Opening

HomeGoods opened on Sept. 8 at 333 W. Ventura Blvd. (Camarillo Town Center) in Camarillo. The 22,969 square-foot off-price home décor store’s merchandise departments include bath, bedding, decorative accessories, furniture, kitchen and dining, lighting, outdoor, rugs, storage, workspace, and more. HomeGoods offers top brands and designers as well as fascinating discoveries from around the globe, with prices usually 20-60 percent below full-price retailers’ regular prices on comparable merchandise. … Delta Restoration Services opened at 4532 Telephone Road in Ventura. The franchise is owned and operated by Doug and Caroline DeSario with their son, Alex. It provides restoration services to both commercial and residential clients; its services cover damage from flood and water, smoke and fire, mold and other environmental conditions, as well as additional services such as contents restoration and reconstruction.

Transportation

On Aug. 19, schedule changes went into effect for two of the Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC) intercity bus system routes. The Channel Islands route, formally known as Oxnard/Camarillo/CSUCI, 90, 96 and 97 will be replaced by the new Channel Islands Route 99. The Coastal Express line is adding additional service to three locations: the Camarillo Metrolink Station, The Collection and the Esplanade Mall. For more information on VCTC schedules, visit www.goventura.org.

And the award goes to …

Meathead Movers is featured on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies list for the eighth consecutive year; it was listed at 4,903. This achievement has only been attained by two percent of all Inc. 5000 companies. Meathead Movers is the largest independent moving company in California. With a team of more than 700 students and athletes, it offers premier moving, packing and storage services to its customers all over the Western United States.

Moving up

Pattie Braga was appointed as the program director for the Ventura County Leadership Academy (VCLA). Braga, a graduate of VCLA’s Cohort XVII, comes from the Ventura County Credit Union where she spent over 14 years in the community. She also serves on the board of the Ventura Family YMCA and is a proud Rotarian. …

Tony Briggs

Tony Briggs was selected as the chief executive officer of the American Red Cross of Central California. Briggs joined the Red Cross as a communications manager for blood services in southern California then became the communications director for the Desert to the Sea Region and served as a national spokesman for the organization at some of its largest disaster responses. In his new role, he will oversee all Red Cross service delivery for 10 counties and nearly 4.5 million residents. … Angelica Cisneros joined the Interface Children & Family Services board of directors. Cisneros has been representing Assemblymember Monique Limón, D-Santa Barbara, in the California State Legislature since 2015. In her professional career, she spent 12 years in the banking industry, opened a family business (American Carpet Care) with her former spouse, as well as worked in the Economics Trade Department of the Consulate of Mexico. … Omid Noori is the newest member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Conejo Valley board of governors. Noori is senior vice president, private wealth advisor managing director for U.S. Bank Private Wealth Management. Prior to that, he worked as a managing director of the Private Bank at Union Bank. He has also held several regional level management jobs throughout the nation. … In the City of Oxnard, Katie Casey was chosen as communications manager for the City. Casey has more than 15 years of strategic communications experience in both the private and public sector; she will be responsible for planning, organizing and managing citywide communication, public information, community and media relations, as well as offering guidance to City departments in public relations matters. Scott Kolwitz was named as planning manager for the city. Kolwitz will join the Community Development team under the City’s Community Development director Jeffrey Lambert; he will be responsible for current and long-range planning efforts. He most recently served as principal planner for the City of Ventura and previously served as senior planner with the City of Goleta. Casey and Kolwitz began their duties on Aug. 26. … Two individuals joined the CURE Pharmaceutical board of directors. Lauren Chung, Ph.D., has 20 years of healthcare investment management and advisory experience. Chung founded MINLEIGH LLC in 2012, identifying, evaluating and partnering with companies for investments and various strategic, operations and commercial planning, as well as providing growth capital. She has served in a variety of roles including managing director in Healthcare Research at WestPark Capital, Senior Healthcare Equity Analyst at Maxim Group, and research scientist at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School and Boston Children’s Hospital. Anya Goldin has 28 years of experience across the law, private equity, venture capital, healthcare, and telecommunications industries. Goldin serves as a consultant, and is an attorney at Nolan Heimann law firm and teaches a course on International Business Negotiations at the University of Southern California’s Gould School of Law. She has served as managing partner at Latham & Watkins, the General Counsel, vice president and chair of the risk management committee of a $20 billion London Stock Exchange-listed conglomerate. … Ari Averbach is the new Rabbi at Conejo Valley’s Temple Etz Chaim. Averbach most recently served as an assistant rabbi at the largest Conservative synagogue in the Midwest, Congregation Beth Shalom in Northbrook, Illinois, and volunteered as a chaplain at local hospitals. Also, he was the founding leader of the Rabbinical Assembly (RA) affinity group for assistant rabbis and served as treasurer of the local RA chapter. … Two individuals were named to the Ventura College Foundation board of directors.

