JAMES (JIM) MILLER, CMDCM(SS) (U.S. Navy Retired) Chairperson / Director since 2014 / Committees: Executive, Development (Co-Chair), Honolulu Pride™ (Chair), Honolulu Pride™ (Finance & Contracts), Nominating, Marketing & Public Relations, Finance & Audit, Bylaw & Policy
Jim was born and raised along the Gulf Coast of Texas before he joined the Navy in 1985. He served on the USS DARTER (SS 576) in Sasebo, Japan, USS HADDOCK (SSN 621) in San Diego, California, USS TAUTOG (SSN 639) and USS OLYMPIA (SSN 717) in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. He was the Chief of the Boat (COB) of the USS PASADENA (SSN 752) in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, the USS OHIO (SSGN 726) in Bangor, Washington, and Command Master Chief (CMC) for Naval Submarine Support Command in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Through his 30 year career he has lead, trained, and mentored hundreds of Sailors from all parts of our great nation. Since his recent retirement he has dedicated his time to giving back to the community.
LUKE ELICK Vice-Chairperson / Director since 2017 / Committees: Executive, Bylaw & Policy, Gala
Luke was born and raised in Southern California, which taught him to love people, nature, and the ocean. Now living in Hawaii he wants to try and help his community here.
Luke thought that Honolulu Pride™ was so much fun last year that he wants to help make it even better. As part of the Volunteer Committee he wants to get more people his age involved, and as part of the Fundraising & Sponsorship Committee he aims to get more businesses to have floats and to march in the parade.
Luke feels that Pride is a time where all of us can come together on our wonderful rainbow filled state to make Oahu the best island for the LGBT community, and Hawaii the best state for anyone looking to find that paradise over the rainbow.
RICK SLOAN Treasurer / Director since 2019 / Committees: Executive, Finance & Audit
Rick grew up in the Black Hills of South Dakota, in the shadow of Mt. Rushmore. After receiving his bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota, he worked in Washington, DC, for a former U.S. Senator from South Dakota for a few years, while receiving his master’s degree in Political Science from American University. He received his Paralegal Certificate from the University of San Diego, acquiring 25 years of paralegal/legal experience working both in law firms and for banks. Rick manages First Hawaiian Bank’s Record Management Department. He is on the board of directors of Honolulu Frontrunners/Frontwalkers and ARMA (Association of Records Managers and Administrators) International – Hawaii Chapter.
REBECCA COPELAND Secretary / Director 2014-2016, 2019- / Committees: Executive, Honolulu Pride™ (Educational & Cultural Events)
Rebecca is an appellate attorney, ally, and community advocate. She’s active in the legal community, serving on a number of boards and committees including the Hawaii State Bar Association’s Board of Directors, the Hawaii Judiciary’s Commission on Professionalism, the Hawaii Justice Foundation, and the Hawaii Judiciary’s Committee on Equality and Access to the Courts. Rebecca previously served on the boards for the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundation, and Equality Hawaii. During her time with Equality Hawaii, she successfully advocated during the 2015 and 2016 Hawaii legislative sessions for the passage of the Transgender Birth Certificate Bill and the Transgender Insurance Bill, both of which were signed into law. She is also the mother of a transgender son and a teenaged daughter who identifies within the LGBT spectrum.
JOE V. BOCK Director / Director since 2014 / Committees: Marketing & Public Relations (Co-Chair), Development, Finance & Audit, Endowment, Rainbows Over Waikiki, Honolulu Pride™ (Planning), Honolulu Pride™ (Media, Marketing & Advertising)
Joe is currently partner and chief operating officer at Nella Media Group, where he is responsible for strategic development, operations, legal affairs, sales and marketing. Prior to joining NMG, he led marketing and e-commerce efforts for Castle Resorts & Hotels and Mesa Airlines, Inc., dba go!, where he held the role of chief marketing officer from the company’s start in 2006 through its first five years. Before moving to Hawaii, Joe served as in-house counsel for Phoenix-based Mesa Air Group, Inc. as a member of the State Bar of Arizona. He is also president and director of Sales and Marketing Executives Honolulu and a director of both Make-A-Wish Hawaii’s Young Leaders Board and Hawaii Publishers Association. Joe has also served on the boards and committees of American Heart Association of Hawaii and Gregory House Programs. He received a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from Texas A&M University and also holds a juris doctorate from the University of Houston.
