Longtime television anchor Marisa Yamane is leaving KHON2 to join the Hawaii Tourism Authority.
Yamane, 40, who co-anchors newscasts three times a day, will be director of communications and public relations at the HTA, where she will oversee a contract with PR firm Anthology Marketing Group.
“I’m looking forward to it. It’s a good time for change,” said Yamane, who joined KHON in December 2004 after graduating from Iolani School and the University of California, Los Angeles. “It’s been a long time and I’m really gonna miss it. Being in the news business is very different from anything else out there. You get to see and experience things most people don’t get to. I’m going to miss my awesome coworkers. We’re like one big family. It’s certainly bittersweet.”
Yamane said she was approached with the job opportunity that she couldn’t pass up. The position was previously listed on the HTA website with a salary range of $95,000 to $120,000.
“I met with the president (Chris Tatum) and he has a great vision and I definitely can see myself making a positive impact there and helping out Hawaii’s No. 1 industry,” she said. “More so, it’s just a great opportunity and one that I could see myself leaving the news business for — knowing that I would help make a difference … still helping out the community but in a different way.”
Tatum said that among Yamane’s responsibilities she “will be essential to supporting the wonderful work being done in our neighborhoods by community groups dedicated to perpetuating Hawaiian culture, protecting the environment and showcasing festivals and events important to our communities.”
Yamane co-anchors the 5-5:30 p.m. and 10-10:30 p.m. newscasts with Howard Dashefsky, as well as the 7-8 p.m. show with Brigette Namata on KHII. Yamane’s last day at KHON will be May 3, and she’ll begin work at HTA on May 6.
“The newspaper business, the TV business — it’s all rapidly changing. I never, ever thought I’d get out of the news business, but I think it’s a good time. It’s a good move,” said Yamane, who aspired to be a journalist after Hurricane Iniki hit Hawaii in 1992. “I’ve wanted to do this since I was in the 7th grade — become a journalist. I’ve essentially reached my goal at KHON. On to new goals.”