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In Memoriam – Dr. Richard R. Kelley Chairman Emeritus of Outrigger Enterprises Group


HONOLULU – For more than 40 years, Dr. Richard R. Kelley was the successful steersman for Outrigger Enterprises Group, a company that has had and continues to have an impact on Hawai‘i’s travel and tourism industry. He served as Outrigger’s president until 1988, chief executive officer until 1993 and chairman of the board until 2011. He was chairman emeritus until the company was sold to KSL Capital Partners in 2016.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dr. Richard R. Kelley – son of Outrigger Founders Roy and Estelle Kelley, former chairman emeritus of Outrigger Enterprises Group and pioneer in the hospitality industry. Dr. Kelley was an inspiration for so many and his legacy of The Outrigger Way – caring for guest, host and place – continues to be the foundation of our corporate culture today,” said Jeff Wagoner, president and CEO of Outrigger Hospitality Group.

Richard Kelley grew up working in the hotels and joined the business full-time in 1970. A Stanford University graduate and Harvard-trained pathologist, he was persuaded by his father to leave medicine and help open the Outrigger Waikiki. What followed is a storied history of his role in turning Hawai‘i into a premier global destination with “a personal touch.” His memoir and a look into Outrigger and the issues of the day and his insights can be found in his recently released book, “Paddling the Outrigger,” available on Bess Press and Amazon.

“On behalf of Outrigger Hospitality Group and all of our hosts worldwide, we offer our heartfelt condolences and aloha to the Kelley ‘ohana,” Wagoner added.

Click HERE for a PDF of this release.