Legendary entertainment reporter Rona Barrett speaks with host Ethan Tudor on The Neverhood Radio Show, September 6, 2011:
CONTACT: Marjorie Wass/Juliana Minsky (805) 687-3322/(805) 252-3124, [email protected]
SEE International Trains Surgeons in Sight-Restoring Technique
Fifth annual training in Santa Barbara provides skills needed to treat cataracts, the major cause of blindness worldwide, in humanitarian medical settings
Santa Barbara, CA, August 31, 2011— Cataract, a clouding of the lens of the eye which obstructs the passage of light, is by far the major cause of blindness worldwide (47.8%) and affects millions of people. This Saturday, September 3rd, 19 surgeons – representing four countries, nine U.S. States, and from as far away as Australia – will attend Surgical Eye Expedition (SEE) International’s intensive instructional course and lab to learn Manual Small Incision Cataract Surgery (MSICS) in Santa Barbara. MSICS is considered to be an optimal method to treat the acute cataract cases in the humanitarian medical expedition setting, in developing countries that cannot support the use, transportation and maintenance of sophisticated, expensive equipment.
Since being founded in Santa Barbara in 1974, humanitarian medical nonprofit Surgical Eye Expeditions (SEE) International has completed more than 400,000 sight-restoring surgeries worldwide, with a record 15,463 surgeries performed in 2010.
“It is wonderful to see these board certified eye surgeons taking the time to improve their skills, learning a procedure that can be used in areas where access to modern surgical technology is not available,” said John Crowder, MD, SEE International’s Medical Director and founding board member. “As a result, they will be able to restore sight to some of the poorest and remote areas of the world. I am impressed with their dedication. I am thankful to our faculty, Dr. Janak Shah and Dr. Jeff Rutgard, who collectively complete more than a thousand sight restoring surgeries every year for those most in need .”
SEE International affiliate surgeons typically restore sight to between 50 and 200 people during each five-day clinic expedition.
*** MEDIA ADVISORY ***
WHO: 19 eye surgeons training for SEE International humanitarian medical expeditions; Santa Barbara experts Steven Couvillion M.D. and John Crowder, M.D.; Guest expert training faculty Janak Shah, MBBS, DO (Mumbai, India) and Jeffrey Rutgard, M.D. (San Diego); SEE International staff.
WHAT: SEE International training in cataract surgery for humanitarian medical conditions.
WHEN: Saturday, Sept. 3, 2011; 7:15 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
MEDIA OPPORTUNITY 1:00-2:00 PM during wet-lab session; or by special arrangement
WHERE: University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB), Loma Pelona Center, Room 1108
MEDIA CONTACT: Marjorie Wass/Juliana Minsky (805) 687-3322 /Sat. (805) 689-6618
Since 2006, SEE International has been offering its affiliates an opportunity to improve their skills in the manual methods of cataract removal by organizing the Manual Small Incision Cataract Surgery (MSICS) training course and wet lab through its headquarters in Santa Barbara, California. Taught by experienced faculty, the course is specifically designed for the practicing ophthalmologists who plan on using the technique on one of our expeditions. The training course also provides participants with Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education through the joint sponsorship of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and SEE International.
Faculty for the 2011 MSICS training course include SEE International affiliate experts:
John Crowder. M.D. (Santa Barbara), Faculty Director and SEE International Medical Director and Board Member; Janak Shah, MBBS, DO (Mumbai, India); Jeffrey Rutgard, M.D. (San Diego); Guest Speaker Steven Couvillon, M.D. (Santa Barbara); and Elizabeth Link, RN (Santa Barbara).
A Medical Education Grant from Allergan is supporting the training course in part, and the San Diego Eye Bank is sponsoring the course by provision of human eyes for participant training.
