Business Comments Magazine- Fall 2022

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Travis Credit Union has been rooted in the community since 1951. With $4 billion in assets and 24 branches, including several throughout Fairfield, Vacaville and the rest of Solano County,we are here to change lives and lift communities through financial wellness. In 2020, Forbes ranked Travis as a Top 10 Best-In-State Credit Union for our branch service, digital technology and trust, among other things. We were also awarded the 2020 U.S. Air Force Distinguished Credit Union of the Year, for the second consecutive year.

If you’re looking for a new place to bank, select a local financial institution with roots that have run deep in the valley for the past 70 years. Switch to Travis today. Join us at, call 800-877-8328 or visit a local branch. Thank you for your membership. Federally Insured by NCUA. Everyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in our 12-county area is eligible to join. Certain membership eligibility requirements may apply. Equal Housing Opportunity. NMLS #643926. 2

Vacaville Chamber of Commerce

2022-23 Board of Directors Executive Committee Healthy Business. Healthy Community. 411 Davis Street, Suite 101 Vacaville CA 95688 Tel 707.448.6424 | Fax 707.448.0424

Debbie Egidio President/CEO

Noelle Buckband Digital Communications Manager

Ralph Berumen Rakelle Broadley Business Development Office Manager Manager

Ed Rapisarda, Realty ONE Group Fox Chairman of the Board Vicki Barros-Ortiz, State Farm Insurance Chairman Elect Allan Haddox, Haddox Consulting Engineers Immediate Past Chairman Ivan Jones, Travis Credit Union Treasurer Jeremy Craig, North Bay Distribution Vice Chairman – Business Issues & Advocacy Teri Johnson, Bookkeeping & More Vice Chairman – Business Resources Stephanie Tarter, NorthBay Health Vice Chairman – Membership

Chamber Comments is a publication of The Reporter. To advertise in future issues, call 707-448-6401. Cover photo courtesy of Young Professionals of Solano.

Directors Jason Case Case Electric Inc.


Rosa Gracida Pacifica Senior Living Jennifer House Business Development Professional Ken Imah Minuteman Press Vacaville Todd Lowell Reynolds Law, LLP Scott Pardini Recology Vacaville Solano

Platinum Genentech, The Reporter Gold City of Vacaville, First Northern Bank, Knitter & Knitter LLP, Attorneys at Law, McDonald's Restaurants, North Bay Distribution, Inc., Pacific Gas & Electric Co., Placer Title Company, Reynolds Law, LLP, Sunrise Banquet Hall & Event Center, Sutter Health, Western Health Advantage

Toni Parkhurst Budget Blinds of Fairfield and Vacaville Lisa Smith Kaiser Permanente Liz Wentworth-Kelly Genentech Kim Whittaker Young Professionals of Solano

