Friday, May 8, 2009

There's A New Sheriff In Town

Meet San Bernardino County Sheriff Rod Hoops at a reception sponsored Thursday, May 14 by the Inland Empire African American Chamber of Commerce.                                                                                   

(SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.) -The Inland Empire African American Chamber of Commerce is hosting a reception for newly-appointed San Bernardino County Sheriff Rod Hoops on Thursday, May 14, from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.

The City of San Bernardino Mayor Pro Tems Rikke Van Johnson, Acquanetta Warren and Rialto City Council Member Deborah Robertson are inviting members of the community to come out to the reception. The event will take place at Castaway Restaurant and Banquet Center, located at 670 Kendall Drive in San Bernardino. 

Sheriff Hoops was appointed as San Bernardino County's sheriff on February 3, 2009, taking the place of retiring sheriff, Gary Penrod. A long time resident of San Bernardino County, Hoops has been an active member of his community and a respected leader in law enforcement for over 30 years.


Sheriff Hoops joined the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department in 1978. His many achievements include serving as captain of the Rancho Cucamonga Station, commander of the Sheriff’s Bureau of Administration, and deputy chief. Hoops was appointed assistant sheriff in 2006.


According to Carl Dameron, president of Dameron Communications and The Inland Empire African American Chamber of Commerce, “There is a profound need for the leaders in the community to have the ability to establish effective relationship-building dialogue with our elected and appointed officials.


 This event is the first of several events planned during 2009 to introduce our community leaders to our elected and appointed officials, and have the opportunity to share their expectations and aspirations for success.”


This event is free and will include light refreshments. It is sponsored by Dameron Communications, Castaway Restaurant, Arrowhead Credit Union, and The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. For more information, please contact Brenda Erickson at 909-888-0017.



About The Inland Empire Chamber of Commerce

The Inland Empire's African American Chamber of Commerce's mission is to promote the economic and professional development of African American- owned businesses, thus enhancing the quality of life in our community.











Tuesday, May 5, 2009


(SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.) – Restoring vintage homes is one way an interior designer can make a living. Designing commercial buildings is another. And teaching others how to do it is a third.

Riverside’s Tony Burton, an Interior Design instructor at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire and a former designer of the new Los Angeles County Medical Center at University of Southern California, does all three.

As a hobby, he loves to restore vintage homes. This passion has recently made him a bit of a celebrity, as a Victorian home he and wife Wilma restored and now live in appears on the March 2009 cover of Victorian Homes magazine.

 “Wilma, and I had an agent looking for a house for my mother-in-law. He found the perfect challenge for me – an 1893 actual city landmark.” David Gilson, one of the five founders of the city of Riverside, and its first treasurer, was the original owner. “But, when we saw it, it had been abandoned for five years,” Burton continues, “and vandals had taken about anything that could be moved.”

And a “challenge” it was. “I worked closely with the contractor at every step, having already designed health care facilities through my former company, Gene Burton and Associates.

“Wilma, an Emmy-winning television writer/producer, took on the task of Project Coordinator. I had to travel to my projects all the time, and left much of the job to her. What was especially good was that since we agree on design issues 99 percent of the time she didn’t have to wait for us to talk before making a decision. She monitored everything that had to be done, and kept the restoration on schedule.”

That schedule targeted one year to get the entire project finished. And they made it. Among numerous other tasks, Tony Burton took on the design and lighting, with the contractor responsible for the plumbing and re-wiring. “Also, my wife and I had been scouring auctions to find over-mantel pieces and period furniture then I do the restoration of it all,” he says.

The most difficult part of this difficult job? “Permits! There were permits for everything, and they seemed to take forever for the necessary approvals. Just a big pain.”

The Gilson home originally had five bedrooms, but the Burtons converted it into three upstairs for themselves. The first floor has been both restored and redecorated, to makeit a fully period showcase. The Burtons have lived in the home for the past five years.

“We often make the house and the first floor available to non-profit organizations,” he adds. “It’s perfect for fund raisers, parties, annual meetings. That sort of thing.”