About SEE International
Surgical Eye Expeditions (SEE) International is a nonprofit, humanitarian organization that provides medical, surgical, and educational services by volunteer ophthalmic surgeons with the primary objective of restoring sight to disadvantaged blind individuals worldwide. www.seeintl.org
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||PRESS CONTACT:
Kelly Kapaun/Chris Davis, (805) 687-3322
Harvest for Hospice of Santa Barbara Wine, Food, and Music Festivities Support Local Bereavement Services
The Brander Vineyard in Los Olivos Hosts Harvest Celebration to Benefit Hospice of Santa Barbara
August 30, 2011, Santa Barbara, CA— On Saturday, September 24th from 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm, The Brander Vineyard at 2401 North Refugio Road in Los Olivos will host a harvest afternoon of wine, food, music and fabulous vineyard vistas to benefit Hospice of Santa Barbara’s local services.
“We’re thrilled to be involved in the celebration of Brander Vineyard’s annual harvest,” said Steve Jacobsen. “In addition to providing an opportunity to enjoy local wine, food, and entertainment, Harvest for Hospice of Santa Barbara is supporting the emotional, spiritual and practical needs of the terminally ill and their families in our community.”
Harvest for Hospice of Santa Barbara guests will enjoy a gourmet hors d’oeuvres reception catered by Ca Dario, accompanied by hand-crafted, world-class wines from Brander Winery, while soaking in the vineyard vista views to the music of local Latin guitarist Anthony Ybarra.
Doug Macmillian, acclaimed chef recognized for his award-winning Cioppino, will provide a cooking demonstration as an exclusive preview of the hugely popular Bouillabaisse Festival which will return in May 2012 after a few years’ hiatus, and will also support Hospice of Santa Barbara.
In addition, there will be selected silent auction items including a Winemaker’s Dinner for eight hosted by The Brander Vineyard. Each guest will receive an etched wine glass commemorating the event.
Tickets are $125. To purchase tickets, visit www.hospiceofsantabarbara.org or call (805) 563-8820. All proceeds benefit Hospice of Santa Barbara.
The mission of Hospice of Santa Barbara, Inc. is to care to for anyone experiencing the impact of a life-threatening illness, or grieving the death of a loved one. All services are provided free of charge.
For more information, please call (805) 563-8820 or visit www.hospiceofsantabarbara.org.
WEVing a successful business
Local nonprofit celebrates 20 years of helping entrepreneurs
By Michael Sullivan 08/25/2011
Marsha Bailey, founder of WEV, has helped thousands of up-and-coming business owners throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura counties via her nonprofit.
It’s a mantra the public has heard over and over for the last several years — we need to create more jobs! With Ventura County’s unemployment rate on the rise from 9.5 percent in May to 10.7 percent in July, economic progress seems to be on a slippery slope. Be that as it may, inspirational success stories about local business owners and entrepreneurs are still being made on a daily basis.
Marsha Bailey, founder and CEO of Santa Barbara-based Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV) that serves Ventura, Santa Barbara and southern Kern counties, would be the first one to tell you not to let shocking headlines get you down — the world is anyone’s and everyone’s oyster. WEV, which Bailey founded in 1991, has helped thousands of women start and expand their own businesses through various programs and services, including providing loans.
Thanks to WEV and its programs, Fresco Café, started in 1995 in the city of Santa Barbara, now has franchises in North Santa Barbara County. In Ventura County, Michelle Hirrel of Shell’s Petals off Telegraph Road started her business in 2004 and is still going strong.
Though not so specifically geared toward helping just women these days, over the last two decades, WEV has served more than 13,000 clients through its programs, including more than 4,000 people through the self-employment training program. WEV’s loan fund has provided more than $2.5 million in loans to local, pre-bankable businesses. The success of WEV and its clients has translated into more than 2,000 businesses that have started or grown with WEV’s help, creating or sustaining an estimated 3,500 jobs.
Bailey spoke with the Reporter this week about WEV’s two-decade anniversary, success in business and how times have changed.
VCReporter: It’s been 20 years since you began WEV. What inspired you to start this nonprofit?
In graduate school, I studied the feminist and anti-feminist rhetoric of the suffrage and ERA (Equal Rights Amendment) movements, and I was struck by how little progress we’d made in some areas since the “Declaration of Sentiments” was written and signed at the first Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, N.Y., in 1848. One of the things they noted was that a male tailor earned more than a female seamstress and a male teacher more than a female teacher. When I graduated from college in the ’70s, there was still a huge earnings disparity between men and women, which, although it has shrunk, exists to this day with women earning 77 cents for every dollar men earned . . . It appeared to me that the feminist movement was focused on social equality but wasn’t paying much attention to economic equality. Financial security is so basic. I felt that if women had more money of their own, they would have more power to change other social and political inequities.