SEAN BARRETT Director / Director since 2018 / Committees: Honolulu Pride™ (Entertainment), Development, Compensation & Hiring, Bylaw & Policy, Endowment
Sean Barrett was born and raised in Cocoa Beach, Florida before joining the Air Force in 2003. He was inspired to become involved in the community ever since attending his first Gay Pride in Manchester, England. Since then, he has been active in Outserve-SLDN, a worldwide LGBT+ military advocacy and legal services network, as well as supporting local LGBT community organizations around the world. It is his honor to work as a Director of the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundation.
FRANCINE BEPPU Director / Director since 2018 / Committees: Marketing & Public Relations (Co-Chair), Endowment, Honolulu Pride™ (Media, Marketing & Advertising), Compensation & Hiring
Francine was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii and was recently appointed as a Director of the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundation. Francine brings her unique skills back home to Hawaii with over 14 years of combined experience in developing new business and growth strategies for international corporations as well as start-ups in the entertainment, media, and technology industries. After earning a double major in Marketing and International Business at NYU Stern, she began her career at Sony Electronics and was involved in marketing the successful launch of 7 luxury consumer electronics products under the exclusive Sony QUALIA line. During her time at Viacom’s MTV Networks, she was part of the team responsible for launching the first LGBT cable network, LOGO, growing viewership from zero to over 30M in the first year.
Currently the Network Strategy Director of Nella Media Group, Francine is passionate about new technologies, out-of-the-box thinking, and creating new channels to enhance the way entertainment is consumed. Prior to joining NMG, she led digital campaign and corporate strategies with KHON2, Hawaii’s FOX and CW Networks. Francine is a member of the Honolulu Pride™planning committee, and previously an e-council member of the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship to Kids (NFTE) program in Los Angeles, and served on the board of the International Inspirational Women Awards.
DAVID BRUSTEIN, ESQUIRE Director / Founding Director 2007 / Prior Vice-Chairperson 2007-2015 / Prior Chairperson 2016 / Committees: Compensation & Hiring
David was born and raised in New York and has always pursued many diverse interests throughout his career. He originally obtained two undergraduate degrees in hotel and restaurant management in New York and Miami and early on he was a Department Head at the world famous Windows on the World on the 107th floor of the World Trade Center. David went on to obtain his law degree from Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles in 1985 and he moved to Hawaii shortly thereafter. After becoming a practicing attorney David again gained diverse experience as a civil litigator in many areas including contracts, insurance matters, estate planning, personal injury and worker’s rights. Early in his legal carrier David also devoted his pro-bono efforts in the areas of LGBT civil rights including the advancement of various causes of those living with HIV and AIDS. This included serving on the BOD’s of several non-profits including the Governor’s Committee on AIDS and the PWA Coalition. Additionally, David was one of the founding members of the Life Foundation of Hawaii’s legal clinic and he has litigated important questions of law before the Hawaii Supreme Court. Finally, David served as the President of the La Casa Homeowner’s Association for over 12 years.
WILL COLEMAN, DVM Director / Prior Secretary 2016 – 2017 / Director since 2016 / Committees: Development, Honolulu Pride™ (Planning), Honolulu Pride™ Festival (Co-Chair)
Will was born and raised in Georgia, then attended the University of Georgia for his undergraduate and veterinary medical degree which he completed in 1999. He practiced emergency veterinary medicine for a decade in Colorado before moving to Hawaii with his husband, Chris, in 2009.
Here in Honolulu, Will opened Hawaii’s first veterinary emergency and specialty hospital which is a thriving 24-hour hospital staffed with a dozen veterinarians. In his free time, Will enjoys traveling, cooking, gardening, and spending time with his husband and friends.
