Charles Crumpley

Publisher & Editor

Charles weighs in each week with his opinion - his "Comment" - about local business. While he pats the heads of those who make prescient or brave decisions, he's not afraid to kick the shins of businesses that make dunderheaded moves or governments that interfere with free markets. It can be newsy, it can be opinionated, or it can be funny, but the Comment column is always about business in Los Angeles County.

Charles Crumpley has been a reporter, writer or editor for 30 years, mostly with daily newspapers. He was born and raised in Kansas City, MO, and worked for years for the Kansas City Star, mainly as a senior financial writer. He was the editor of the business news section for two daily newspapers, including the New Orleans Times-Picayune. He has won four national journalism awards and studied Japanese banking and business practices in Tokyo as a senior Fulbright scholar. He has been editor of the Los Angeles Business Journal since January 2006.

He can be reached at (323) 549-5225, ext. 208, or by email:

Phone: 818-316-3133 Extension: 127

Recent Stories

Alas, Our Shriveling Factory Sector

Charles Crumpley laments the Valley area’s shrinking manufacturing sector.

How Amgen’s New Policy Will Hurt

How Amgen Inc.’s work from home policy will hurt economy.

Special Report: Asian Entrepreneurs Month

Stories of Asian-American business owners in the San Fernando Valley region.

Thank you, Women of the Valley

Charles Crumpley finds businesswomen’s stories to be inspirational.

Special Report: Asian Entrepreneurs Month

Stories of Asian-American business owners in the San Fernando Valley region.

Hogtied Once Again at the Ranch

Hogtied once again at Tejon Ranch.

Plastic Utensils to Be Restricted

The Los Angeles City Council on Wednesday unanimously passed an ordinance to make disposable utensils and napkins at restaurants available only by request from customers.

Burbank Locks Tinhorn Flats, and Again Owner Cuts It Off

The city of Burbank on Wednesday morning put a red tag of condemnation on the defiant Tinhorn Flats Saloon and Grill and padlocked its doors for a second time.

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The Showdown at Tinhorn Flats

Is this the Wild West or the San Fernando Valley? One local business news story in the last few weeks may make you wonder.

Padlocks Off of Defiant Restaurant – For Now

Padlocks were removed from the Tinhorn Flats bar and grille on Wednesday evening after the city of Burbank determined that it was a safety hazard to have the front doors locked when patrons had streamed through a breached side door and were dining inside the defiant restaurant.

Witt Resigns as Chair, Leaves Fernando Board

Randy Witt has resigned from the Fernando Award Foundation’s board and as its chair and chief executive.

In Pandemic, Dealmakers Survived

‘Many (brokers) successfully employed creativity and persistence to complete deals in a difficult year.’

Can’t Help It: I Love Entrepreneurs

‘The chance to be an entrepreneur is one of the greatest privileges this country has to offer.’

Black Entrepreneurs Month: Mel Wilson Mel Wilson & Associates

832 N. Maclay Ave., San Fernando Business: Residential real estate brokerage, asset management, legislative housing advocacy (818) 336-6777 • Email: Website:

Black ENTREPRENEURS MONTH: John Grace Investor’s Advantage

200 N. Westlake Blvd., Westlake Village Business: Personal financial planner (805) 495-2077 • Email: Website:

Black Entrepreneurs Month: R. Nicolas Brown

R. Nicolas Brown worked for 29 years at the Los Angeles Department of City Planning, 16 years of which was spent as a zoning administrator.

Black Entrepreneurs Month: Walter Njboke

Walter Njboke always liked fashion and design, even as a youth growing up in Nigeria.

Black Entrepreneurs Month: Richard Herron

For many businesses, the last year with the government-imposed lockdowns has been the most challenging. But Richard Herron of Construction Concern Inc. in Newhall thinks of the Great Recession as his worst period.

Black Entrepreneurs Month: Jessica Huling

The economic lockdowns during the coronavirus pandemic have devastated restaurants in California.

At Least One County Supe Gets It

‘Before you imperil thousands of businesses and crush a million dreams, shouldn’t you be pretty sure of what you’re doing?’

How Cheri Fleming Faced Setbacks

Three things about Cheri Fleming truly stand out.

Cheri Fleming, Auto Dealership Owner and Civic Leader, Dies at 69

Cheri Fleming, among the most accomplished business and civic leaders in the Valley area, died Monday evening after suffering a brain aneurism two weeks ago.

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Maybe Valley Will Get Some Offices


Shortly after the coronavirus pandemic hit nearly eight months ago, businesses started questioning whether they would need as much office space going forward.