How have the world of business and becoming an entrepreneur changed over the years?
Certainly it is no longer unusual for a woman to start up her own business. When we started in 1991, there were few visible women role models who owned or ran large businesses. We’ve made progress since then, but still only 12 Fortune 500 companies are run by women, down from a peak of 15. Women have been starting businesses at a faster rate than men for over a decade, but they still own only 27 percent of all businesses and women-owned businesses generate only 25 percent of the annual sales that male-owned businesses generate. Less than 2 percent of woman-owned businesses get to the $1 million annual sales mark, compared with 6 percent of male-owned businesses, and less than 5 percent of all venture capital goes to women-owned businesses — mostly because women don’t ask for it. That’s why we still need organizations like WEV — to help women think bigger and build more significant businesses.
How has your nonprofit grown and changed since it began?
We started with a budget of $75,000, two staff members and a $30,000 loan fund. We made microloans of up to $1,500 and very little training. Within a year, we realized that the need for training was much greater than we’d anticipated and that our loans were too small . . . Now, with a staff of 11, over a dozen consultants and an annual budget of $1.1 million, we provide training, consulting and loans of up to $50,000 to both women and men throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura counties as well as the mountain communities of Kern County. We’ve made over $2.6 million in small loans to pre-bankable businesses. Twenty years ago, we worked primarily with startups but today we’re working with more existing businesses, helping them stabilize and grow, and we’re also working with more men.
Last year, 19 percent of our clients were men.
What is the secret to your success? To the success of those who have come through WEV?
Tenacity. My mother once told me she hoped I’d have a child as stubborn as I was. There have been many times over the past 20 years when I’ve been discouraged and questioned my ability, but I never gave up. There’s a book called Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway. I think that’s a great philosophy to live by. As a business owner or the director of a nonprofit, no task is ever beneath your dignity; you need to be willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done.
Vision. People often talk about vision and ask me if I ever imagined WEV would be as successful as it has been. I never had a distinct picture in my mind of what WEV might become. What I’m good at is balancing what needs to get done today with thinking about where the organization is going in the future. You need to anticipate what needs are emerging and how you will fulfill them. I’m a firm believer that no organization can stay the same and survive. You have to be constantly changing and growing, and I like change.
Love of learning. I’ve always loved to read and learn new things. I think that being a lifelong learner is essential to success in any field.
WEV will be holding orientations for the upcoming fall session in Ventura on Aug. 28, from noon to 1 p.m., and in Thousand Oaks on Aug. 30, from 6 to 7 p.m. For more information on WEV and/or to register for the orientations, go to www.wevonline.org or call (805)667-8004.
Zizzo’s sizzles as new trend in contemporary coffee shops
By NICK C. TONKIN — AUG. 24, 2011
Zizzo’s serves a variety of coffees at its popular drive-through cafe near Santa Barbara’s Camino Real Marketplace. Daily Sound/Victor Maccharoli
In the face of economic uncertainty, Sue and Michael McDonald have transformed South County’s only remaining drive-through coffee shop from a franchise branch into a mom-and-pop store.
Zizzo’s Coffee, on Storke Road just past the Camino Real Marketplace in Goleta, has been going strong for more than two years. The McDonalds say the secret to their success is right in the shop’s motto, “Good Friends, Great Coffee.”
They also credit advice and support from Women’s Economic Ventures, a nonprofit organization that provides training to aspiring small business owners.
Sue, a licensed real estate agent, said she and her husband got their start a few years ago when they decided to do something different with their lives. Both have been self-admitted coffee lovers for many years
and Sue said that a coffee house is one of the few places that can change someone’s mood within 15 minutes.
“You give them that cup of coffee and they leave happy,” Sue said.
That’s when the idea of a coffee house came to them. Being small business novices, the McDonalds’ sought out franchises to avoid having to, “go it alone.”
