published on January 6, 2017 - 4:19 PM
Written by The Business Journal Staff


In California Dritsas Groom McCormick, LLP would like to announce the advancement of Adam Gruszczynski and Leslie Pountney, CPAs, as partners in the firm.

Gruszczynski joined the firm in 2009 and provides tax services as well as business planning services to both businesses and individuals. He is the financial chair of the Adaptive Sports Program at Children’s Hospital, president of the local chapter of Business Network International, and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants as well as the California Society of Certified Public Accountants. Pountney joined the firm in 2000 and has been providing auditing, accounting and tax services for more than 20 years.  She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, California Society of CPA’s, as well as serving as a committee chair in the local chapter of the California Society of Certified Public Accountants.  

Fresno Rotary is pleased to welcome four new members. Ann K. Abajian is the director of Learn4 Life Program and oversees corporate public relations at Crescent View West Public Charter School. Alice L. Barberich is the principal at Crescent View West Public Charter School. David Clarke is a senior account manager at Nettra Marketing, Inc. Jake Soberal is the co-founder and CEO of Bitwise Industries.


Pearson Realty has announced its Top Producers for 2016:  Salesperson of the Year was Robb Stewart, senior vice president, Visalia office; followed by Jon Daggett, senior vice president, Fresno office; and Bill Hopkins, senior vice president, Fresno office, all specializing in the sale of agricultural properties.


Fresno Mayor Lee Brand announced that Jaime Sandoval has joined his staff as the new communications coordinator. Sandoval, who most recently served as Fresno County public information officer, was an Emmy Award-winning photojournalist at Univision KFTV-TV in Fresno where he worked for over 12 years. He earned a B.A. in mass communication from California State University, Fresno and is a member of the California Association of Public Information Officers (CAPIO.) As communications coordinator, Sandoval will work directly with the city’s director of communications to develop and disseminate all internal and external communications, as well as oversee content management of the City of Fresno’s new website, social media platforms, and FresGO mobile app.


Fresno-based United Valley Insurance Services, a membership network of more than 70 independent insurance agencies, announced the addition of five new member agencies in California for 2016. These include Cooper Insurance Agency, Inc. in Easton, where Principal Gary Cooper writes both personal and commercial insurance. Other new agencies include CMR Risk & Insurance Services, Inc. in San Diego; Warren G. Bender Co. in Roseville; Steven H. Spiegler Insurance Services, Inc. in La Jolla and Michael Kennedy Insurance Agency, Inc. in El Cajon.


The Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce announced that Ron Colgate is the recipient of the 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award. A 40-year mountain-area resident, Colgate is a community volunteer and was formerly employed by Sierra Telephone. The Man of the year winner is Victor Weitzel of Idea Print Work, Inc., the Woman of the year is Laura Norman of Sierra Tel, the Business of the Year is Oakhurst Grocery Outlet owners Brandon and Jessica Steele, and Executive Director’s Award goes to Carrier Proctor of Oakhurst Healthcare & Wellness Centre. They will be honored Jan. 20 at Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite.

“New Beginnings” is the theme for the 2016 Chowchilla District Chamber of Commerce Community Awards dinner slated for Jan. 21. The annual event will recognize community members who have given above and beyond of their time, energy and resources to the community. This year’s winners include Business Person of the Year – Ray Barragan; Choose Chowchilla Award – Phil and Elizabeth Cheatham, Deli Delicious; Chowchilla Progress Award – Tara Davis, State Farm Insurance; Chowchilla Heritage Award – Land Company and Real Estate; Educator of the Year – Muriel Fore; Excellence in Agriculture – Doug Thiel, Thiel Air Care; Heart of Chowchilla – In Memory of Pete Cornaggia; Historical Award – Reddy Redskin; Honoring Community Contributions – Chowchilla Lions Club; Outstanding Citizen of the Year – Kim Hickman, Paw Spa; Unique Citizens – H.O.W. – Brenda Farmer, Kelle Ray, Tracey Moore; and Vision Award –Mario Davila, Mario’s Traditional Mexican Restaurant.

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