Hawaiʻi’s 2024 Painting Leaders
Building Industry Hawaii caught up with some of Hawai‘i’s painting leaders to learn about their plans for 2024 — and their keys to success.
In March, Jade Painting completed roughly 129,000 square feet of interior and 125,000 square feet of exterior painting at Amazon’s new warehouse.

When Dean Nagatoshi, Painting and Decorating Contractors Association of Hawaii (PDCA) executive director, greeted guests at a recent installation banquet, he had plenty to smile about.

PDCA’s 2024-2026 board of directors, installed that evening, includes some of the most renowned names in Hawai‘i’s painting industry. And Nagatoshi says he is conservatively optimistic the industry will see robust growth in 2024.

Building Industry Hawaii caught up with some of Hawai‘i’s painting leaders to learn about their plans for 2024 — and their keys to success.

Alee Bowden


Alee Bowden, Zelinsky Co. estimator and project manager, says Zelinsky’s wheelhouse this year is new construction, high-rise developments, townhouse and hospitality interior renovations and exterior spall repair.

Zelinsky’s leading 2024 projects read like a “Who’s Who” of Hawai‘i’s structural landmarks: Victoria Place, Sheraton Princess Kaiulani, Royal Lahaina, Outrigger Kona Resort, Kahala Hotel & Resort and the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant are among the names on this year’s list.

“We are strategizing to increase the volume of our industrial division,” Bowden says, in response to the state increasing infrastructure investment, particularly in wastewater treatment facilities. “And [with] our QP-1 certification, we see an opportunity to be of value to upcoming infrastructure projects.”

Zelinsky is also a distributor and installer for Fabri-Trak, a cutting-edge line of acoustical panels.

The company was founded in 1971 by Kenneth Zelinsky and is currently a woman- and family-owned business.

“We currently run between 90 to 120 employees with work on all islands,” Bowden says. “We make sure the projects we bid are a good fit for our company and within our workload.

“We never want to over-commit and under-deliver on our projects. Having a good relationship with our customers, servicing their needs, being fair and honest and keeping a healthy line of communication is important. We also value our employees and nurture a culture of ‘ohana.

“We believe the outlook for Hawai‘i’s painting industry through 2024 is positive, driven by ongoing construction and maintenance activities across various sectors,” continues Bowden. “Overall, while market conditions and trends may evolve, the demand for painting services in Hawai‘i is expected to remain steady.”

The Zelinsky Co. is currently strategizing to increase the volume of its industrial division, which includes projects such as this HFF flight tank. PHOTO COURTESY THE ZELINSKY COMPANY

On the Shelves

Hawaiʻi’s top vendors stock up on the latest products — just in time for summer

Lon Yamaguchi


“HPM offers a variety of paint options, some of the most popular being Valspar Medallion Plus Exterior, Rust-Oleum Seal-Krete and Sika One Shot,” says Lon Yamaguchi, HPM Kapolei paint sales manager. “The Valspar Medallion Plus Exterior is an excellent formula with paint and primer all in one. This line provides all-season beauty and protection with a flexible finish that resists cracking and peeling.

“Another increasingly popular choice is the Seal-Krete line from Rust-Oleum. A big appeal is its application in decorative flooring, encompassing flake floors, colored quartz and metallic finishes,” she says.

“Additionally, Sika One Shot is another product HPM has stocked for a few years and is becoming increasingly sought after for its timesaving one-coat application,” Yamaguchi says.

On O‘ahu, paint from HPM is used across a wide array of projects, spanning low- to high-rise structures and residential developments.

“Every exterior paint that we carry in our O‘ahu location is mildew-resistant and has scrub-friendly surfaces,” Yamaguchi says.

HPM customers also have the added benefit of onsite professionals who can provide tailored solutions for exterior or interior applications.

“We collaborate closely with local representatives from various vendors, ensuring timely on-site support and comprehensive product training to enhance project efficiency and quality,” he says.

Joni McGinnis


Maui maintenance issues
have met their match with Rust-Oleum’s The MULE,
PPG’s Advantage line and the Enviroshield restoration series, says Joni McGinnis, Ameritone Maui Inc. sales executive, certified AMPP coating inspector and certified PDRA industrial paint and coatings consultant.

“The MULE [modified urethane latex epoxy] is a user-friendly, versatile coating built to withstand high-traffic areas and routine cleaning [and] can be applied indoors or outdoors on walls, doors, trim, railings and floors, making it ideal for commercial spaces, offices, schools, hospitality and healthcare settings,” McGinnis says.

