Progress April 2021

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Modesto Chamber oF COMMERCE

VOL. 42 | ISSUE 4 | april 2021

Citizen Of The Year Green Business Milestone Members

We’ve Got You Covered SINCE 1867

In times of uncertainty, it is nice to know who you can count on. Bank of Stockton has been a source of

strength and stability for more than a century and a half. We’ve helped generations of families and businesses through good times and tough times. We will always be here for our customers and our communities. All of our branches remain open with our staff of friendly professionals ready to help. As uncertain times continue, rely on us! We’ve got you covered when it comes to your banking and financial needs.


Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

IN MODESTO 1302 J St. & 4204 Dale Rd.

Mission Statement

The Modesto Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to serving the greater Modesto Area, regional businesses and community prosperity through advocacy, collaboration, access to leaders, economic development, connectivity and business education.

april 2021 | CONTENTS

Executive Committee Chairman

Michael Gaffney, PG&E

Past Chairman

Steve Rank, Rank Investigations and Protection, Inc.

Vice Chair, External Operations Michael Moradian Jr. Peace of Mind Pest Control

Vice Chair, Internal Operations, Treasurer

Citizen Honors

Patricia Gillum Pat Gillum CPA


board of Directors

Garrett Ardis- Huff Construction Company Inc. Dennis Bettencourt- Blue Diamond Growers Brad Blakeley, Edward Jones Investments Kirstie Boyett, The State Theater David Halvorson Jr.- American Chevrolet Warren Kirk, Doctors Medical Center Brian McDermott, Team S.O.S DeSha McLeod, Community Hospice Inc. Kymber Miller- Sysco Central California Inc. Eric Nielsen, Gianelli Nielsen Peggy O'Donnell, Mid-Valley Productions Jason Pineda, Freshpoint Inc. Bill Robinson, Principal Financial Group Dejune Shelton- Modesto Junior College Madhu Singh, Bank of Stockton Jared Steinwert, F&M Bank John Villines- Modesto Gospel Mission


EMC Leadership



CEO Message







Neptune Water

President & CEO

Trish Christensen Modesto Chamber of Commerce


Publisher: Modesto Chamber of Commerce

209.577.5757 •




Small Business Honors

Distribution: 209 Magazine


Advertising Sales:


Excellence In Education

Graphic Design: 209 Magazine 209.634.9141 • Printer: 209 Magazine

Strategic Plan


209.634.9141 • 209.634.9141 209.845.4074 © Copyright 2021 Modesto Chamber of Commerce. Some parts of this magazine may be reproduced or reprinted, however, we require that permission be obtained in writing. 209.577.5757,


SERVICE Membership Honors


Administrative Assistant, Hope Gyorfi Administrative Assistant, Jolene Camarena Events Coordinator, Felicia Lopez Membership Coordinator, Sabrinna Gonzales Staff Accountant, Jaime Lastra


Welcome Team

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in

this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Modesto Chamber of Commerce.

Distinguished Service


PROGRESS MAGAZINE 1114 J Street • Modesto, CA 95354 209. 577.5757 • Fax 209. 577.2673 •

april 2021


A Message From The President & CEO Annual Accolades By Trish Christensen


month later than normal, and without any public glitz, glamour, or gowns we found our own COVID safe way to focus on what matters most by our tradition of recognizing stellar stars in our community. The accomplishments of our members, volunteers, and community partners who were nominated by either member choice, board choice, or committee choice, based on category were presented in mid-March. These were done in a quiet, private, and individual award ceremony for each recipient. If you missed watching the presentations on our social media platforms, please go to our website to view each at your leisure. We greatly enjoyed honoring these incredible people and organizations. You will notice a couple of unique elements to the array of awards we presented. Due to COVID – the 2019/2020 Leadership Modesto Class paused last March and is looking forward to finishing their experience later this spring/ summer. With that in mind, their annual award is also suspended until the class concludes. Every class knows it is “the best class ever” and this one will feel the same, no doubt. But it will honestly be the longest class ever by morphing into what we hope to be the only 2-year class that ever occurs – they are now known as the 2019-2021 class.


You will also notice two new awards. One is now a permanent addition as we build on the number of businesses clamoring to join our California Green Business Network – Stanislaus (CaGBN-Stan) sustainability program.


Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

During the last few months of 2020, we were able to work with, and support, several businesses as they gained their Green Business Certifications on the CaGBN platform. We were excited to be able to honor that effort. An award we would like to believe will only apply once, our COVID Resiliency award, was presented to an organization that worked tirelessly from the moment we all “shut down”. Within days of the shelter in place order, they launched resources, a plan of attack, and a call to action on various fronts in support of multiple stakeholder groups within our county and city. The Chamber TEAM had to think long and hard to come up with what felt right regarding the 2020 Awards presentations. Our desire to honor those who shined, especially amidst the fog of COVID last year, never wavered. The how, was the challenge. In the end, we presented one award at a time, individually, in the Chamber Conference room with just the winner, an appropriate co-presenter, a staff member taking the video, and myself. We worked hard to highlight each on social media individually throughout the week of March 15th, striving to give every recipient their own “limelight” moment. Those videos and photos now reside on our website blog, and the formal winner’s photos and summaries will be found in this edition. The theme for April is our Annual Awards and Anniversaries. We hope you enjoy reading about the 2020 highlights~ With warm regards, Trish

MISSION The Modesto Chamber of Commerce to serving theArea, greater MISSIONSTATEMENT: STATEMENT: The Modesto Chamber of Commerce is dedicatedistodedicated serving the greater Modesto regional businesses community prosperity through advocacy, collaboration, access to leaders, MISSION The Modesto Chamber of Commerce isthrough dedicated to serving the greater Modesto Area,STATEMENT: regional and businesses and community prosperity advocacy, collaboration, economic development, connectivity and business education.