Business Comments Fall 2022




love having a good, friendly debate. It makes you think. Not just about your own opinions but also about the opinions of the person you’re debating. And if you go into a debate with an open mind, you’re bound to learn something. I have never walked away from a “debate”, or let’s say a spirited backyard discussion, without having a greater appreciation and understanding for the opinions of others. Why is this topic on my mind? Well, it’s Fall and that means campaign season. The Vacaville Chamber does not hold political debates, but we do hold candidate forums in order to formally learn more about the people running for our local elections. This year, we will be holding two candidate forums due to the number of individuals running for office. The first will be on Monday, October 3 for those running for Mayor (John Carli, Joseph Green, and Jason Roberts) and for District 4 Councilmember (Sarah Chapman, Kristen Navarro, and Christian Scott). The second will be on Wednesday, October 5 for those running for District 2 Councilmember (Joseph Desmarais and Greg Ritchie) and for District 6 Councilmember (Raymond Beaty, Tapac Chastain, Jennifer House, and Jeanette Wylie). As I write this in the first week of September, ten of the twelve candidates are scheduled to participate. So, why does the Vacaville Chamber have candidate forums? Plan and simply because it is integral to our role as being an advocate for business. Advocacy is defined as the act of speaking on behalf of, or in support of, another person, place, or thing. We all are advocates in different ways and at different points in our lives. We advocate on our own behalf at our workplaces, schools, in our personal relationships, and in simple, everyday interactions. Parents advocate for their children so that they receive the best education possible. Non-profit organizations have staff who advocate on behalf of entire populations who may not have the reach to advocate for themselves. Advocacy can happen in many ways and with many different groups. At the Chamber, our advocacy is focused on the support of businesses and business owners, not just within our membership, but within our community as a whole. The Chamber advocates with city staff, elected officials, and other agencies to adopt policies that encourage business growth. This includes governmental policies that impact the cost and ease of doing business, availability of resources for retention of our existing businesses and attracting new ones, and quality of life issues that affect workforce development. We do this every day and it is directed by our Business Advocacy Guiding Principles which can be found on our website. The Fall election cycle is a unique opportunity for the Chamber to weigh in on candidates that we feel will best represent the interests of business. We do this through holding the previously mentioned candidate forums. These forums are held in conjunction with the Chamber’s Political Action Committee (PAC), a separate legal entity. This is an important


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distinction as the PAC collects and distributes its own funds in support of candidates and issues. No Vacaville Chamber membership dues, sponsorships, or fundraiser revenues are used for political contributions. After the forums, the PAC will make a recommendation to the Chamber’s Board of Directors who will ratify, or not, those recommendations and the results are then shared with the public. Candidates get an endorsement from the Chamber because we feel they will champion policies and decisions that will support business. We hope our endorsed candidates win, but more importantly, we hope that whoever wins we can have an open dialogue with them to better understand each other’s positions. Which goes back to having debate with an open mind. Our elected officials are servants of our community and work hard to do what they think is best for Vacaville. We may not always agree, but it is invaluable to me as your Chamber representative, to be able to communicate with our elected leaders to advocate for business. I try to do this respectfully, thoughtfully, and passionately, without accusation, and by suggesting solutions not just pointing out problems. I hope that you, as citizens, do this too. Make sure to vote in the November election, and after that, stay engaged so that your voice continues to be heard for the issues that are important to you.



ello Everyone! As Summer comes to an end and September lets us know it is indeed the hottest month of summer, we welcome the cooler breezes and changing of colors. I hope this message finds you well. I wanted to write to you today with a fable by Aesop, a slave and storyteller from ancient Greece, titled “The Two Travelers and the Farmer.” A traveler came upon an old farmer hoeing in his field beside the road. Eager to rest his feet, the wanderer hailed the countryman, who seemed happy enough to straighten his back and talk for a moment. “What sort of people live in the next town?” asked the stranger. “What were the people like where you’ve come from?” replied the farmer, answering the question with another question. “They were a bad lot. Troublemakers all, and lazy too. The most selfish people in the world, and not a one of them to be trusted. I’m happy to be leaving the scoundrels.” “Is that so?” replied the old farmer. “Well, I’m afraid that you’ll find the same sort in the next town.” Disappointed, the traveler trudged on his way, and the farmer returned to his work. Sometime later another stranger, coming from the same direction, hailed the farmer, and they stopped to talk. “What sort of people live in the next town?” he asked. “What were the people like where you’ve come from?” replied the farmer once again. “They were the best people in the world. Hard working, honest, and friendly. I’m sorry to be leaving them.” “Fear not,” said the farmer. “You’ll find the same sort in the next town.” The fable points out that we are likely to keep finding the same thing in life unless we open our minds to the realm of possibilities. We get what we focus on. In life, we get to choose how we view our daily interactions. We can focus on the positive and the negative, but it’s very difficult to focus on both at the same time. I have learned that it takes about the same

