San Diego Next 40 Finalists #9

The San Diego Business Journal on Aug. 14 will recognize San Diego’s Next 40 Top Business Leaders Under 40. The event will be from 4-7 p.m. at the Westin San Diego Gaslamp Quarter. Here are some of the 150 finalists, listed alphabetically. Ten names will be released each day for 10 days starting July 30, 2018. LIST TO DATE

Taylor Schulte
Founder and CEO
Define Financial

Taylor Schulte launched Define Financial in 2014. Schulte grew gross revenue of the firm by 60 percent in the last year. He was named a Five Star Wealth Manager in San Diego Magazine for the four consecutive years and was also named to Investopedia’s Top 100 Most Influential Financial Advisors list in 2018, along with many other awards. Schulte is a regular contributor to national media outlet Kiplinger and to San Diego Downtown News. He holds a Certified Financial Planner designation and is a member of the San Diego Financial Advisors Network.

Amanda Schultz Brochu
Senior Director of CalFresh& Advocacy
San Diego Hunger Coalition

In her first year overseeing the organization’s advocacy activities, Amanda Schultz Brochu has created long-term system changes to improve access to federal nutrition programs affecting nearly 500,000 people. She is overseeing the creation of a College Student Disabilities document to connect students with disabilities to CalFresh. She has been working with colleges, universities, and County of San Diego HHSA to offer same-day service events on campus allowing students to apply for and verify eligibility, a process that can normally take up to 30 days to complete. These models can serve up to 150 people in one day.

Adam Seery
Co -Founder
Harvest Small Business Finance

Adam Seery co-founded a company that in less than two years ranks in the top 15 SBA loan originators in the country for fiscal year 2018. He was the number-one-producing business development officer in his firm. The firm has grown to 70 employees — half in Southern California and the other half spread across the country. His firm secured one of only 14 nationwide nonbank SBA lender licenses available, allowing it to lend on behalf of the U.S. government through SBA 7A and SBA 504 real estate loans without being a bank. Since May of 2016, the firm generated approximately $350 million in total loan originations.

Dina Segal
Vice President, Associate General Counsel
Renovate America Inc.

Dina Segal successfully lead negotiations of the company’s partnership with one of the biggest providers in the energy home improvement space, making energy efficiency improvements more accessible to homeowners and bringing opportunity to the energy efficiency industry. She also leads negotiations with cities and counties throughout California and Florida. Segal is a member of the advisory board at Universal Stabilization Technologies, an early stage biopharmaceutical R&D company. She also founded the San Diego chapter of SunLaw, a group that addresses the unique needs of women in-house counsel.

David Shapiro
Owner, Managing Partner
Law Office of David P. Shapiro

Shapiro touts himself as someone who helps good people through bad situations when they are charged with a crime. Since opening his office in 2010, he has handled more than 1,000 state and federal cases, from misdemeanors DUIs to felonies. He previously worked as an associate attorney at Steigerwalt and Associates. Shapiro completed his undergraduate work in legal studies at the University of Buffalo. He earned his law degree from the Tulane University Law School in New Orleans. While in law school, Shapiro worked to secure rights for prisoners in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He is a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, California Attorneys for Criminal Justice and the California Public Defenders Association.

Josh Shapiro
Executive Director
UC San Diego Center for Applied Research and Evaluation

Shapiro’s work involves evaluating workforce trends and conducting regional economic studies, program evaluations and other data-driven projects. He is one of the core evaluators of the effectiveness of the Department of Labor’s $500 million Wired initiative, which involved 15 regions across the country. He has also worked on a number of labor market and innovation reports including a grant from the National Science Foundation on the role social and cultural dynamics play in regional innovation. Shapiro is trained in both qualitative and quantitative methodologies, with a specialization in survey design. He holds degrees from UC San Diego and Washington University in St. Louis. Prior to joining the UC San Diego community, he spent about a year volunteering with Americorps.

Chancelor Shay
Director, B2B & Infrastructure Development
(W)right On Communications, Inc.

Chancelor Shay led a strategic B2B public relations campaign that launched a new iOS-based software solution for warehouses and 3PL distributors in mid-2017. In 2018, it earned national recognition with a silver award for Best B2B Product Launch from Bulldog Reporter. His efforts produced media coverage in The Wall Street Journal which earned the attention of Arianna Huffington, who Tweeted a link to her 3 million followers. He also managed communications to support an international merger between a Vista-based pool equipment brand and a Barcelona-based company. He earned coverage in PC Magazine for the client’s robotic pool cleaner.

