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Daily Business Report-Sept. 24, 2009

Colliers International launches Website for tenants

Colliers International has launched to assist tenants reduce their lease obligations in San Diego County. “For the first time in recent history, the goals of landlords and tenants have aligned,” said Chad Urie, a senior v.p. at Colliers. Urie and partner Michael Glavan, a consolidation specialist, created the sublease Website.  “Both landlords and tenants are focused on occupancy now.  Building owners can’t afford to have huge blocks of vacant space sitting on the market, and tenants need to reduce overhead costs and possibly downsize without going through a costly relocation,” said Glavan. According to Moody’s Economic Forecast for 2010, an additional 18,000 jobs are estimated to be lost in San Diego across all job sectors.  Colliers estimates such job loss will translate to an estimated 4.5 million square feet of additional vacancy, which would escalate the current office and industrial vacancy of 12.6 percent to a 10-year high of 14.5 percent.  Life science companies are returning nearly 3.5 square feet to the market for every square foot leased, according to Colliers. offers a marketing medium for tenants to dispose of their excess space. The site also offers expert counsel regarding the real estate market and other specific services offered by Colliers Consolidation Specialists. “Our goal is to save our clients time and money by renegotiating an existing lease, securing prospective sublessees / assignees, disposing of excess real estate, working out a financial restructuring or buyout, and providing space utilization consultation,” said Glavan.

“The sublease that we negotiated for Amylin is a good example of how we can help clients dispose of excess real estate,” said Urie.  “We were able to save the tenant around $25 million by subleasing approximately 160,000 square feet.”

SDSU researcher wins grant to study nursing workforce

Michael Gates, an assistant professor at the School of Nursing at SDSU, has won a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to conduct research on the supplemental nurse workforce and the link between the nursing work force and patient outcomes. Gates is one of 15 nurse educators from around the country to receive the three-year, $350,000 “Nurse Faculty Scholar” award this year. It is given to junior faculty who show outstanding promise as future leaders in academic nursing. The grant period begins this month.

“The generous support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will enable me to study the nursing workforce that is vital to our country’s health,” Gates said. For his research, Gates will be examining the supplemental nurse workforce and surveying different types of supplemental nurses, including travel nurses, registry nurses, and hospital per diem nurses.  Supplemental nurses work shorter temporary assignments in hospitals and other health care facilities, on an as-needed basis. Few studies have been conducted to assess the needs of this particular group. Gates will research what motivates supplemental nurses and how their work affects the quality of patient care. He will also examine how health care facilities use supplemental nurses and whether and how facilities economize costs by using supplemental nurses.

Diane Hatton, professor of nursing at SDSU, and Gangaram Singh, professor of management, will serve as Gates’ mentors.

Maggie Watkins named to Legal Marketing Assn. board

Maggie Watkins, chief marketing and business development officer for Best Best & Krieger in San Diego, has been appointed to the board of the Legal Marketing Association as a member-at-large. Watkins, a 25-year marketing and strategic planning expert for legal, accounting and other professional service organizations, has long been involved in LMA.  Under her new appointment with LMA, Watkins will chair the QuickStart program, a daylong program designed for marketers with less than five years of experience inside law firms or lawyers looking to enhance their marketing knowledge.

Federal contracts awarded to San Diego County companies

• Romero General Construction Corp., in Escondido won a $796,500 federal contract from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Sacramento for the paving of access road and parking lot at the Tule Recreation Area under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Place of performance will be in Success Lake, Calif. (Source: Targeted News Service:

Science Applications International Corp. has been awarded a task order by the Naval Surface Warfare Center-Dahlgren Division, to provide engineering, technical and management services. The follow-on task order has a one-year base period of performance, four one-year options and a total value of more than $26 million if all options are exercised. Work will be performed primarily in Virginia Beach, Va.

Alliant Techsystems signs 10-year lease for $14 million

Alliant Techsystems Inc. signed a 10-year lease for a 114,150-square-foot warehouse space at the Miramar Commerce Park located at 7130 Miramar Road, Suite 100B, in San Diego. The lease is valued at $14.12 million. The lessor is the Walton CWCA Miramar Distribution 78 LLC. Jay Alexander, Ryan Grove and Arnie Friedman of Colliers International represented the lessor. Mike Christian of UGL Equis represented the lessee. Alliant Techsystems is an aerospace and defense company. The space will be used to manufacture aircraft parts and auxiliary equipment.

Jonathan Littrell appointed receiver for professional plaza

Jonathan Littrell, an attorney with Raines Law Group and manager of RLG Properties LLC, has been appointed receiver for Bonita Professional Plaza, a 45,000-square-foot medical/office building in Bonita. Through a Stipulated Court Order agreed to by both the lender and borrower, a limited liability company operating as Inter-market Investment Group Bonita Plaza LLC, Littrell has taken over day-to-day operations of the building.  Since being appointed by the court in August, Littrell has increased occupancy and is in negotiations for the remainder of the space. Littrell has retained Grubb & Ellis for property management and Cushman & Wakefield of San Diego as leasing agents.

Union Bank and KPBS to honor Latinos

Union Bank and KPBS will honor four Latinos from San Diego County with the 2009 Local Heroes Award for their outstanding community service. The 2009 honorees are: Ruben Barrales, Sarita Fuentes and Catalina Valencia, all of San Diego; and Dr. Jorge Valerdi of Chula Vista. The awards will be given on Sept. 30, 2009 at the KPBS Copley Telecommunication Center in San Diego. The honorees will be formally recognized as part of the 12th annual Local Heroes Awards, which Union Bank sponsors in conjunction with public television station KPBS. The network will also broadcast video profiles of the honorees throughout its Hispanic Heritage Month programming through Oct. 15.

