President’s Letter to Leadership – December 2018

Dear Members,

Steve Fleming, River City Bank FBC Board President

This time of year brings a flurry of activity, both in our respective workplaces and personal lives, as well as the planning efforts of FBC staff and volunteers. Holiday events, and, of course, programs for next year, including the upcoming Generations Conference, are keeping us all busy! With that in mind, I am delighted to share a few details of what’s in store for the FBC in 2019:

Growth in Membership: We are about to hit a key milestone with 100 Family Business Members! We know that FBC is only as strong as its membership. To us, that means representing an array of industries and businesses of all sizes, but all being family owned. Kudos to our membership committee, a group of volunteers that takes FBC into their networks for the benefit of us all.

3rd Annual Generations Family Business Conference: In response to our dynamic keynote speaker and breakout session line-up, registrations and sponsorships continue to outpace our projections for February’s Generations Conference. Limited space is still available; we encourage you to take advantage of this unique local opportunity to hear from industry leaders on the issues that matter to you…succession planning, handling family conflict, taxes and estates, and more. Remember, our Family Ticket Packages enable you to bring multiple members of your team to the event at a discounted rate. We look forward to seeing you there! If you are interested in joining the planning effort for the following year’s (2020) conference, please contact Conference Chair Amber Holwell at

New Board Members: I am delighted to report that Justin Horner and Meghan Baker have agreed to join the FBC Board. Justin is the Director of Business development with DCA Partners, a leading local investment bank based in Roseville. In his spare time, he led our efforts with the planning of the Spring Family Forum and has been Vice-Chair in planning the upcoming Generations Conference. Meghan is a successful partner and attorney with Downey Brand, most relevant for us, has been making a huge contribution to the FBC via the Programming Committee, including taking the lead in planning the upcoming Spring Family Forum. I would be remiss, also, if I didn’t thank our departing directors: Cathy Aronson, Tom Dille, Tim Schultz, Duffy Segale. Each of these folks made a huge contribution to the FBC while on the Board, but we expect to see them remain actively engaged with the FBC.

Happy Holidays!


Steve Fleming | President/CEO | River City Bank
Board President

Technical Advisor Spotlight – Jamie Berry

Jamie Berry, HUB International


When it comes to sharing the value of FBC membership and sponsorship, we could not have a better partner than Jamie Berry of HUB International Roseville.

A born networker, in his 30 years in Sacramento Jamie has established and nurtured relationships with his hundreds of clients, the insurance carriers that are at the core of his employee benefits business, and the personal friends he has made since graduating from CSU Sacramento.

Jamie is keen to share the advantages of becoming involved in the organization because they were so easy for him to witness at his first FBC event. “The vibe was so welcoming, definitely a more personable experience than any other networking event I had attended. And I had attended plenty! I could tell there was a different value proposition; people were eager to share their business experiences and help one another.”

Afterwards, he was eager to jump right in and use his network and his business’ existing marketing engine on behalf of FBC’s membership committee and to secure sponsors for Generations, FBC’s annual family business conference in February 2019. In our experience, we find that family-owned businesses care more for their employees and, as a result, turnover is less. As a company with a mission to care for our clients’ employees, we really like that. And perhaps selfishly, volunteering for FBC gives a chance to establish communication for potential new clients.”

The messaging Jamie delivers to potential members and sponsors was easy to put together based on his impressions at that first FBC event. There are so many successful members in this organization…certainly the ‘Who’s Who’ in the greater Sacramento area. There’s so much potential for growth and a tremendous value to what this organization is doing for family-owned businesses.”

As an insurance professional who has built his business and reputation on referrals, Berry is proud to claim that his first client from 30 years ago, before HUB International purchased his and partner Mike Briare’s private agency Tevis Insurance, is still his satisfied client today. In fact, several current FBC family business members are also HUB Roseville’s clients, acquired through referrals.

