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

Betty Goes Vegan

I know it may sound crazy, but there is a new cookbook out called Betty Goes Vegan. Yes, it’s Betty Crocker, the fictitious character who was created by a major food company in the last century to make certain foods and recipes more relatable to the American female shopper. Turns out that the authors Annie and Dan Shannon — longtime vegans living in New York — got the idea for the cookbook from the movie Julie and Julia about blogger Julie Powell’s compulsive year of cooking every recipe from Julia … Continue reading

Sunchokes® have a rich history

Have you ever heard of Sunchokes®? You may know them better as Jerusalem Artichokes. They are one of the HOTTEST vegetables for 2013, according to those organizations who track food trends, like The New York Times’ Julia Moskin. They are a knobby root vegetable that looks like fresh ginger root, but are crunchy with a nutty flavor, and can be eaten raw or cooked. Fresh Ginger Root Sunchoke® Jerusalem Artichokes were first discovered by my mom in 1965, as a man came walking down the Los Angeles produce market. He … Continue reading

Today is International Women’s Day

Since the early 1900s, March 8th has been observed as International Women’s Day. When I woke up this morning at a hotel in Florida and logged onto my computer, this popped up on my Google home page. I think it’s so great that the world has chosen a special day to honor women. Of course, women in the United States have a far better situation than women in many other parts of the world, but we should ALL be honored today. For the men reading this, you probably have female … Continue reading

There is hope for the next generation

This week, I made my annual trek to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (HLSR). For 20 days, the community of Houston encourages and promotes the breeding, raising and marketing of better livestock and farm products through charitable, educational and scientific means. Much of the money raised by the HLSR goes to educational scholarships for children in Texas. This year, they awarded more than $12 million in scholarships! On my flight out of Houston, I started reading the February 25th edition of TIME Magazine and one headline caught my eye: … Continue reading