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Kathryn Stotler, Eureka

“Common items of refuse are the focal point of my collage / assemblages, a compelling format for artistic exploration and evolution for me. I feel driven to explore the visual secrets of scavenged objects, discarded household fabrics, and materials we commonly discard. I am continually fascinated by the visual qualities that this mix of objects and materials brings to abstract imagery. The materials speak to me in different ways so the work is continually evolving and what you see today may be very different from what you see a month from now. So please stay tuned, this is all a work in progress. Most of the cloth in these works has been woven, dyed, painted, and stiffened. All of papers have been painted, stripped, folded and intermixed with cloth. Metal, rubber, and plastic have been scavenged, cleaned, oxidized, and painted or coated. The paints are unwanted house colors, watercolors, fabrics paints, and cold water dyes. Only the frames are new.”

Cool Earth Solar, Livermore

Cool Earth Solar (Cool Earth) is an innovative start-up company whose fundamental technology uses an inflatable plastic film to concentrate sunlight onto a photovoltaic (PV) solar cell. With these concentrators, Cool Earth PV cells generate over 1,000 times the electricity of non-concentrated PV cells.

In addition, Cool Earth is developing a complementary technology – a solar meteorological station (met station) that provides highly accurate measurements of solar radiation at a low price point and with minimal maintenance. A network of these inexpensive met stations produces the data required to develop the highly accurate solar generation forecasts needed by utilities, solar operators, and government agencies such as NOAA.

Axiom Mobile Imaging, Silicon Valley

Axiom Mobile Imaging has a passion for serving the most vulnerable of patient populations - seniors and others with limited mobility. We make their lives easier by bringing state of the art diagnostic exams (x-rays, ultrasounds, EKGs, Cardiac Echoes and more) to their homes or bedsides if they can't easily get to a hospital. We build strong networks with treating physicians, post-acute care providers, home health companies and caregivers to help provide the support network required to ease patients gradually back to their homes from an injury or illness that may have led to a hospitalization. In today's challenging environment, we do this as a low cost and low hassle alternative to transporting patients to a hospital, where they may face expensive readmission.

Mani Snacks, Los Gatos

Mani Snacks/PQX Inc. has developed a very popular Brazilian snack food for the US market. The products, Pão de Queijo (pown-deh-kay-zho), are savory rolls made of tapioca starch and cheese, sold frozen, ready to be baked by the consumer.

Founded by a Brazilian native, Mani Snacks is marketing their product to high-end retail food stores such as Whole Foods Market and Draeger’s Market as a tasty and healthy (gluten-free) frozen snack food.

The Fitness Coalition, Fairfield

The Fitness Coalition is a personal training center established in January 2012 in the client’s garage. Classes and clients began almost immediately rain or shine. The goal was to expand the business into a larger space and become a CrossFit Affiliate gym. Clients visited many other CrossFit gyms and CrossFit events and sought out advice from successful CrossFit gym owners.

World Class Window Coverings, Brentwood

World Class sells and installs residential shutters, blinds, shades, sunscreens and drapery quality products. They are family owned and Diamond Certified company for the last four years.

Beck's Bakery, Arcata

Beck’s Bakery is a wholesale bread bakery located in Arcata, California. They use locally grown grains in their breads and crackers and grind them fresh in house with a stone mill!

Sheri DeBow, Napa

Sheri DeBow is a sculptor, painter and doll artist, living in the Napa Valley with her husband and five children. Her work is inspired by dreams, books, love for history and general life experiences, good and bad, she explained.

Sheri studied painting and drawing and took sculpture courses at Napa Valley College with Carolyn Broadwell and under the "Mad Scientist" of clay, Micheal Maday. She also attended life-changing workshops under Richard Carter at his professional studio in Napa Valley.

Wine Compliance Alliance, Napa

Ann started her career in 1989 in a tasting room. Then she moved into the winery lab at Beringer Vineyards, and eventually managed the lab for Sterling Vineyards. She also did some cellar work before focusing on compliance and tracking.  Along the way, she developed winemaking record systems for Sterling Vineyards, Viansa Winery, Caymus Vineyards and Conundrum Winery.

Ann worked for six years as Winemaking Records Coordinator for Caymus Vineyards, and she soon realized the value of her skills to understand the complex regulations for winemaking compliance. She spotted a crucial need in the wine industry and filled it.

She applied her penchant for details and even wrote a book on wine label compliance. Plus she has strategically established herself as an expert consultant in winery compliance. 

Railroad Cleaners, Pittsburg

Railroad Cleaners started their business in September 2009 with little knowledge of the dry cleaning and laundry industry. They began serving individuals and commercial clients offering free pick-up and delivery service utilizing two, limited part-time employees.

Several months after the business started, Tom and Svonne came to the Contra Costa SBDC through a referral from the Contra Costa County Workforce Development Board.  They had invested $35,000 from their 401K and signed a lease for a 2,000 sq.ft. facility. Both Tom and Svonne had college educations and felt confident that there was need for their business but wanted specifics of how to grow and to learn business management techniques.

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