Category Archives: California Capital News and Updates

Through California Capital partnership, City of Lodi expands funding opportunities for local businesses

Today, the City of Lodi Economic Development Department launches its partnership with Sacramento-based nonprofit California Capital Financial Development Corporation (FDC) to create a new loan program for small businesses and entrepreneurs in the City of Lodi. Through the Hometown Microloan Program, low-interest loans of up to $50,000 will be available to Lodi-based businesses with 10 or fewer employees.

“This new source of lending offered by the Lodi City Council is intended to provide a path forward to greater economic growth for startups and small businesses based in Lodi who have experienced hardships in obtaining capital,” explains Astria Trupovnieks, City of Lodi Business Development Manager. Trupovnieks developed the microloan program over a 12-month period in consultation with lending institutions in Lodi, regional nonprofit microlenders and community development nonprofits.

While any businesses who fit the borrowing criteria may apply, these loans are particularly designed to reach first-time borrowers and low-income, minority, veteran, and women-owned businesses. The partnership with California Capital FDC, a mission-based lender that provides loans to businesses who have been denied funding from traditional sources, will be instrumental in providing long-term financing support for Lodi’s growing businesses.

“California Capital provides complimentary business advising as part of the loan application process, ensuring that the applicants are prepared to manage their business and finances effectively,” explains Robert Gonzales, Director of Lending at California Capital, adding that business owners also will have access to ongoing no-cost advising after receiving a loan.

To add to the mission-based approach of the program, the loans will have a fixed interest rate of 5%, which is far below the current prime market rate. These favorable terms are made possible by the City of Lodi who will buying down the interest rate from 9.75 percent in addition to paying all loan fees. Leaders from both entities are optimistic, says Trupovnieks. “Plans are already underway to expand funding for the program to increase the number of businesses assisted in the future.”

Anyone interested in learning more about the Hometown Microloan Program is invited to visit cacapital.org/lodi or lodi.gov/484/economic-development.

Meet the finalists of the Small Business Showcase Pitch Competition!

Next month, the Women’s Business Center will host the Final Round of their Small Business Showcase Pitch Competition, the capstone event of their Motivated Entrepreneurs networking program. Five entrepreneurs will present their business pitches at the free event, and the top three will receive cash prizes. The competing business owners were selected after completing the first round of the Small Business Showcase in November, where 13 total businesses presented for the chance to pitch at the larger event. 

Preparing for a pitch competition is an impressive feat: the businesses owners you’ll meet below worked hard to finalize their business plans and translate that into a succinct, 3-minute presentation that demonstrates who they are, knowledge of their industry, and how their business solves a problem in that market.

The Final Round will take place on Tuesday, December 12 from 5pm-8pm at The Dante Club. We hope you’ll join us to cheer on the finalists, learn what it takes to effectively pitch a business, and network with local small business champions.

In the meantime, let's meet the businesses who will pitch at The Final Round!

Itacate, founded by Martha y. Díaz

After falling in love with backpacking and realizing that options for Latin-inspired meals in the back country were limited, Martha Y. Díaz created Itacate – a Latin backpacking food company for adventurers with great taste and strong values.

DRVA Emergency Rescue, Founded by Taneika Jones

Taneika Jones is squashing any and all stereotypes of women in the automotive industry with her company, DRVA – a certified green, woman owned and operated Emergency Roadside business dedicated to rescuing stranded motorists experiencing roadside emergencies. 

The Lux Barber Lounge, Founded by Ron Burt

Ron Burt, proud founder of The Lux Lounge, has over 10+ years of barber experience and is dedicated to helping clients look and feel their absolute best. 

TAP Wine Lounge, Founded by Cynthia Dees Brooks

With her love for food, wine, art, music, & community, Cynthia Dees Brooks opened up the The Artisan Pour (TAP) Wine Lounge where guests live in the moment and enjoy luxury wines from Black-Owned wineries 

Best In Tents, Founded by John Miller and Seth Abbott

John Miller used his passion for nature and live music to create Best in Tents with his business partner, Seth Abbott – luxury camping with full power accommodations at music festivals along the west coast. 

We hope you’ll join us on December 12th to hear more from these inspiring, visionary entrepreneurs!

Like we said, preparing for a pitch competition is no easy feat. Let's meet all of the participants from Round 1 who are working hard on their businesses!

Bahiya Spaulding, Founder of Rock Your Crown Beauty

Specialized products and support services for women of color experiencing hair loss. 

