home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


January 1, 2019

Mike Victorino

Pete McPartland

Kari Luna Nunokawa

Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii

PETE MCPARTLAND: Thank you for being here, guys. I would say so far everything looks like this is going to be a great tournament. From a golf standpoint Alex Urban is working with Nancy Cross and Stephanie Smith who is our chief marketing officer in charge of this event from Sentry's standpoint, added some very nice wrinkles that I think the fans are going to be excited about.

But what I want to talk about today has to do with the charitable giving aspect of the tournament and kind of some thoughts that we have had. And I would start by saying that whenever it was that we, it was announced that we would become the Tournament Of Champions sponsor, I want to say August or late July of 2017, something like that, but we barely had more than maybe three months to understand enough of the tournament itself to know how to contribute and begin to put Sentry's stamp on things. Now what we clearly didn't have time to do at that period was understand the kind of charitable aspect of the tournament and being a PGA sponsor and how it would relate to Maui, other than to know that that would be something that we would indeed come to understand better and put a little more of our own stamp on. So to that end we went to work on that after the tournament in 2018. That included a trip to Maui, and I want to say that was in June, in which we presented the check and we at that time met with all of the organizations, the recipients of that check and spent time with each and every one of them and we're going to spend more time, in fact. So that was all very good. We also spent time with Mike Victorino, now Mayor-elect, and as of tomorrow I believe Mayor, and Mike spent a lot of time with us, educating us on kind of Maui from a kind of quality of life standpoint looking beyond the things that we could see on a glancing blow from in terms of the homes, the resorts and things like that and educated us on the demographic, on kind of some of the cultural aspects, some of the needs of the people of Maui. And we came away really enlightened from that particular trip.

Along the way, and now I talk a little bit about Sentry Insurance itself, so we're located in a fairly small town in central Wisconsin, about 80 miles west of Green Bay. Half of the folks who work in Sentry Insurance Company or about maybe -- call it 22, 23 hundred people, live in the Stevens Point area and they are extremely community-oriented and we're a company that encourages to a great degree that people get involved in the community, that people give to the charities of their choice, and we embrace the United Way in particular. In the Sentry community, giving a total of 1.5 million dollars to the most recent series of campaigns around the country where our offices are located, with 1.2 of that 1.5 million dollars being donated to the Portage County United Way, which serves the Stevens Point area. So we're a big United Way believer and contributor.

So now I kind of want to connect the dots a little bit, and we knew that we wanted to begin to pay close attention to Maui and to embrace Maui as a corporate citizen, which we are now a corporate citizen of Maui, to embrace Maui and to embrace the people, just as we do the communities where we have offices and just as we do Stevens Point and see from a style standpoint some aspects that would be just as applicable as far as we would see it here in Maui as it would be elsewhere and including in Stevens Point.

So there's a few things that I want to inform you of today. One is that Sentry is making a $25,000 donation to the United Way of Maui. $25,000 donation to the United Way of Maui. Kari Luna Nunakawa is here and she's been I think working with Stephanie Smith and our folks and I think I would like to, if we have a check -- do we have a check, Stephanie? Right here. Here's the check. Okay, here's the check. So maybe Kari, if you could come up here if you don't mind.


Our pleasure. The United Way is such a great organization that and they do such a terrific job of kind of vetting and looking at things from entire community perspective and so we really are pleased to be working with you.

KARI LUNA NUNOKAWA: This is amazing. Thank you so much. We just want to express our deepest appreciation to Sentry Insurance. This is an amazing start of a beautiful partnership, I think. I welcome you to Maui and our county and we are so excited. Maui United Way supports 33 different programs on our island under education, income sustainability, and health and we support thousands and thousands of our friends and families and neighbors and we always tell you, when you give to one you're giving to all. And you never know when you or your family or your friend is going to need that support and United Way is always there for them. And we are so excited to be starting this partnership with Sentry Insurance and to welcome them to our Maui ohana, so mahalo nui.


KARI LUNA NUNOKAWA: Thank you so much.


PETE MCPARTLAND: Thank you. Boy that feels good. I got to tell you, that feels good.


