Author Archive

Volunteering – The Most Enjoyable Way to Network

November 29, 2010 3 comments

Imagine getting your next client or job opportunity from someone you interact with regularly on one of VIA’s Committees. Imagine building long-lasting relationships with other business people who share some of your same interests and passions. Well, it’s quite easy to turn these images or visions into reality! Yes, it will require a little bit of effort and time on your part, but the possibilities are endless.

You might be asking, “How can I make this happen? How I can I create opportunities for myself in 2011?”
Well, quite simply, check the online calendar on the VIA website for meeting dates and times, call the VIA office at 661-294-8088, or ask any one of the VIA Board members who would be more than happy to help you find a volunteer opportunity that matches your interests and skills.

On the flip side, if you’re looking to bring someone into your organization this is a great way to “try someone out” and see what they’re really like to work with or how they follow through on commitments. Remember, volunteering doesn’t come with a salary, so imagine what someone who gets things done while volunteering may actually accomplish when getting paid to do a job.

So, let’s learn from our schools that often times require students to do volunteer work to enhance their education, refine their skills, work with others, and make their community a better place.

There’s a Greek proverb that says “A civilization flourishes when people plant trees under which they will never sit.” We can all help ourselves and VIA flourish by getting involved in one of the many active committees so that we can strengthen our relationships with other business people, grow our own businesses, and ensure VIA remains a “living” organization.

Diana Meyer
Meyer Marketing Intelligence

Categories: Uncategorized

Proposed California “Safer Consumer Product Alternatives” Regulations

October 25, 2010 Leave a comment


On September 14, 2010, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) published proposed regulations that will impose sweeping new responsibilities and regulatory risks on companies world-wide that manufacture products for sale into California, as well as those California companies marketing consumer products in that state.

In the now officially proposed draft, DTSC places the duty to comply on a newly defined term, called the “responsible entity.” Companies selling products into California may be a “responsible entity” if they are:

  •  An owner or licensee of a brand name or trademark under which a consumer product is placed into the stream of commerce in California;
  • A California importer;
  • A California distributor;
  • a retailer; or
  • Any person who is party to a contractual agreement with a California importer, distributor or retailer concerning a consumer product placed into the stream of commerce, unless that contractual agreement specifically states that the product shall not be sold in California.

 The draft regulations set out a schedule for its four-step identifIcation and prioritization schedule over the next three years. Thus, the first product to be selected to attempt to comply with this new regulatory program would be in December 2013.

 Step One: DTSC is proposing to first establish an initial list of “Chemicals Under Consideration” by June 1, 2011, and a final list by March 1, 2012.

Step Two: DTSC is proposing to establish an initial list of “Priority Chemicals” by July 1, 2012.

Step Three: DTSC is proposing to have an initial list of “Products Under Consideration” by March 1, 2013.

Step Four: DTSC is proposing to have an initial list of “Priority Products” by September 1, 2013, and a final list by December 1, 2013.

All companies selling consumer products in and into California obviously have a substantial interest in what ultimately is contained on each of these important “lists.” It is important to note that this listing process is not envisioned to be an exclusively government exercise, as the regulations also provide for a petition process for any person to add chemicals and products to the lists. After they are all developed, the duty to comply with the alternative analysis reporting and documentation for the responsible entity for that priority product will commence

Comments can be submitted to DTSC electronically by using the comment link on DTSC’s website. They also can be submitted via mail or e-mail, or at a public hearing to be held in Sacramento on November 1, 2010

Tim Burkhart
Six Flags, Magic Mountain

Categories: Uncategorized

Connecting to Success – Connecting with Our Future!

October 8, 2010 1 comment

Connecting to Success – Connecting with Our Future           

Yesterday I had the opportunity to participate in VIA’s Connecting to Success program.  This was my first year participating in the program and I will admit, I went into the day not sure what to expect. 

My partner in crime for the day was Connie Sparks of the SBDC and together we co-led the session topic of Financial Literacy for three sessions of 40 students each.   The students were attentive, participative (yes the candy we brought did help) and asking really good questions throughout the morning. 

Connie and I traded off sharing stories from our own personal experiences with credit cards, ATM fees, and checking accounts.  We also enjoyed hearing the stories of success and struggle that the students shared.

As the final class boarded the bus just after 12:30pm today I walked back to my car and smiled.  I am happy to say that I ended the day with a renewed excitement about what the future leaders of the Santa Clarita Valley will bring to our community.  They are bright, determined, and ready to take on whatever the world may throw at them.  They are also much more acutely aware of the pitfalls of using out of network ATM machines and are planning to start saving today for that new car they want tomorrow.

If you haven’t participated in VIA Connecting to Success yet, there are two more sessions this year (October 18 and November 4th) .  I guarantee you will find it well worth your time and a true investment in the future.  

Contact the VIA office to register.  (661) 294-8088 or by email:

Laura Biery
Administrative Analyst
Economic Development
City of Santa Clarita

Categories: Uncategorized

VIA – A Trustworthy Organization in Santa Clarita

August 17, 2010 2 comments

The Valley Industry Association (VIA) plays an important role in the City of Santa Clarita through its many programs offered.  When I first came to represent Southern California Edison as the Public Affairs Regional Manager, the first organization I became acquainted with was VIA, because of the reputation this organization has had for many years, one of TRUST and Effectiveness.  These two aspects are important to the business customer that is looking for educational insight on key issues important to the business section and the residents in this City.  VIA offers the types of programs that Edison values in staying connected and informed on community issues and matters, such as the Advocacy. Committee, Education Committee, Marketing Committee, B2B Industry Show, and others, which have provided valuable information on making effective decisions.  