level of energy to focus on either one and the path is so much more beautiful looking at the positive. In business today, what is one thing that you could focus on that if you did, it would have a significant impact on your life/business? What’s stopping you? I would love to hear your thoughts. Over the past five months, a few members at my company have begun a book club mastermind. We have read the following books: • The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Man • The Compounding Effect by Darren Hardy • Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek • Atomic Habits by James Clear • Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin • The Shift by Garry Keller and Jay Papasan I think everyone of us who have participated feel the book club is positive and uplifting in its messages, but an unforeseen bonus is the group’s willingness to think beyond what we know today and be open to new ideas. What are some of the MUST READ books on your list? Lastly, the real estate industry is experiencing a shifting market which has the ability to introduce fear and skepticism regarding equity and home values. The truth is that it may or may not be a good time to buy and/ or sell. That decision needs to be based off of everyone’s personal situation and circumstances. Here are a few market trends from TrendGraphix compiled for Single Family Residences in Vacaville through August 2022.* • The Median Price in Vacaville is $613,000 which is up 2.3% from 2021 • New Listings are down 35% from 2021 • The Sales Price to the Original List Price Percentage is down 4% from 2021 • The Average Days on Market is 40 days • The Months of Inventory is at 1.9 Months of Inventory *This message is intended for informational purposes only and not for solicitation of business. Please consult your real estate professional for additional information regarding your specific situation. California Department of Real Estate Licensed Broker #01854854. The Vacaville Chamber of Commerce is poised to help you with your business needs whether it’s Business Issues, Advocacy, Education, or Relationships with other businesses. Tune-in to Stay Connected. Let’s make the end of 2022 the best quarter yet! Business Comments Fall 2022


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Business Comments Fall 2022


MEMBER SPOTLIGHT An Interview with Recology Vacaville Solano Give me your elevator pitch for Recology...explain the company to a stranger. Recology is a 100-year-old, employee-owned resource recovery company dedicated to finding the highest and best use of the resources we use every day. We are consistently partnering with the communities we serve to find ways to reduce impacts on our environment and keep materials out of the landfill through waste diversion and recovery. Recology provides innovative collection and processing services to more than 140 communities throughout California, Oregon and Washington. Tell me a bit about the history of the company. How long have you been in operation? Recently celebrated our 100th anniversary. While our company roots are in San Francisco, over the course of the last century we have grown to serve rural, urban and suburban communities in Washington, Oregon and Northern and Central California. Recology serves as the largest 100% employee-owned company in the waste and resource recovery industry, with a dynamic team of more than 3,700 employee owners across 40 operating companies. From front-line workers like drivers, equipment operators, and material handlers, to administrative staff like customer service representatives, human resource partners, environmental compliance teams and information technology employees, our employee community encompasses a wide variety of skillsets and expertise. ln 2020, our network of eight material recovery facilities, eight composting operations, and 18 transfer station facilities across our service regions provided the essential framework necessary to collect and process nearly 3 billion pounds of materials. There are other recycling companies out there... what makes Recology unique? The Recology employee ownership model is unique both within our industry and among other businesses throughout the country. Employee ownership drives our culture and commitment to the Recology mission and vision and provides a foundation for teamwork and accountability across our organization. Another primary differentiator for the company is our overwhelming investment in recovery technology. At Recology, our approach to resource recovery focuses on putting resources to their best and highest use through recycling, composting and reuse instead of landfilling valuable materials. Why is it important to be employee-owned? Being employee-owned gives each employee a feeling of value within our company. Employee owners are often members of the communities Recology and earn stock shares each year that gain value over time and serve as supplemental retirement plans. This benefit allows individual employees to share in the success of overall business performance. I understand you use recycled material to build and paint your own offices. What other ways do you exercise the company mission within your own operation? At a Recology office you are also likely to see artwork on display from our internationally recognized Artist in Residence (AIR) Program. Our AIR Programs are designed to support local artists and art communities. Resident artists are provided with access to 8

