805 Gift Emporium opened at 3875 Telegraph Road in Ventura. The store specializes in eclectic art, decorator items and seasonal as well as unique gifts for any occasion. … Dogzilla Mobile Pet Care opened. The mobile pet care business is owned by Michael Gleeson, and services include dog walking, pet sitting, pet taxi, waste removal and behavior reinforcement exercises. … Build-A-Bear Workshop opened at the Pacific View Mall (3301-1 E. Main St.) in Ventura. The shop offers customers the opportunity to build their own stuffed animal from a wide range of choices and personalize it further with a variety of fashion accessories.


On Nov. 12, Fresh & Fabulous Cafe will host a grand re-opening at its new location, 221 W. Fifth St. in Oxnard. The cafe will also celebrate Customer Appreciation Day in honor of doing business in Downtown Oxnard for a decade. The day will include raffle prizes, special discounts on the menu, a live musical performance, activities for kids and giveaways. The celebration will take place during the cafe’s regular Saturday business hours. … On Nov. 2, Premier America Credit Union opened its remodeled Oxnard-Channel Islands Branch at 1651 E. Channel Islands Blvd. in Oxnard. The credit union’s numerous renovations aim to provide greater convenience for members; they include a new teller line, guest WiFi access and digital channels to highlight rates and services.


World-Famous Parsons Guitars at 620 E. Main St. in Ventura now offers full-service guitar repair. The shop also offers a variety of classes and workshops, custom-made guitars, novelties and parts and accessories.

And the award goes to …

Lisa Barron was recognized by the California Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense program. Barron is the director of the Morton Boys & Girls Club in Newbury Park and she was presented with a Patriot Award for extraordinary support of her employee serving in the guard and reserve. … Jessy Tapia is the recipient of the California Expanded Learning Emerging Leadership Award from the California Department of Education. Tapia is one of only six individuals in the state who was honored with the award for his commitment to serving children through after-school enrichment and academic activities. … Sarah Perez received the Outstanding Department Director Award from the California Assisted Living Association (CALA). Perez is Generations program manager with Cypress Place of Ventura. With the award, CALA honors individuals who are committed to providing outstanding, quality care and service to residents in the assisted living communities where they work. …  The city of Oxnard won the Helen Putnam Award for Excellence from the League of California Cities at its 2016 Annual Conference and Expo. The award honors cities that make unique community contributions that have resulted in reduced costs or more efficient delivery of services. Oxnard was recognized for work completed by Oxnard City Corps youth in partnership with the Public Works Department. Oxnard was also presented with three Beacon Spotlight Awards from the Institute for Local Government. The city was recognized for its work toward addressing climate change. It received a Platinum Award for 27 percent agency energy savings, a Gold Award for 10 percent agency greenhouse gas reductions and a Gold Award for sustainability best practices. … Ventura Visitors and Convention Bureau (VCCB) received an outstanding achievement award from Destination Marketing Association of the West (DMA) during the annual Best Idea Program Awards at the 2016 DMA West Education Summit. VCCB was honored for its innovative social media campaign that revealed Ventura as a fun and pet-friendly destination.

Moving up

Susan S. Waag joined Camarillo-based employment law firm LightGabler as a senior attorney. Waag has more than 25 years of experience and specializes in litigation avoidance and helping businesses and nonprofits understand and comply with employment laws. She has provided employment legal advice to over 450 companies. … Attorney Virginia Fuentes has joined the Small Business Development Center of Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties (SBDC). Fuentes will act as a consultant for SBDC, which provides free professional business assistance to businesses. She will offer her expertise in employment law and human resources. … Darwin Base has been named fire chief for the City of Oxnard. Base has been serving as interim fire chief since this past July and has more than 28 years of experience with the Oxnard Fire Department. As chief, he will be responsible for leading a department that supports eight fire stations, 128 positions and a $24 million annual operation budget. … Jim Throop is the new chief financial officer for the city of Oxnard. Throop has more than 30 years of financial management experience in both the public and private sectors. He will be responsible for the implementation of practical financial policies and standards as well as supervising the preparation of quality financial reports and projections. His duties begin Nov. 7 … William (Bill) Less rejoined the DuPuis Group as a vice president of design. Less will be responsible for elevating the role design plays in delivering brand growth and consumer experiences to clients ranging from startups to Fortune 500 companies. He was previously director of design at PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay and managing director of the Dubois Group’s Chicago office. … Attorneys John Hribar and Lane Lopez became partners at Ventura County law firm Ferguson Case Orr Paterson LLP (FCOP). Hribar has been an attorney with FCOP since 2010; he focuses on appeals and civil litigation. Lopez has been with FCOP since 2014 and specializes his practice in tax, business, employment, real property and trusts and estates law. … Kimberly Cole has been named executive director for the Pacific Coast and Ventura County Chapters of the American Red Cross. Cole previously served as regional development director. She will promote the growth, quality and constituency of Red Cross programs and services throughout the community while also improving the chapter’s ability to respond to and recover from disasters.

In the name of charity

The California Coastal Horse Rescue (CCHR) received a matching grant of $10,000 from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The grant is for the Pasture Enrichment Project. CCHR will turn a large area of unused land into pasture space for as many as 18 rescue horses and will also use the funds to upgrade sections of the road on the property that become impassable during wet weather. … The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Oxnard &and Port Hueneme received a $1,000 donation from Premier America Credit Union during its grand re-opening celebration. The funds will sponsor BGCOP efforts toward youth development, healthy lifestyles and lifelong learning. … Alcoa Fastening Systems and Rings awarded $20,000 to the Boys & Girls Club of Simi Valley for its STEM Workforce Development Program. The program prepares young people to enter the workforce while building gateways and interest in science, technology, engineering and math careers (STEM). … With the help of local community members and businesses, the American Heart Association (AHA) hosted the Ventura County Heart and Stroke Walk/Run and raised nearly $150,000. The funds will be used to support research and initiatives that promote prevention, treatment, community outreach and improved patient care in areas related to heart attack, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases. … California Lutheran University’s Community Counseling Services, Community Memorial Health System, FOOD Share, NAMI of Ventura County, Ventura Hillsides Conservancy, Ventura Homeless Prevention Fund and Westminster Free Clinic received a total of $45,000 from the Foundation of Ventura County Credit Union to further their respective charitable efforts.


On Nov. 4, the Oxnard School District will hold a community reception to celebrate progress made and the upcoming construction of the new Elm Elementary School at 450 E. Elm St. in Oxnard. The new campus has been designed for 600 students in 25 classrooms that will support 21st century learning environments. The reception will be held from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and everyone is welcome.