News and notes from around the greater San Fernando Valley area


Lease: Premier Business Centers will list its available office space on, a website targeting small businesses and entrepreneurs.

SuiteSearch launched on April 1 and offers detailed listings, including property photos and floor plans, full contact information for the leasing agent/broker, publicity of listings across multiple marketing channels, and tour scheduling.

Premier Business Centers provides businesses with professionally staffed office space on a full-time or part-time basis.

Premier has locations in Sherman Oaks, Burbank, Panorama City and Woodland Hills.

Awards: Winners of the 2011 Excellence Awards will be recognized at the May 14 Greater San Fernando Valley Chamber’s 100th Birthday Celebration and Inaugural Ball.

Awards include Founders’ Award, Daily News; Chairman’s Award of Excellence, Braemer Country Club; Community Award of Excellence, Dr. Michael Olenick, President and CEO of Child Care Resource Center; Chamber Award of Excellence, Curves Lake Balboa/Reseda Fitness Center; Committee Chairperson of the Year, Anush Sumian, Valley Village; Mendenhall Memorial Award, Heidi Lennartz, Mission Community Hospital.

Chamber Award nominations are made by committee chairs, board members, and staff, while membership handles the Community Award nominations

Van Nuys

Partnership: Caesarstone announced a partnership with Jeff Lewis, star of Bravo’s Flipping Out and recently-announced television series Interior Therapy.

Lewis has designed over 100 homes and with Caesarstone, he will be developing surface colors and appear in advertising campaigns for the company.

“Jeff Lewis brings to the Caesarstone brand his experience in designing homes for over 20 years; his understanding of the homeowners' likes and dislikes; his use of modern and relevant colors, as well as his humor and humility,” said Arik Tendler, President of Caesarstone.

This will be the second year of partnership between Caesarstone and Lewis.

North Hollywood

Contest: The International Student Film Festival Hollywood is now accepting submissions for its 9th annual Film and Video Competition. The festival takes place November 5 and 6 in the NoHo Arts District of North Hollywood. The competition is open to students of all ages and academic backgrounds. Submission deadline is August 31, 2011. Participants must be registered in elementary, junior high or high school, community college, university, graduate or private film schools. Awards are presented to winners after their films are judged by a panel of professional filmmakers, writers, directors, producers, actors, distributors, agents, film critics and professors that comprise the jury. Information and entry forms are available on the festival website:


Awards: Adult company Pipedream Products was the recipient of the Vendor of the Year award at Spencer’s annual Vendor Summit.

The award recognizes outstanding partnerships, innovative contributions, excellent service in shipping and delivery and strategic approaches to growing sales and profits.

Pipedream was the only adult company to win the award in a pool of more than 300 manufacturers.


Branding: Jessica Dunne has been named as the executive vice president of Disney’s Mom and Babies brand. Dunne will be responsible for establishing and growing the Disney Baby brand as well as implementing new marketing and communications strategies developed with new moms in mind. She will report directly to Andy Mooney, chairman of Disney Consumer Products.

Production: Glendale Studios has opened a fully digital post production facility on its lot.

It features two editing bays that can handle Avid, Final Cut Pro and other editing software.

The facility includes fully-integrated editing equipment, experienced editing personnel as well as discounts for clients already shooting on the lot.

Glendale Studios is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.


Product: BreathGemz, a breath freshener product, will have two new faces promoting its product, Larry King and wife Shawn.

The CNN television host and his wife will become the new spokesman for the capsule that is said to provide “instant fresh breath that lasts for hours against the toughest offenders - even garlic.”

The couple will star in a two-minute television spot promoting the product launched by husband and wife team Anthony and Lauren Raissen.

The all-natural product features a mint coating on the outside and a liquid core of parsley seed oil in the inside. It contains no artificial flavors, no preservatives and no alcohol.

Woodland Hills

Real Estate: Rodeo Realty is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.

With 11 offices and more than 1,000 agents in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties, it is one of California’s largest independently-owned residential real estate firms.