HUB International, Inc.Now as part of HUB International’s nationwide network of insurance brokers, Berry is pleased to be able to continue with their creative and successful business model and unique approach to employee benefits. “HUB lets us run things the way we always have. Because we have our own third party administrator right in our office, we are able to build customized plans with enhanced benefits, sometimes saving as much as $1000 per employee.”

With a large client base of family-owned multi-generational businesses, HUB International understands the needs of FBC’s relationship-focused family business members. Their team staffs an in-house advocacy center to handle personal situations that may arise and to care for employees through difficult times. In fact, covered employees never have to call an insurance carrier themselves. There are lots of opportunities for the healthcare system to fail your workforce. At our enrollment meetings, we remind employees that we are here to help. We are well-versed at producing case studies that illustrate to our carriers that sometimes better care is less expensive.”

Even with a ‘beast’ of a fourth quarter [Up to 85% of HUB Roseville’s renewals occur in November and December due to changes in the Affordable Care Act’s enrollment policy], Jamie, Mike and the team look forward to celebrating the Holiday season by adopting families and sponsoring events for Acres of Hope, a Placer County nonprofit that provides a safe environment and healthy living for homeless women with children, and, of course, attending FBC’s Annual Holiday Social. This year, the company is also sponsoring a family affected by the recent Camp Fire.

Perhaps Berry can best be described as a team player. As a former football player who still enjoys competing in beach volleyball, an eager volunteer and committee member, and someone willing to ‘go to bat’ for his clients, Jamie and HUB International Roseville have been instrumental in strengthening FBC’s community and business outreach team. Thanks, Jamie!

Executive Directors Letter to Membership – December 2018

FBC Board President Steve Fleming and I attended the Fall Family Forum earlier this year.

Dear Members,

As we celebrate the holiday season, I can’t help but reflect on the prior year and my gratitude to be part of this amazing community. This year, I’m especially grateful to the new members that have stepped up and dedicated their time to volunteer in our committees. This is tremendously important because our organization’s growth and vibrancy is largely dependent on the energy and commitment of our volunteers. For this reason, I would like to welcome these new committee members:

  • Kelsey Monroe-Sclater from Holt of California has accepted the role of vice chair, Membership committee. Kelsey will take the baton from Dave Boyce who has been instrumental in leading the Thank You Drive efforts for the past two years. Dave will continue to lead this effort as we continue to get to know our members. Kelsey has served on the Membership committee for many years and is ready to take on the elevated role as vice chair with a focus on member retention. If you would like to join Kelsey in getting to know our members, please reach out to her at
  • Nathan Torinius of Genovese Burford & Brothers joined the Membership committee and accepted the newly created position of member recruitment lead, with an emphasis on growth efforts in 2019. There is no doubt in my mind that we will experience unprecedented growth under his leadership. If you have a family business that you believe would benefit from our programs, please introduce them to Nathan at
  • We welcome Jamie Berry of HUB International to the Membership and Generations committees. Jamie has been involved with the organization for many years and continues to give of his time, talent and treasures to ensure that we continue to thrive and prosper. (Please be sure to read his company spotlight in this issue!)
  • Moss Adams has recently joined FBC as members and without hesitation John Whitfield joined the Membership committee. John is excited to help grow our membership and will work with Nathan primarily on recruiting new members.
  • Jennifer Boland of Wells Fargo is our most recent addition to the Membership committee. Jennifer will join us beginning in January and is looking forward to helping where she can to recruit and retain our members.
  • Mukti Patel from PwC has joined the Programs + Events committee. Mukti has been a Technical Advisor member for a very long time and has a deep understanding of how important our programs are to our membership. I’m certain that he will bring valuable resources to our programming that will benefit our members.
  • Lois Lang from Evolve Partner Group is a new Technical Advisor member and has jumped into the mix right away helping the Programs committee with planning the Spring Family Business Forum. Lois is a family business expert, author and speaker. We are lucky to have her!