Vacaville Chamber of Commerce

materials at our facilities, studio space and a stipend, and exhibitions are held at the end of each residency. After their residencies, artists leave artwork to be kept in Recology’s permanent collection. These pieces are shown in exhibitions that promote the power of reuse. We also promote a sustainable purchasing program within the organization, with a focus on recycled or upcycled products. Additionally, through our Volunteer Program, we often use Recology products like mulch and compost materials from our own operations to beautify parks, gardens and other outdoor areas. What services and guidance do you provide in the communities you serve? In the Dixon community, we provide solid waste, organics and recycling collection services to both residential and commercial customers. Recology Dixon also provides debris box collection and street sweeping services. We operate the local recycling buy-back center as well as a Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility in Vacaville for the residential customers of Dixon. Our residential and commercial offerings also include educational resources like waste audits and consultations to improve knowledge and awareness around what goes where. Can you tell me about the Recology trash can drill team? I assume it’s great for public relations/awareness for your company. Is there also a higher purpose? Recology’s drill team draws inspiration from our company roots. During the early days, waste collectors (known then as “scavengers”) hauled large metal cans full of waste on their shoulders to be dumped into the back of collection trucks. During public parades and other ceremonies, our drill teams can be seen using antique industry assets to draw attention to the history behind essential waste collection services. lf an organization wanted to partner with Recology, how would they go about it? We’re always available to talk to interested community partners. The best resource for contacting Recology is our website, recology. com, or by way of existing Recology community partners.

MEMBER SPOTLIGHT Valley Strong Credit Union

It has been nearly a year since the Valley Strong name went up in Vacaville and nearby Solano County communities in October 2021 and it has not taken long for the growing Credit Union to make an impact with those it serves. Juan Sanchez is a Financial Services Officer at the Vacaville location and sees frequent opportunities to make a difference in people’s lives. “I like helping people in this community with their financial needs because many of them have been underserviced or denied previously. Vacaville is a great place for Valley Strong to be because we can help these individuals with a wide range of products and services,” says Sanchez. Altogether, there are three Branches to serve residents of Solano County, including the Vacaville location and two other full-service locations in Fairfield. At the Vacaville location, located at 151 Elmira Road, you will find friendly faces and knowledgeable Valley Strong Team Members who understand the needs of the community. In fact, 80% of the employees that work at the Branch, live in Vacaville themselves.

Aside from the day to day of being a financial resource and partner, the Credit Union and Team Members love to interact with the community by sponsoring events and providing information to those who stop by the Valley Strong booth. Recently, you might have seen them at the Fairfield Clergy Action Network First Annual Juneteenth Celebration and the Young Professionals of Solano Cornhole Tournament. Valley Strong Credit Union will be celebrating 85 years of existence in the Central Valley in 2023. What started as a financial cooperative for school employees and their families, has now grown to serve more than a quarter million people from Bakersfield to Vacaville, and communities in between. From extensive loan programs, including home, solar, and auto, to the latest in digital technology, retirement and wealth management services, and business banking, Valley Strong is a lifelong financial partner. They are here to serve and help with your financial possibilities, whatever they may be. For more information about Valley Strong, visit Business Comments Fall 2022