PPG’s Advantage “is a top-quality, waterborne, very fast-drying acrylic enamel developed to have many characteristics of an alkyd enamel but with a water clean-up,” she says. “It is an excellent paint for interior or exterior trim, doors and other surfaces requiring a fast turnaround.

“In response to Lāhainā’s restoration needs, Ameritone Maui now stocks Enviroshield Shellac Stain & Odor Block and Water-based Odor and Stain Blocker,” McGinnis says.

“Both products effectively and permanently block stains and smoke odors from severe fire damage. Enviroshield products are professional-grade formulas that aid in restoring surfaces damaged by water, fire, mold, nicotine, pets and more.

“Enviroshield Mold Resistant Coating ES-90 is also included. This product will prevent mold and mildew growth on interior paint film and protect porous and non-porous masonry surfaces from moisture and mildew damage,” she says.

Donald W. Ka‘anapu Jr.


Jade Painting Estimator Donald W. Ka‘anapu Jr. is excited about Jade’s lineup of leading 2024 projects, which include the Hawai‘i Convention Center, Maui’s Montage resort and UH Mānoa’s mixed-use housing complex and student success center.

“The Hawai‘i Convention Center is an extraordinary project that is also the largest exhibition center of its kind in the state,” Ka‘anapu says. “Painting it will create new but exciting challenges and experiences for us as painters due to the complexity of the elevations and having never been painted since opening in 1998.”

This year, Jade Painting is also celebrating its 50th anniversary in Hawai‘i’s painting industry. Established in 1974 by the Wyman family with a four-person crew, the firm now employs over 100 members.

On average, throughout each year, 70 to 80 people work at any given time across all the Hawaiian Islands,” Ka‘anapu says. “As long-standing Painters Local Union 1791 District Council 50 members, we have access to many union workers who are annually trained and certified in first aid/CPR, HAZCOM, fall protection, aerial lifts, scaffoldings and many other facets of the construction industry, which have contributed to our success.

“We project that we will continue the post-COVID construction ‘boom’ with the increased demand for new affordable housing and high-rise condos,” says Ka‘anapu. “Recently, we expanded a new Jade office and shop on the Big Island to possibly be a part of the growth.”

Sheldon Ibara
Jaime Dominguez


Sheldon Ibara, JD Painting business development executive, feels the first quarter of 2024 “seemed to be a bit slower compared to last year.”

Perhaps only by the company’s exacting standards, since its leading 2024 projects span three sectors and four islands — Palolo Homes Rehabilitation and Waioha II and Nanea II at Koa Ridge on O‘ahu, the War Memorial Stadium Complex Rehabilitation and Hoku‘ula Residential Workforce Housing on Maui, The Royal Sonesta Kauai Resort on Kaua‘i and Kaloko Heights Affordable Housing on Hawai‘i island.

JD Painting also “recently completed the acquisition of Honolulu Painting Company Ltd., a company established in 1946 and renowned for its expertise in abrasive sandblasting and industrial coatings,” says Jaime Dominguez, president, JD Painting & Decorating Inc. “This merger has been seamlessly executed due to the shared values between the two entities, ensuring a harmonious integration process.”

The merger further expands JD Painting, which “commenced operations in 1988 and presently has a workforce of 100 individuals, with offices located on the islands of O‘ahu, Maui and Kaua‘i,” Dominguez says.

“Our inception, guided by our founder, Jimmy Dominguez, was rooted in a commitment to prioritize service and quality. This culture is sustained through our core values, which emphasize strategic thinking, reliability, compassion, innovation and adaptability in all facets of our operations.”

Kapili’s February completion of this Wai‘anae residential project using Sherwin Williams A100 Exterior Paint demonstrates precise attention to detail. PHOTO COURTESY KAPILI SOLAR ROOFING & PAINTING
Brennan Leong


Kapili Solar Roofing & Painting was founded in 2007 by Mike Leong and in 2023, “we successfully expanded our painting services to Kaua‘i, extending our reach to new customers,” says Brennan Leong, Mike Leong’s son and current company president and CEO.

“Now, we’re excited to announce our plans to expand further into Maui this summer. This aligns with our commitment to providing top-quality painting solutions to communities statewide.”

With more than 150 employees, “Kapili has established itself as a significant player in the painting sector,” says Leong. “Critical to its success are the strategic projects and decisions undertaken over the years, which have enabled the company to expand its operations, maintain high-quality service standards and adapt to changing market demands.”

Leong also cites his company’s commitment to excellence and precise integration of multiple crafts, exemplified by a recent endeavor in Mānoa Valley.

“This project demanded meticulous collaboration between three distinct trades: abatement, carpentry and painting,” he says. “Through seamless coordination and effective communication, we were able to successfully complete this project to the highest standards, delivering exceptional results to our client.”

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