The Generations committee has new members, too! And we couldn’t be more excited to have their fingerprints on the success of this Conference.

  • Steve Zeller of Zeller Kern is a long-standing member who is guiding a very special keynote presentation with Orange Kiwi.
  • Sharon Love of Incredible Pets serves on the Generations programs committee and is always thinking about how to create the ultimate attendee experience.
  • Doug Van Order of Tier One Financial is a newer committee member who is committed to helping in all areas of the Conference, from helping guide presenters with their presentations, to driving attendance.
  • Greg Robinson of Bank of the West is a new committee member and without hesitation stepped right into being the events Finance Chair.

So please, if you see any of our volunteers new and longstanding, please thank them for their service to our community. Without all our members actively being involved on our organization, we would not have the vibrant community that we enjoy.

Have a wonderful Holiday Season and I look forward to seeing you at an upcoming event in 2019!


Stella Premo – Executive Director
Capital Region Family Business Center

Generations 2019 is right around the corner!

About Generations | Speakers | Sponsors | Schedule | Location & Hotel

This is your last chance to register for Northern California’s most dynamic family business conference, exclusively designed for your family’s business.

Engage with family business leaders and network with businesses from across the region. This conference is designed to provide cutting-edge education, collaborative networking and unique social events to help you grow, manage, operate and transition your business – keeping the unique dynamics and needs of family businesses in mind.

Space is now extremely limited. Register today!

U N I Q U E   C O N F E R E N C E   H I G H L I G H T S   I N C L U D E:

An impressive roster of local and national keynote speakers from renowned companies:

In addition, attendees will enjoy ground-breaking educational breakout sessions on topics such as:

  • Generational transitions
  • Talent development strategies for 21st Century leaders
  • Co-leading a family business
  • Balancing ethics between business and family
  • Managing family dynamics
  • The role of the board of directors
  • Conflict
  • Taxes

Don’t miss an incredible opportunity to gather vital tools and resources that will make 2019 your most successful and impactful year yet!

Generations attracts the attention of leading businesses across myriad of industries.

Several networking opportunities woven into the 2-day schedule.

The intimate environment invites valuable conversations and learning opportunities.






Over 300 family business leaders, nextgen, and non-family executives will be in attendance.


Member Spotlight – Zuda Yoga

Jodi Dillon, Zuda Yoga





Even with intimate studios in Roseville and Folsom and fewer than 20 employees, Jodi Dillon of Zuda Yoga knows that she struggles with some of the same issues as larger companies. That is why she is eager to take her business acumen to the next level with advice from her FBC family business member colleagues. Since her son and daughter, also in the business, attended their first FBC event, Dillon has embraced new procedures in her business.

The skills needed to teach yoga, which come very naturally to her, are very different from those needed to own and operate a successful studio and business.

“As a teacher, I need to be learning and growing so that I’m not stagnant. As a business owner, I need refine, organize, create goals, and experiment. We’re not a corporation, we don’t have a national presence, so I need to work smarter to overcome the obstacles that plague small businesses. Especially in California, it’s getting harder and harder to operate here: rising workers comp rates, payroll taxes, not being able to buy in bulk or take advantage of tax incentives.”

Inspired by FBC’s focus on networking and sharing for the common good, Jodi has embraced her competition, seeking opportunities to interact with those within her industry. “I have to remind myself that there is enough opportunity for us all to be successful. I find comfort in sharing my challenges, knowing I’m not alone.”

To Dillon, managing family dynamics within the business is a priority. Issues in her relationships with her children, no matter how seemingly insignificant, are magnified in the small environment, leaving her to discover the balance between mother and supervisor. She understands that it is that balance that attracts her clientele who, despite constant connection via technology and social media, relish the family feel of the studio.

A studio owner since 2015, she teaches her members about the “more than 100 years of medical research on anxiety and depression, what they used to call melancholia. I know there’s not a pill you can take that’s more powerful than simply managing breath.”