Modesto Area,economic regional businesses and community prosperity through advocacy, collaboration, access to leaders, development, connectivity and business education. Toour execute our adopted mission have developed an acronym that helps keep us focused. access to leaders, economic connectivity and business education. That To execute adopted mission we development, havewe developed an acronym that helps keep us focused. That acronym is “CARES: Community, Advocacy, Relationships, Education and Service.” acronym is “CARES: Community, Relationships, Education andkeep Service.” That To execute our adopted missionAdvocacy, we have developed an acronym that helps us focused. acronym is “CARES: Community, Advocacy, Relationships, Education and Service.”





At its heart the Modesto Chamber is a community of likeminded

The Chamber serves the education community by hosting the

business owners who share the vision for enjoying a thriving economy

annual State of Business and Education event, by fund-raising for local

and creating and maintaining our community as a vibrant place to live,

students at the Ag Aware and Harvest Luncheon annual series, and

work and play. The Modesto Chamber is the go-to resource and

partnering with local schools and colleges to train and educate young

At its heart the Modesto Chamber is a community of likeminded

business owners who share the vision for enjoying a thriving economy

and creating and maintaining our community as a vibrant place to live,

work and play. The Modesto Chamber is the go-to resource and

The Chamber serves the education community by hosting the

annual State of Business and Education event, by fund-raising for local

students at the Ag Aware and Harvest Luncheon annual series, and partnering with local schools and colleges to train and educate young

facilitator of ideas and communication for nonprofits, governmental men and women, all in keeping with our pledge to help provide a ready facilitator of ideas and communication for nonprofits, governmental men and women, all in keeping with our pledge to help provide a ready

agencies, and community leaders. More More than than just ajust business club,club, the the workforce the Chamber Chamber agencies, and community leaders. a business workforcetotoserve serve local local employers. employers. Additionally, Additionally, the Modesto Chamber strives to affect its environment for positive educates its members on practical solutions and best practices through Modesto Chamber strives to affect its environment for positive educates its members on practical solutions and best practices through transformation by supporting change agents in the community. its Progress Magazine articles, monthly Chamber University and Seeds transformation by supporting change agents in the community. its Progress Magazine articles, monthly Chamber University and Seeds ofof Success speaker monthlycommittee committee Success speakerseries, series,workshops workshops and and seminars, seminars, monthly meetings, and SCORE counseling. meetings, and SCORE counseling.



Chamber Staff, Board of Directors and many of our topical

Chamber Staff, Board of Directors and many of our topical

committees, such as Economic Development and Government

committees, such as Economic Development and Government

Relations, are engaged and proactively representing our members by

Relations, are engaged and proactively representing our members by

The Chamber believes in service to the community and to its

The Chamber believes in service to the community and to its members. The Chamber Board and staff are active on many nonprofit

addressing business initiatives, addressing issues in our community members. The Chamber Board and staff are active on many nonprofit and government committees, donating their business expertise, time

addressing issues in our community and business working toinitiatives, relieve theaddressing regulatory burdens businesses endure due

and working toand relieve regulatory The burdens businesses due as to local statethe governments. Modesto Chamberendure gets results, to local shown and state Modestomore Chamber gets results, as by governments. recent victoriesThe in forming rational ADA legislation, shown by recent avictories in measure, forming electing more rational legislation, defeating no-growth businessADA friendly candidates, working alongside otherselecting to passbusiness Measure L, a candidates, local self-help defeating a no-growth measure, friendly measure, for our workingtransportation alongside others to and passchampioning Measure L,fora more local water self-help agribusiness, industry citizens. By working together, transportation measure, andand championing for more waterour formembers our are stronger together than they ever be on their own. agribusiness, industry and citizens. Bycould working together, our members

are stronger together than they could ever be on their own.



The Modesto Chamber specializes in building relationships among business and serving as the nexus to businesses, nonprofit

The Modesto Chamber in building relationships and specializes governmental agencies. We hostamong monthly organizations, businessnetworking and serving the special nexusevents, to businesses, nonprofit events, as annual an annual trade show, and our long-running Gala. Membersagencies. also may serve committees or go organizations, and governmental We onhost monthly through the Leadership Modesto program wheretrade they will build longnetworking events, annual special events, an annual show, and term relationships with key leaders in the business world and or go our long-running Gala. Members also may serve on committees

andand government their resources. committees, The Chamberdonating also serves its business individualexpertise, members time by andhosting resources. Thecuttings Chamber alsointroduce serves itsa individual members ribbon which new business to theby

hosting ribbon cuttings introduce new business to the community, valuable and which cost effective (free) amarketing opportunities, community, costworkshops effective (free) marketing exposure valuable to social and media, and training for opportunities, our business partnersto andsocial their associates, and other free andtraining discounted exposure media, workshops and forresources. our business

partners and their associates, and other free and discounted resources.

C - Community

C - Community A - Advocacy

A - Advocacy

R - Relationships

R - Relationships E - Education

ES--Education Service S - Service

throughlocal the community. Leadership Modesto program where they will build longterm relationships with key leaders in the business world and local community.

april 2021





Ambassador & Welcome Team Meeting *Preregister via Zoom 8:00 A.M.



ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Committee Dan Leavitt, Manager of Regional Initiatives, ACE Forward, Update on ACE Train *Preregister via Zoom 11:30 A.M.

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Committee* Jaylen French, Community & Economic Director, City of Modesto *Preregister via Zoom 11:30 A.M.


Ambassador & Welcome Team Meeting *Preregister via Zoom 8:00 A.M


Business U: Effective Leadership Traits Part 2 Debra Hendricks owner of DH Facilitating & Training Consulting *Preregister via Zoom 12:00 P.M.


Modesto Leadership Series *Preregister via Zoom 11:45AM-1PM


Stanislaus Green Team REPSCO *Preregister via Zoom 12:00 P.M.


