Movers & Shakers 3/6/2015

Paulina Almaraz


The Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber, a local chapter of the U.S. Hispanic Chamber that serves Oregon and Southwest Washington, has added Paulina Almaraz as a scholarship/event coordinator.

In her new role, Almaraz will be responsible for providing bilingual/bicultural information to students and parents about the Hispanic Chamber’s scholarship program and holding workshops for students and parents regarding how to finance a higher education. Almaraz will also assist in planning and implementing other Hispanic Chamber events throughout the year.

Almaraz has a bachelor of science degree in organismal biology from Portland State University. She has experience working with students and planning events with a variety of organizations.

”We are very pleased to add Ms. Almaraz to our staff,” said Gale Castillo, president of the Hispanic Chamber. “Like the students we serve, she is the first in her family to graduate from college and she has received her education in Oregon. She will be able to share her experience and encourage our students.”


Don Jacobs of NW Injury Law Center in Vancouver was recently presented the award of Trial Lawyer of the Year by the Clark County Bar Association (CCBA). The annual award is presented to a civil or criminal trial lawyer to “recognize an outstanding achievement or achievements by an attorney in court.”

Jacobs, who has been practicing law in Vancouver for the past 36 years, was chosen for the award by his Clark County peers. He is a former member of the Board of Governors of the Washington State Association for Justice and a past president of the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association.

His office is in the historic George DuBois home at 9th and Franklin near downtown Vancouver.


Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Northwest Real Estate has hired Kathy Frisbie as managing broker at the company’s Columbia Tech Center office in East Vancouver.

Frisbie is a Certified Negotiation Expert and Accredited Buyer’s Representative designee with extensive experience in residential resale, development and new construction.

“Kathy shares Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ commitment to integrity and customer service,” said Jason Waugh, company president and CEO. “She is a very respected member of the local real estate community and a great resource to our brokers, as well as her clients.”


The M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust recently announced its newest visiting fellow, Verne Sedlacek.

Sedlacek was president and CEO of Commonfund, an institutional investment firm, from 2003 to 2015. Prior to that, he served as executive VP and CFO for the Harvard Management Company. He also has served on many not-for-profit and for-profit boards including the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. He has been a frequent contributor to CNBC and FOX Business.

“Mr. Sedlacek is one of the nation’s leading thinkers on the role and work of the nonprofit sector and their boards,” said Steve Moore, executive director of the M.J. Murdock Trust, which is based in Vancouver. “We are honored to have the opportunity to have him partner with us as we serve the nonprofit sector and other constituencies in the Pacific Northwest, particularly the higher education sector.”


Phoebe KruegerSherry StewartPacific Continental Bank recently promoted Phoebe Krueger to the position of vice president, relationship banking officer.

Krueger started with Pacific Continental Bank in May 2011 and was promoted to assistant vice president in 2013. She is an active volunteer and community participant, serving on the board for the Nonprofit Network SW Washington and on the steering committee for Support for Early Learning and Families. In 2011, she graduated from Leadership Clark County and was also recognized as one of Southwest Washington’s Accomplished and Under 40 by the Vancouver Business Journal.

Krueger is currently enrolled in the University of Portland’s MBA program in nonprofit management and will graduate June 2015.

Pacific Continental Bank also announced the promotion of Sherry Stewart to assistant vice president.

Stewart joined Pacific Continental Bank in 2012 and has helped guide the bank’s new wealth management services in the greater Portland Market.

Also active in the community, Stewart serves on the board of directors for Vancouver’s Downtown Association.


Erik Runyan Jewelers has added appraiser Janean Reynolds to its team.

Reynolds brings 20 years of jewelry industry experience to her new position. She studied with the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) and currently holds a Diamond Grading Certificate.

In her new position, Reynolds will be appraising customer jewelry, buying and selling estate jewelry and evaluating colored gemstones and loose diamonds.

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