So the other aspect of this then and there may be, there probably will be more aspects as we kind of go deeper and understand Maui even further. So the other aspect of this involves kind of the way we look at local communities, and in particular Stevens Point, Wisconsin, and we're a deep believer in homegrown talent. And if you can imagine running a very large I think Fortune 750 financial institution and a community of maybe 28,000 people, it is absolutely necessary that we grow our own talent from kindergarten all the way through the local university or the University of Wisconsin system, in particular, because those are the folks that are most likely to stay in the area, end up contributing to the growth of the economy, and continuing to make, in our case, the Stevens Point community great. That same issue I think should fully apply here in Maui.

So the other part of our announcement today is to create a series of Sentry scholarships beginning with I think four this coming spring: Two for $2,500 and two for $1,000. The two for $2,500 are for students who graduate from Maui public high schools and choose to pursue their Bachelor's Degree at one of the University of Hawaii system universities in any of the islands. The two $1,000 scholarships are for students who graduate from Maui public high schools who wish to pursue an associates degree through one of the community colleges within the University of Hawaii system. So there will be four scholarships that we will award I think next May, if I'm not mistaken, and we will do that when we come out to deliver the check for this year's Tournament of Champions. And there will be a total of four scholarships added to that the following year and four the following year for a total of 12 scholarships when this is fully built out. The University of Hawaii will be the administrator of this scholarship program, I believe, and they will be the ones that will be kind of vetting the students and determining who those winners will be.

So that's what we would like to convey to you today and I would just say that on behalf of Sentry management, Sentry's Board of Directors, and very definitely the folks who work at Sentry, we are, we love being the sponsorship of this tournament. The fact that it's in Maui works for us. We have a lot of guests that have come here this week on their own nickel, on their own vacation time and are bringing their kids. We had a welcome reception last night and I couldn't believe how many kids, teenagers and younger children were here. So people of central Wisconsin are embracing this tournament and even beyond Sentry and paying very close attention and choosing to come here, I'm very proud that we're associated with it.

Mayor Mike, is there anything that you would like to convey?

MIKE VICTORINO: Thank you. Well first of all, I would like to thank you very much for your generosity. Not only for our children but for our community in general. Let's have a seat.



MIKE VICTORINO: This is amazing. I have been coming out here for 32 years helping this tournament when it was way back, when it was called the Kapalua Invitational and historically moved on and on to the Mercedes and all the others, and you, Sentry Insurance, has come in as such a wonderful -- we don't call you corporate family, we call you family ohana.

PETE MCPARTLAND: I like that better.

MIKE VICTORINO: This is a true ohana. I think Kari can attest to this. And we go way back, her father and I were Jaycees. My son and her went to school together, so connections around this room. And the population, just like in your hometown is very similar. We believe in family. The homegrown talent, like we talked about, and preserving and keeping them here. So thank you very much for those scholarships. Thank you for helping United Way. Thank you for all the other groups that you help, whether they're the Boy Scouts and I could go on and on and on and I know we have only so much time, but Portuguese we get going, we don't want to stop, but I realize in politics like in everything else it's working together, collaborating, looking out for the betterment of the community. That always makes any event successful and I want to thank Sentry for their commitment to our community. And you have our community -- or our commitment from the Maui, from Maui County to do whatever we can to help you in any way because we treasure your ohana. Be part of our ohana, which is family in Hawaiian and that we hope to perpetuate this for many many years to come. Whether I'm mayor or not, I still intend on Thursday to stand out on my front post there and welcome people to Maui, to this invitational again.

So again, on behalf of the people of Maui County I want to say mahalo and aloha to all.


PETE MCPARTLAND: Thank you, Mayor. Thank you.

MIKE VICTORINO: Any questions? You can ask him. You don't have to ask me.


Q. When you're the sponsor of this tournament, when you look back on it, how do you measure what kind of year it was for you, year one?
PETE MCPARTLAND: What kind of a year was the, for example the first year of the tournament?