Tech Connect *Preregister via Zoom 2:00 P.M.


Government Relations Council Mayor Sue Zwhalen *Preregister via Zoom 11:30 AM


rising professionals *Preregister via Zoom 12:00 PM


Women in Business Madhu Singh AVP Community Branch Manager Bank of Stockton *Preregister via Zoom 4:00 P.M.




Business U: Effective Leadership Traits Part 1 Debra Hendricks owner of DH Facilitating & Training Consulting *Preregister via Zoom 12:00 P.M.


Stanislaus Green Team James Summerfield, ProClean Supply *Preregister via Zoom 12:00 P.M.


Tech Connect Eric Vaughn, Owner of One Eleven Web Design *Preregister via Zoom 2:00 P.M.


Government Relations Council Joe Lopez, Manager of City of Modesto Future challenges & Opportunities for the City of Modesto *Preregister via Zoom 11:30 A.M.



Modesto Chamber Leadership Series Guest Leader: Kamaljit Bagri - Agricultural Commissioner for Stanislaus County *Preregister via Zoom 11:45AM-1PM


rising professionals Christine Schweininger Executive Director Valley Builders Exchange, Inc *Preregister via Zoom 12:00 P.M. Women in Business Rachelle Elledge Barkus Senior Director, Educational Options Modesto City Schools *Preregister via Zoom 4:00 P.M.

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

*See website for more detail. Find Zoom Registry links and more at Please note that calendar events and details are subject to change.

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| Business march 2021



Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Citizen of the Year - Brad Hawn


he Citizen of the Year award is given to honor an outstanding member of our community. Recipients of the award are nominated by the community and demonstrate creativity, vision, leadership, and citizenship. The 2020 honoree is Brad Hawn. Brad has and continues to do much for our community. He served several years on the City Council and is very active in trying to find solutions for our homelessness problems. He serves as the co-chair of Focus on Prevention and takes a strong leadership role in addressing many issues affecting our county and is very active in the College Area Neighborhood Association. His leadership has resulted in a safer, cleaner, stronger neighborhood. He is also the past president of Modesto Rotary Club. Recently he took an active role in helping downtown restaurant build parklets and adapt to the need for outdoor dining. Brad is also an artist who regularly donates artwork for charity auctions. He and wife Nancy are very generous to many of our nonprofit organizations. They donate money as well as make their beautiful home available for charitable events.

He is a kindhearted gentleman who works tirelessly for the betterment of our community for all the right reasons. Brad Hawn was selected to receive the Citizen of the Year Award for 2020. Brad Hawn - CHG Structural joined the Modesto Chamber of Commerce in 2010 and has demonstrated creativity, vision, leadership, and citizenship in our community.

COVID Resiliency Award – Love Stanislaus Inc.


he COVID Resilience Award is given to a business or organization that has shown exceptional resilience in response to the impact of COVID-19. This organization made innovative adjustments and investments to address the needs of others, to support their employees, and be a true resource to the business community and community at large.

On March 17, 2020, the Love Our Neighbors COVID-19 website went live creating the website to include ways to sign-up to give or get help putting together a database to track the requests for help, food pantries and volunteers to start with, expanded with the addition of Spanish speaking forms, listing volunteer opportunities that displayed on their website for food pantries, taking requests and volunteers from southern San Joaquin County and mobilizing groups of 10 to 20 volunteers for weekly deliveries from the County Senior Aging and Vet Center. In order to handle the numerous requests for help, they organized a virtual “call center” made up of hand-picked volunteers that became case workers who talked to the clients to triage their need,

searched for a food provider that best suited their need and location, then match them up with a volunteer who would pick-up/deliver from the food provider. The COVID-19 Get Help website was updated to divert all requests for help to 211 due to their staffed call center. Love Our Neighbors was able to fill a gap during a time where there was no viable option. For more information about Love Stanislaus Inc. please go to

april 2021


Love Stanislaus Inc. won the COVID Resiliency Award for 2020. Love Modesto/Love Stanislaus Inc. joined the Modesto Chamber of Commerce in 2019 and has made a tremendous commitment to take care of our city.


announcements Provost & Pritchard Announces New Vice President


rovost & Pritchard Consulting Group is proud to announce that Matt Klinchuch, PE, has been promoted to Vice President in its Visalia office and that Kevin Johansen, PE, has been elected to serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the company. Johansen becomes only the third person to hold the role in the firm’s history, following founder Jim Provost and most recently, Dale Melville. “Matt has already established himself as water resource leader in the Kaweah and south valley area, and we are excited for how he will help us continue to grow and serve our clients in the years ahead,” said Ronald Samuelian, President/CEO of the firm. “Kevin has been a long-time member of our Board and is committed to carrying forward our employee-focused and client-service priorities.” Klinchuch, who was also selected to Provost & Pritchard’s Board of Directors, is a Senior Engineer at Provost & Pritchard and has been with the firm for nearly 10 years. His experience has been mainly focused on water resources engineering and has played an integral role in several water design and regulatory projects in the Central Valley. Recently, he has been a key player in assisting project teams and clients with efforts related to the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA).

Johansen has been with Provost & Pritchard since 1988 and has served on the board for many years. He has an extensive background in the study, planning, design, and administration of surface water distribution systems, water district management, water supply planning, groundwater recharge and groundwater management. Established in 1968, Provost & Pritchard Matt Klinchuch Consulting Group has a strong tradition of engineering and consulting excellence throughout California. With office locations in Fresno, Clovis, Visalia, Bakersfield, Modesto, Los Banos, Chico and Sacramento, the firm features a mix of seasoned professionals, complemented by younger staff with fresh ideas. Provost & Pritchard specializes in civil, agricultural, and structural engineering, environmental and land use planning, hydrogeology Kevin Johansen and geology, surveying, and construction management services in the areas of water resources, municipal infrastructure, agriculture, site development, and environmental compliance. For more information, visit www. or email

President, CEO Of Central Valley Community Bank Announces Retirement



he Board of Directors of Central Valley Community Bancorp (Company) (NASDAQ: CVCY), a bank holding company headquartered in Fresno, California, and the parent company of Central Valley Community Bank (Bank), joined James M. Ford, President & CEO, to announce his intention to retire in early spring 2022. Ford will continue in his current role and duties until a successor is named.


