Capital Region SBDCSacramento SBDC

Our Team

"Our focus is to have the community see the SBDC as a business fitness center and not a business hospital. It's not where you go if you're a struggling business trying to fix your problems. It's a place to go for expert advice on how to grow your business. We have an expert team of business advisors that can assist you with starting or growing your business.  They can help you with your greatest need from accessing debt or equity capital, marketing, e-commerce, human resource issues, increasing sales, developing your business plan or operations.  Their valuable guidance is provided at no cost to you, thanks to the support of the Small Business Administration, Go Biz and our generous community partners.” 

- Scott Leslie, SBDC Director

Ron Barrett

Business Advisor

Ron is a native East Bay resident with more than 40 years of entrepreneurial and financial services experience.

Most recently, Barrett served as Manager of Government Guaranteed Loans for Bank of Alameda. Previously, he was a business development officer at Wachovia Small Business Capital and earlier served as a broker and financial advisor for Merrill Lynch. He also has had his own international marketing and sales counseling practice including assignments for the likes of the CEO of Kinko’s Graphics and ACT Teleconferencing.

In addition to his experience in the banking and brokerage industries, Barrett was recognized numerous times for his leadership as founder and CEO of Pride Electronics in San Diego, California, a company with 150 employees who sold its manufactured products in over 26 countries. Pride was named by the President of the United States as “Employer of the Year.”

Linda Bigler

Business Advisor

Linda's career includes 25+ years of High Tech HealthCare sales nationally and 10+ years of certified business coaching (including 5 years of ownership of an ActionCOACH Franchise in Sacramento). The advantages of working with Linda are many. Her process concentrates on how to build an owner, not just the business.  When working with Linda, she will not only guide the business owner in how to achieve their goals, she will hold the business owner accountable for their actions.   “Like an athletic coach she will help a client create their program and will guide them through it but won’t do their sit –ups for them.”  Therefore they can use the skills they have developed throughout the rest of their life.  Change the behavior, change the results!

Linda focuses among others, on these key areas:

Ongoing Business Planning and Development, TEAM Building for leverage, Target Marketing, Testing and Measuring for effectiveness, Sales/Service Training, Business/Systems process improvement, Employee hiring process, Knowing their numbers to increase profits, Effective Time Management Strategies as well as life balance tools. Her success has come by holding the clients accountable for their own growth through Commitment (homework) and Follow through.

Paul Bozzo

Business Advisor

Paul Bozzo is a scalable entrepreneurial and technology ventures expert in the San Francisco Bay Area. Paul’s background blends over 25 years of professional experience in start-up strategy, angel and venture capital financing, strategic planning and SBA lending. His specialty is working with entrepreneurial ventures to refine their business model, create an investment-driven business plan and prepare an effective funding presentation. He also advises CEOs and founding teams on these common start-up issues: legal entity selection, equity financing structures, financial forecasting and exit strategies. Paul is an adjunct faculty member in both Sonoma State's Executive MBA program and Dominican University's Green MBA program.

Wayne Cottrell, MBA

Business Advisor

Wayne is a seasoned finance and operations executive with over 40 years experience in manufacturing, distribution and medical service industries. Experienced as a CFO/COO with start-up, small/medium sized firms and larger organizations moving through growth stages, Wayne posses a skill set that provides guidance, coaching and mentoring to clients.

Additionally, Wayne has acted in a consulting capacity for various manufacturing, software and service organizations. Assistance to clients included: interim CFO; project management for IT system selection, conversion and implementation; guiding the selection and securing of commercial loans, venture capital, factor and public offering financing; organizational restructuring; pre and post acquisition due diligence and analysis; audit preparation and general financial and operational consultation.

Ken Freeman

Business Advisor

Ken was the owner of Feather River Mills for over 26 years.  A diversified Farm and Home store with western wear, pet and animal supplies, farm delivery and animal feeds. He was also an instructor in Agriculture and Business while owning Feather River Mills, Inc. With an impressive 17 years for Consulting Nightingale and the SBDC. Ken was the SBDC Director the 10 years for 5 county areas and he has aided 100’s of business obtain loans. In addition, Ken has 15 years of experience instructing business workshops and training.