Why Trust is Critical in a Healthy Organization?  How important is building a trusting work environment?  When I speak about Trust, I refer to Aristotle (384-322 BC).  His writings in the Rhetoric, suggested that Ethos, the Trust of a speaker by the listener, was based on the listener’s perception of three characteristics of the speaker.”   “Aristotle believed these three characteristics to be the intelligence of the speaker (correctness of opinions, or competence), the character of the speaker (reliability – a competence factor, and honesty – a measure of intentions), and the goodwill of the speaker (favorable intentions toward the listener).”  I don’t think this has changed much even today. 

The same speaks for the type of environment you want to create in your community and your environment.  Trust is the necessary precursor for:

  • Feeling able to rely upon a person or business
  • Cooperating with the experiencing teamwork with a group
  • Taking thoughtful risks
  • Experiencing believable communication 

Trust forms the foundation for effective communication, employee retention, and employee motivation, and when trust exists in an organization or in a relationship, almost everything else is easier and more comfortable to achieve. 

 VIA promotes Trust and is a Key Organization in this Community, and for those of you that are not a member, I encourage you to join immediately! 

Anna Frutos-Sanchez
Public Affairs Regional Manager
Southern California Edison

Categories: Uncategorized

Most Important Step in Business?

“What is the most important step in business?’ is a favorite question I like to put to business people.  

The responses usually cover the range from “The decision to start in business,” to “The first sale,” to “The successful marketing campaign we initiated last year.”  Although the events cited certainly deserve a special place in the mind of any entrepreneur, the response that is my favorite is “The most important step in business is the next one!”

I like the latter response best because it reflects a forward-looking vision, not mere recognition of history.  Implicit in the statement is the realization that what got you to where you are is unlikely to be good enough to get you to where you want to be.  In today’s fast-paced, high technology world, success goes to the swift and agile over the big and strong. The great American humorist got it right when he said, “Even though you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there!”

The most successful businesses are already working on their next step as their competitors are admiring their last step.  Apple  Corporation is one such winner that readily comes to mind.

One of the many reasons I am a member of VIA is because we have a great group of leaders who understand this concept and it is reflected in the dynamic way VIA is keeping pace with the changing economy and using technology to meet the current needs of members.

What about you?  Are you keeping pace?  What is your next step?

Bill Kennedy, Wingspan Business Consulting

Supporting VIA

June 24, 2010 1 comment

Some of you might not expect a manufacturer to be one of the Valley Industry Association’s biggest supporters. However, during the many years of involvement in VIA, Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing and its related companies have continued to benefit in numerous ways through their VIA memberships.

VIA offers its members an excellent means to connect with the best of our local service organizations such as; advertising agencies, banks, environmental, insurance, staffing, technology, and various consulting firms. Looking at VIA’s member directory you can see a wealth of other industries showing how diversified the membership is.

Another impressive value to members is access to our colleges, the City, their services, and to the many Government Officials who continue to support the VIA membership.

The Valley Industry Association, almost 30 years in existence, is experiencing current and continued growth with newly added objectives for value to members. Bayless and group look forward to many more years of association with VIA.

Andrea McAfee


Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

Why VIA? For a Collective Voice

June 4, 2010 3 comments

Why VIA?  Discover the power of a collective voice. How are we going to hold the attention of our politicians, except by banding together?

VIA has existed as an organization for over 29 years.  VIA was originally formed to get the attention of the local politicians that represented the areas encompassed by the Valencia Industrial Park.  Since then VIA has grown and diversified, and now covers a greater geographic area, but one thing has remained constant: VIA is the voice of industry in Santa Clarita.

There are many other groups in Santa Clarita that represent businesses of all kinds.  Each exists for a specific purpose, doing many good things for their constituents and the community.

VIA is unique among the representative groups in Santa Clarita for several reasons:

  1. VIA is entirely supported by its members, and does not depend on government funds
  2. VIA is local, representing only the Santa Clarita Valley
  3. VIA’s primary focus is business to business (B2B), to serve our local manufacturers and the service companies that serve businesses.

Because of these factors, VIA is a reasonably “pure” collective voice, truly representing the specific needs of industry in the Santa Clarita Valley.  VIA’s only political agenda is to advance the business interests of its members.  For years, VIA has provided a unified voice to support various transportation and infra-structure projects.  This support helps our region attract state and federal dollars to fund projects.  These are dollars that could easily flow to other regions instead.

Come to any VIA event, and you are certain to run into: 1) a City Council member or a City Staff member, and 2) the deputies of your county, state, and federal representatives.  Why are our politicians such dependable participants of VIA events?  It is extremely efficient for our representatives to come to a VIA event.  At the event, the deputies and representatives can meet with the leaders of our business community, as well as with the other deputies and representatives.  For the VIA members, the VIA events are an extremely low cost and time efficient method of getting access to the politicians who represent us.

The politicians need our input.  Unless we tell them, they don’t know what is important to work on.  Unless we tell them, our reps don’t know what is hampering our businesses.  By giving our politicians feedback, we can encourage them to do more of the good things.  By backing up our politicians, we can help them find the resolve to do the right things while in session.

Think about how much work it would be if you had to connect yourself, one-on-one, with each representative.  A VIA membership is a great bargain that quickly pays for itself if you use it.

Andy Pattantyus

Andy is the President of Strategic Modularity, Inc. and has been a member of VIA since 2003.  Andy is also a member of The ACA Group