Q. Yes. How do you look at the success of year one and what did you see that stood out as something that you would like to do differently or better or elevate it are whatever?
PETE MCPARTLAND: Okay, well, I wanted to see that. I wanted to feel even better about the reasons we wanted to become the sponsor of this tournament than I even did at the time. And we're very confident at the time and I do feel even better and there were two aspects of this for us: One was from a branding standpoint. We're a pretty big company and an 118-year-old company -- or 114-year-old company, but we had been very quiet from an advertising and kind of brand-building standpoint in the business insurance area, which is predominantly the area that we serve. And we felt that the Sentry, the Tournament Of Champions, now the Sentry Tournament of Champions was a fantastic way to assert a new brand identity in the form of the logo that Stephanie and her team created. And our brand message, which is nothing other than the message that our own customers, our business insurance customers told us was the image that they saw us in, which was that of a company that is very intimate with its clients and likes to hang on to and create long-term business relationships, partnerships. So that's what we were wanting to convey and we felt that this tournament being in prime time over the holidays and the demographic of who enjoys PGA tournament golf, who attends it, watches it on TV, that that was a perfect for us from a customer orientation standpoint. And it has been. Included within that was the guests that we invite to Maui and we don't have a lot of guests that we invite to Maui, we have, I want to say, 40 something individual invited guests and their spouses or significant others and how would they, how did they feel about it and how did that impact our relationships with them. And I can tell you that it's been exceedingly positive because we invite them to Maui and we indulge them. And last year some brought their families and now this year many more are bringing their families and last night as we had our welcome reception I saw it seemed to me almost as many kids as adults in that room and we fortunately we celebrated new years at 8 o'clock which was midnight in Wisconsin. But it's quickly turned into, from a kind of a, the guest aspect, a family event and there aren't many corporate kind of indulgences that involve families as well as work, being able to spend almost a week as business partners cementing a relationship. And what we go for is a very long-term relationship. Last year we met customers, one lady -- I could wax on and on about this -- who is a third generation family member who runs a business in Michigan and they have been with Sentry 46 years. And she had never met a CEO of the company before, including myself, and it was so wonderful to be able to have a venue and an event where we could indulge our customers on that basis. This year we have more long-term customers, 20, 25, 30 years, people that drive business our way. So from a purely I'll say selfish standpoint, I can tell you that this has been hugely successful. But then also from a kind of a cultural and value standpoint, Maui and I'll say Stevens Point, Wisconsin kind of are hand in hand. I almost think of us as sister cities in a lot of respects, there's so much in common. And then to see Sentry retirees and Sentry associates, we call our employees associates, embracing this and coming out here so much as I mentioned themselves, I mean to me it's just absolutely perfect for us.

Q. Kind of a surprise you didn't have any guests write back and say, I had a lousy time on Maui.

PETE MCPARTLAND: No, no. And then we of course try to bring a little bit of Wisconsin here to Maui as well and we created an evening last year, big party, that we called cheeseheads in paradise, where the only food served a brats, macaroni and cheese and Wisconsin stuff. And let me tell you the plates were piled high at the buffet line with macaroni and cheese and brats and so on. So we bring a little bit of a flavor of Wisconsin to the state and that's another fun aspect.

Q. When are you doing that again?
PETE MCPARTLAND: We're doing that this week. What night is it? Thursday. You'll see where the hula dancers, with cheddar cheese on their heads. That's how that works. So if you want to take a visual that kind of pulls everything together in my mind, it would be those hula dancers with chunks of cheddar cheese on their heads greeting our guests.

MIKE VICTORINO: To add, I can appreciate Sentry because I have been an insurance agent in this community for 38 years. So my background is just what he's talking about. And you as an agent, you build relationships, I'm stepping away now as mayor, can no longer do it and I've written letters and I have had so many calls from my clients, some generational, I'm now doing grandchildren, and they're saying, then who is going to take over? And I said, don't worry, I set it up so that those that are there now are going to do as well enough job or better than I ever did so don't worry about it, we're ready for this. You knew this change was coming when I got elected so I want you to understand. So what he's talking about, generational, family, protecting your well being, that's something that I tell you is built-in to something like insurance company like Sentry and we don't even sell it here and one of these days I'm going to see if I can convince Sentry to come to Hawaii, because wouldn't that be a great aspect. But thank you very much.

PETE MCPARTLAND: Thank you. Thank you, everybody.


FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297