My relationship with El Segundo business began more than 60 years ago. In 1952 my Father accepted a job with Zep Aero, a small aerospace company on Sheldon Street in Smoky Hollow. Saying goodbye to Ohio we set our compass west to Route 66. In 1959 with a desire to own his own business, my Father purchased South Bay Welder’s Supply at the corner of Franklin and Main Streets. He could be found there every day until his death in 1979 at which time my Mother became the CEO continuing until her death in 1994. I was able to continue the business until 2002 and was saddened to shutter the doors after 43 years of continuous service to the community.
In 1985 I entered the El Segundo business community with the purchase of House of Cards located in the 300 block of Main Street. We enjoyed serving the community and benefited from our customers that flocked across Sepulveda Blvd. to eat lunch and visit shops like ours. Lunch time was one of the busiest hours in the day. We became active in the Chamber of Commerce forming a downtown committee to coordinate and enhance downtown activities.
With the decline of Aerospace business we began to find a decline in our daily business that eventually caused us to close the business in 1992.
The decline of our business community on the east side of the City also began to affect City revenues. The Downtown Business community began to lobby the City fathers to take action through an aggressive economic development program. Pushing for funding and the hiring of a dedicated employee to ensure success.
Economic Development must be a continual activity. It is not a problem that you solve and put on a shelf for later. I continued to champion for a strong Economic Development program as President of the Chamber of Commerce and as Mayor/Mayor pro tem and now as a current member of EDAC.