Currently, Ken is working on a special project to help Marysville Business owners with branding to increase business sales and to attract new businesses to the city.  The business climate has been poor for many years and is in need of a plan and direction to increase traffic and profitability.

M. Ester Gordillo

Business Advisor

Ms. Gordillo counsels, provides support and leadership in international trade to a wide array of industries from seasoned to start-up companies, and individuals. Ester assists companies through consulting, market intelligence, resources, trade missions, business matchmaking, commercial diplomacy, trade shows, and a variety of other trade promotion events.

Ms. Gordillo began her international trade consulting career at Verity Systems in El Dorado, California in the logistics department. She is currently a member of the Northern California District Export Council. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in International Business.

Clyde Green

Business Advisor

Clyde created and taught the “Business Basics” and business plan workshops for the SBDC since 2001.  He has over 20 years of experience in directing general services for a major life insurance companies home office operations including field office locations in thirteen western states.  In addition, Clyde has 10 years of experience in health care, directing facilities management, and support services in multiple acute and non-acute care facilities.

Craig Hettrich

Business Advisor

Craig Hettrich has over 30 years of experience as a CEO, President and Senior Sales and Marketing executive in the Food Industry. Craig’s sense of purpose in life and his passion is developing people and businesses to their fullest potential. His business philosophy centers around positioning companies for profitable growth by collaborating with leadership teams to create highly focused and compelling go to market strategies. Craig’s career includes positions of increasing sales and marketing executive leadership with General Mills and Nestle as well the role of President of American Seafoods International and of Eskimo Pie Inc.  Until recently Craig had spent the last 4 years as CEO of Sacramento based Java City. Craig’s Specialties are:  P&L Management, strategic planning, turn around strategies, transformational change, marketing and brand strategy, organizational and leadership development, and sales strategy and process.

Kyle Kaneshiro

Business Advisor

Kyle Kaneshiro is an experienced leader in high tech with expertise in strategic planning, product development, user experiences, new business development, and marketing.  He has over 25 years of industry experience, including Director of Strategic Planning and Client Computing Group Manager at Intel Corporation.  Kyle has driven strategies and provided leadership for imaging, 3D video, security, audio, voice recognition, and silicon component/platform planning.  Kyle’s recent activities focused on cutting-edge technology usage efforts, including “No Password” security initiatives and 3D video experiences, which incorporated the use of LEAN methodologies and user experience (UX) testing.  He graduated from Purdue University with a BS in Computer & Electrical Engineering and a MS in Industrial Administration. 

Scott Leslie

Director

Scott Leslie is Vice President of Economic Development for the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Director of the Capital Region Small Business Development Center (SBDC).  Active in the Capital Region community for over fifteen years, Scott thrives on building community relations and economic development. 

In his former role, Scott was the Small Business Transportation Resource Center Project Director for the states of California, Nevada, Arizona and Hawaii.  He assisted small businesses interested in contracting and provided financial, technical and procurement assistance. Scott also worked closely with the Office of Civil Rights for each state Department of Transportation.  During his tenure as a Senior Consultant for CA State Senate, Director of Community Development, Scott was responsible for creating and implementing community summits and technical assistance programs for small businesses, civic and nonprofit leaders.  Since 2004, Scott has been active in Placer County where he has served on the Sierra College Board of Trustees.  Scott has a degree in Finance from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and holds an MBA in International Business from San Diego State University. 

Dave McDougall

Business Advisor

Dave received his MBA from Rider University then obtained his position as the CEO of a $12 million dollar, 100+ employee, multi-location service company in the Bay Area. Dave brings a strong background in both the corporate and entrepreneurial worlds having owned his own business since the mid 1980’s and worked with several Fortune 500 companies. For the past nine years Dave has been a consultant for the greater Sacramento/Sierra Small business Development center. Dave concentrates in the following areas: Financial Management, Business Planning, Economic Feasibility, Cash Flow, Budgeting, and Financial Statement Analysis.

