Tragically, at the beginning of this month across Hawaii, but mostly on the island of Maui, a series of deadly wildfires broke out, causing the death of at least 111 people and extensive damage, predominantly around the historic coastal town of Lahaina, which was ravaged by the infernos. As soon as Boyd Gaming officials were notified of the “worst natural disaster” ever to hit Hawaii, they immediately made the decision to assist with relief efforts.

Commenting on the sadness and personal connection they felt when learning about the situation, the company’s vice president of corporate communications, David Strow, commented: “This is not just an abstract thing we hear about in the news. Many of our team members call this place (Hawaii) home or have family there, or they have longtime customers who are from there.”

Generous donation:

Out of generosity, each of the company’s local hotel-casinos such as Main Street Station, Fremont hotel-casino, California hotel-casino and many others made a donation to the American Red Cross of $100,000 over the previous week to help with relief efforts of the wildfires that killed more than 100 people, making it the deadliest U.S. wildfire in more than a century.” On that note, Strow added: “The company is also encouraging its employees to consider Hawaii foundations and other relief efforts in its current charitable giving campaign.”

Moreover, the California hotel-casino (Cal), has been the most famous destination for Hawaiian tourists since it officially went into business in 1975. Relatedly, Strow said: “Founder Sam Boyd lived on Oahu when he was younger and marketed the property to Hawaii travel agencies. Today travelers from Hawaii make up about 75 percent of the Cal’s business and two-thirds of Boyd’s downtown business, generally.”

A sentimental place for the company:

Since the company’s founder, Sam Boyd started from scratch here and earned his first dollars here, Hawaii holds a special place in the company’s heart. Commenting on that, Strow said: Without Hawaii, there’s no Boyd Gaming. If they didn’t come to the California, that property wouldn’t have succeeded and everything that came after. It’s no exaggeration to say Hawaii is our heart and soul.”


Boyd Gaming Corporation owns, develops, and operates hotels and casinos in the United States. Founded by Sam Boyd, the company is still a family operation with his son, Bill Boyd acting as executive chairman after retiring as CEO in January 2008. The company owns and operates over 800,000 square feet of casino space and more than 7,500 hotel rooms over 15 properties. Gaming provides about 75% of gross revenue.

Latest information:

According to a post on the County of Maui’s official Facebook page, the most destructive of the blazes, the 2,168-acre Lahaina fire, was 90% contained as of Thursday night. Meanwhile, other wildfires are still burning on the island in the Central Pacific, including the 1,081-acre Olinda fire, which was 85% contained as of Thursday, and the 202-acre Kula fire, which was 80% contained, according to Maui County.