They found their match in Zizzo’s Coffee, with its upscale granite-and-wood look and surf theme. The company provided the McDonalds with two-week training and operating manuals and they were off.
But after a year, the owner decided to sell and offered the McDonalds the chance to go independent. The prospect seemed daunting, but the McDonalds took it on.
Still new at business, the McDonalds put their networking skills to the test, getting advice from all their business-owning friends. Sue also enrolled in Women’s Economic Ventures’ Self Employment Training course.
While the McDonalds’ friends had plenty of business management advice for them, they didn’t find much encouragement.
“Everyone we talked to said ‘don’t do it,’” Sue laughed.
But Sue said WEV gave plenty of support, even for someone with a business already in hand. The McDonalds had to hammer out a business plan.
“It makes you think of everything,” Sue said.
Things seemed tough at first. They had little experience managing employees and the drive-through meant having more people on hand during the morning and afternoon rushes.
Sue herself admits she had a fear of customer service back then. She described herself in training as, “A deer in headlights,” a problem in an industry where customer service can make or break a shop.
“People will go out of their way to go to a coffee house that has good customer service and not go back to one that doesn’t,” Sue said.
But Sue found herself rising to the challenge, memorizing names, drink orders, and sharing her life with her customers.
As testament, a Zizzo’s regular invited the McDonalds to his wedding.
Sue remembers him sharing the details of the courtship right up to the moment when the man walked in and told the McDonalds, “I proposed.”
Sue recalled the moment after the man left with his coffee that day.
“Michael turned to me and said ‘that’d why we do this business!’” Sue said.
Running their own business has given the McDonalds more control over their lives and new opportunities to make their mark in Goleta. The shop holds bands, movie nights, and even a fireworks viewing party on
the Fourth of July.
“There’s just a lot of flexibility for what you can do for yourself or for the community,” Sue said.
FYI: Zizzo’s Coffee is at 370 Storke Road, Goleta. 571-8888.
WEV is holding orientations for its fall courses on August 25 and 31
from 12—1 p.m. For registration or more information call 965-6073 or
go online to www.wevonline.org
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Energy Efficiency Program for Mobile Home Owners
Qualifying Residents Can Receive New Bulbs, Showerheads, and Refrigerators
Monday, August 15, 2011
by COLE CONNELLY
Starting today, August 15, Santa Barbara’s mobile home owners have a new opportunity to increase their dwellings’ energy efficiency through the South County Energy Efficiency Partnership (SCEEP) and Synergy Companies. The program, backed by Southern California Edison and Southern California Gas Company, “offers free energy-efficient equipment and free installation” coupled with recommendations on how to avoid wasting energy.
Synergy Companies will be providing “compact fluorescent light bulbs, low-flow showerheads, faucet aerators, refrigerator replacement, carbon monoxide testing” among an array of other goodies, including checkups for heat and air leaks, to qualified customers. They also plan on directing those eligible toward other programs that reduce utility bills for income-qualified households by as much as 20 percent.
Matthew Clark, who works as the marketing director for Synergy Companies, said Synergy has been working with various mobile home programs for 10 years, but this will be the first chance for Santa Barbara residents to take advantage of the opportunity with the aid of an income assistance program. “Not only is the program free,” he said, “but we also make people’s homes healthier, more comfortable, more energy efficient, and sometimes more safe.”
Synergy Companies has maintained a strong record of service as well with an “A+” Better Business Bureau rating and 30 decades of partnership with area utility companies. “They really trust us,” Clark said. The program is first come, first serve until funding for energy retrofits and inspections runs out or is terminated. Clark estimated that the company should be able to serve around 600 household units a month.
SCEEP, said representatives, has been a ubiquitous force in cleaner, more efficient energy in the greater Santa Barbara area since 2006, helping homeowners and smaller, growing businesses both financially and informatively to become more competent energy users. “Our job is to encourage energy conservation and programs, to help people get incentives to make energy conservation less costly,” said Jim Dewey, Santa Barbara’s Facilities and Energy manager.
Those interested in signing up for the program can visit synergycompanies.org or call (888) 988-9829.