Veronika Monell

Business Advisor

Veronika Monell is passionate about small business and has helped hundreds of business owners grow their businesses. She has joined the SBDC as a consultant in 2016 and is also the owner and strategist of JumpStartNOW. Veronika helps to strategically put the pieces for your business together to create a clear picture. She supports business growth through forward thinking strategies in an ever changing world of marketing and business dynamics. Veronika is a generalist who focuses at the SBDC on startup strategy, business development, strategic planning, online and social media marketing, SEO, eCommerce. Veronika started her career in the fast-paced and dynamic video game industry. Developing and launching cutting-edge products and finding solutions for almost impossible problems was her mission. With her end-to-end business expertise, she helped set the stage for new business opportunities which resulted in millions of dollars in new revenue. She was a nominee for the “2017 Woman on the Way,” NAWBO’s Outstanding Women Leadership award, serves as co-chair of the 2018 Sacramento Metro Chamber Ambassador Committee and was awarded 2017 Ambassador of the Year.

Panda Morgan

Business Advisor

Established 26 year career in banking with a wide range of skills in operations, management, training, auditing, and consumer/commercial lending.  Owner operator of a local moving and storage company (North American Van Lines) for over 10 years. Responsible for daily operations and management within the company, such as: dispatch, accounting, payroll, HR, marketing, estimating (residential & commercial), booking, state & federal inspections, and PUC licensing. Owner of Anchor Property Solutions, LLC; business consultant and workshop instructor.  SBDC consultant for over 20 years specializing in business plans, loan preparation, loan application, time management, operations/management, leadership skills, HR, and business expansion. All areas include one-on-one consulting and workshops.  SBDC director for eight years specializing in community outreach, business and partnership development, managed budgets, wrote grants/contacts, and managed staff.  Over 20 years as a professor at Yuba Community College District and Sierra College teaching classes in entrepreneurship, operations/management, time management, marketing, and leadership.

Ramin Ramhormozi

Business Advisor

Ramin has helped start-up ventures strategize their e-commerce goals, taking their products from concept to market. He focuses mainly on e-commerce platform selection on-site and off-site marketing initiatives, search engine optimization with keyword analysis, social marketing strategies, content curation and creation and road mapping a successful site launch. He has also addressed product data mapping, drop ship and fulfillment set-up. Ramin holds a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communications from CSU Los Angeles. Ramin is a partner at SKU a premier agency in the Northern California focused on e-commerce strategy, design and development.

Barbara Read

Business Advisor

Barbara has 25 years of experience in business management including seventeen years with the Small Business Development Center. In addition, Barbara was a Marketing Manager at Neutrogena Corporation and is also a professor teaching Marketing, Advertising and Entrepreneurship at California State University of Sacramento. Barbara received her MBA from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her B.A. in philosophy from Stanford University.

Don Rose

Business Advisor

Don has over 35 years of experience in business financial management and banking.  After spending the first five years of his career as a commercial loan officer, Don completed his MBA and progressed through a variety of finance positions, including Treasurer, Vice President-Finance, and Chief Financial Officer, in a variety of industries, including food processing, wholesale distribution, consulting, health care, biotech, farm supply, and real estate development.  He has worked for companies with a variety of ownership structures, including private and publicly traded for-profits, non-profits, and cooperatives.  Recently, Don has provided part-time CFO services to multiple companies, in industries such as high-tech manufacturing and consumer products distribution.  Over the course of his career, Don has raised hundreds of millions of dollars of capital, while working closely with CEOs in evaluating and implementing strategic initiatives.  At various times, he has also been responsible for HR and IT.  As an SBDC consultant, Don focuses on raising capital, financial planning and analysis, budgeting and forecasting, optimizing financial performance, and strategic planning for growing companies.

Bill Teeple

Business Advisor

Bill has over 13 years of experience as a business advisor for the SBDC and over 33 years of experience as an undergraduate and graduate college professor. For over 33 years Bill has been working in government contracting and project management, in addition to over 20 years of experience in business supervision and management. 

Bill has held many management positions in civil service and his education includes, Masters of Business Administration (MBA) and Masters of Aeronautics Science, and Acquisition Professional Development Program Level 3 (Highest) in Contracting. Bill retired from the Federal Service with 31 years of service with multifunctional experience to include contracting, aviation, maintenance, quality, production and manufacturing, logistics, training, project management, and safety. 

Ron Barrett

Linda Bigler

Paul Bozzo

Wayne Cottrell, MBA

Ken Freeman

M. Ester Gordillo

Clyde Green

Craig Hettrich

Kyle Kaneshiro

Scott Leslie

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Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA or HSU Sponsored Programs Foundation.