VALLEY FORUM: Has Your Gift Giving Changed? With the holidays fast approaching, shopping malls beckon but economic realities not present in years past cause some to hesitate. So, the San Fernando Valley Business Journal asks: Given this year’s economic downturn, have you changed your holiday gift-buying strategy? James R. Felton Partner Greenberg & Bass Encino I have not yet begun my holiday shopping. Notwithstanding the economic slowdown, I probably will spend about as much as I normally spend. The gifts that I purchase are intended to show people gratitude, and my heart will probably not let me compromise what I give because of a slower economy. But, if you know of a good sale …. Brandon Bogeaus Regional Vice President/Branch Manager Mercantile National Bank Encino The recent economic downturn has not changed my strategy in the area of gift giving. I have a great deal of confidence in the economic resilience of the Valley community and, despite the recent national tragedies, our generosity and goodwill will remain unaffected. Bill Daniel CEO Mission Community Hospital Panorama City/ San Fernando As a not-for-profit organization, we stay modest and regulated with corporate gift giving. It’s different for us in comparison to large corporations in that expenses are accounted for very carefully. Our strategy hasn’t changed at all. We offer to our staff gift certificates from different retailers. Our organization sets up toy drives for the holidays to help our community. During the end of the year, we offer an employee recognition award dinner where we also encourage our medical staff to give gifts to employees. Sally Iskenderian Development Director Child Care Resource Center Van Nuys My shopping strategy hasn’t changed at least not yet, given the fact that I’m just starting. I consider myself to be an educated consumer, as well as a good bargain spotter, so the challenge is always finding what I want at the price. Looking around, the temptations are there and I find myself responding with the usual level of enthusiasm. Hopefully, with everything going on in the world today, the holiday season shopping might give us a bit of good news as we deal with today’s economy. James Boldizar Sales Manager Westlake Village Inn Westlake Village No, I haven’t really changed my strategy. The only thing I’ve changed on purchasing holiday gifts is to look for something more valuable and meaningful. The cost is secondary. In our company, we are focusing on our top repeat clients by providing unique gifts and by maintaining our tradition that will come within our valued services.