Diane Ako spent most of her adult life in a TV newsroom, and can now translate that experience and those connections into exposure for her clients. An award-winning journalist, she anchored and reported for nearly 20 years for network affiliates around the country, in Hawaii, California, Pennsylvania, and New Mexico. Her last stop was as morning anchor at KHON2 (FOX) in Hawaii.

Her reporting garnered nearly a dozen first place awards from the Society of Professional Journalists’ Hawaii Chapter, and three Emmy nominations from the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

From 2010 to 2014, she worked as PR Director/spokeswoman for luxury resort Halekulani and boutique  hotel Waikiki Parc. Her connections and creativity secured Halekulani consistent coverage on local and national media outlets, including a spot on CNN Headline News and articles in major travel publications like Travel + Leisure, Conde Nast, Departures, and more.

Ako has radio experience as well. She hosted a community affairs radio show for a year for Ohana Broadcast, a Hawaii radio group consisting of five FM stations. Her show, “Hawaii Matters,” brought in newsmakers and leaders to talk about issues impacting the community.

Though primarily known as a television personality, Ako considers herself a writer, and has freelanced/guest written for many local publications, including HONOLULU magazine, MidWeek, Honolulu Advertiser, Hawaii Weddings, and Hawaii Herald.

She blogs for a hobby. From 2009 to 2016, she penned slice-of-life column “Small Talk” for Hawaii’s largest daily newspaper, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Those blogs have won SPJ awards, as well. Now, she’s posting blogs on her own website because she still enjoys telling interesting stories and connecting with people.

Ako has assisted friends with pro bono public relations for years, and realized how much it made her happy. This passion guided her to start her own PR company in 2017. She likes to ask herself before every endeavor, “Who does this bring joy to?”

She is a Kamehameha Schools alumna who earned a B.A. in Communications from Menlo College and an M.A. in Political Science from University of Hawaii at Manoa.

In her personal life, she enjoys being with her husband and daughter; yoga/meditation; partnering with marine biologists to study endemic opae ula shrimp; and volunteering as a Shinto “shrine maiden” for Daijingu Temple of Hawaii.

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June 1, 2017

Veteran newscaster launches p.r. firm
HONOLULU – Longtime Island newscaster Diane Ako has opened her own public relations firm, “Diane Ako PR.” She specializes in media placements for traditional media (TV, newspaper, magazine, and radio) as well as online articles, but will handle a scope of public relations tasks that include media-training, crisis communications, producing company videos, and more.

“I have been helping friends or volunteer groups with p.r. needs for years, because being in the media is a natural fit for understanding how to pitch to reporters. People had long asked me how to get their company featured in the news, and I would explain how newsrooms work and how to get writers interested in their story. I have also continuously provided p.r. for non-profit groups I volunteer with. I find this fulfilling,” Ako says of her choice to open her own business after a 19-year career as a TV newscaster.

Ako most recently worked as a morning anchor for KHON2 (FOX), where she co-anchored a live newscast for three hours at daybreak. Before that, she anchored and reported at KHNL (NBC) in Honolulu, WBRE (NBC) in Pennsylvania, KOB (NBC) in New Mexico, and CTV (cable) in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

Her work won regional recognition; nearly a dozen first place awards from the Society of Professional Journalists’ Hawaii Chapter, and three Emmy nominations from the San Francisco/Northern California Chapter of The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

In between news jobs, from 2010 to 2014, she served as PR Director/spokeswoman for luxury resort Halekulani and boutique hotel Waikiki Parc. There, she refined an intuitive sense of p.r. to arrive at a fuller understanding of how to achieve success in the p.r. industry.