“Serving as Central Valley Community Bank’s third leader in our 41-year history has been a tremendous experience that I have valued each day since I began in 2014,” stated James M. Ford, President & CEO of Central Valley Community Bank and Bancorp. “I am honored to have shared the oversight of the Bank’s growth with a talented group of executives and teammates. They are a special group of bankers who will continue to excel into the future. I have no doubt the Bank is in good hands.” Ford brought over 30 years of banking and overall financial leadership expertise to Central Valley Community Bank when he joined the Bank in 2014. Under his guidance, the Bank’s Greater Sacramento Region significantly expanded its footprint as well as grew business relationships organically and through two acquisitions.

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Additionally, assets nearly doubled to over $2 billion and tangible book value per share grew from $8.10 to $15.19 thus far during his tenure. “For many years prior to joining Central Valley Community Bank I had admired their success. I am pleased to have had the opportunity to lead the team and Company over the past seven years to their next level of success, and I look forward to transitioning my successor,” stated Ford. “We are proud that in our 41-year-old history our Company has been led by only three CEOs and honored that it has been led the past seven years by Jim’s tireless commitment to the Bank, our employees, our shareholders and the communities we serve. He is an accomplished leader and we wish him success in his retirement after the transition,” said Daniel J. Doyle, Chairman of the Board of Central Valley Community Bancorp and Bank. The Board of Directors has established a search committee to review and implement its succession plan by evaluating internal and external candidates and potentially engaging the assistance of an executive recruitment firm.


Emanuel Medical Center Announces Changes To Leadership Team


manuel Medical Center has appointed Kathy Van Meter as its new Chief Nursing Officer and Dianna Romo as its new Associate Administrator.

Effective Feb. 1, 2021, Kathy assumed responsibility for all nursing and designated patient care functions within Emanuel. She oversees and coordinates the nursing units and their daily operations. “Kathy is dedicated to the patient experience and advocating for patients to receive the safest care of the highest quality,” said Lani Dickinson, CEO of Emanuel Medical Center. “We are excited to have her step into this role and continue to implement best practices for our patients.” Kathy has been a registered nurse for more than 20 years and has served as Associate Administrator at Emanuel since 2019. Prior to her role at Emanuel, she served in various Clinical Informatics roles in California and Arizona. Kathy was also employed at Legacy Health System in Portland for more than eight years, where the majority of her time was spent serving in the emergency department. Kathy earned Associate Degrees in Nursing and Liberal Arts from Chaffey Community College, a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Information Systems from DeVry University and Master of Science in Health Informatics from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is a member of the Association of California Nurse Leaders and the California Association for Healthcare Quality.

Taking over for Kathy as Associate Administrator, Dianna will develop management objectives for various hospital departments and monitor results. She will coordinate activities within various departments and help resolve issues with department leads. Dianna will also support administration with special projects, and with short and longterm strategic planning.

Kathy Van Meter

“We are thrilled to have Dianna move into this position,” Dickinson said. “She has already shown a passion for ensuring we deliver excellent service and meet the needs of the patients we serve.” Dianna has been at Emanuel since Dianna Romo 2011 and has served in various roles including Human Resources Director, Human Resources Manager and Human Resources Generalist. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration & Management and a Master’s in Business Administration, both from California State University Stanislaus.

Modesto Chamber Launching Stanislaus County Green Business Network Program

The Green Business Network Stanislaus Program is a measuresbased certification program for businesses that desire to save money, resources, and who values the environment and their employees' health. Certified Green Businesses exceed all environmental regulations and implement specific practices to reduce pollution, save water, conserve energy, and protect human health. The program launched in Stanislaus County in 2020 and has certified five businesses and another seven are registered and working on their certification. Customers want to support businesses that are doing their part for the environment. According to a recent survey of California Green Businesses, 42% reported an increase in business since receiving their recognition. A 2019 Nielson poll suggests that 81% of global respondents said it is "extremely" or "very"

important for them that companies implement programs to improve the environment. "We are excited to launch the California Green Business Network in Stanislaus County. Here at the Chamber, we have been encouraging our community to change sustainability. With the additional funding, we will take a greater leap to get our local businesses certified. We encourage you to take action to conserve resources and prevent pollution in your facility & operation, conserve water, energy, and air quality in our community", said Jolene Camarena, California Green Business Network Stanislaus Coordinator. Learn more about the Green Business network Stanislaus Program at California Green Business Network Stanislaus County - Modesto Chamber of Commerce (modchamber. org) and the California Green Business Network at ( april 2021



he Modesto Chamber of Commerce, through a competitive grant process, has been awarded a $30,000 grant to certify green businesses throughout the county from the California Green Business Network. This grant was provided by the California Environmental Protection Agency, to expand the Green Business Program into Stanislaus County.