The house may be seen at 3209 Mulberry and 2nd Street in Riverside. It’s easy to spot, with its colorfully restored paint job, echoing what David Gilson boasted more than a century ago. And the March issue of Victorian Homes magazine features this painted lady on the cover.

When Tony Burton isn’t captivated by another restoration, or running his clothing and art boutique, Citrus Punch Designs in Riverside, he’s on the faculty of the Interior Design Department at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire, a position he’s held since the fall quarter of 2008, under the guidance of Academic Director Sara Sandoval. His classes are Introduction to AutoCAD, Intermediate AutoCAD and Institutional Design. Burton is a graduate of O’More College of Design in Franklin, TN, with a bachelor’s degree in interior design.

Sandoval recalls, “We met at the FHA-HERO design competition in Riverside in 2008. We worked together as judges for the high school interior design section. I realized that Tony’s natural ability to work with aspiring young designers, his critical eye and his keen sense of the latest design trends would make him an excellent addition to our Interior Design team at the school.”

Even though his background encompassed the field of health care facilities design, this made a perfect experiential paring, explains Sandoval. “Part of our curricula includes competencies in health care planning and design.” His vast experience designing health care facilities with computer aided design (CAD) software was a major “plus,” too.

Burton clicked in the classroom right away. “With the first classes he taught,” Sandoval adds, “students were drawn to his professional expertise and his great sense of humor. What a marvelous addition Tony has become.”

The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Game Art & Design, Graphic Design, Web Design & Interactive Media, Interior Design, Fashion & Retail Management, and Media Arts & Animation. It offers an Associate of Science degree in Graphic Design, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Fashion Design.

The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire offers an Associate of Science degree in Culinary Arts and a Bachelor of Science degree in Culinary Management. Each program is offered on a year-round basis, allowing students to work uninterrupted toward their degrees.

It’s not too late to start a new term at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. Courses begin May 18 and classes are offered in the day, evening and on weekends for new and reentry students.

For more information or a tour, call The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire at (909) 915-2100.

The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire is one of The Art Institutes (, with more than 40 educational institutions located throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals. 


Don’t panic. Swine flu is only a possibility.

This LaSalle Medical Associates, Inc. clinic on Mt. Vernon Ave. in San Bernardino, along with the other three clinics operated by LaSalle, has temporarily been converted to a flu treatment center. Many people sick with flu symptoms have visited a LaSalle clinic in recent days, a few were tested for swine flu, but LaSalle has not yet treated anyone with a confirmed case of swine flu.

(San Bernardino, CA) LaSalle Medical Associates, Inc. has temporarily converted its medical clinics to “Flu Treatment and Prevention Centers” to deal with patients’ concern over the swine flu virus. But only a few patients have symptoms that could be linked to the swine flu, said Dr. Albert Arteaga, CEO of LaSalle Medical Associates, Inc.

“We halted all operations except checking people who have come in with flu symptoms,” Dr. Arteaga said. “We have recently seen 300 to 350 people a day at our clinics with flu symptoms. Of those, we recommended three or four be tested for swine flu and only a few of these actually received treatment with Tamiflu or another antiviral drug.”

 Only one case of swine flu has been positively identified in San Bernardino County as of May 1 and this did not involve a LaSalle patient. The case was identified in a Marine stationed in Twenty-Nine Palms.

The media’s high publicity of the swine flu pandemic may have caused undue concern, Dr. Arteaga said. Still, it was necessary that word get out about this disease. He compared it to the necessity of a doctor giving patients a warning about possible side effects of prescription drugs.

“Sometimes people feel the side effects before they even take the medication,” he said. “When we hear a warning over and over again, our suggestive nature makes people think that what is a possibility has become a reality.”

Nevertheless, Dr. Arteaga encourages people with flu symptoms to seek medical attention.

“Don’t panic. Swine flu is only a possibility,” he said. “But it is a possibility with serious repercussions.”

