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Inspiring Stories from Old Town-Mission Valley

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 Old Town-Mission Valley below.

Dr. Mario Mancini

I have always had an affinity towards the study of the East, even as early as 6 years old. At that time I was intrigued by the Chinese martial arts and began my studies. Studying the arts allowed me to appreciate the level of depth this culture went through to create not only an art of combat but also within it, a medical system that spans over 3,000 years with the primary intention to produce vitality. Read more>>

Finlay Drake

Building Automation and Control Systems have been my passion since my college days at Northeastern University in Boston. There I studied Mechanical Engineering and when it became time to figure out what co-op position I wanted to pursue, I was engaged by Andover Controls (now Schneider Electric). Read more>>

Les Kollegian

People often ask me where our agency’s name came from. The name itself – Jacob Tyler – is named after my son, Jacob Tyler Kollegian. But the inspiration for the brand that Jacob Tyler has become, began at a clothing store in Grand Central Station in New York City. Read more>>

Quy Phan

Up2You Cafe started in 2012 with the aim of providing unique and custom made desserts and drinks to the customers. Our goal is to bring Asian inspired desserts and drinks to the masses; get everyone from children to adult to enjoy its uniqueness and flavors. Read more>>

Hannah Allen

Immediately after graduating college in the Midwest, I relocated to Las Vegas and began my career with Kirvin Doak Communications, as PR coordinator for entertainment, hospitality and tourism clientele.  After supporting the grand opening of CityCenter Las Vegas in 2009, I was recruited by Caesars Ent. Read more>>

Aya Saravia

When I was a child, I was trying every possible craft I could to find the perfect artistic outlet for me. One day, my Dad and I were at ValueCraft in Oceanside and I discovered a Wilton Year Book and some supplies. I remember my Dad saying, are you sure because this is really expensive? Read more>>

Olumide Gbenro

Olumide is an internationally respected businessman based in San Diego specializing in PR & Brand monetization. He utilizes social media to tell stories that attracts business for his clients. His clientele include former NFL players, celebrity real estate agents and local business executives and entrepreneurs. Read more>>

Earlene Adams

I started my journey working with the homeless population in January 1999 with Father Joe’s Villages. During my time at Father Joe’s I have learned that each and everyday is different when working with this population and thus in my 17.5 years at the Village not two of my days were ever the same. Read more>>

Stephanie Wirkus

I have always known I’ve wanted to do hair. From a young age, I was influenced by my Aunt who was a hairdresser for many years. I was constantly intrigued by everything she did, and I was always practicing on myself and sisters. Fast forward to graduation high school, I decided to get a degree in Business Managament from SDSU. Upon graduation, I realized I didn’t want to work behind a desk in an office. Read more>>

Nick Christman

I got my first taste of the industry 10 years ago playing with bands and touring along the south coast. In that time, I became quickly fascinated with the technical side of audio and visual production. In 2013, I was hired on by a very reputable A/V Production company in Houston, TX where I quickly became a staple in the industry. Read more>>

Samantha Harris

I’ve spent my entire career building businesses in various industries. I started in Insurance at the age of 18 as director of marketing and business development and was hired to build 3 agencies in Washington and California. I moved to San Diego in 2014 and met some amazing business mentors while learning to network. I was recruited by one of my mentors to help build an apparel branding firm, which lead me to start a give-back apparel company in 2016. Read more>>


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