianas ended was expected to receive over $22 million in media exposure.
The CNMI got another $100,000 ad exposure value after it was given full-page feature by The Japan Times in their March 20, 2011 issue, and a four-page article in a luxury magazine published by custom media for their spring edition.
In April 2011, seven daily newspapers from South Korea —Chosun Ilbo, Joongang Ilbo, Kukmin Ilbo, Kyunghyang Shinmum, Naeil Shinmum, Money Today, and The Sports Chosun sent editorial teams on Saipan to introduce this island resort destination to their 11-million readers.   The ad exposure value of the FAM tour coverage was estimated at $200,000.
In May last year, the CNMI received over $6 million in ad exposure arising from FAM tours of different media outlets including a crew from the television travel documentary series Globe Trekker (formerly Lonely Planet), the world’s most watched TV travel show since 1998 arrived on Saipan and worked on a 5-10 minute segment on Saipan and Tinian, a crew of the Korean sitcom “All my Love” to tape episodes of the show on Managaha, San Antonio Beach, Bird Island, and Banzai Cliff for 90 minutes of air time at an estimated ad value of over $4.2 million, and the monthly travel magazine Travie for a 12-page feature in the islands focusing on the culinary culture and local events.
The 3rd Saipan International Open Water Flipper Race Tournament on Managaha in June last year also attracted Jiji.com, one of Japan’s leading news wire agencies which was expected to give the CNMI an estimated ad value exposure of $28,000.

Popular Russian TV host Michael Shirvindt featured the CNMI and its uniqueness in his highly rated show “Hochu Znat” which airs to 250 million viewers in Russian, former Soviet republics, Asia, Australia and the U.S. was expected to bring an estimated $45 million in publicity.
Writers and photographers from Chunichi Shimbun, Gifu Shimbun, lifestyle magazines, CHEEK and SPY GIRL, and Golf Masters participated in a 3-day whirlwind tour of the island in August last year, contributing to provide a total media exposure estimated at almost $400,000.
Far East Russia TV who visited the CNMI in November last year produced an air segment that will be aired over the next six months and brought the island $250,000 worth of advertising exposure.
Last month, Global Travel News, Korea Travel News, Korea Travel Times, and Travel & Leisure — all travel trade newspapers targeting travel agents, while AM7 is a free morning tabloid distributed at Korea’s subways to the general public visited the islands and enjoyed the beauty of the island.
The FAM tour is expected to give the CNMI $30,000 worth of advertising coverage.
Also last month, Korea’s MBC TV’S “Live Today Busan” visited for a location shoot that was expected to bring over $1 million of international exposure value.
All these familiarization tours and exposure are expected to lure more tourists to come and taste the CNMI experience.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New Year to spark more interest in Zumba

WITH more people aiming to lose weight and taking care of their health as part of their New Year’s resolutions, more individuals are expected to take interest in Zumba, a fitness class introduced to Saipan last year.
Zumba licensed fitness instructor Elly Stoilova, right, leads an enthusiastic class at Gold’s Gym. Contributed photo Elly Stoilova, a licensed Zumba Fitness instructor at Gold’s Gym, said her class  continues to gain popularity since its introduction in April last year.
She said there are five classes weekly and most of the participants are women of different ages and shapes.
“I expect now, with the New Year Resolution season, to see more participants,” Stoilova said.
Zumba is a calorie-burning dance fitness party that is effective, exhilarating, Latin-inspired, and easy-to-follow.
“Zumba achieves the perfect balance of a progressive core workout, full-body cardio and strength training, and a stress-relieving, energy-producing fitness experience,” Stoilova said.
It is common knowledge that a vast majority of New Year’s resolutions are “forgotten” eventually. They are easier made and said than done, but Stoilova  believes that setting realistic goals and rewarding yourself when you overcome a fitness challenge can help a lot in keeping with your resolutions.
Keeping up with your health resolutions is a real challenge for a lot of people. It is easy to fall prey to the hundred and one alibis why you could not join the Zumba Fitness program today.
“My tips for fitness success —don’t quit if you drop the ball. Admit you did it and carry on the plan you have, do not negotiate with yourself for another hour of sleep. Don’t say ‘not this morning.’Love the person you see in the mirror the way he/she is and do everything in her/his best interest,” Stoilova said.
Living the program
Stoilova’s life is the story of how the Zumba program affects one’s life positively.
Weighing 178 pounds, Stoilova resolved to begin her own journey toward a slimmer self as her New Year’s resolution in January last year.
“My goal was to become fit, lose weight and be healthier, which brought me to the Gold’s Gym Challenge. Since the challenge, I have continuously exercised week after week through the entire 2011,” Stoilova said.
She shed 25 pounds mostly because of her dedication and perseverance.
She credits her success to Zumba Fitness and her personal trainer Brett Nelson.
Stoilova said  each time she puts on her workout clothes, she immediately feels the pulse of Latin rhythms in her veins. She said  even as she is dressing up, her heart starts to beat faster and happiness takes the place of stress and worry as she anticipates another enjoyable and exciting session of Zumba.
Stoilova does Zumba five times a week, dreaming of it and enjoying the fun of sweating the calories off and grooving to the bustling Latin sounds.
She supplements her workouts with stretching and pilates.
“I can see my pounds and size melting each week,” she said.
It takes discipline, however, to wake up in the morning and go to the gym.
About the program
Zumba uses an exhilarating cardiovascular approach to torch fat and calories (400 to 900 cal per hour), whittle your middle, and sculpt your hips, butt and thighs.
The program is a contagious blend of Latin and international rhythms that provide a fun and effective workout to a global community and has helped to melt the pounds and inches off 12 million Zumba-enthusiasts in 125 countries.
The workout provides long-term fitness benefits through exhilarating, high calorie-burning fitness classes and its simple Latin and international dance moves increase the fun factor. The routines feature fast and slow rhythms which, when combined, successfully tone and sculpt the body while burning fat.    Music is Zumba’s special motivational ingredient.
Stoilova said the Zumba class members were part of the Saipan Zumba Fitness Flash Mob at the Garapan Street Market just before Christmas.
“I was happy to hear that people who stopped by to watch our performance recognized the Zumba Fitness style. Many people asked where and when they could join us. Zumba Fitness is getting more and more popular on island,” Stoilova said.
For more information, visit Gold’s Gym in Garapan or call 233-4000.
(first published HERE