These individuals are changing the face of Bakersfield.
The young professionals highlighted in Bakersfield Life’s third annual 20 Under 40 People to Watch entered into a competitive nomination process in March and were selected as this year’s most promising rising stars in our community. Whether it’s owning their own business, providing the latest care in optometry, making an impact in the educational system or practicing law, these compassionate men and women are improving the quality of life in our community.
• 38, Prevention Specialist with the Kern County Superintendent of Schools
• Community involvement: Various gang intervention programs, serves on the board of Youth Connection, volunteer at Christ the King Catholic Church
When it comes to getting youth in check, Sal Arias is the man that parents, teachers, principals and counselors call.
As a prevention specialist with the Kern County Superintendent of Schools, he spends his time working with at-risk students and their families.
Arias said he can get between 10 to 15 phone calls a day from concerned parents who need help getting their child to stay in school, or keeping them away from gangs or feel threatened by their child at home.
Once a situation is assessed, Arias puts together a plan that will benefit not only a student but parents as well.
Arias is currently the only fulltime prevention specialist in Kern County. He has trained 13 future school social interns and hopes that number will grow to 20 by next year.
His dream would be to have a school social worker at every elementary, junior high and high school in Kern County.
“There is nothing like having a caring adult at each school,” Arias said. “If a student feels connected to an adult, someone that will support them, they’ll think twice before skipping school or hanging out with the wrong crowd.”
And for Arias, the success stories are what makes his job fulfilling.
“When you get to see students that are not going to add on to the prison population and are going to be contributors to society instead, that’s golden,” he said.
• 31, Director of Marketing and Public Relations, Chain | Cohn | Stiles
• Community involvement: Vice president of the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s Business and Education Foundation, board director for Mothers Against Drunk Driving Kern County, board member of the Bakersfield Museum of Art and Bakersfield Active 20-30 Club
Like most people from Bakersfield who leave and say they’ll never make it back, Jorge Barrientos found himself back in the city that stores all of his childhood memories.
After moving away for college in Chico, then to Southern California to work at the Orange County Register right out of college, Barrientos returned to Bakersfield in 2008 and has called it home ever since.
Barrientos sits on the board of many local nonprofit organizations, including those whose focus is education.
Growing up in a poor neighborhood surrounded by lots of gang activity and drug use, Barrientos chose to learn instead – learn from those doing things wrong and learn from those doing things right.
“I learned – from family, friends and mentors – that hard work overcomes a whole lot,” he said.
When he speaks with youth growing up in similar situations like he did as a teenager, he can relate.
“I say it’s not the end of the road,” Barrientos added. “There are resources always available and good people who are always willing to help.”
For young professionals in Bakersfield, Barrientos had one piece of advice: Care for your job and everything that’s a part of it, care how you do it and care how others see you do it. But also care about your well-being. It’s important to live your life.
• 39, Chief Operations Officer at Countryside Market & Restaurants
• Community involvement: Director of the Bakersfield Sikh Women’s Association, a director of the Kern County Fair Board
Raji Brar is a true example of someone living the American Dream. Born to immigrant parents who started off as farm workers in the Central Valley, she is now a successful businesswoman.
Brar has owned and operated different franchises throughout Kern County for the past 25 years. These include, Subways, Taco Bells, Pizza Huts, Brookside Deli and Shell gas stations. All together, there are more than 250 Kern County residents employed.
“Being able to own different businesses in the community I call home is a blessing,” Brar said.
Brar said her worth ethic comes from watching her dad become a successful businessman himself, after coming to the U.S. with only a few dollars in his pockets.
As busy as one can get from running different businesses, Brar still finds the time to sit on numerous private and community boards and is actively involved in giving back.
In 2015, she was appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown as a director of the Kern County Fair Board, a first for anyone of Indian descent.
“My appointment not only meant a lot to me but also to the entire Indian community,” she said. “To be a part of the Kern County Fair Board is a privilege and the best part of all, my boys finally think mommy has a cool job.”
Recently, she co-founded the Bakersfield Sikh Women’s Foundation, a first for the city.
The mission of the foundation is to give back to the community and is comprised of women who are teachers, lawyers, doctors, nurses, therapists, business owners and politicians who help newly arrived parents from India cope with the American way of life.
The foundation will soon establish a mentoring program at local high schools so that Indian children, especially young girls, have role models to help them succeed in life.
• 35, Vice President of Gregory D. Bynum & Associates
• Community involvement: President of Temblor Brewery, CSUB Roadrunner Scholarship Fund, CAPK, co-owner of The Gentleman
As a former student-athlete at UC Davis, Don Bynum knows exactly how the experience molds athletes into future leaders.
