University of La Verne

Do College Students Need More Life Skills?

It all started on the golf course. Early last year, I attended the Northern Trust Open at the Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles. As I was wandering around the clubhouse, I ran into Mark Brian Smith, the filmmaker who produced and directed “Fear No Fruit,” the documentary about my mom and our family business. He had with him a longtime personal friend Simon, a banker. As per usual, we shook hands and exchanged business cards. So I guess I was a little surprised when six months later I received an email from Simon, who had changed banks, inviting me to be the keynote speaker at a CEO summit. As it turns out, his new bank, Union Bank, is a sponsor of the CEO Summit at the Continue Reading

The Layers of an Onion

I spent my sophomore year of college at Mills, a small women’s college in Oakland, California — just across the bay from San Francisco. Because I have kept in touch with the school, I was thrilled when I got a call a few weeks ago asking if I had time to have coffee with Alecia A. DeCoudreaux, the newly selected 13th president of the college. We met on a Sunday afternoon at Il Fornaio, a wonderful Italian restaurant in Irvine. And the first thing she said was, “I love Frieda’s … Continue reading

Here’s how to make my new favorite coleslaw

A few weeks ago, I wrote about my weeklong vacation in Scottsdale, Arizona, and the fabulous salads I had enjoyed as my main courses. Well, I fell in love with the Grilled Shrimp Salad I enjoyed at Blanco Tacos + Tequila, so I decided to replicate the recipe at home as more of a coleslaw. I had taken notes while at the restaurant, including all the ingredients I tasted, and I even asked the chef what was in the vinaigrette. I’ve made it twice since my vacation and, although the … Continue reading

The back story on pomegranate juice

Over 20 years ago, I got a phone call from Stewart and Lynda Resnick, who you may have heard of. They own Roll Global, which owns Paramount Citrus (marketers of Cuties®), Paramount Farms (marketer of Wonderful® Pistachios), Fiji Water® and POM Wonderful®.   They were calling to invite me to their home in Beverly Hills because they wanted to pick my brain about pomegranates. I’m guessing they called me because Frieda’s was the first to market fresh pomegranates in U.S. supermarkets nationwide. I met Lynda when we honored her at … Continue reading

Graduation and Gen Y’s job searches

June is graduation season. If you don’t have a child graduating, then you probably have a relative or good friend who does. My youngest daughter, Sophia, is graduating from high school next week, so it is top of mind for me. Last month, I spoke to an Agricultural Marketing Class full of graduating seniors at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. What was top of mind for them? Finding a job, of course. I told those students what I always tell the young people I mentor: It does matter WHO you … Continue reading