Doctors Medical Center, Doctors Hospital of Manteca Recognized for Higher Quality in Bariatric Surgery Doctors Medical Center and Doctors Hospital of Manteca are proud to be recognized by Blue Shield of California with a Blue Distinction® Centers for Bariatric Surgery designation, as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated healthcare facilities that show a commitment to delivering high quality patient safety and better health outcomes, based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community and leading accreditation and quality organizations. The Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery program provides a full range of bariatric surgery care, including surgical care, post-operative care, outpatient follow-up care, and patient education. Doctors Medical Center and Doctors Hospital of Manteca are proud to be recognized by Blue Shield of California for meeting the rigorous Blue Distinction Center quality selection criteria for bariatric surgery set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. “We are proud of our teams for their continued dedication to providing safe, high-quality bariatric healthcare in our communities and for being recognized for their commitment,” said Erin Bashaw, DNP, MSN, RN, Coordinator of Weight Loss Surgery at Doctors Hospital of Manteca. “For those who are considering weight loss surgery, we encourage you to consult a bariatric surgeon to discuss the benefits and risks, and whether it’s an option for your weight-loss journey.” The annual healthcare spends on obesity and obesity-related conditions expected is expected to rise by 2030, if the rate of obesity in the U.S. continues to climb. Bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment for severely obese patients because it allows for substantial, sustained weight loss, which leads to, improves, or resolves obesity-related co-morbidities like type 2 diabetes. On average, healthcare costs were reduced by 29 percent within five years following bariatric surgery, due to the reduction or elimination of obesity-related conditions, based on findings by ASMBS. To receive a Blue Distinction Centers for Bariatric Surgery designation, a healthcare facility must demonstrate success in meeting patient safety measures as well as bariatric-specific quality measures, including complication and readmission rate for laparoscopic procedures in sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass, and adjustable gastric band. All designated facilities must also be nationally accredited at both the facility and bariatric program-specific levels.


“We applaud Doctors Medical Center and Doctors Hospital of Manteca’s work in weight loss and bariatric surgery for our members and the citizens and California communities at-large. Coordinated efforts to manage weight, and underlying issues linked to obesity, is very important for us, and they have excelled at addressing these concerns and providing people with a new lease on life with the exceptional assistance they offer,” said Dr. Seth Glickman, chief health officer at Blue Shield of California.


Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality specialty care in the areas of bariatric surgery, cancer care, cardiac care, cellular immunotherapy, fertility care, gene therapy, knee and hip replacement, maternity care, spine surgery, substance use treatment and recovery, and transplants, while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the care they deliver. Research shows that, compared to other healthcare facilities, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients.

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Federal Grant Will Launch Economic Development COVID Response Plan They have a time-tested proven method of determining three to four initiatives that an organization can lead that have associated accountability metrics. The last plan has been a great success and has led to the creation of VOLT Institute with its various manufacturing training programs, leadership development programs and skills bootcamps. It also led to the creation of a more vibrant economic research program, new workforce development programs and greater support for local businesses. Our breadand-butter service has been traditional business attraction, retention and expansion. Since the start of the previous plan, OS in partnership with many others has helped to attract more than 4,000 jobs to Stanislaus County.

Opportunity Stanislaus has retained the services of Strategic Solutions of Austin, Texas to assist in developing the strategic plan. In 2016 Strategic Solutions helped develop a five-year plan which enabled OS to launch several new initiatives such as VOLT Institute to help support local industry.

The next strategic plan will take a close look at how the global COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted business and created new paradigms that will impact economic development. We encourage your involvement.

The Strategic Solutions team consists of Tom Mucks, Fred Mickelson, Mike Noonan, and Mike Dryden. Combined they have more than 150 years of experience in economic development. They have helped create plans for more than 100 economic development organizations throughout the United States.

To learn more about Opportunity Stanislaus please check out our website To learn more about our strategic planning process, please contact Dave White, CEO, Opportunity Stanislaus, via email at dwhite@ We appreciate our strong partnership with the Chamber.

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pportunity Stanislaus (OS) was recently awarded a $155,000 federal grant from the Economic Development Administration to fund a five-year economic development strategic plan for how the organization and partners will respond as a region to economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Opportunity Stanislaus will work with the Modesto Chamber of Commerce, Stanislaus County, all nine cities, OS investors, and many other partners to determine what the economic focus will be for the next five years to elevate economic prosperity in the county and Northern Dave White San Joaquin Valley region.

1.800.94CAPAX • 209.526.3110 Giddings, Corby, Hynes Lic# 0144783

april 2021


Green Business Award - Blue Diamond Growers


he Green Business Award has been given to a company that demonstrates innovative sustainability in all of their business practices. The 2020 Green Business Award goes to Blue Diamond Growers. Blue Diamond Growers is the world’s leading almond marketer and processor. It led the development of California’s almond industry since it was formed as a nonprofit, grower-owned cooperative over 100 years ago. Today Blue Diamond has over 3,000 growers across California. With all the challenges for businesses in 2020, they did not let it stop them from becoming Green Certified. Blue Diamond Growers joined the California Green Business Network Stanislaus program and made the commitment to save resources not only for their facility, but also the community. The facility features several energy-saving attributes including LED lighting, a multi-staged HVAC system, and temperaturecontrolled processes. To meet and exceed today’s stringent food safety standards, the new facility houses separate room enclosures with electronic-controlled entry to better control environmental conditions, along with automated pressurized air, and automated controls for all processes and packaging, including monitoring line performance, yields and downtime.

Additionally, the integrated processing lines move finished product direct to cold storage and shipping and will greatly reduce material handling and trucking costs. Beneath the facility, buried perforated pipe will keep stormwater on-site to recharge the ground water and deliver it directly to the soil. Blue Diamond Growers won The Green Business Award for 2020. Blue Diamond Growers joined the Modesto Chamber of Commerce in 2019 and has been implementing sustainable practices for a cleaner and efficient community since 2020. For more information about Blue Diamond Growers please go to

Go Green With Neptune Water Solutions


eptune Water Solutions is helping businesses go green by eliminating bottled water usage as well as helping companies implement a sanitization protocol for their drinking water. The challenge with using the 5-gallon bottledwater jugs is that you expose everyone that uses them to drink contaminated water, as they are a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses including COVID-19. We can eliminate all of that risk. Our dispensers are closed systems, meaning air never touches our water until it is dispensed into your glass.