D.J. DOLE Director / Director since 2013 / Committees: Gala (Chair), Endowment, Development (Co-Chair), Marketing & Public Relations, Finance & Audit
D.J. has been a lead home mortgage originator in Hawaii for the past 14 years. He is the Vice President / Branch Manager of Honolulu Home Loans, the largest local mortgage lender in the state.
D.J. was born and raised in Sacramento California, and moved to southern California to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. D.J. graduated with a BA in Film/Television production from Columbia College, and spent 12 years working with Universal Studios, Propaganda Films and various other production companies in Los Angeles and New York before opening his own post production company, US 2 Editorial, in 1993.
During his career he worked on many high profile projects including feature films E.T., Back to the Future, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Breakfast Club; music videos with Michael Jackson, Madonna, Sade, Barbara Streisand, Bon Jovi and commercials for Nike, BMW, Reebok, Pepsi, Mercedes, Coke, and Apple computers.
In 1999, D.J. relocated to Hawaii with his partner of 5 years to pursue a better quality of life. “I had spent almost 20 years in an extremely fast paced business, and it was time to take count of what was important to me for the next 20 plus years, and Hawaii was the answer”. D.J. and his husband were married in early 2015 after celebrating 21 years together.
When not working, D.J. enjoys renovating his home, spending time with his friends and traveling. D.J. served on the Board of Directors of the Locations Foundation for 8 years prior to joining the Hawai’i LGBT Legacy Foundation, and currently volunteers his time with fundraising committees for the Honolulu Museum of Art and the Hawaii Opera Ball among others.
TIM “tj” JONES Director / Director since 2019 / Committees: Marketing & Public Relations, Honolulu Pride™ Festival (Co-Chair), Compensation & Hiring
Tim “tj” Jones is a native of Southern Illinois where he obtained his undergraduate degree in mass media and telecommunications with a minor in music. He always knew he would find his way to Hawaii after spending time with his college roommate from Oahu who shared many cultural stories about our beautiful islands.
Upon graduating in 1988, Tim moved to San Francisco to further his education and take post-graduate business courses from Golden Gate University. He began his career in the legal industry while attending school and then moved into professional services at Deloitte, working in several operations roles spanning 17 years and ultimately as Managing Director, Workplace Innovation. He was also a faculty member at Deloitte University in Westlake, Texas. Luckily, his area of responsibility included Hawaii for many years, which allowed him frequent travel to visit and be part of the local LGBTQ community.
Tim is currently the Director of Learning at Kyo-ya Hotels and Resorts / Marriott International in Waikiki specializing in organizational development and workplace strategies. He also promotes health and wellness programs for their associates in an effort to create a more balanced working environment.
Tim is no stranger to community and board service. He created and led the first Diversity and Inclusion Council at Deloitte, and has acted as Chairperson for the American Heart Association, and most recently as the Interim-CEO of the San Francisco Aids Foundation after 4 years on the Board of Directors serving as Chairperson of the Audit and Fund Development Committees.
Tim is an avid outdoor adventurer who enjoys helping others reach their full potential by encouraging and inspiring them to find their passion and let nothing get in the way. He loves traveling and spending time with friends and family.
SCOTT D. LARIMER Director Director since 2016 / Committees: LGBT Center & Community Engagement, Nominating
Scott is a native of Illinois having lived in Champaign until moving to Hawaii in 2008. It took nearly 15 years of vacation before the ultimate decision to call Hawaii home.
A graduate of the University of Illinois with a Bachelors of Arts in Landscape Architecture, Scott’s career has been a mixture of Landscape Architecture, Commercial/Retail/Industrial Development and now Residential Real Estate.
As an agent with Berkshire Hathaway HomeService Hawaii Realty, Scott serves clients across the island of Oahu. Community volunteering has always played a role in Scott’s life dating back to his years in Champaign. Upon moving to Hawaii Scott soon became involved with Equality Hawaii, serving as Co-Chair, volunteering as an usher for Diamond Head Theatre and becoming a founding member of the Hawaii Business Alliance Networking Group.