Ashley Geoffrey, Founder of The Suite Spot Collective

Commercial real estate and turnkey rental services for beauty industry entrepreneurs. 

Da'Shena Payne, Creator of The Moisture Oil Comb (MOC)

An innovative hair care tool designed to make hair oiling fast and easy. Part of CAGED. 

Iyanna Jennings, founder of Nouvelle Healing

An inclusive reiki healing studio offering other mind-body healing services. 

La Toya Holmes-Green, Founder of g4 All Access Transport

Non-emergency medical transportation designed to increase accessibility. 

Pamela Marquez, Founder of Puzz e Gata Jamaica

Homemade, authentic agua de jamaica inspired by the flavors of Mexico.

Naeemah Capers, founder of House of Priti

A membership-based community for women and moms to learn the basics of investing.  

Christa Lee, Founder of Priti Mobile Notary

A remote and mobile notary service to make notarization quick and accessible. 

These entrepreneurs are the reason our local small business ecosystem is vibrant and growing!

Big Day of Giving 2023: Supporting the Future of Sacramento’s Small Businesses

As of today, early giving for Big Day of Giving 2023 is open, bringing the opportunity to support hundreds of non-profits across the Sacramento region. This year, California Capital Financial Development Corporation is proud to participate in Big Day of Giving as we celebrate our 40th anniversary. We’re raising funds that will

Melissa Muganzo-Murphy, founder of Mindy’s Kitchen

directly benefit diverse small business owners by allowing us to reach more entrepreneurs from marginalized communities with no-cost business development resources and access to capital.  

“I have worked for California Capital for over 30 years, and I am still inspired every day by the creativity and resilience of our region’s small business owners,” says Deborah Lowe Muramoto, President and CEO of California Capital. “We are looking forward to strengthening our programming to continue meeting the needs of entrepreneurs.”  

It is no secret that the past three years have been challenging for small business–but the resourcefulness of entrepreneurs is unparalleled. Taking advantage of guidance and education from organizations like California Capital, countless small business owners have pivoted their operations, accessed emergency funding and capital infusions, and even expanded.   

“The Sacramento region is full of creative, ambitious individuals,” continues Lowe Muramoto. “Being able to support their dreams and see the impacts they have in their communities makes our work so gratifying.”  

Brittney Hoffman, founder of Glass House Garden

From artists like Brittney Hoffman, who seeks to spread joy with her unique products, to community leaders like Melissa Muganzo-Murphy, who is using their business to increase access to nutritious food for under-resourced communities, small business owners are positive changemakers.  

If you are passionate about seeing entrepreneurs succeed and grow into thriving small business owners, consider supporting California Capital’s work for Big Day of Giving 2023. Your donation will allow us to continue providing no-cost business counseling and educational courses, and access-to-capital programs. Give today and remember to #ShopSmall!  

Head to cacapital.org/bdog to donate.  

Queers & Allies Fitness Opens, Bringing LGBTQ-Inclusive Gym to Sacramento

For Hayden Glenn, a sports psychologist and the co-owner of Queers & Allies Fitness, exercise has been more than a means to staying in good health.  A lifelong athlete, Hayden played multiple sports until a knee injury in college caused him to take a break. During this time, he reflected on his identity as an athlete as well as his gender identity, and decided to begin the gender transition process. While pursuing his Masters in Sports Psychology, Hayden became more involved in the community of LGBTQ athletes and learned about the experiences of Queer athletes. “What I learned was, particularly in the athletic community, there is a huge disparity in mental health–Queer athletes are more at risk of negative mental health outcomes,” he explains.  After coming out as trans, Hayden decided to combine his personal training and sports psychology coaching businesses and pivot to serving the trans population with services that would support the physical transition process (including pre- and post-op chest masculinization for female-to-male trans and non-binary folks who undergo top surgery) and address the mental experience of gender dysphoria through mental health coaching.   

THE CHALLENGE  

With a vision to create an inclusive and empowering space for trans and Queer folks to train and build mind-body alignment, Hayden began coaching clients out of his garage. The demand quickly grew beyond what the space would allow, so Hayden reflected on the direction of his business. He invited his friend, Sarah Serbic, to be a part of the project, and Queers & Allies Fitness was formed. “We knew it was important to merge Queer and straight populations, because it’s so divided,” explains Hayden. “We wanted to create a space for allies to show their support in a healthy way as well.”   

Looking to build a full-service gym with offerings beyond one-on-one training, Hayden and Sarah knew they would need to explore commercial leasing options–and that a capital infusion was a must.  