We also help eliminate vendor visits by 92 percent since you won’t have any bottled deliveries. Our dispensers have antimicrobial technology baked into the surface, keeping germs from colonizing on the coolers; this aids in your effort of reducing sick days. We offer two options for touchless dispensing with our foot pedal and sensor pad for a hands-free way to dispense your water. Our installation process is simple and seamless, all we require is a water source and a power outlet, we take care of the rest. Benefits of making a switch from bottled water or a nontouchless option: - Our units have a 5-Stage Water Purification process, including reverse osmosis: 99.99 percent of all contaminants are removed. - PH Balance … Less acidic, more alkaline. 14

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Mineral Enhanced … Added Calcium, Magnesium and Electrolytes to improve health. - In-Tank Sanitization … Prevents the growth of bacteria once the purified water is in the stainless -steel tank. - Endless Supply of Purified Water … Never run out of water again. - Bottle Free … No need to store or lift heavy 42-pound water jugs. - Closed System … Eliminates all airborne contamination. - Clean Contact Surface … Prevents germs from colonizing on the cooler. - Touch-free Dispensing … Compliant with enhanced cleaning protocols and reduces need for surface contact. - Budgeting Made Easy … One low monthly payment. No hidden costs. With bottled water, the more you use the more you spend. Contact us to set up a 7-day free trial so you have the opportunity to do a side-by-side comparison before making a change. Within 7 days you can start drinking the safest, healthiest, and purest water you can drink.

advocacy april 2021


MODESTO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE GOVERNMENT RELATIONS COUNCIL GRC Meetings will be held on the 3rd Friday of the month at 11:30am on Zoom until further notice.



To promote the region’s economic strengths and vitality; identify and promote services that are valuable to our members; advocate for public policy that is advantageous to the business community; and fully participate and partner in activities to improve quality of life.



Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Comcast – Chamber Member of the Year

The 2020 winner of the Chamber Member of the Year is Comcast. Comcast Cable is one of the United States’ largest video, high-speed internet, and phone providers to residential customers under the Xfinity brand, and also provides these services to businesses via Comcast Business. Although their footprint spans across 39 states and the District of Columbia, they truly understand the importance of local investments and engagement. Comcast is proud of the long-standing membership of the Modesto Chamber of Commerce and the organization’s mission to support the local business community, which serves as the backbone for our economy. Over the years, they have also partnered with local organizations, including the Central Valley Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Opportunity Stanislaus, Learning Quest of Stanislaus County, among others, to help support initiatives around economic development, education, and digital literacy. As a local internet service provider, they take pride in the strength and reliability of their network. Comcast is immensely proud of its $15 million investment announced this year, to enhance and expand their internet infrastructure in Modesto. Upon completion, the network will have the capacity to deliver up to 10-Gigabits-per-second (Gbps) Ethernet speeds, and increased capacity and reliability to an estimated 2,000 businesses throughout downtown and central Modesto. This project was made possible with the support of the Modesto Chamber of Commerce, who provided support at the press announcement and by hosting a virtual panel event with local,

leading experts on technology and economic development and sustainability. Comcast has been effective with COVID responses and have continued commitment to helping the local communities. When the Country entered into lockdown in March, Comcast announced they would provide free internet service for the first 60 days for new Internet Essentials customers, and free access to more than 1.5 million public Xfinity WiFi hotspots to everyone, the largest network of its kind in the country. As the uncertainty continues, Comcast has extended these commitments three times, most recently announcing they will continue through June 30, 2021. Comcast made a $10,000 contribution to the Stanislaus Community Foundation’s COVID Relief Fund to support local businesses impacted by closures. In September, they also launched their Internet Essentials Partnership Program, which enables a third party to sponsor low-cost internet for their constituents, and entered into a partnership with Stanislaus State University to provide free internet service for select university students throughout Stanislaus, Merced, Tuolumne, and San Joaquin counties. Due to ongoing impacts of the pandemic, social unrest, and environmental events, Comcast recently announced the launch of Comcast RISE (Representation, Investment, Strength and Empowerment). This program aims to create sustainable impact and give meaningful support to Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)-owned small businesses, who have been hardest hit. Comcast alone can’t remedy complex, systemic issues, but they are deeply committed to playing a role in driving change.



he Chamber Member of the Year Award is given to the Company who has shown a continued commitment to promoting the business community’s growth through their investment of time, resources, and personnel, supporting the Chamber’s Mission of business growth.

For more information on Comcast please go to www.corporate. april 2021


Relationships 18

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Helping Valley Business Grow

Deep Roots ~ Strong Branches

“I chose Oak Valley because of the exceptional personal service they provide. Their fantastic team is smart, thoughtful, and willing to go the extra mile to ensure our needs are met while offering solutions for my growing practice.” - Priti Modi, MD, FACP, Pinnacle Health Center

Sylvia Orozco

Branch ManagerMcHenry


Pamela Swift

Branch ManagerDale Road


Nick Nelson

Victoria Gaffney

Lynette Fletcher




Branch Manager12th & I

Commercial Lending

Commercial Lending

april 2021


Oakdale • Modesto • Escalon • Sonora • Turlock • Ripon Patterson • Stockton • Manteca • Tracy • Sacramento


president’s club Circle Of Influence Diamond Level

Atherton & Associates, LLP

Gianelli Nielsen

Solid Networks, Inc.

Beard Land and Investment Co.

Audi Modesto

Gilton Solid Waste Mgmt, Inc.

Stanislaus Food Products Co.

Capax - Giddings, Corby, Hynes, Inc.