“It is a strain of Type A influenza, which causes tiredness, body aches, fever along with a cough and sore throat,” Dr. Arteaga explained. “As with all strains of influenza, there are other potential complications such as internal infections, pneumonia and possibly even death.”

According to public health officials, swine flu has killed more than 150 people in Mexico and one in Texas.  Many others, especially in Mexico, have been sick enough to require hospitalization. In California, there have been 16 positive cases of swine flu and 43 probable as of May 1.

This strain of flu is resistant to flu vaccines that have been developed so far. However, flu vaccines are modified every year to include new strains.

According to founder Dr. Arteaga, the primary mission of LaSalle’s clinics is “to offer high quality medical care to the whole family with courtesy and respect.” And, right now, that is to help people with flu symptoms.

The LaSalle medical clinics are at 17577 Arrow Blvd. in Fontana, 1505 West 17th St. and 565 N. Mt. Vernon Ave. in San Bernardino, and 16455 Main St. in Hesperia 

For additional information about LaSalle Medical Associates, call (909) 890-0407 or go on line to


Tech Week Promotes IE Software Business

“The goal of IE Tech Week, from May 11-15, is to bring technology events to the Inland Empire that show what government and financial resources we have available,” said Steven Reneker, executive director of SmartRiverside, an organization formed to attract and retain high-tech companies. “We also want to show that technology spending in the Inland Empire is strong and this is a great place to relocate a technology company.” 

(RIVERSIDE, Calif.) Once renowned for its cheap land and picturesque landscape, the Inland Empire is going after a new image. Businesses and government leaders working are branding the Inland Empire as a great place for technology companies to grow.

“The goal of IE Tech Week, from May 11-15, is to bring technology events to the Inland Empire that show what government and financial resources we have available,” said Steven Reneker, executive director of SmartRiverside, an organization formed to attract and retain high-tech companies. “We also want to show that technology spending in the Inland Empire is strong and this is a great place to relocate a technology company.”

IE Tech Week features five days of events geared towards technology/software entrepreneurs. IE Tech Week sponsors include The Press Enterprise, the City of Riverside, AT&T, ESRI, Pivot 3, Dameron Communications, ITT Technical Institute, Shoretel and the Greater Riverside Chamber of Commerce.

The events include:
• The Tech Expo on May 11 at the Riverside Convention Center. This SmartRiverside-sponsored event brings together high technology companies and information technology professionals to discuss specific issues affecting their industries. The Tech Expo will also attract some of the 100 technology companies based in the Inland Empire.

• IE Tech Employment Trends, May 12, at the Riverside Convention Center. This will be a presentation on local IT hiring trends. The presentation is by Robert Half Technology, a leading a leading provider of IT professionals, and Protiviti, a global business consulting and internal audit firm.

• Tech Horizons, May 13, at the University of Riverside’s Bourns College of Engineering. This event features panel discussions and demonstrations on sensor and networking systems, artificial intelligence, and other emerging technologies.

• The IE Fast Pitch Contest, May 14, at the Hilton Ontario Airport Hotel, features a discussion with angel investors and concludes with a competition where 12 entrepreneurs pitch their business plans to a group of investors.

• The IE Software Summit, May 15, at Greer Pavilion, Riverside City Hall. The theme is “Getting Ready for the Smart Phone: How to make your websites ready for Smart Phones, PDAs, and iPhones.” The conference shows e-commerce companies how to make their websites compatible with mobile Internet devices. There will also be a panel featuring angel investors and funders.

“The Inland Empire is a great place to live, but residents often face three-hour commutes to jobs that pay them enough to live here,” said Carl Dameron, president of Dameron Communications, a leading public relations and advertising company. “By attracting jobs in the technology and software sector, IE resident can live and work in the same community, thus reducing congestion and increasing their quality of life.”

Reneker added that the large number of local colleges provide a great pipeline of potential technology workers. “There are about 60,000 higher education students in this area, who are a great source of intellectual capital for high-tech companies looking to grow,” Reneker said.

For more information about IE Tech Week e-mail or go to