With aid, Roman found his dream

first_imgPALMDALE – Sam Roman’s improbable financial success story began with a big idea, but no plan. Roman, a Mexican-born immigrant from Zacatecas, found himself spending at least three hours a day commuting from Palmdale to his silk-screening job in Glendale and back. On a typical day, he’d leave for work at 5 a.m. and wouldn’t get home until 9 p.m., a routine that left him exhausted and with little time to spend with his family. Roman dreamed of some day starting his own silk-screening business. But with no coherent strategy, he doubted it would ever happen. Roman credits the Antelope Valley Hispanic Chamber of Commerce – which today celebrates its 10th anniversary – with helping him realize his ambition. “I had a dream, but I had no idea what it takes to open a business,” Roman said. Roman’s dream has produced one of the Antelope Valley’s most inspirational small-business success stories. “Sam’s Silkscreening,” which began as an enterprise Roman ran out of his garage, now has storefronts in Las Vegas and Bakersfield, to go along with a 5,000-square-foot outlet and production facility in east Palmdale that employs six full-time workers. Roman discovered the chamber of commerce while watching former chamber president and co-founder Sal Tavera interviewed on a local TV station in advance of the chamber’s formation. Latino business owners and prospective entrepreneurs were invited to enlist the group’s support. Roman attended the chamber’s first meeting, the day it was granted official status by the state – appropriately enough, on Cinco de Mayo, in 1997. “The first chamber meeting, it wasn’t even a chamber,” Roman recalls of the meeting, which was held at The Hacienda, a Mexican restaurant Tavera owned. “Nobody thought we’d make it,” current chamber President Sylvia Duarte said. Roman said the chamber was instrumental in establishing his business, directing him to a property where he could rent space without paying a deposit, and helping him establish a checking account and apply for loans. The chamber, which now has an office near Palmdale’s civic center, remains an active force in the Antelope Valley business community. In addition to promoting Latino-owned businesses, the chamber has established a scholarship fund named for Tavera, who died last year. “A lot of people think we just cater to Hispanics, but it’s really for everyone,” Vice President Jenny Garibay said. “A lot of businesses don’t even know how to market to Hispanics.” Roman, who Garibay calls the chamber’s “poster-child,” now mentors others and is involved in engaging other Latino-owned businesses. “Meeting people who already had their own business, it was like a new family for me,” Roman said. “Every business had its own story of how hard it was for them. “They motivated me to keep going.” gideon.rubin@dailynews.com (661) 267-7802160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Earnhardt Jr. replacement selected for No. 88 car

first_imgINDIANAPOLIS >> Dale Earnhardt Jr. got the replacement he wanted. Alex Bowman got his dream job.Hendrick Motorsports announced Thursday that the 24-year-old Bowman will replace one of the series’ biggest stars in the No. 88 car next season after Earnhardt retires.Bowman has big shoes to fill. Earnhardt was named NASCAR’s most popular driver each of the last 14 seasons and fans of his late father often tracked Junior’s results following Dale Earnhardt’s fatal crash in the 2001 season opener at …last_img read more

Raiders legend Cliff Branch dies at 71

first_imgNAPA — Cliff Branch, who played on three Super Bowl championship teams and played his entire 14-year with the Raiders, died Saturday, the club confirmed.Branch turned 71 years old on Thursday. No cause of death has been released. According to the Bullhead Ciy (Arizona) police Twitter account, Branch was found  deceased in his hotel room at 3:40 p.m.“The initial investigation revealed no suspected foul play and that Mr. Branch died of natural causes,” according to the tweet.On August 3, …last_img read more

Teacher held for sending ‘religiously sensitive’ post

first_imgA government school teacher was arrested here for allegedly forwarding a ‘religiously sensitive’ post on a WhatsApp group, the police said on Sunday.Tilak Raj Singh was arrested on Saturday following a complaint lodged by a district official, who was part of the WhatsApp group, the police said.Assistant Returning Officer and tehsildar Ramesh Parmar said: “Mr. Singh, who also worked as a block level officer for election duty, forwarded a religiously sensitive post to our WhatsApp group. We immediately lodged a complaint against him on Saturday.”The teacher was posted at Bansa village under the Manpur police station, he said.Superintendent of Police R.D. Prajapati said Mr. Singh was arrested following a complaint lodged by the tehsildar.“The complaint said that the teacher forwarded an outrageous message in their WhatsApp group. After a probe, Mr. Singh was arrested under relevant IPC sections,” he said.last_img read more