Kiran Shelat
Executive Director
Classics 4 Kids

Classics 4 Kids has made tremendous strides through increased grant funding, added staff positions, growth in programs, and increased community outreach and partnerships; the efforts helped music education programs to reach almost 30,000 elementary students, teachers and parents in San Diego — in one year! Over the past ten years, Shelat has served in numerous leadership roles at American Red Cross, Jewish Family Service, Senior Services of Northern Kentucky and World Affairs Council of Greater Cincinnati. Kiran was a finalist for the 2016 Women Who Mean Business Awards from the San Diego Business Journal.

Shivani Singh
Dharma Express

Shivani Singh is a former NASA rocket scientist turned entrepreneur. Singh has brought personal development to the tech world and academia through apps, powerful speaking, neuroscience-based systems, experiential programs and proven results. She has helped over 10,000 entrepreneurs, leaders, and scientists around the world start companies and create change. Her work has led her to launch leadership programs with companies such as Lululemon, Disney, Sage Human Capital and Stanford. Singh is the author of the book, “Discover Your Dharma,” which won the Best New Age Book of the Year from the Next Generation Indie Book Awards.

Pierre Sleiman
Founder and CEO
Go Green Agriculture

Go Green Agriculture is an innovative hydroponic produce company. Pierre Sleiman has steadily improved and expanded his business, and continues to implement the latest technology to minimize his footprint. Currently, his business only utilizes 1/5 of the land typically required for farming and 80 percent less water while maintaining year-round production of healthy, organic food. Sleiman’s company had over 400 customers just three years after he founded the company from his college dorm room. He has received several honors for his innovative, environmentally conscious business, including one of 15 individuals chosen for President Obama’s “Champions of Change” award in “The Future of Agriculture.” recognition.

Bryan Smith
Project Manager
Fuscoe Engineering Inc.

Bryan Smith is currently working on the UC Riverside Barn Project which includes renovation and addition to the existing barn dining building, a new kitchen expansion, a faculty/staff dining building, a ticketing tower and a new theater building on 1.5 acres. He is the project manager providing civil engineering services, including grading and site improvement plans, utility infrastructure design and storm water management support. Smith joined the higher education strike force team at Fuscoe. He collaborates with others to seek out opportunities in the higher education industry. Smith was a major player in getting this strike force assembled.

Adam Svet
Eastridge Workforce Solutions

Adam Svet was included in the San Diego Business Journal’s 2018 “The San Diego 500, The Book of Influential Business Leaders.” Under the Professional Services category, Svet was recognized for his transition to Eastridge CEO in March of 2017. Forbes ranked Eastridge as one of the top 100 professional recruiting firms in the nation. The ranking was determined by industry-led surveys and resulted in over 20,000 nominations. Since transitioning to CEO, Svet has sold two noncore business units and made a key acquisition in the Boston metropolitan area, which expanded Eastridge’s national reach.

Jason Svet
President, Workforce Technology
Eastridge Workforce Solutions

Jason Svet’s leadership is driving one of the fastest growing divisions at Eastridge. His division has been growing at an approximate rate of more than 30 percent year-over-year growth the past 4 years, and it is on pace to achieve this result again in 2018.Svet is building out the infrastructure for both his technology and workforce management teams to double in top line revenue over the next 3 to 5 years. During the recession, Svet faced one of the most intimidating challenges of his career. Eastridge’s IT team was inefficient. He reorganized the IT Team, created crucial efficiencies, and turned the technology team into a service delivery team. Svet achieved his president role at Eastridge just after the age of 30.

Sarah Syed
Head of Marketing & Communications
CV Sciences

Sarah Syed successfully launched a new blogger program to get CV Sciences hemp-derived CBD in the hands of influencers. She also handled the launch of a new product line. Syed works to bring hemp extracts, including flagship product PlusCBD Oil, to the mainstream. She has grown PlusCBD Oil to the number No. 1 selling hemp extract product line in the natural products channel. Syed serves on the board of nonprofit Hemp Roundtable, a coalition with the goal of securing passage of bipartisan legislation in the U.S. Congress that would establish hemp as an agricultural commodity.

Avi Tal
Co-founder and President
Agentology Inc.

Tal co-founded Agentology in August 2013. The technology-based company offers real estate agents tools to more efficiently reach potential clients based on their online searches. Earlier this year, under Avi’s leadership, Agentology raised $12 million in a financing round led by an early-stage Bay Area-based venture capital firm Defy. The company – which employs about 150 people in San Diego – last year raised a $4.5 million funding round led by Freestyle Capital, with participation from Entry Ventures Group and OurCrowd. Prior to co-founding Agentology, Tal co-founded OnSite Latin America, a digital network that caters to business and leisure travelers in Latin America. He is a 2008 graduate of the University of Arizona.