The 2009 honorees are:

• Ruben Barrales is president and CEO of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce. As president, Barrales ensures the chamber provides a broad-based economic value for its members and the international region. Prior to the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, Barrales spent five years serving under former President George W. Bush as the President’s liaison to state and local elected officials. He was the first Latino elected to the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors in 1992 and has been listed as one of Hispanic Business Magazine’s “100 Most Influential Hispanics” three times within the past decade.

• Sarita Fuentes is the principal of Monarch School. As the principal, Fuentes helps serve the community’s homeless youth, ages seven to 18, and mentors children to lead productive lives. Under her leadership, the school has exceeded its Academic Performance Index score for six consecutive years and also implemented the Graduate Support Program. Prior to Monarch School, Fuentes was a dedicated teacher for the Advancement Via Individual Determination program and was recognized as the Latina of the Year at the 2004 Adelante Mujer Conference.

• Catalina Valencia is the executive vice president and general counsel for Aero Financial, where she is responsible for the company’s global legal and regulatory affairs. She has a widespread background in telecommunications, and prior to Aero Financial, Valencia was the co-founder and executive for FanBox, an Internet start-up recognized as host to the world’s largest mobile community. She has served on the board of the Mexican and American Solidarity Foundation and also served as the chair of the Leadership Institute of the Chicana/Latina Foundation. Valencia was awarded the Corporate Achievement Award by Vista magazine for three consecutive years.

• Dr. Jorge Valerdi is a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). As a CASA volunteer, Valerdi was appointed by the San Diego Juvenile Court as an advocate for children in dependency court who have suffered physical and emotional neglect. He has transformed the lives of many children. Prior to becoming a CASA volunteer, Valerdi was the CEO of a Chula Vista-based telecommunications company where he deployed technologies in disadvantaged countries in South America, Africa and Asia. He is currently on the speakers’ bureau for Voices for Children and motivates others to become advocates for the community’s youth. The Mexican Embassy in Washington, D.C. nominated Dr. Valerdi for the 1982 International Marconi Award.

SWAT Officers and Barona team up for benefit golf tourney

Barona Resort & Casino has teamed up with the San Diego SWAT Officers Association to host the annual Invitational Golf Classic on Oct. 15. The tournament will take place at the Barona Creek Golf Club. The annual event will raise funds to help purchase critical lifesaving tools and safety equipment for San Diego’s SWAT team. In addition to the golf tournament, there will be an award ceremony, raffle prizes, a silent auction and a lifesaving demonstration by SWAT team members. San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne will be in attendance to present his vision for the future of the organization. The Invitational Golf Classic will begin with a shotgun start at noon at the Barona Creek Golf Club, 1932 Wildcat Canyon Road, in Lakeside. All proceeds benefit the San Diego SWAT Officers Association and the San Diego Police Officers Association. For more information, call (760) 533-4805.

Port’s video relives boom years of the tuna fishing industry

The Port of San Diego has produced a nine-minute video that will take viewers back to the boom years of the tuna fishing industry when San Diego was known as the tuna capital of the world. Writer Barbara Moreno and videographer Glenn Batuyong, of the Port’s Communications & Community Services Department, produced the segment based on interviews with people familiar with the industry that at one time employed 17,000 workers and generated $65 million in annual economic impact in the region. Interviews were conducted with cannery workers, family members whose relatives worked on the tuna vessels and with those whose family members were employed in the tuna canneries. Included in the production are several historical photos of the canneries, the mostly female workers inside the canneries at their work stations and the tuna fishermen.

The video was produced to coincide with the dedication Saturday of an artwork that pays tribute to the thousands of people employed in the local tuna canning industry. The dedication will begin at 10:30 a.m. The artwork, “The Cannery Workers Tribute – Parque del Sol,” is located at the southwest corner of Cesar Chavez Parkway and Crosby Road.

San Diego-Ensenada Race to launch Oct. 2-3

Southwestern Yacht Club will host the 46th annual San Diego-Ensenada Race Oct. 2-3 with a goal of attracting 120 yachts. Last year 94 yachts started the 62-mile race.  The weekend race festivities begin with a pre-race party on Oct. 1 at Southwestern Yacht Club in Chula Vista. The night features a presentation about the upcoming America’s Cup Race by Team BMW Oracle. An international party at the San Nicolas Hotel in Ensenada completes the weekend. “This is the biggest race for Southwestern Yacht Club,” said Margo King Hemond, commodore. “The city of Ensenada and the San Nicolas Hotel always do a wonderful job of hosting the 500+ racers, plus the SWYC Race Committee, volunteers and friends who support the race.” Smaller and slower boats start the race at 11 a.m. on Oct. 2.  The cut-off time for finishing the race in Ensenada is 2 p.m. on Oct. 3. The post-race party at the San Nicolas Hotel starts at noon on Saturday.

The entry fee for the race is $80 ($75 for US Sailing members) before Sept. 25 and $100 ($90 for US Sailing members) for entries received after that date. All entries must be received before Sept. 30.  Notice of race and sailing instructions can be obtained at Southwestern’s Website at

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