Bynum has been involved with the Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunner Scholarship Fund for more than 10 years.
Last year, his group raised $550,000 for Division I scholarships.
“Many of the talented athletes who receive scholarships here at CSUB could not otherwise afford to attend a university of this quality,” Bynum said.
When he’s not busy coming up with different fundraisers for CSUB or working in the family business, he is focused on another passion: beer.
Since 2010, Bynum has been a student of beer. He has traveled across the U.S. and Europe visiting hundreds of breweries and beer bars for inspiration.
“I became a home brewer and learned the science with lots of reading and experimentation and some course work,” he said.
In 2011, Patrick Wade, Thomas Maxwell, Coby Vance and Bynum founded The Gentleman, a private membership-only club that focuses on foreign and domestic craft beer.
“We wanted to bring something to Bakersfield that didn’t already exist,” he said. And that same motto was the push for Temblor, a new brewery that is slated to open in September.
“We were very fortunate to be able to gather an incredible group of team members and investors to begin this exciting new brewery in town,” Bynum added.
• 38, Owner of Apricot Lane Boutique
• Community involvement: Donates 20 percent of proceeds earned from flier events or shopping parties to local nonprofits, schools, clubs and religious organizations
Tami Calderwood believes in the power of self-will and is constantly encouraging others struggling with life’s hurdles to never give up.
The local businesswoman was born and raised in Bakersfield and runs a successful clothing store at The Marketplace: Apricot Lane Boutique.
“Opening a business in the town that I grew up in, I naturally started with a strong support group,” Calderwood said. “Friends and family are like my own live Twitter feed.”
Before the start of her business, Calderwood knew she wanted to have flexible hours to be involved with her two daughters’ extracurricular activities. And the only way to do that was to be her own boss.
As she interacts with staff and customers on a daily basis, Calderwood said she hopes her outlook and attitude on life sets a good example for those she encounters.
“I hope that being vulnerable and sharing some hard topics allows others to see that hard work, dedication and doing the right thing, even when it’s the last thing you want to do, always pays off,” she said.
When she’s not at one of her daughters’ schools helping out as a volunteer, Calderwood is coming up with new fundraisers to raise money for local charities.
She has donated private shopping events at the boutique to be auctioned off for Stockdale Christian School, Junior League and First Presbyterian Church Camp scholarship fundraiser, among others. “It’s an honor knowing that organizations seek out Apricot Lane to help with their fundraising needs,” she said.
“My business survives with the support of the entire city of Bakersfield and that requires me to get out into the community in addition to just opening my door at The Marketplace.”
Justin L. Cave
• 36, Executive Director for the Center for the Blind & Visually Impaired and Advanced Center for Eyecare
• Community involvement: Provides free glasses and exams to visually impaired children in Kern County
Justin L. Cave is the force behind two nonprofit organizations that focus on serving the blind, visually impaired and medical eye needs of Kern County.
The Advanced Center for Eyecare (ACE) and the Center for the Blind & Visually Impaired (CBVI) complement each other and share common values and goals.
“Providing the gift of eyesight, in my opinion, is one of the greatest gifts a child or any individual can ever receive because it allows us to see the beauty of this world,” Cave said.
ACE spearheads a yearly vision clinic through a partnership with OneSight International to provide children with free eye exams and free glasses.
To date, 1,760 children and counting have received these vital services, increasing their ability to do classroom work and manage school assignments, Cave said.
Through CBVI, people are provided the necessary training in assistive technology, Braille and using a white cane to increase independent living skills.
One of the highlights of his job, Cave explained, is sharing stories about individuals he is blessed to help each day.
“With the generous help of our community and volunteer partners, ACE funded a prosthetic eye for a 12-year-old girl,” he said. “We gave her back the confidence she deserves.”
Vin T. Dang
• 33, Primary Care Optometrist with Empire Eye and Laser Center
• Community involvement: OneSight missions, provides internships for students at Western University of Health Sciences, Allergy and Dry Eye Clinic
Our eyes are the most crucial sensory organ. They are the window to the world. With just a glance, we instantly register and interpret shapes, colors, sizes and textures.
And they are also a little more.
“By looking at or into your eyes, I can diagnose systemic health issues like high blood pressure or diabetes, as well as early risk factors for multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and dementia, among nearly 200 other diseases that are present in the eyes,” said Vin T. Dang.
As a primary care optometrist, Dang provides patients with solutions and not one day is the same. He also takes the time every year to volunteer his time and expertise and give free eye exams to children in Bakersfield and others in developing countries like India and Thailand.
“I love what I do,” he said.“I don’t feel like what I do is a ‘job;’ instead, I get to be a problem solver.”
