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Friday, Jan 27, 2023
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AROUND THE VALLEYS

SAN FERNANDO VALLEY Studio City Songs: Aspiring songwriters and musical performers have a chance to work with producer Toby Gad in his Studio City recording studio for winning the John Lennon Songwriting contest. The winner will write a song with the Grammy Award recipient, as well as receive a guitar and amplifier. Having a role in bringing a new talent to a wider audience is artistically fulfilling, said Gad, who has worked with Beyonce, Fergie, Alicia Keys, and Miley Cyrus. “To me that’s just as powerful as working with someone who is already a superstar,” Gad said. Glendale Connect: Users of FreeConference can now use Facebook to schedule a teleconference and invite friends to attend. The application opens up the ability for family and friends to gather and chat about whatever they want, said Ken Ford, chief executive of FreeConference’s parent company, Global Conference Parners. “FreeConference is not just for business discussions, but for anyone that needs to bring people together for communication,” Ford said. Sherman Oaks Purchase: An acquisition by Schaaf Consulting will make the firm one of the largest affiliate program management companies in the marketing industry. Terms of the deal between ShSchaaf and PartnerCentric were not disclosed. The name of the firm has been changed to Schaaf-PartnerCentric. Combining the two companies brings together the best practices each manages, said Brook Schaaf, chief executive of Schaaf-PartnerCentric. Linda Woods, PartnerCentric founder and president, remains with the new company as a strategic advisor. Among the affiliate programs the firm represents are the eBay Partner Network, 21st Century Auto Insurance, Constant Contact, SnagAJob.com, Moosejaw Mountaineering and Quicken Loans. San Fernando Reading: The Northeast Valley Health Corp. will have a fundraiser May 10 at three El Torito restaurant locations to benefit its pediatric Reach Out and Read program. By presenting a special flyer available at the health center’s website, www.nevhc.org, diners will donate 25 percent of their final bill to the health center to purchase books for children. The participating El Torito locations are: Burbank, 3113 W. Olive Ave.; Northridge, 8855 Tampa Ave.; and Valencia, 27510 The Old Road. Van Nuys Plane: TWC Aviation Inc. has added a Dassault Falcon 2000LX to its managed fleet, the first such aircraft available for charter on the West Coast. The 10-passenger Falcon has a range of 4,000 nautical miles and is up to 40 percent more fuel efficient than other jets in its class. Inside, passengers will enjoy one of the quietest cabins of any large business jet with club seating upholstered in rich Buttermilk leather. The long list of amenities includes a state-of-the-art entertainment system, WiFi, satellite voice and data communications, and a fully equipped galley. Canoga Park Award: Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne was honored by the California Employer Advisory Council for its practice of hiring and promoting U.S. serviceman and women. Pratt & Whitney was among 40 companies in the state nominated for the Veterans Employer of the Year Award. The award recognizes employers who consistently demonstrate positive policies toward U.S. veterans in hiring and promotion, as well as through employee retention, training and benefits. Veterans broaden the diversity of the company and bring skills such as leadership, discipline and adaptability, said Darold Sawyer, manager of Diversity and Equal Employment Opportunity Programs. Universal City Recovery: The Valley Economic Alliance will present its annual economic summit on May 13 at the Sheraton Universal Hotel in Universal City. Speakers include Mark Goldston, chairman, president and CEO of United Online, based in Woodland Hills; and Peter Lowy, managing director of the Westfield Group, owner and operator of shopping centers throughout the Valley region. The forum also includes the annual release of the Valley Economic & Real Estate Report by the College of Business & Economics at California State University, Northridge and The Center for Real Estate. Calabasas Recognition: Therese Tucker, founder and chief executive of financial software provider BlackLine Systems, has been named as a semi-finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Tucker was cited for her accomplishments in building BlackLine from the ground up and contributing to the growth of Southern California as a center for technology innovation. Nominees were evaluated based on criteria such as management style/team building; corporate culture; company profitability and fiscal resourcefulness; product innovation; and contribution to the local community. Finalists will be announced in May, with the winners announced on June 22. Northridge Speech: Society of Professional Journalists National President Kevin Z. Smith will speak at the Kenneth S. Devol First Amendment Forum at California State University, Northridge. Smith has been national president since August, serves as an assistant professor of journalism at Fairmont State University in West Virginia, is a columnist for the Times West Virginian’s Corridor magazine and works as an Associated Press political elections reporter. The forum is named after long-time CSUN journalism instructor Kenneth Devol and takes place at 7 p.m. on May 3 in the Santa Susana Room of the student union. Seniors: The Village at NorthRidge, a new luxury retirement community, had its grand opening on April 21. The community’s modern, upscale design, and first-class amenities and services present an unparalleled setting for seniors who desire a service-enriched lifestyle. “Our residents tell us everything we need to know about who they are and how they want to live,” said Michael Grust, president and CEO of the developer, Senior Resources Group. North Hollywood Store: Rite Aid had a ribbon cutting April for its newest location that incorporates design suggestions made through customer feedback. The store at 11350 Victory Blvd. has a pharmacy area easily seen from the entrance with a lowered ceiling, comfortable chairs, a TV, and connects with the pharmacy consultation room. The design also includes with more visible departments, a centrally located cosmetics department, a new Picture Center, a Thrifty hand-dipped ice cream counter, and drive-through pharmacy services. VENTURA COUNTY Camarillo Trust: Semiconductor manufacturer Semtech Corp. has been named by Forbes magazine as among the Top 100 Most Trustworthy Companies. Semtech scored high in the Accounting and Governance Risk category ranking practices that historically have had a high correlation with increasing shareholder risk. Forbes worked with Audit Integrity, a Los Angeles-based financial analytics company, to find companies that consistently demonstrated transparent and conservative accounting practices and solid corporate governance and management. Leaders: California State University Channel Islands honored area business people at its annual Business & Technology Partnership 2010 Leadership Dinner on April 22. Carl Wesely was named as Business & Community Leader of the Year and Peter Wollons as Technologist of the Year. Wesely is founder of Wesely Thomas Enterprises Inc., a Thousand Oaks-based company specializes in high tech commercial, biotech, medical, and industrial design and construction projects Wollons is chief executive of Camarillo-based Airborne Technologies Inc., a contractor and manufacturer of airframe structural components for the U.S. Air Force and Navy, and for international governments with aircraft manufactured in the U.S. Wollons also founded Airborne Biometrics Group, a developer of facial recognition software. Engines: Transonic Combustions Vice President of Research and Development Chris de Boer took part in a panel discussion on emissions regulations at the SAE 2010 World Congress in Detroit. Improvements to the internal combustion engine are the most economic way to reduce fuel consumption and carbon exposure to the environment, de Boer said. “Sharply reducing global carbon emissions from new passenger vehicles require breakthrough innovation that builds upon current power train systems,” de Boer added. ANTELOPE VALLEY Palmdale Riders: The City of Palmdale will serve as host city for the Stage 6 start of the 2010 Amgen Tour of California. The stage start on May 21 had to be moved from Pasadena due to road closures on the Angeles Crest Highway caused by recent fires and subsequent mudslide damage to the route. Palmdale City Hall will serve as the backdrop of the most difficult stage of race. Riders will follow Sierra Highway to Angeles Forest Highway into the San Gabriel Mountains. The race finishes in the San Bernardino mountains at an elevation of 7,000 feet.

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