THE GAMEPLAN  

While searching for the perfect space to lease, Hayden connected with the California Capital Lending Center and began the loan application process. Working with the credit administrator and a business advisor, Hayden solidified his business plan, created realistic financial projections, and completed the rigorous work of applying for funding.  

“The process took longer than anticipated, but the biggest takeaway was the amount of support we received from everyone we worked with,” says Hayden.  

Ultimately, Queers & Allies Fitness was approved for a $75,000 loan in late 2022. With this, Hayden and Sarah were able to secure a lease in East Sacramento, purchase exercise machines and weights, build out their administrative space, and have working capital moving forward.  

THE RESULT  

Hayden and Sarah opened the doors of Queers & Allies Fitness in December of 2022, and celebrated their grand opening on March 4th. To date, the gym has 20 members, 10 of whom are personal training clients. By the end of the year, Hayden hopes to have 80 members and 30 personal training clients. In addition to growing their client base, Hayden and Sarah are building an attainable culture for populations that are sadly still marginalized in traditional gyms and athletic spaces. “I want to host a trans and non-binary powerlifting competition, and eventually, I want to have a space that could accommodate youth leagues. There are a lot of trans youth that don’t have access to sports now,” says Hayden, explaining that many young people are still faced with choosing between transitioning or playing in sports leagues. With Queers & Allies Fitness, Sacramento has become a stronger and more welcoming place.  

Queers & Allies Fitness is located at 1770 36th Street. Check out their recent feature on KCRA 3 below! 

“It’s much more than just being optimistic” : The Importance of Mental Health for Entrepreneurs with Life Coach Asia Hilario

January 6, 2022 | Oftentimes, a new year brings with it new resolutions, and refreshed focus on personal and professional goals. For Asia Hilario, a certified Life Coach and successful mental health blogger and podcaster, the new year is also the perfect opportunity to uproot the beliefs that are keeping us in cycles of burnout and stress.

In addition to growing her own business, Ms. Hilario is the teacher of our upcoming eight-part mental health series, Preparing For Harvest, which begins January 27th. (It’s offered free of charge–click here to sign up!) We sat down with her to discuss her business journey, tips for entrepreneurs to cultivate mental health, and why the harvest is a fitting metaphor for self-love. 

*Note: this is a transcript of a longer conversation. Some comments have been edited for length or clarity* 

California Capital: How did you get your start as an entrepreneur?

Asia Hilario: I originally started as a fashion blogger after people on social media reached out asking me to share about my outfit choices. I started that blog, and it got some traction, but my heart wasn’t in it. After more people reached out suggesting I write about my philanthropy, which I had been doing for years but didn’t promote, I transitioned to a lifestyle and mental health and wellness blog. A few months after launching, one of my posts went viral and my blog was read in 160 countries. 

When more people started messaging me looking for advice, someone suggested that I become a life coach. I didn’t know people got paid to do that! So I got my certification and launched my coaching business in 2020. I was able to leave my corporate job and work on my business full-time just eight weeks after launching. 

CC: Do many clients come to you looking to make the jump to business ownership?

AH: They don’t necessarily come to me thinking they want to pursue entrepreneurship, but through the program they realize they don’t feel aligned with their current job any more. It takes a lot of bravery and healthy self-esteem to really go after what you want, and self-love is where that starts. 

CC: Why did you decide to focus on mental health as a career? 

AH: I’m a childhood abuse survivor, so with that background I grew up with a lot of self-limiting beliefs. I also have depression, anxiety, and PTSD. I firmly believe that mental health affects how we think, feel, and act, and it also helps us handle stress and make healthy choices. In regards to entrepreneurship, it’s tied to the belief that we can thrive and have success in a chosen industry. 

Once I started taking care of my mental health, my whole world changed. I think everyone could benefit from learning how to take care of their mental health. I’m also a former crisis counselor for Crisis Text Line, so it has always been a passion of mine. 

CC: Do you see common themes among your clients who are entrepreneurs? 

AH: Definitely: burnout, imposter syndrome, stress, overwhelm, feelings of inadequacy. Those are the most common themes. During Preparing for Harvest, I’ll talk about “self-concept”, which is a collection of beliefs about oneself. Many entrepreneurs don’t realize that a lot of their thoughts, actions, and beliefs are rooted in childhood, trauma, or other past experiences. 

CC: How does self-concept impact mental health? 