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he Young Professionals of Solano are an enthusiastic group of young adults who come together to empower the next generation of business leaders through networking, professional development, and community involvement. YPV, The Young Professionals of Vacaville, was founded and led in 2018 when Alexis Ruiz, and Tempest Hoover, Chamber champions, discovered a need to provide a place for like minded individuals, newer to the business world, to come together to learn how to grow within their business community, learn and be involved in local matters, support local nonprofits, and build the skills to grow personally and professionally. They became Presidents of the group and paved the way for what we now know as YPS. As the group has grown,so has their impact on the community and attracting newleaders such as, Past Presidents Kandice Dixon, Kia Lutte, current President Kim Whittaker, President Elect Jessica Callison, and previous and acting board members Dustin Donnell, Erika Walthall, Trey Barrios,AlexandraBeddow,Brittan yTapparo,AyeshaShah,JessikaReyna,AlexCampbell,Ed Combong,Aimee Murray, Dalton DeMartini,AJ Hearn, and Radmehr Nowroozi, .Along with many members of the Young Professionals community who have found growth, friendships, business relationships, and success throughout their experience with the group. Through the foundation of what they have adopted as their three Pillars; Networking, Professional Development, and Community Service, YPV has provided monthly and annual events catered to young professionals. Networking Happy Hours hosted and sponsored by numerous community restaurants and businesses. Professional development opportunities including, public speaking,goal setting, homebuying,winetastingetiquette,andmore.Aswell as community service which includes fundraising and hands-on volunteering on multiple projects for nonprofits. The impact has been far reaching, and in 2022, with the support of Vacaville Chamber of Commerce President/ CEO, Debbie Egidio,and the Board of Directors, the group has been able to expand their reach countywide, to become The Young Professionals of Solano. Their goal is to set the stage for professional success by connecting with local Chambers, Young Professionals, Community Members, and Leaders throughout all of Solano County,while also bringing awareness to their designated nonprofit of theYear. Previous beneficiaries of this designation have been the Vacaville Neighborhood Boys and Girls Club, The Opportunity House Homeless 12

Vacaville Chamber of Commerce

Shelter, Vacaville Public Education Foundation, and currently CASAof Solano County. In addition to this, thegroup is currently recruitingf or memberships, future leadership roles,and more businesses and nonprofits to support! Ready to become part of this amazing movement? Reach out to us today by sending us a message on social media or via email. Facebook:YoungProfessionalsofSolano Instagram:yp_of_solano

AMBASSADOR PROFILE Name: Vera Gleason Business: Real Estate Job Title: Realtor® for over 18 years Where did you grow up and/or go to school? I grew up in southern CA in the Moreno Valley area. It was called Sunnymead at the time. And I graduated from Moreno Valley High School. While living in Virginia, I got my BA, then a Graduate degree in special education at George Mason University in VA. What are your hobbies? I enjoy gardening, reading and travel, both within the U.S. and internationally. How long have you been an ambassador? I›ve been an ambassador for roughly 5 and a half years. Joining the Chamber is one of the first things I did when we moved here. Why do you volunteer? I volunteer because I love learning about my community, being involved, and helping. I also enjoy meeting other ambassadors, community leaders, and business professionals. Being an ambassador helps me connect with others who are active in the community. What is your favorite Ambassador memory? The mixers are my favorite. I try to go to every mixer possible.

My favorite mixer is always the Christmas mixer usually held at Travis Credit Union. What would others be surprised to learn about you? I love adventure and change. Before real estate, I was a Special Ed Teacher of high school students. I was a scuba diver, and I tried para sailing, and jet skiing. I›ve dabbled in a variety of arts including oil painting, water colors, and ceramics. I›ve driven across the country from coast to coast five times and I’ve visited most states, including Alaska and Hawaii. My travels have taken me to Europe, Vietnam, Canada, Mexico, and Tanzania, Africa. What are some of your favorite things about Vacaville? Main Street downtown is so cute, small, and the people are friendly. I love the older homes and the history of Vacaville. The location is great with the Bay area and Tahoe so close and easy to get to. I love that Vacaville is surrounded by open country and I›m able to go to local farms to buy produce. It has been easy to settle in Vacaville and call it home.

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MEMBERSHIP DIRECTORY We are so very thankful for the more than 390 businesses that are members of the Vacaville Chamber of Commerce! From independent members, to home-based entrepreneurs, to small businesses, and to our large employers - members of the Vacaville Chamber touch the lives of our entire community! Our membership is constantly growing and we hope that you will support our local businesses when making your buying choices. USE THIS QR CODE TO JUMP TO THE LATEST EDITION OF OUR SEARCHABLE MEMBERSHIP DATABASE



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Business Comments Fall 2022


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Business Comments Fall 2022



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