Disney Now Not the Happiest Place

‘At some point, it would be uncomfortable for Disney execs to stand up at an annual meeting and try to convince shareholders that they’re carrying out their fiduciary responsibility by staying in California.’

A New Way to Hurt Our Businesses

‘Maybe the supporters (of Proposition 15) should hit up the profligate legislators instead of the overburdened taxpayers.’

Give Homeless Money, Not a Unit

It’s outrageous that the average cost to build a city-subsidized apartment for the homeless has climbed to $559,000 with highest per-unit cost now at $746,000.

No More Fines for ‘Open for Business’ Signs

Los Angeles City Council member Bob Blumenfield successfully led an effort Tuesday to end one small but aggravating issue for local retailers during the pandemic: Fines for businesses that put up banners saying they were open.

Why Are We Waiting Like This?

‘I feel like we are all captive actors in the absurdist play “Waiting for Godot.” We are illogically sitting around, waiting for a vaccine to arrive. But a vaccine may be months away or even longer, and there is no assurance that it will be quickly deployable or even very effective.’

Arabian Awards Postponed; Fernando a ‘Maybe’

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, two well-known San Fernando Valley fall events – the Arabian and Fernando awards – will not be held in person this year. It is possible the Fernando Award will become a virtual ceremony.

How L.A. Can Help its Businesses

‘Suspend the gross receipts tax until the pandemic has ended.’

The City’s Shakedown Machine

The unfolding corruption scandal involving Los Angeles City Hall denizens and real estate developers is absolutely shocking. On the other hand, it’s not at all surprising. It’s almost to be expected.

Princess Cruises’ Parent to Sell 6 Ships, Delay Restart

Carnival Corp., which owns Princess Cruises of Santa Clarita, has reported that it lost $4.4 billion in the second quarter and is speeding up the sale of six ships.

Was That an Error at the Stadium?

‘We may look back on this moment as an opportunity that was lost.’

New Waste-to-Energy System to Explore Sites in L.A.

A new waste-to-energy technology, looking to set up shop at some landfill site in Los Angeles, has gotten a letter of support from Los Angeles County.

Hey, Mayor, We Bent That Curve

‘Our political leaders know about running an economy as much as those guys on “Tiger King” know about Verdi opera.’

Local Lawyer Pleads Guilty to Bribing FBI, ICE

A Calabasas lawyer has pleaded guilty to federal charges including bribing agents from the FBI and ICE to provide protection for him and to obtain sensitive information.

Newsom Outlines Broad Plan to Resume Work

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday outlined a cautious plan to reopen the virtually shuttered California economy in phases in the coming weeks as COVID-19 cases stabilize.

Mission Valley’s Earnings Up

Mission Valley Bancorp on Tuesday announced that its first quarter net income of $816,000, or 25 cents a diluted share, was up more than 16 percent from the same quarter last year.

Economists Forecast 20 Percent GDP Plunge

The economy is darkening rapidly, and on Thursday local experts said they now believe GDP will nosedive more than 20 percent in the second quarter.

Wealth Managers Advise Anxious Clients to Hang Tight

Shocking plunges in the stock markets in recent weeks have prompted frantic calls from investors to their wealth managers.

Economists: Worse than Great Recession; Maybe Depression

Because of the near seizure of the economy prompted by the coronavirus scare, the second quarter may see GDP shrink by 13 percent.

Poll: The Hurt on Small Businesses Now ‘Profound’

About 76 percent of small businesses are being hurt by the coronavirus pandemic, according to a survey put out Monday by the National Federation of Independent Business.

At Least 38 Virus Cases in Valley

At least 38 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in the San Fernando Valley area.

Gary Thomas, Valley Leader, Dies

Longtime San Fernando Valley civic leader Gary M. Thomas died Friday morning during a hospital stay for a respiratory ailment.

Award Earned by SCV Economic Development Corp.

The Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corp. announced Wednesday that it has received a significant honor from the California Association for Local Economic Development.

Mission Valley Has Record Full-Year Results

Mission Valley Bancorp on Wednesday reported a down fourth quarter but positive full-year results that set an earnings record.

Give Moms a Break or Suffer Costs

I’ve asked a dozen or so business operators in recent months if they’ve created lactation rooms yet.


The Lists 2020

Editor and Publisher Charles Crumpley talks about San Fernando Valley Business Journal's The Lists 2020

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I’m Down with T.O.’s ‘Downtown’

Downtown Thousand Oaks will bloom with time.

Discovery Cube Gets Backing from Businesses

Valley area businesses and civic-minded people pledged more than $164,000 Tuesday morning to support Discovery Cube Los Angeles.