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Inspiring Stories from La Jolla & UTC

The heart of our mission at the SD Voyager is to find the amazing souls that breathe life into our city. In the recent weeks, we’ve had the privilege to connect with some of the San Diego’s finest artists, creatives, entrepreneurs and rabble rousers and we can’t begin to express how impressed we are with our city’s incredibly deep talent pool. Check out the rising stars from La Jolla & UTC below.

Nancy Jamison

I am a very lucky woman. I grew up in fortunate circumstances in Palo Alto – my father was a Stanford professor and my mother was home with the kids. We did not live a super fancy life, but we did not want for much either. It was assumed I would go to college, get a good job and live a good life. And that has been the case. Read more>>

Doug Constantiner

I started Societe with Travis Smith, who I met while we were brewing together at The Bruery (Placentia, CA). He had previously brewed at Russian River Brewing Company (Santa Rosa, CA) and I previously had gigs at some San Diego breweries (Green Flash Brewing, Oggi’s). Travis left The Bruery for a San Diego brewing job and shortly after his departure we decided we should start something together. Read more>>

Jimmy Kim

At the age of 16, I started off by washing cars at a local dealership and with hard work and drive, I became one of the youngest General Managers in the country by the age of 25. In 2008, when General Motors declared Bankruptcy, I decided that was my sign to start a new career path. Read more>>

Michael S. Rosenberg

La Jolla Playhouse was founded in 1947 by Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire and Mel Ferrer. It thrived as a summer stock retreat for Hollywood luminaries until 1959. From 1959 to 1982, the Playhouse was on hiatus, during which time a handful of dedicated supporters fought to keep the Playhouse alive, eventually working to revive it on the campus of UC San Diego in 1983. Read more>>

Myduyen Nguyen, Thanh Nguyen

Thanh and Myduyen are brother and sister. They wanted to open a sushi restaurant in an industrial area to provide companies and workers more lunch options in the area aside from deli sandwiches and fast food. We kept the Deli concept as fast ordering and take out. Read more>>

Quyen Nguyen

I’ve been playing music for the past 25 years, and I’ve been teaching music for the past 18 years. When I was 17 years old, I took 1st place in the American String Teachers Association’s National Competition and had the opportunity to tour Europe and perform in front of Congress as a result. Read more>>

Stephen “Steph” Groce

My career started out in retail and commercial Loss Prevention with companies such as Sport Chalet, Anna’s Linens, and L.L. Bean to name a few. I held roles at the mid-manager to Executive levels within each. Then in 2008, at the height of the economic crises, I was laid off. Read more>>

Deanna Gwilt

My husband and I had a lunch with some friends of ours at Awash in North Park. One of our friends is a foodie and said that this place is definitely worth the wait. Upon arriving my husband and I looked at the drink menu and came across Tej. We found out that this was a beverage made with honey. Read more>>

April Oury

In 2004, I decided to start my own PT company so that I could create the changes that I know were “inside” the patient. Many of my physical therapist didn’t realize their potential because I was trying to treat 4 at a time prior to that! Read more>>

Heather Simental

I’ve always been attracted to good grammar and pretty words, and the road to becoming a freelance copy editor was a natural development of my passions and skills. I was immediately drawn to the study of Linguistics during my time at UCSD and a few years postgraduation, I discovered, signed up, and completed the Copy Editing Certificate offered by the UCSD Extension campus. Read more>>

Annie Jackson

I have been in beauty for most of my career. My first “real” job was at Estee Lauder, and over the years held a variety of positions in the field and ultimately in their New York HQ. It’s an incredible company that cares deeply about their employees and I still feel extremely lucky to have been given that opportunity. Read more>>

Rhett McMurry

BOTE San Diego was created out of the love of adventure and the outdoors, great friendships and need for a different kind of Standup Paddleboard(SUP) company in Southern California.  I grew up in Orange County and have always considered myself a “West Coaster.” I travelled back to Washington DC to attend college at George Mason University. Read more>>

Sean Fogel

It began with me trying to raise money on a crowdfunding site which was a very, very small amount of success. The good news was that it made me much more serious about the business after that. I quickly made a prototype and started going to local manufacturers to get some quotes. Read more>>

Tara Konitshek

Sweet As Bliss started off as just a hobby that eventually turned into a full blown business. I started my business back in 2010 after obtaining a degree in health science and struggling to figure out what I wanted to do. While I’ve always had a love for baking since I was a kid, I’ve honestly never had professional culinary training or even a business degree. Read more>>

Bobby Sanchez

I have always been passionate about health and fitness from a young age. In high school I was always looking for opportunities to be active, whether it was participating in organized sports, strength training at the gym, or working as a lifeguard at the local pool. Read more>>

Trey Foshee

I started cooking in 1984, right out of High School in the small town of Ojai. After moving to Hawaii to surf and supporting myself in the kitchens i decided to make a career of it and enrolled in the Culinary Institute of America in NY. Read more>>

Dana Ben Kaplan

Over 25 years ago, in 1992, I joined the first Krav Maga class to be held in San Diego. It was held at the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center, and we’re still there to this day. I was a relatively new Firefighter at the time, and had previously boxed when living in Los Angeles, but there was not a lot of boxing going on in San Diego at that time (unlike today; I eventually became, and still am, an Official with USA Boxing). Read more>>

Austin Palmer

I was first introduced to the car industry or “clear bra” in 2012, in between my last two years of college, by my now partner Evan Rowe. After I finished up college at ACU, I decided to begin learning the basics of clear bra installation as a “back up plan”. After 6 months of learning the basics in Sacramento, me and my wife decided to move to San Diego so I could work for Evan. Read more>>

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