Nuris Dante

Nuris Dante is principal/owner of SC Lending Group in Oxnard. Stephen Kipp most recently served as president and CEO of Kipp Financial Group. Kipp was also an adjunct professor at Ventura College for 10 years, teaching night classes in finance. … Mary Joyce Ivers was selected as president-elect of the American Public Works Association (APWA). Ivers is the deputy public works director with the City of Ventura where she oversees operations activities within the Public Works Department. For the APWA, she will lead a 17-member board of directors who serve more than 30,000 public works professionals throughout North America. … Two individuals were elected to the Workforce Development Board of Ventura County (WDB). Tracy Perez will serve as chair. Perez is regional manager at United Staffing Associates, a local staffing firm with four branch locations in the county. Her firm has utilized the employer services at WDB’s America’s Job Center of California and has referred job seekers with specific barriers to employment to seek assistance and support. Peter Zierhut will serve as vice-chair. Zierhut is vice president of Motorsports Marketing at Haas Automation. Perez and Zierhut will serve one-year terms.

In the name of charity

The Humane Society of Ventura County launched its pilot program, Pantry 4 Paws, which aims to feed the dogs of homeless and underserved communities across the country. The Pantry 4 Paws grant covers a two-month pilot study for up to 10 locations. Participating locations include HELP of Ojai’s Community Assistance Program, Community Action of Ventura County in Oxnard , SPIRIT of Santa Paula, Lutheran Social Services – Ventura County in Thousand Oaks, and Dee Dee’s Dog Spot in Ventura. Any organizations that offer assistance to the homeless in Ventura County and are interested in hosting a Pantry 4 Paws dispenser at no cost, contact Greg Cooper at 805-656-6505 or GregC@hsvc.org. Unopened bags of dry dog or cat food can be dropped off at the shelter at 402 Bryant St. in Ojai.

Education

California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI) received $2.5 million from the National Science Foundation (NSF) “Improving Undergraduate STEM Education: Hispanic-Serving Institutions Program.” The grant is to help boost the number of women and minority students who pursue a STEM degree, do well, and graduate on time. According to NSF’s recent statistics, the number of science and engineering degrees awarded to women and minorities has increased over the past two decades but their numbers are still not high enough for the two groups to be considered well-represented in the field. … Thomas Aquinas College opened its New England campus on Aug. 24. The campus was able to be opened after the college was gifted the former preparatory school in Northfield, Massachusetts, by the National Christian Foundation. The second campus opened with 30 freshmen and 30 sophomores and is expected to grow to between 350 and 400 students. It will offer the same program as the California campus. … Laurel Springs School, a fully accredited online private school, launched the career exploration program Find Your Drive. The program allows its students (grade 9-12) to explore courses, clubs and other resources based on their personal interests and goals as they prepare for college. It provides an academic roadmap in four popular pathways: Behavioral Sciences, Business & Entrepreneurship, Computer Science & Technology, and Health Sciences.

Government

Naval Facilities Engineering and Expeditionary Warfare Center Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) program was awarded $45,000 by the Department of Defense STEM For Inspiration & Recognition of Science & Technology Robotics Grant program to increase STEM education across Ventura County.