The Valley Economic Alliance Newsletter February 2015 Highlights

The Valley Economic Alliance Newsletter February 2015 Highlights

Executive Forecast Innovative, Informative and Interactive

Drones, recycled water, social media, live polling, compact scooter and more…the first ever Executive Forecast was a huge success. With more than 150 attendees and elected officials including Mayor of Calabasas David Shapiro and City of Burbank Councilmember Emily Gabel-Luddy, the morning was filled with innovative technology, interactive surveys and tools to stimulate productivity and growth.

The Los Angeles Daily News positively reviewed the executive forecast in their Sunday, January 24-25 issue and reported that Kenn Phillips, TVEA president and CEO, was pleased with this initial endeavor. “All of the customer surveys that came in gave us high marks,” he said. “The thing they liked the best was the ability to learn about the different types of technology and innovation and the cross talk between the industries.” Full article below.

Sponsors included Los Angeles Department of Water & Power, Chase Bank, Time Warner Cable, Hilton Woodland Hills, Metro, Datastream, Van Nuys-Los Angeles World Airports, and Fresh Potato Factory. Media Sponsors included AGF Media Services, Randy Witt Productions, The San Fernando Valley Sun, Community Connection and Daily News.

Visit to see more photos from the event.

11 years at the Alliance…

By Liz Florio, Office Manager, The Valley Economic Alliance

It is with much joy and a touch of sadness that I announce my upcoming retirement on Thursday, February 26, 2015.

I have been with The Valley Economic Alliance for over 11 years and overall, my time spent here has been a magnificent journey. I have met so many wonderful and brilliant people along the way. I have admired and respected so many of you and I will carry you with me. I have also made some great friends through the Alliance and please know that you will be missed.

I want to thank all of my current and past co-workers especially the long timers – Kenn and Erica. You have always treated me with tolerance, kindness and respect; and for that I am grateful. Mr. Fleming- thank you for all of your kindness through the years. I want to mention Bruce Ackerman too. Bruce interviewed and hired me and I still miss him dearly today.

As for my future plans, I will be traveling cross country to Rhode Island on April 11th and plan to make my home there. I have 4 brothers, 12 nieces and nephews, and now grand nieces and nephews. That should keep me busy for a while. Free Day Care is hard to come by but I will give it my best shot – unless they fire me.

I wish all of you good health and a happy heart as I ride off into the sun set!

7th Annual The Valley Business Expo ’15

The Valley Economic Alliance is hosting their 7th annual The Valley Business Expo ’15 on Thursday, March 5th at the Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport Hotel at 9:00am. Join us to network, connect, and promote. Business owners will also be able to get a private one on one assessment by a loan consultant from The Valley Economic Development Center (VEDC) to determine their lending options at the Here’s the Money! Loan Pavilion, happening conveniently at the expo.

For tickets, exhibit tables and sponsorship opportunities, visit or call 818-379-7000.

Grand Reopening of The Alliance

On Thursday, January 22, 2015, The Valley Economic Alliance hosted a Grand Reopening after their remodel during the Holidays. The ribbon cutting took place after the Board of Directors Meeting. Ron Galperin, Los Angeles City Controller was in attendance and spoke on encouraging businesses to locally bid for Request for Proposals (RFP) through the City of Los Angeles.

2 Workshops Remaining – Business for Fitness

There are two workshops to take advantage of in the Business for Fitness series with instructor Scott Holleran.

How to Get New Customers

This sales workshop yields lessons in how to get new customers to increase revenues and profit margins.
Monday, February 9, 2015
at The Valley Economic Alliance – BFG Boardroom

Succeed with Social Media

A comprehensive tutorial in social media including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
Wednesday, February 17, 2015
at The Valley Economic Alliance – BFG Boardroom

The cost to attend is $20 per workshop. Email to register and attend.

How to Avoid ADA Lawsuits

The Valley Economic Alliance is reaching out to restaurants to help them become Access Friendly and avoid lawsuits pertaining to the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Alliance is helping businesses save $4,000 or more per violation of these laws. Whether it’s parking lot signs, entryway dimensions, or bathroom appliances, The Alliance is making businesses more aware of ADA laws and what they can do to become proactive against them. By becoming  Access Friendly, businesses will also be able to cash-in on the World Special Olympics coming to Los Angeles this July and provide their services to over 500,000 that will be visiting for the event.

To attend the “How to Avoid ADA Lawsuits” Workshop on February 11th at 2pm, visit

Welcome to The Valley Economic Alliance

Frank Hallak, Jr. is a Business Development Executive with AFEX, a non-bank provider of global payment, foreign currency and risk management solutions. In his role, Frank works with corporate clients, ranging from SMEs to multinational organizations, providing international payment solutions and developing risk management strategies. Frank is based out of AFEX’s global headquarters in Woodland Hills, California and oversees clients based on the West Coast.

Frank is very passionate about working with non-profit organizations and is excited to work closely with The Valley Economic Alliance to positively impact local businesses in the Greater San Fernando Valley area.

Visit for more information.

10 Health Tips from Kaiser Permanente

1. Eat breakfast every day.  Front-loading your calories curbs your hunger and prevents over-eating later in the day.

2. Go nuts.  Nuts are packed with heart-healthy fats, protein, vitamins and minerals. Just make sure you stick with just a handful per serving.

3. Eat the rainbow.  Focus on picking a rainbow of different colors of fruits and vegetables, from dark leafy greens to bright citrus fruits – each of the colors usually represents different nutrients.

4. Say no to sugar.  Focus on eating lean protein and healthy fats instead of refined carbs.

5. Drink water.  Stop drinking your calories.  Those sodas, juices, and gourmet coffee lattes can quickly add up to 1-2 extra pounds per week.

6. Keep track.  Keeping a food diary, or using an app like MyFitnessPal, can be eye-opening as to how quickly those calories can add up in a day.

7. Build muscle.  Strength-training revs your metabolism, so you burn more calories at rest.

8. Add intensity.  If you want to blast calories, intensity is key.  High-intensity interval training is a super-fast and very effective way to work out. You can do this easily with a brisk hike or run with your kids.

9. Find a buddy or join a group.  A workout partner keeps you accountable and motivated on those days you just don’t feel like getting to the gym.  Children, husbands and pets all make great workout buddies. Dr. Angeline Ong’s weekly “Walk with a Doc” program meets every Wednesday at the Kaiser Permanente Panorama City Medical Center and is open to the community.

10. Get a good night’s sleep.  Sleep reduces stress, improves your memory, and helps control body weight issues.  Aim for 7-8 hours per night.

And most importantly, make healthy living a part of your everyday life – not just a resolution you will forget about in a month or two.

For more healthy tips, recipes and information, please visit

Business Services, Marketing and Resource Development at WIB meeting

Kenn Phillips is the new committee chair of the City of Los Angeles Workforce Investment Board Business Services, Marketing and Resource Development. The committee hosted their meeting at Los Angeles Valley College on Friday, January 16, 2015. This was the first meeting in the Valley in the past 7 years.

Angela Amirkhanian, Economic & Workforce Development Coordinator of The Valley Economic Alliance presented on how the Alliance has automated to help businesses more efficiently. She explained how they are using tablet technology for their Business Assistance program and how to capture data during one on one consultations with the businesses.

Keith McPherson, Director of Innovation & Digital Strategy of The Valley Economic Alliance shared information about the My311 with real time request assignment & multi-notification platform that informs all parties of a request for better timely response. Keith also discussed a project with Councilman Bob Blumenfield, which will identify active businesses in Council District 3, who have been there for more than 20 years. This data will be used by the Councilman to better outreach and engage tenured businesses in his district.

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