The Lahaina Kaanapali Railroad has a new man at the throttle following the company president's resignation.
Sidney Kulek was named by company directors to handle the job held by Tom Morrish before his resignation last week.
Morrish said he quit "over what I consider to be an honest difference of opinion about business matters and the way things ought to be run."
Paul Haring, Maui General Manager, said he also expected to leave. "I anticipate I will be leaving shortly," he said.
Haring was named general manager following the resignation in April of Mac McKelvey, who was credited with founding the picturesque tourist train which runs between the Kaanapali resort area and Lahaina.
Morrish also quit his job as Senior Vice President of Makai Corp., which owns the Lahaina Kaanapali Railroad. He has been with Makai since it began in 1963 with creation of Oahu's Sea Life Park. He indicated that disagreements between himself and a group of east coast investers led to his resignation.
The railroad, which has been in operation for about 20 months, is only now getting to the point where it can return a profit. Morrish said the Lahaina Kaanapali Railroad made "terrific progress" during the past year, with sales revenue some 75 per cent ahead of 1970. He said he was "pleased with the growth" of the company.
According to Morrish, major visitor attractions or amusements such as this, typically take three years to become profitable.
The new president, Sidney Kulek, already heads up another Makai organization, the Makai Range at the Makapuu Ocean Center.
Kulek, an ocean engineer, said he expects to hold down the railroad job for a couple of months until a permant present can be named. "It's no secret the railroal has not achieved its hoped for revenue goals," he said. He was meeting last week with Makai officials on Maui and Oahu "to come up with ideas to increase revenue."
Kulec said Makai Corp. is looking carefully at its entire group of companies to increase profits.
Buck Quayle at the Maui Lahaina Sun bureau circa 1970
Reporter/Photographer Buck Quayle in 1971 in Maui with the Cartagenian in the background
Another Day At The Office Haleakala National Park