Family Business Forum – Fall 2018

When three executives from some of Sacramento’s most reputable businesses are on one stage, you can be sure they will attract a full house. At the Fall 2018 Family Business Forum, Rise to Leadership in the Family Business, we were pleased to welcome Allison Otto of Otto Construction, Dina Kimble of Royal Electric and Shawn Devlin from River City Bank who each discussed their backgrounds, journeys to leadership, balancing work with other responsibilities and challenges they face as they relate to family dynamics in their businesses. The caliber of the panel was striking; all three women have been recognized by local and regional business and civic organizations for their leadership skills, community service and success in business.  Moderated by human resources consultant Kim Silvers, the panel enthralled the audience of FBC members and guests with their tales from the trenches, stories that can resonate with all generations in the family business.

The morning panel (from left to right): Dina Kimble, Allison Otto, Shawn Devlin and Kim Silvers.

The women described significant moments during their young adulthood and key turning points that launched their careers and had insightful advice for both women and men rising to leadership in their own businesses:

  • Mentorship: One panelist revealed that a college professor redirected her to a career path that would utilize her natural talents for business and leadership.  Whether a parent, professor or colleague, it’s important to connect with someone who can instill confidence and offer objective advice while having your best interest at heart.
  • Use your eyes and ears: Another panelist shared memories from her teenage years working in the tool room of her family business.  She watched her father interact with employees and learned first-hand how to take care of the company.  Every situation can impart wisdom if you’re willing to learn.
  • Challenges are unavoidable: In leadership, it’s inevitable that situations requiring daunting decisions will come along.  A panelist was faced with difficult choices after the sudden death of her father.  By relying on those with experience to provide guidance and, with practical consideration, she made tough calls with confidence.

Closing speaker Lizbeth West (center) with program chairs Maggie Bender-Johnson (left) and Pat Lewis (right).

The lunch session featured Lizbeth West, shareholder and labor law expert with Weintraub Tobin an FBC Technical Advisor Member.  Ms. West educated the audience on legislation recently signed by Governor Brown.  In the wake of #MeToo and recent headlines, it’s more important than ever that business owners know what is required to protect themselves and their employees from harassment and discrimination.

FBC’s Family Business Forums are half-day networking events that feature timely topics that pertain to the specific challenges faced by family businesses.

Thank you to the table facilitators (from left to right): Trevor Kern, Justin Horner, Dave Boyce, Gina Lera, Steve Bender, Amber Holwell, Nancy Gilfillan, Tyler Deary, Todd Bollenbach, Pat Lewis, Maggie Bender, Shawn McElmoyl.

View all event photos here.

Photos by: Riverview Media/Tia Gemmell

NextGen Affinity Group Meeting: Developing Talent

The NextGen Affinity group met September 18th for their program on talent development facilitated by Kevin McCarthy, ChangeRX. Most family businesses have to deal with a host of complicated issues when it comes to retaining talent let alone developing talent. And, the complexity can be made more difficult when the family is involved. Or, is it? We did talk about the blend of business and family, but what we came away with was so much deeper. Yes, we all want our place in the family business and yes, we want to grow in our roles, and yes, it’s our responsibility to take our development into our own hands and be real with where we are today.Once we have identified where we want to be, and evaluate our knowledge, skills, and affect today and what needs to change to grow into our prospective roles/positions, the work begins. But, not in isolation. This is where we identify peers, mentors, and maybe even subordinates that can become light posts to help us see progress (or lack thereof). You see, change and personal growth can only be assessed by the people around us. Although it might be tempting to stop at telling everyone how much you have changed, well, it’s the people around us that get to be the judge of that.

Okay, so now we know where we are going. We’ve identified the knowledge and skills needed to be effective, and maybe we have garnered a few coaches along the way. What’s next? We sit down with our coaches and tell them that we are wanted to grow in a certain area and that you’ve laid out a plan to be more/less (you fill in the blank) and that you’ll meet regularly (when appropriate) to check in on the progress that you are making toward your goals.

