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Wednesday, Jun 7, 2023


SAN FERNANDO VALLEY Burbank Partnership: FRASCO, a Burbank insurance investigation company, and USIS, a Virginia supplier of investigative services for the federal government, are now partnering to provide end-to-end investigative services and expertise to the insurance, third-party administrator and self-insured industries. “We have extensive experience implementing and operating a Special Investigations Unit,” said John Simmers, president and chief executive officer of FRASCO. “Given our extensive hands-on experience, we are well equipped to support a company’s fraud detection, regulatory, and monitoring needs.” Salute: Burbank Airport Marriott Hotel & Convention Center is honoring current and former members of the U.S. Armed Forces by offering them a special rate for vacation travel through its Holiday Service Salute program. “Throughout the year, and especially during the holiday season, we want to recognize the enormous contribution made by the men and women of our Armed Forces,” stated General Manager George McGann. Burbank Airport Marriott’s Holiday Service Salute program runs from through the first week of January 2009. The rate for active, reserve,or retired military personnel and their families is 30 percent off the published government rate. To qualify for the discounted rate, military personnel need to present a valid and current government identification card at the time of booking. A “dependent” identification card is required for family members traveling separately from the military card holder. Reservations must be made online at www.burbankairportmarriott.com. Canoga Park Launch: CreditReport.com has launched a three-bureau credit monitoring service, which provides consumers with a single source of current credit report data from the three top national credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. “Comprehensively monitoring your status on all three of the major credit bureaus is particularly important during today’s unprecedented credit crisis,” said Aprille Lipton, senior product manager, CreditReport.com. “And with the many recent bank failures and mergers and acquisitions, the bank you’ve known for years may transfer your account and that has the potential to lead to errors and/or an even bigger threat of ID theft.” Because the three bureaus are independent of each other, personal and financial information that is obtained by one may not be the same for another. The three-bureau credit report helps consumers see how lenders see them and ensures the accuracy of consumer credit records, according to CreditReport.com. Chatsworth Article: Natrol Inc. is featured in the Dec. 15 issue of First magazine. Two products from the nutritional supplement maker,Carb Intercept and Phase 2 Carb Controller,are written about in a weight loss article in the magazine called “Flat Belly,Found!” The article was published one month after Carb Intercept received a “Best of Supplements” award from another consumer health publication as a winner in the “Metabolism and Weight Loss” category. “We are proud that First magazine has featured Natrol Carb Intercept and Phase 2 in its article on weight loss,” said Dr. Michael T. Yatcilla, Natrol’s vice president of Research and Development. Encino Acquisition: Surety Company of the Pacific (SCP), a writer of license and permit bonds in Encino, has been acquired by Houston-based HCC Insurance Holdings Inc. This transaction is subject to approval of the California Department of Insurance and is expected to close during the first quarter of 2009. Founded in 1969, SCP specializes in license and permit bonds for California contractors. SCP will be merged with American Contractors Indemnity Company. The merger is expected to add approximately $20 million of premium to ACIC in 2009. “We are very pleased to welcome the SCP team of professionals and are excited about the opportunity to grow our California low-limit license and permit business,” stated ACIC President Adam S. Pessin. “The well-seasoned SCP book of business and experienced employee base complement our already solid presence in the California marketplace. With this transaction we believe we can improve the margins of both the business acquired and our existing business.” North Hills New: Munchkin Inc., a designer and manufacturer of infant and toddler products, has added a new collection of pure glass, BPA-free bottles and silicone accessories to its Mighty Grip line. The launch of the new glass bottles comes in response to the growing concern among parents about the chemicals children are exposed to when using standard bottles. “Through our market research, we have discovered that moms are tired of worrying about which plastic will be banned next and are increasingly concerned with how to safely get nutritional fluids into their children,” stated Doug Gillespie, Munchkin vice president of marketing. “As confusion and concerns grow about plastics in baby bottles, we believe glass provides the safest, time-tested alternative for parents.” Northridge Magic: Retired Los Angeles Laker Magic Johnson spoke to physicians and staff at Northridge Hospital Medical Center Dec. 18 to discuss his new book,30 Ways to Be a Champion in Business. During his appearance, Johnson also discussed how businesses can survive in tough economic times. After his retirement from basketball, Johnson became one of the leading businessmen in the country. Honor: California State University, Northridge, interior design students were honored at the Our Community House of Hope (OCHH) fundraiser and banquet in November. The 15 undergraduate seniors were honored for their creation of “Designs of Hope,” three-dimensional drawings, floor plans and recommended fabrics and furniture to be used in the construction of a low-income, end-of-life home for hospice patients. In addition, 10 graduate students were honored for the artwork they created for OCHH’s proposed