Bank of Stockton - Dale Road

Golden Valley Health Centers

Stanislaus Surgical Hospital

Doctors Behavioral Health

Bank of Stockton - Modesto Main

Grimbleby Coleman CPAs, Inc.



Grover Landscape Services, Inc.

Doctors Medical Center-DMC

Blue Diamond Growers

Infiniti of Modesto

Frito-Lay Co., Inc.

Caliber Collision

International Paper Co.

California State University,

JS West & Companies

The Century and Nine3One


Lewis Capital Advisors

The Farmacy

Care One Home Health and

Maxx Value Foods

The Modesto Bee

Hospice, Inc.

Mister Car Wash

TSM Insurance & Financial

Central Sanitary Supply Co.

Mister Car Wash (Prime Shine

Central Valley Automotive

Car Wash)

Central Valley Chrysler, Jeep,

Mocse Credit Union


Modesto Toyota

Central Valley Nissan


US Bank

Central Valley Volkswagen

NT Nail Spa

US Bank (Modesto Main)


O'Brien's Market

US Bank Turlock

Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino

Oak Valley Community Bank

Valley BMW

Clark Pest Control

Opportunity Stanislaus

Valley Children's Healthcare

COIT Services Inc.

Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

Collins Electrical

Pepsi Bottling Group


PMZ Real Estate

Del Monte Plant #1

Residence Inn by Marriott

English Oaks Nursing &

Modesto North

Valley First Credit Union

Rehabilitation Hospital

Rizo-Lopez Foods, Inc.

Administrative Offices

Pacific Southwest Container, Inc. Physician Referral Service-DMC Walmart

Gold Level Crystal Creamery Doubletree by Hilton Modesto EMOE, Division of Parker Encompass Health Rehabilitation of Modesto Fiscalini Cheese Company IHeart Media Modesto Irrigation District Modesto Nuts Professional Baseball Nestle USA - Carnation Sutter Health Valley Area


Sysco Central California Inc.


Stifel Investment Services Storer Coachways Sutter Gould Medical Foundation

Services Turlock Irrigation District Union Bank

Valley First Credit Union Valley First Credit Union (Dale Branch)

Exceed GPR & Locating, LLC

Rose Bouquet

platinum Level

Valley Lexus

F&M Bank (Carpenter Road)

San Joaquin Valley College

Vintage Faire Mall/Macerich

E & J Gallo Winery

F&M Bank (Dale Road)

Save Mart Supermarkets

Kaiser Permanente

F&M Bank (McHenry)

Save Mart Supermarkets - Corp

Flooring Liquidators, Inc.


silver Level

Flowers Baking Co. of Modesto, LLC

Seven-Up Bottling Co. of

Alpine Protective Solutions

Food Maxx

Modesto/Varni Brothers

Winton-Ireland, Strom & Green

American Chevrolet



Insurance Agency

American Medical Response

Galletto Ristorante

Solecon Industrial Contractors

Yosemite Foods Inc.

Company Warden's Office Products Center Wells Fargo Bank

Contact the chamber to learn more about our president's club level benefits Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Small Business of the Year - Pizzeria Halt


he Small Business of the Year Award is given to a company with 25 or fewer on staff. The winner must show innovation in business practice, have a superior customer service philosophy, and must show overall growth as a company. Pizzeria Halt was founded to bridge the gap between people’s love for pizza and health issues. The transition to a Vegan Lifestyle is on the rise from the increased number of people dealing with heart problems, lactose intolerance and cancer. Pizzeria Halt was brought to life in order to provide customers with carefully selected ingredients and healthier cooking alternatives. At 9.7 million and growing, Americans have adapted the plant-based diet. With their corporate restaurant located on the west coast, they are part of the top 20 cities for vegans and vegetarians as ranked by Forbes (Sweet, 2020). There is affordability for consumers and adaptability for entrepreneurs to invest in a vegan-based pizza restaurant. They also provide 100 percent animal by-product free, and safety regulations results in a clean and safe environment.

Pizzeria Halt won the Small Business of the year Award for 2020. Joining the Modesto Chamber of Commerce in 2019, Pizzeria Halt has made their name known locally, introducing themselves as the first Vegan Pizzeria here in Modesto, CA. For more information on Pizzeria Halt please go to www.

Ambassador of the Year - Madhu Singh, Bank of Stockton


he Ambassador of the Year Award recipient has displayed exceptional dedication in furthering the mission of the Chamber by assisting in member outreach and education, volunteerism at Chamber events, and doing more than what is expected of them as a member of the Ambassador Team. The 2020 award goes to Madhu Singh.

She truly deserves the honor of being one of our few back-to-back Ambassador of the Year award winners.


Madhu is someone that puts a smile on your face when she’s around. She is kind, thoughtful, a good listener and very reliable. During the difficult year we had with COVID-19, she set the bar for how many Chamber members she contacted in the past year. Even with the very busy job she has at Stockton Bank, she still finds the time to get her Ambassador responsibilities done while also helping members with PPE loans and any other concerns they may have.

april 2021



Pre-register to attend at: Gatherings will be every 4th Wednesday of the month at 12:00 PM


For more information please contact or go to


Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Congratulations to this MONTH'S milestone memberships

Pacific Southwest Container, Inc. Red Wing Shoe Store

30 + years Safeguard Business Systems Never Boring RE/MAX Executive Stellar Career College Hotsy Pacific

20 years +

California Mortgage Associates Sierra Pacific Warehouse Group Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites United Capital Financial Life Management Bell-Carter Packaging Cal-Trade Welding School of Modesto Humphreys University Mussman & Mussman, LLP Oak Crafts by Jeremiah

15 + years Hampton Inn & Suites - Modesto, CA Valley Lexus Derrel's Mini Storage, Inc. Gallo Center for the Arts