AH: Unless we get to the root of our self-concept, we’ll be recycling the same challenges. The people that don’t see change in burnout, etc., it’s because they’re only going surface level. They’re not digging deep enough. In terms of self care, self-concept is really big because we have to dig into what identity we’re anchored to that is keeping us from doing what’s good for us. 

Because we know what to do! It’s just getting ourselves to do it that is the challenge. 

CC: What do you wish more people knew about mental health/wellness? 

AH: I wish people knew that it’s much more than just positive thinking and being optimistic. 95% of what we do, say, think is on autopilot by our subconscious. It’s kind of scary to think that we’re not really in control. Our subconscious is our master program, so unless we reprogram we’ll just repeat the same patterns. Will power can only go so far, and just being positive doesn’t get to the root of our problems.  

I also think that people forget the brain is an organ. We think mental health is just in our heads–we don’t hold it to the same standards that we do our bodily health. When we experience something traumatic we sweep it under the rug, rather than seek the help we need to make sure we heal properly. Chronic stress hugely impacts our mental health and brain. I read recently that 72% of entrepreneurs are affected by mental health issues compared to 48% of non-entrepreneurs.

CC: Why did you choose the name “Preparing for Harvest” for your upcoming series with the Women’s Business Center? What does that concept mean to you in relation to mental health?

AH: As entrepreneurs, when we’re producing fruit that is not good in our business, do we change the branch, or do we change the soil and the environment that we’re growing these fruits in? I like that analogy because unless we uproot and change things, we’ll produce the same fruit. 

We think mental health is on the surface level, and a lot of entrepreneurs, a lot of us can be addicted to the stress and we don’t know it. I wanted to create an analogy that would show the importance of digging deep. 

Preparing for Harvest runs January 27-March 17 and is offered online, free of charge. If you are ready to dig deep and plant the seeds of mental health and business success, click here to register.

Through Licensed to Care- Training Program, California Dream Fund Recipient Sithumini Millawabandara Expanded Adventure Montessori STEAM Academy and Created Jobs

For Sithumini Millawabandara, business ownership has been a creative expression. While working in a preschool nearly 10 years ago, Sithumini found herself coming up with many ideas for innovation that her employer was not willing to act on. With a degree in business, Sithumini knew that she was capable of running her own preschool center–and if she wanted to carry out her creative ideas, she would have to do it on her own.  

In 2014, Sithumini opened Adventure Montessori STEAM Academy from her home. While she made the at-home business work, offering a Montessori-inspired and STEAM curriculum, Sithumini consistently searched for opportunities to expand the business to an established facility. When she found a promising facility in Natomas, she joined the second cohort of the California Capital Women’s Business Center’s Licensed to Care Training Program and began working with business consultant Danielle Marshall to work on securing the lease and opening the new facility.  

“Even with my degree in business, I learned a lot during the program,” explains Sithumini. “It made me rethink my mission and vision of my program, and how certain things should be positioned when it comes to marketing.”  

Working with Danielle Marshall for a total of 20 hours of counseling, Sithumini created an actionable business plan, which proved to be advantageous for several reasons. Being able to show a strong vision and financial projections helped Sithumini secure a lease on the space in Natomas, as well as receive a loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration which she used for the purchase of an established childcare business. Additionally, through her participation in the Licensed to Care program, Sithumini was eligible to apply for a California Dream Fund grant, which she was awarded.  

Sithumini opened Adventure Montessori STEAM Academy at its new location in Natomas (Northern Sacramento) in the fall of 2022 with a renewed focus on her creative vision for early childhood education: natural playscapes and classrooms; teaching of mindfulness activities, and cultural diversity. Since participating in the Licensed to Care program, in addition to the acquisition of another business, expansion to a larger operation space, and receiving a Dream Fund Grant, Sithumini has also created five jobs–with plans to hire more–and doubled her revenue. 

Revolving Loan Fund Week: California Capital Client, Ascend Diagnostics, Featured by U.S. Economic Development Administration

As part of the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Revolving Loan Fund Week, California Capital lending client Dr. Haleigh Scott, founder and owner of Ascend Diagnostics and Support Services, was featured on the EDA blog. Click below to read the feature! 

“I want to open people’s eyes to their own talents”: Jzonh Williams Uses Sewn Products Training to Launch New Business and Inspire Youth Entrepreneurship

Jzonh Williams is a man of multiple entrepreneurial interests. With a background as a  barber and a rapper, Jzonh began creating custom embroidery designs on hats and pants to express his unique style during performances. After gaining a following on TikTok featuring his embroidery work, Jzonh began to envision ways that he could expand his skillset and create a wider variety of custom pieces. He connected with Constance Agee, owner of Agee Fashion Institute and instructor of the California Capital Sewn Products Manufacturing Training Course.  

