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

What’s new at Frieda’s? (Hint: It’s purple, of course)

Most people familiar with my company, Frieda’s, know that our signature color is PURPLE. We “chose” this color 50 years ago, when my mom, Frieda, was getting ready to open her business on the Los Angeles Produce Market. Frieda hired a painter to paint her business sign, and it turned out that the only color he had available was a pale lavender. So our first company sign was purple, and it stuck! (Too bad we didn’t have the foresight to trademark the color.) We have always been intrigued when a … Continue reading

Mayor Bloomberg and sugary drinks

Early last month, I reconnected with a high school friend of mine, Mindy. Turns out Mindy lives outside of New York City and is a highly respected Nutritionist and Registered Dietitian and does a lot of consulting in the food business (www.mindyhermann.com). So, when we had breakfast together last month — both of us ordered oatmeal and fresh fruit, of course — the first thing I asked her was, “So what do you think of Mayor Bloomberg’s plan to reduce the allowed size of sugary drinks in the city?” Being … Continue reading

Food, Photos and Pinterest

OK, so we all know about Facebook. For all you Facebook virgins, the way I describe it to my 89-year-old mother is, “It’s like a bulletin board. You post things you want to share on YOUR bulletin board, and those who you have chosen as YOUR Facebook friends can see what you’ve posted. And it’s updated 24/7.” Hard to believe, but I have many friends and business colleagues who are NOT on Facebook. It’s not until they want to share some good news, photos from a trip or reconnect with … Continue reading

Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools

You have probably heard of First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign. She’s made it her personal mission to combat obesity and end it within a generation. It’s actually scary to think about the fact that our kids generation will be the first to live shorter lives than their parents’ generation, all because they aren’t as healthy. This is not a just political cause, even thought it was started by the First Lady. Whether you are Democrat, Republican or Independent, I think you will agree this is an important issue. After … Continue reading