10 + years Great Valley Academy Floors Plus, Inc. Black Bear Diner - Modesto Saddle Creek Corporation Arata, Swingle, Van Egmond, Gerling Applied Engineering, Inc. American Red Cross, Stanislaus County

5 + years Garcia Insurance Agency (GIA) Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Assemblyman Adam Gray Alzheimer/Dementia Support Center, Inc. Century 21 - M & M and Associates The Holy Apostolic Catholic

1 + years California Vegetable Seeds LLC United Site Services REPSCO, INC Color The Skies, Inc. MoBand of Stanislaus County MHD Group, Inc. NAACP Modesto Stanislaus Branch, Unit 1048 Sylvan Financial and Advisory Group One Eleven Web Design

april 2021

relationships EDUCATION

40 + years



Chamber University


Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Modesto Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the Modesto Junior College bring you Chamber University! Chamber University offers you the keys to unlock over 800 courses of development opportunity. We have no doubt you will find the tools that will enhance YOUR business. Chamber University empowers you and your staff to take your business to the next level.

14 Sectors of Development: Arts and Design Computer Business Computer Applications Computer Science Construction and Trades Health and Fitness Hospitality

Information Technology Language Legal Math and Science Teacher Professional Development Test Prep Writing

For 99 years, MJC has provided a high-quality learning experience for tens of thousands of our residents. Chamber University brings the college to your work place. Modesto Chamber of Commerce Members, and non-members alike can access these courses through MJC’s Workforce Development & Lifelong Learning Department.


Chamber University offers: Access to individualized training opportunities via the Chamber’s website. Instructor-led courses with self-paced tutorials in relevant workplace skills delivered fully on-line. Group training for companies seeking a customized approach to learning. Discounted for Modesto Chamber of Commerce members.


april 2021


MJC Agriculture – Excellence in Education


he recipient of the Excellence in Education Award recognizes a local program, project, event, or individual that displays the following criteria: is visionary/forward looking, demonstrates advancement of the community’s economic well-being by preparing the future workforce with up-to-date skills and good work habits, and shows significant evidence of cooperation between the recipient and one or more members within the community. Modesto Junior College Agriculture offers one of the most comprehensive community college agriculture programs in the nation. MJC’s agriculture curriculum encompasses 18 Associate of Science Degrees and 18 Technician Certificates. Commitment to excellence is evident in the instructional program, which utilizes modern technology and practical hands-on approaches to student learning. Industry collaboration has always been a hallmark of the Modesto Junior College Agriculture Program. Located in the heart of California’s Central Valley ag community, career exploration and industry connections enable students and staff to experience the latest developments and technological advances in food and fiber production.


Real world experience is a key element of the MJC Ag instructional program. Work experience sites are developed in agriculture business, crop and fruit production, agriculture mechanics, animal science, dairy science, ornamental horticulture, forestry, poultry science and soils areas. With the belief that internships are a great benefit to students in the MJC agriculture program, the faculty and staff encourages and helps to place as many students as possible. From local irrigation companies to dairies, veterinary hospitals and flower shops, students are required to complete 300 hours of paid work experience or 240 hours of volunteer work experience in order to receive their degree. This work experience is accomplished right here in our community.


Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

And many of our graduates remain right here, providing a boost to our economy daily. Over the past ten decades, thousands of MJC Agriculture program graduates have helped the industry grow and thrive, providing food for the region, the state, the nation and the world. MJC’s Ag Program offers a unique blend of modern instruction offered by a diverse, talented and dedicated staff utilizing the most current technology in an applied classes and farm laboratory setting. It is the vision of the MJC Agriculture Department to continue to provide the most outstanding agricultural education experience for the existing and future leaders of this dynamic and rich agricultural industry. Recent honors for the program include: National Agriculture Science Hall of Fame, California Outstanding Community College Agriculture Program, and Statewide Program Review.





april 2021



Modesto Chamber Leadership Series April 9th, 2021 12:00pm - 1:00pm Guest Leader : Kamaljit Bagri Agricultural Commissioner for Stanislaus County Facilitated by Kate Trompetter, Leadership Coach


Fees: Chamber Member $10 Non-Chamber Member $15


Sessions will be every 2nd Friday of the month.

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I

Register at

John Sanders – Distinguished Service Award


he Distinguished Service Award is given to an individual who has displayed exceptional dedication in furthering the mission of the Modesto Chamber of Commerce and enhancing the Chamber’s programs and services. The 2020 Distinguished Service Award winner is John Sanders. He has been honored as the Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year and was instrumental in coordinating and aiding in the development of the Graffiti Car Show. John initiated and chaired the Modesto Concour de Elegance classic car show. He gives of himself by serving on the City of Modesto’s Planning Amgen and Go-Cart race events in our community. John has spearheaded a group of local business leaders and dedicated supporters to develop a Graffiti Classic Car Museum in Modesto. The mission and vision of this could not have been realized if it were not for his leadership, time, and dedication.

John believes and supports in promoting Modesto as a destination for events, entertainment, tourism, and family gatherings, while not only capitalizing on nostalgia but highlighting Modesto’s cultural history.

Welcome Team Member of the Year – Bob Searls


he Welcome Team Member of the Year Award recipient has displayed exceptional dedication in furthering the mission of the Chamber through participation on the Welcome Team. The Nominee has been a regular participant in welcoming new members to the Chamber and volunteers at Chamber Events. The 2020 award goes to Bob Searls. Bob has been with the Chamber of Commerce and on the Welcome Team for many years now.


Even when COVID-19 hit, Bob was still an active participant in our regular monthly meetings and attended every Ribbon Cutting ceremony that others could not. His smile, professionalism and reliability is a true example of what a Welcome Team member should be.

april 2021


service SERVICE 30

Modesto Chamber of Commerce I




SALES OFFICES Oakdale 209-847-3021

Manteca 209-249-3505

Turlock 31 209-634-9141 april 2021



december 2020