“I decided to enroll in the course because I knew it was time to take this seriously and do what I’ve been saying about learning how to sew,” explains Jzonh, who received a sewing machine as a gift and put his own creative spin on the projects he and his classmates worked on during the course.  

During the week-long training course, participants learned the basics of machine sewing, drafting patterns, and created pieces of their own designs. Jzonh focused on creating pants out of unique materials that he found at thrift stores, and was able to bring new visions to reality with the new skillset.   He created flared pants and embroidered sweatpants, which proved to be a big hit online–in the first two weeks after posting the design to TikTok, Jzonh received 15 orders. As he explains it, Jzonh is creating designs that people have never seen before and didn’t know they needed.  

“Beyond the sewing skills, the course taught me how to work with customers and be a leader,” says Jzonh. Working with Constance, he has filed his LLC, gotten an Employee Identification Number, and is in the process of writing a business plan. “Being a first-generation college student, I want to set an example in my family and be an inspiration for my community.”  

To be sure, Jzonh has already taken great strides in showing the younger generation the opportunities of entrepreneurship. Recently, Jzonh attended a career fair at a local high school, where he demonstrated the knowledge he gained during the course, and spoke with students about the paths that open up when you develop a dynamic skillset. Since posting online about his visit, high schools across the region have requested more information and invited Jzonh to come speak.  

“I don’t just want to run my own business. I want to open people’s eyes to their own talents.”  

2.4 Veteran-Owned Businesses Across the Country Celebrated During National Veterans Small Business Week

Across the nation, approximately 2.4 small businesses are owned by Veterans–that means that 1 in 10 small businesses are owned and operated by women and men who have served in a branch of the U.S. military*. This year, the U.S. Small Business Administration recognizes October 31st through November 4th as National Veterans Small Business Week. This year, the events of the week will focus on the resilience and strength of veteran and military spouse entrepreneurs and business owners.  

At California Capital Financial Development Corporation, we are proud to work with Veteran business owners and entrepreneurs to ensure that they can access the resources and opportunities to build thriving Veteran-Owned Businesses.  

Over the years, we have helped many Veterans obtain certifications; pursue, bid and perform on government contracts; and leverage the skills and resilience learned during their time serving the country to succeed in various industries. The stories we are honored to share are strong examples of the unique qualities that Veterans bring to their entrepreneurial journeys.  

Antronette Robinson, Maestro Coffee House  

Antronette Robinson is a Veteran of the United States Army, where she served as a critical care nurse for 12 years. In 2018, Antronette was inspired to open a café space that would allow her to give back to her community. After opening Maestro Coffee House in July of 2019, Antronette became certified as a Service-Disabled Veteran business owner, and through the entirety of her business journey, she has returned to her training in the Army for guidance.  

“I attribute my confidence as a business owner to the leadership courses I took during my time in the military, and my abilities as a manager to my experience as a platoon leader,” she explains, adding that her time in the Army also made her more resilient and determined as a business owner, equipping her to think outside the box. 

David Ramil, Pivotal Adaptive Services  

David Ramil is a certified Service Disabled Veteran, who worked with the California Capital Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) to learn how to pursue, bid on, and successfully perform on government contracts.   In early 2019, David was awarded a contract with California American Water and was selected to participate in their Mentor Protégé Program.  

 

 

 

 

Mack Thomas, MacQue’s BBQ 

Mack Thomas is a father, a Disabled United States Marine Corps Veteran, a Black business owner—and someone who knows good barbecue. Over the past 30 years, The Thomas family have learned the ins and outs of the business and grown MacQue’s Barbecue into a staple of the Sacramento area. To continue growing, Mack began envisioning the possibility of selling MacQue’s sauces to military bases across the country.  

“I knew there were opportunities to sell to mess halls and commissaries on military bases from my time in the Marine Corps,” Mack says. “So I was interested in government contracts, but I wasn’t sure how to get in.”  

 In search of guidance on navigating the procurement process, Mack turned to California Capital’s Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC). Working with a PTAC counselor, Mack has been able to take the first steps to bidding on and securing government contracts. MacQue’s Barbecue has become certified with the Systems for Award Management (SAM), a necessity for any business hoping to sell their goods or services to the Federal Government. With that foundation laid, Mack is now focused on recertifying his Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) status, which will allow him to take advantage of programs that cater specifically to veteran-owned small businesses. 