facility. “We hope that other community organizations will take inspiration from our work and consider involving our students in their visions,” said Anubhuti Thakur, assistant professor of interior design in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences. Grant: State Farm has given California State University, Northridge, a $200,000 grant to develop an arts program that will bring thousands of K-12 students in the San Fernando Valley to the CSUN campus. The State Farm Educational Arts Experience, expected to begin next semester, would provide hundreds of K-12 teachers with training in arts education. Afterwards, they and their students would be invited to campus to put their training into practice. “We are thrilled to be entering into a partnership that provides arts experiences and teacher training that enriches the creative and intellectual development of students across the San Fernando Valley,” stated William Robert Bucker, dean of CSUN’s Mike Curb College of Arts, Media and Communication. Celebration: Health Net of California hosted its 17th annual Celebration of Children Dec. 21. The yearly event brings together local disadvantaged children for a holiday event including food, arts & crafts, games, pictures with Santa and gifts for each child. More than 75 Health Net volunteers hosted the event, which was held at the Hilton Hotel in Woodland Hills. More than 300 children ages 4 to 11 participated from Los Angeles-area organizations including Beyond Shelter, East Los Angeles Women’s Center, The Grace Elliott Center, L.A. Bridges Program, House of Ruth, Lennox Sheriff’s Youth Activity, MotherNet, Regis House and West Valley Family Y.M.C.A. Celebration of Children was launched in 1992 when a group of Health Net associates recommended to the company’s chairman and president, Roger Greaves, that they give up the traditional office holiday party and share their holiday cheer with disadvantaged children. His wife Erika created the first event for Health Net and has chaired Celebration of Children since its inception. Venture: Gumiyo, a mobile marketing and technology provider, announced a venture with the Los Angeles Times to offer online and mobile technology marketing solutions. The mobile marketing initiative connects consumers with The Times classified print and online automotive and real estate advertising. The new service lets in-market car shoppers and home buyers use text messages and the Mobile Web to access detailed advertiser listings, photos and videos and view them on almost any modern mobile handset, according to Gumiyo. The platform also enables car shoppers to access complete CARFAX Vehicle History Reports. “This mobile marketing initiative gives consumers a fast and easy way to shop,” stated Eric Larson, president of Gumiyo. “It turns traditional classified advertising into truly interactive media by giving consumers a way to directly engage The Times’ dealers, agents or brokers listings anytime, while also allowing advertisers to reach thousands of busy, motivated buyers.” CONEJO VALLEY Chef: To promote his new book, Take This Dish and Twist It, Chef George Duran kicked off the Welcome Home reception at the Homewood Suites by Hilton Dec. 16 in Agoura Hills. Duran gave a cooking demo for all Homewood Suites by Hilton hotel guests, as well as a few invited guests. The star of Food Network show “The Secret Life of ,” Duran previously hosted the network’s “Ham on the Street” program. [W/PIC] ANTELOPE VALLEY Lancaster Soccer: An estimated $2 million entered the City of Lancaster’s economy when the Lancaster National Soccer Center (LNSC) hosted the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase Dec. 5-8. The four-day event brought the nationwide academy and the 148 elite soccer clubs associated with it to the Antelope Valley. About 130 of the 148 teams represented cities from outside of California. Twenty-two states as well as three national teams were represented in the competition as well. Select matches were televised on the Fox Soccer Channel, and CNN and ESPN covered the event. Palmdale Awards: The City of Palmdale’s public works department received two 2008 Project of the Year awards presented by the Southern California Chapter (SCC) of the American Public Works Association (APWA) at its annual awards program held Dec. 4 in Lakewood, and one Best Improvement for Public Safety award presented by the High Desert Branch (HDB) of the SCC on Dec. 5 in Acton. The first award Palmdale received from the SCC was for its public Geographic Information System (GIS) Web site. The second award Palmdale received from the SCC was for its 22nd Street East storm drain project. The award the city won from the HDB was for its ADA ramp improvements. During the 11 years that the SCC awards program has existed, the City of Palmdale has received 27 awards for its public works projects and programs. During the nine years that the HDB awards program has existed, the city has received 19 awards for its public works projects and programs. Meeting: The City of Palmdale’s public safety and community relations department will hold a Neighborhood Watch meeting Jan. 10 at noon for property owners and residents who live in Zone 1 at Marie Kerr Park Recreation Center, 39700 30th St. West. Zone 1 is identified as everything west of 10th Street West, north of Palmdale Blvd and west of 20th Street West, south of Elizabeth Lake Road. Crime Prevention Officer Ruth Oschmann and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Community Deputy Humberto Loza from the Palmdale Station will facilitate the meeting. SANTA CLARITA VALLEY Newhall Extension: The Loose Goose Private Cellar will be open for extended hours through New Year’s Eve. Extended hours will be weekdays, 11a.m. to 8 p.m.; and weekends, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The cellar will close Dec. 24 and Dec. 31 at 3 p.m. Loose Goose Private Cellar is at 22508 Market St.

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