And, the same holds true when we are developing our teams. We see where we need the company to go and we identify the skills/experience needed in our teams, and we develop them the same way. We come up with a plan to understand where they are with their skills/experience and invite them to own their development while seeing the gaps and their role in the family business.

This work and process are successful when people take control of their development and empower others to do the same. And, what makes things even better is that we as family business owners and NextGens can begin to shape the way we want to lead our family businesses into the future.

Save the date for our next meeting: December 4, 2018.

About this Affinity Group:  The NextGen Affinity Group meets specifically to share the experiences and challenges of taking on leadership roles in a Family Business. This peer networking group offers a forum for confidential and relevant dialogue among like individuals to share ideas, trends, issues and opportunities unique to the Family Business. Prospective members welcome. NextGen lead contact is Maggie Bender-Johnson. Affinity Group events are an FBC member benefit. For details on membership, click here!

Registration is open for Generations 2019!

Early registration for Generations is now open!  Sign up today to take advantage of discounted individual and family package tickets to FBC’s 3rd Annual Generations Conference at the Sacramento Convention Center. You won’t want to miss this unparalleled opportunity to network with and learn from family business leaders from across the country and around the world.  This year’s conference has been designed to provide cutting-edge education, collaborative networking and unique social events to help you grow, manage, operate and transition your business – keeping the unique dynamics and needs of family businesses in mind.

Our action-packed day-and-a-half schedule will put you up front and center with an impressive roster of local, national and international keynote speakers and presenters who can provide real-life insight into what separates success stories from failures.

Confirmed keynote speakers include:

Representatives from renowned family enterprises will share solutions to commonly faced family business challenges.  Their breakout sessions include:

  • I’m Not My Mom or Dad, but I Sure as Hell Can Lead!
  • Talent Development Strategies for 21st Century Leaders
  • When Two Rights Make a Wrong: Balancing Ethics Between Business and Family
  • Using the Exit Door: Managing Family Dynamics When a Family Member Wants to Leave or Sell
  • Help, Hassle or Hindrance: The Board of Directors’ Role in Family Business
  • Conflict: The “Frenemy” of Every Family Owned Business
  • Trump Tax Law: An Opportunity That May Not Last

Join businesses like Wells Fargo, River City Bank, BBSI and BFBA and become a Generations sponsor by contacting 916-608-8686.  And register by October 15 to take advantage of discounted pricing!

President’s Letter to Leadership – September 2018

Greetings Fellow FBC Members,

The Family Business Center thrives on the energy of our members and, in every sense of the phrase, the more the merrier.  More members increase our collective knowledge via sharing of experiences and help to create a dynamic group of industry leaders. With that in mind, we are proud that we have enjoyed tremendous growth over the past year, surpassing our membership target and nearly reaching 100 total members! Please help us reach that impressive milestone by inviting a fellow family business (say, a client, vendor or friend) to an upcoming FBC program.

Speaking of membership, our 3rd Annual Membership Thank You Blitz is currently underway. Our membership committee members, led by Kevin Fat (Fat Family Restaurant Group) and Dave Boyce (BFBA), are scheduling quick visits with each of our members to deliver gift baskets filled with items provided by FBC members. These member visits give us an opportunity to learn more about our members’ needs and, thus, guide programming in 2019. We want to make sure we are providing valuable programming to help your family business grow and prosper.

Finally, I want to let you know that the February 2019 edition of our largest and most comprehensive event – the Generations Family Business Conference – is now open for early registration. Through October 15, our members can enjoy discounted pricing on individual and family package tickets.  This conference will again bring a roster of highly respected keynote and breakout speakers to tackle topics most relevant to our members.


Steve Fleming | President/CEO | River City Bank
Board President