Formerly named Paramount Properties in 1986, founder Syd Leibovitch decided to rename the company Rodeo Realty.

The company offers in-house advertising services, print shop, public relations and extensive online marketing services to all of its agents.

Studio City

Speaker: Seventy-five people representing more than 30 different organizations attended an April 13 meeting hosted by the United Chambers of Commerce to discuss new ideas to improve fundraising for nonprofits.

The meeting took place at the Sportsman’s Lodge Event Center.

In attendance to listen to Dr. Sanford Shapero, former president and chief executive officer of the City of Hope were people from chambers of commerce, health care clinics, after school programs, senior citizen centers and educational organizations.


Blend: MASTERSFX worked with digital effect firm Modus FX to create two comedic sequences in the film, “Super.”

The sequences combine practical effects and CG effects to portray the top of actor Rainn Wilson’s skull being opened up by a tentacled God; and showing actress Ellen Page taking a shotgun shot to the side of the face.

The use of physical props and prosthetics make for a more accurate and real look and feel to a scene, said Todd Masters, the founder of MASTERSFX.

“By later blending these practical FX into a digital realm, we offer the audience the most realistic representations possible from both art forms,” Masters said.

MASTERSFX is the best in the business at combining practical effects with digital effects, said James Gunn, the director of “Super.”

“We mix practical and visual effects numerous times and I've rarely had anyone guess where that line is drawn,” Gunn said. “I'm personally sick of the practical vs. CG debate - both are useful in different situations.”


Thousand Oaks

Event: Sponsors and tee sponsors are needed for the May 23 18-hole charity golf tournament to benefit Hospice of the Conejo, which serves communities from eastern Ventura County and beyond.

Cost is $120 per ticket and $480 for four players.

Players also can participate in a putting challenge, closest-to-the-pin challenge, longest drive and hole-in-one challenges, marshmallow toss, and even buy mulligans.

To become a sponsor, tee sponsor or donor, raffle and silent auction contributor, call Hospice at (805) 495-2145 or visit

The tournament will be at the Sunset Hills Country Club in Thousand Oaks.



Space: Virgin Galactic LLC is accepting qualified applications for pilot-astronauts. Responsibilities include the WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo spaceflight system test program in accordance with government regulations and company policies in Mojave, CA and Virgin Galactic’s commercial operations at Spaceport America in New Mexico.

Prior spaceflight experience is desired, and full course graduates of a recognized test pilot school with broad experience in high performance fast jet type airplanes and large multi-engine types are considered qualified applicants.


Jobs: The South Valley WorkSource Center marked the grand opening of its new Location on April 13.

The center is located in the city’s former youth library that had been vacant for about two years. The move saves the city about $6,000 per month in lease payments and utilities.

The new center doubles the amount of space to serve job seekers, and employers who are screening job applicants.

The expanded location also gives more parking and allows for the center to host career fairs, said Ana Quiles, a program manager.

Goodwill Southern California contracts with the city to operate the WorkSource center, which is projected to assist 35,000 job seekers in the current fiscal year.



Students: California State University, Channel Islands hosted an expo on science, technology, engineering and math careers on April 6 as part of the Ventura County Science Fair.

Participating companies includes Amgen, Solar World, Lockheed Martin, Aera Energy and Channel Islands National Park. The Expo also featured a portable planetarium and a science treasure hunt for middle and high school students. The hunt involved searching for the answers to scientific questions supplied by participating companies.

Simi Valley

Fair: The Simi Valley Chamber of Commerce’s annual Street Fair event is Saturday, May 14 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The event which will feature Mayor Bob Huber as host of the town hall meeting and two new attractions that include the beer garden and two radio stations from Gold Coast Broadcasting Q104.7 and 95.9 The Rewind.

The event, which has over 340 booth spaces, will be located on Cochran Street, between Galena and Sequoia.

All kids’ activities are free. Also on display will be arts, crafts, business products, community organization promotions, commercial vendors and food booths.