GILBERT RODRIGUEZ Director / Director since 2019 / Committees: Volunteer (Chair), LGBT Center & Community Engagement
Gil Rodriguez has a degree in Business Administration and has worked in the hotel industry for over twenty years, the majority of those years as purchasing director at properties in Los Angeles, on Maui, and for the last 6 years on Oahu. Gil also serves on the board of directors of the Honolulu Frontrunners/Frontwalkers. He enjoys jogging, traveling and spending time with his husband, friends and family.
ANDREW OGATA Director / Director since 2018
Portrait and biography coming soon.
WILLIAM J. SABEL Director / Director since 2015 / Committees: Honolulu Pride™ (Planning), Honolulu Pride™ (Fundraising Events), Honolulu Pride™ Parade (Chair), Rainbows Over Waikiki (Chair)
Willie Sabel is a Midwest boy at heart. Born and raised in the Fox Valley of Wisconsin, he made the move to Oahu in 2006. Willie is employed by Diamond Head Theatre as the Technical Director and Master Scenic Designer. He just celebrated 30 years in the theatrical business, and has accumulated over 400 separate design credits. Willie became involved with the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundation when he attended an open meeting for Honolulu Pride™ in 2015. Since then he has taken the reigns of the Honolulu Pride™ Parade while also serving on the Honolulu Pride™ celebration committee. Willie also serves on boards for The Aloha Bears and HI Gay Flag Football League. As a member of the HI Flag Football board Willie helped launch The Aloha Classic, an annual national ﬂag football tournament.
SHANNON SMITH Director / Director since 2018 / Committees: LGBT Center & Community Engagement
Shannon was born in a small town in Texas near the Dallas/Fort Worth area. She came to Honolulu for the summer of 1993 to work with her great-aunt at Fort Shafter and never left.
Shannon worked for a developer after graduating with a MA in American Studies from the University of Hawaii at Manoa in 1996. She is now a partner at Locations real estate, a locally owned company that has been in business in Hawaii for 50 years. Shannon has been a board member of the Locations Foundation as well as giving a percentage of every dollar she earns to the Foundation for over 15 years. The Locations Foundation mission statement: To ensure the future of our community by enhancing the lives of our children through four pillars: Education, Health, Mentoring and Safety. In 2017 the foundation donated over $325,000 from its agents and employees and 1,400 man hours to the community. The Foundation was a large part of why Shannon joined Locations.
Shannon has chaired many events but one of her favorite organizations is Project Visitation which sponsors events reuniting siblings separated in the foster care system in Honolulu. Shannon is a founding member of the Rainbow Chamber of Commerce, and she is excited to also give her time to the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundation and assist the community in building wealth through real estate.
Shannon enjoys being a realtor and places a strong emphasis on understanding the desires and needs of all her clients. She takes great pride in successfully guiding them through the biggest purchase of their lives, going above and beyond so that her clients are prepared to win in all situations.
Shannon was married in 2016 to her partner Lidia of 15 years and they have 1 child (a rescue dog Coco Lani).
RANDY SORIANO Director / Director since 2019 / Committees: Honolulu Pride™
Randy is a young professional with 10 years of marketing experience at proven industry-leading companies in Hawaii. He specializes in social media marketing, promotional PR, event planning and creative direction. He is currently the Marketing Manager at Title Guaranty of Hawaii, the oldest and largest kama’aina title and escrow company in the state.
Randy has a passion for meeting people and serving the community, which is demonstrated in the countless hours he dedicates to various non-profit and community organizations. He is currently the President of the Rotary E-Club of Hawaii, serving a two-year term that oversees an aggressive strategic plan to grow the Club’s membership and community partnerships. He also serves on the Hawaii FoodBank Alaka’i Young Leaders Board, which is a new initiative by the organization to utilize the talent of Hawaii’s up and coming leaders.
Randy and his partner, Howard, are avid travelers and have visited over 60 countries. Randy was recently honored by Pacific Business news as a recipient of the Business of Pride award. Honorees are recognized for their contribution to the LGBT community through business and community service.