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Valley business news

June 24, 2002

New risk manager for El Centro

STAFF REPORT

Theresa Brownlee has been named risk manager for the city of El Centro.

Brownlee worked for the Imperial Irrigation District for more than 11 years, during which she implemented several safety training programs including standard first aid/adult cardiopulmonary resuscitation training, defensive driving, forklift training, herbicide/pesticide training and chemical training.

She also wrote and developed several standard operating procedures manuals and assisted in developing a recordkeeping system.

As risk manager, Brownlee's first priority will be to implement a variety of safety programs and to reduce the city's worker's compensation costs.

Brownlee is a native of the Imperial Valley and a graduate of Central Union High School. She attended both San Diego State University and Imperial Valley College. She received her bachelor's of arts in psychology in 2001.

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Brownlee is a certified safety administrator and a registered safety supervisor. She is certified through the National Safety Council. She also holds an OSHA professional certificate in occupational health and safety

with an emphasis on construction and general industry orders from the University of California San Diego.

Brownlee, her husband, Jim, and their two children, Shane and Tracey, live in El Centro.

WTC hires new case managers

STAFF REPORT

The Imperial County Work Training Center has announced the addition of case managers Christine Roman-Aguilar and Danny Lopez to its Linkages program.

Roman-Aguilar recently obtained a bachelor's degree in psychology from San Diego State University. Before coming to WTC, Roman-Aguilar worked for the Center for Autistic Research's evaluation and service and at Imperial Valley College for Exceptional Children.

Lopez recently obtained a bachelor's degree in anthropology and French from University of California, Los Angeles. Lopez comes to WTC with experience in social services.

A press release states, "It's with great joy that WTC welcomes both individuals and looks forward to their service to our agency and the community in Imperial County."

For more information about the services offered by WTC, call 352-6181.

SBA honors Brawley accountant

STAFF REPORT

The U.S Small Business Administration San Diego District recently named Birgit G. Klockmann of Brawley as its accountant advocate of the year for small businesses in San Diego and Imperial counties.

She was honored at an SBA luncheon earlier this month in San Diego.

Klockmann owns and operates H & R Block/Klockmann Bookkeeping Services at 631 Main St. in Brawley. She expanded her facility in 2001 with a SBA loan obtained through Valley Independent Bank and the CDC Small Business Finance Corp. The financing allowed her to increase the space devoted to serving clients, as well as add a classroom for her preparation instruction sessions, a press release states.

The SBA recognized Klockmann for her work in the community, including volunteering time and energy outside of business duties to assist small businesses. Additionally, her assistance in the reduction of financial and regulatory requirements for small businesses, as well as her support for initiatives to promote legislation, strengthens the financial health of small businesses, a press release states.

"She had a very clear vision of what she wanted to accomplish with her expansion, and this award is the result of her hard work and determination," said Kay Fisher, an SBA loan officer for Valley Independent Bank.

Because SBA loans are government-guaranteed, they allow small businesses to obtain financing with lower interest rates, lower down payments and longer payment terms than standard business loans.

Art Obeso is manager of the year

STAFF REPORT

CALEXICO — Out of more than 32,000 total team members at Advance Auto Parts, Art Obeso was named one of the managers of the year at the company's national conference in April. Art Obeso works for Western Auto Supply Co., whose parent company is Advanced Auto Parts.

"Obeso is a perfect example that at Advance Auto Parts, the best part is our people," a press release states.

To achieve the highly competitive title of store manager of the year, a team member must demonstrate outstanding leadership qualities. The manager must be able to motivate and support his team and provide feedback so they can achieve superior results, placing them at the top of their class.

"Art is an essential part of Advance's team, exemplifying all the standards of excellence in leadership," said Herschel Hudson, regional vice president. "He is dedicated to making Advance Auto Parts the neighborhood auto parts store you can count on."

Advance Auto Parts is the nation's second largest retailer of auto parts and accessories. The company operates more than 2,400 stores in 38 states, primarily located in the East, Midwest and Southwest of the United States and in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

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