Constance Agee, Agee Fashion Institute  

Constance Agee’s entrepreneurial journey began when she was 18 years old, serving in the Air Force. After she chose to sew her organizational patches onto her uniform herself rather than use the base’s alteration shop, she began offering the service to others on base. This began a long career in sewn products, and led her to establish Agee Fashion Institute, where she creates pathways to entrepreneurship through education in both high fashion and industrial sewn products.  

Over the past few years, Constance has offered a Sewn Products Training series through the California Capital Women’s Business Center that has led to multiple business starts.  

*Source: https://www.military.com/veteran-jobs/largest-ever-study-veteran-businesses-and-their-owners-needs-your-help.html 

California Capital Meets With Delegation of Kosovo National Assembly Members to Discuss Women’s Economic Participation

May 17, 2022 | This morning, California Capital Financial Development Corporation met a delegation of representatives from the National Assembly of Kosovo for a conversation on expansion of women’s economic participation and business development models. The delegation, whose trip was made possible through the Open World program of the Congressional Office for International Leadership and Global Ties Sacramento, consisted of Members of Parliament Ms. Tinka Kurti and Mr. Enis Kervan. Representatives of the Women’s Business Center (WBC) and Lending Center provided insight into how California Capital addresses pressing local and universal business issues.

“Supporting microbusinesses can look different across cultures,” explains Deborah Lowe Muramoto, President of California Capital. “But we learned that the need for more people–particularly women and ethnic minorities–to successfully enter the workforce is common between Kosovo and California.”

In-Depth Discussion

With the issue areas of particular importance to the visiting Members of Parliament including gender equality, microbusiness, and minority rights, the conversation focused on how California Capital’s technical assistance and lending programs are designed to serve and grow women- and minority-owned businesses.

Knowledge sharing included best practices for reaching specific communities with resources, and WBC Director, Sophia Kanaan, provided insight into specific programs–such as Licensed to Care–that provide culturally competent training to empower women to open and operate businesses. For their part, the representatives of the delegation, who were joined by a bicultural/lingual facilitator and an interpreter, shared context of the types of businesses that women in Kosovo typically own, and the ways in which the government supports microbusinesses in the country.

“We were honored to host this meeting with representatives from the National Assembly of Kosovo,” says Lowe Muramoto. “Any opportunity to share information and learn from others is one we are grateful to accept.”

Creating Global Ties

It is clear that, while systems and economies may differ, entrepreneurship is an important area of opportunity for populations around the world, and conversations like today’s are crucial to expanding the positive impact of business ownership.

More than 30,000 current and future leaders from post-Soviet era countries have participated in the Open World program. Open World offers one of the most effective U.S. exchange programs to promote mutually beneficial options for depolarized engagement between future national leaders. It is a unique but no less powerful tool for Congress to engage legislatures in critical regions of the world.

Global Ties Sacramento, a Division of World Trade Center Northern California

Global Ties Sacramento influences positive global change and fosters mutual understanding through the facilitation of professional, cultural, and educational exchanges. Connecting international leaders with the Greater Sacramento Region, they provide opportunities for people from around the globe to engage in meaningful dialogue, build relationships, and create a more peaceful world. Global Ties Sacramento is a division of World Trade Center Northern California, and a member of the Global Ties U.S. network. Global Ties Sacramento is the only organization of its kind in the Greater Sacramento and Central Valley regions. On an annual basis, Global Ties Sacramento hosts over 400 international visitors, contributing over $550,000 to the local economy through hotel stays, dining expenditures, and participation in cultural activities. In addition to the economic impact, their work expands cultural fluency, showcases global perspectives, breaks down barriers, and provides citizen diplomats the opportunity to shape and advance foreign policy goals.

COIL, a Support Agency of the Congress

Founded in 1999 by Congress, the Congressional Office for International Leadership (formerly known as the Open World Leadership Center) maintains a vast network of more than 30,000 alumni in strategic countries including Russia, Ukraine, and others in the Balkans, Caucasus, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. It’s Open World program supports legislative diplomacy efforts for Members of Congress by conducting exchanges that establish authentic communication and enduring relations that are maintained through its extensive alumni network. Program participants are provided with exposure to the work of Congress, American politics, accountable governance, and volunteerism while being home hosted by American families. To learn more about the Open World program, please visit https://www.openworld.gov/.

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