Dang has also been the driving force behind Empire Eye and Laser Center’s Allergy and Dry Eye Clinic, helping provide detection, treatment and prevention for eye allergy sufferers in Kern County.
From the day he began practicing in Bakersfield nearly eight years ago,
Dang said he was amazed by the number of patients with symptoms of red, watery and itchy eyes. It was so common that the staff began to give it the title of “Bakersfield Eye Syndrome.”
“With my allergic clinic, I am able to minimize or eliminate your exposure to the allergens you are allergic to and develop a customized treatment plan to fight the allergies affecting your eyes,” Dang said.
• 36, Counselor with the Kern High School District
• Community involvement: Hector Ibarra Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund, Bakersfield Ivy League Project, College Dream Fund Board, Kern High School Counselors’ Association, Relay for Life
Jose Garza remembers growing up in east Bakersfield in a neighborhood where no one had ever gone to college nor was that the norm.
“People looked out of windows dreaming of what could have been,” Garza said. “I knew that by setting my sights to Berkeley and later Harvard, that I could help break those windows for my family, my brothers and my community.”
As a counselor at Foothill High School, Garza goes the extra mile for students because he can relate to the stories they share with him.
In 2010, Garza started the Hector Ibarra Jr. Memorial Scholarship in memory of a Mira Monte High School student who died a month after being diagnosed with a rare liver cancer at the age of 14.
Since then, $16,000 has been awarded in scholarships — each recipient receives a $1,000 scholarship — thanks to community donations and an anonymous donor. Next year, the scholarship will be made available to the entire community instead of just Mira Monte students.
When it came to finding ways to inspire students to pursue a college education, Garza and a colleague brought the Ivy League Project to Bakersfield a few years back.
Last year, 25 Kern County students traveled to the East Coast to visit Ivy League schools.
“These students returned from this experience with a strengthened sense of possibility and a renewed hope for their futures,” Garza said.
Although he doesn’t know what the future holds, the high school counselor is hopeful for those who have gone away to become professionals.
“Those of us who leave have a responsibility to the places and people who built us,” he said. “I took my books, my pencils and my dreams to the universities I attended so that I could come back and help the children of this community see beyond the windows in their lives.”
• 27, Associate Attorney Chain | Cohn | Stiles
• Community involvement: Education Committee chairman on the New Lawyers Division Board, founder of Cal Alumni Chapter Bakersfield, Mothers Against Drunk Driving
When the time came for Neil Gehlawat to decide what career he was going to pursue, his inspiration was at home.
Growing up, he saw the difference his dad made and continues to make in the lives of his patients as a pediatrician in Delano.
“He inspired me to pursue a career in a field where I could make a positive impact on people’s lives,” Gehlawat said.
During his time in college, Gehlawat was involved in an organization that provided free representation to students who had disputes with the university.
It was then that he knew he wanted to study law.
“I went to law school because I wanted to help real people, and I’m happy to say that I’m at a place where I’m doing that every day,” he noted.
The same inspiration he grew up with is one that Gehlawat now conveys to North High School students as part of a mentorship program.
He mentors one student throughout the year and is able to provide advice and guidance for the unique needs of that one student.
But as Gehlawat puts it, you can accomplish more with showing than telling.
“I’ve brought my students downtown to my office so that they can see what I do, so that they can see the courthouse,” he said. “It’s much more powerful to bring them downtown and show them what I do, and let them visualize their future.”
• 31, Planning Director for the City of Bakersfield
• Community involvement: Motivational speaker at schools and youth groups, one-on-one counseling with students bound for college
Jacquelyn Kitchen has one focus: Create development in Bakersfield that is sustainable, enduring and facilitating the big picture of a community that is modern and an enjoyable place to be.
The Bakersfield native and recently selected planning director for the city of Bakersfield works with out-of-town developers who want to bring the next big thing to Bakersfield. She also meets with locals business owners who want to expand their business.
Kitchen was pleased to learn that Bloomberg Business recently ranked Bakersfield as the No. 2 fastest-growing city for millennials, ages 20 to 34.
“I want to work toward making our city appealing for more reasons than just affordability,” she said. “One of my goals is to build upon this and truly brand Bakersfield as the top destination for young families to lay down roots, for baby boomers to retire and for everyone in between.”
When she was elected as one of the youngest planning directors in the state in 2014, Kitchen said she was humbled to be selected among a nationwide recruitment.
“I think in the end, my passion for the city of Bakersfield shined through and I am so excited to be in a position where I can help to really make a difference in our community,” she said.
Andrea L. Medina
• 37, Cal State Bakersfield Director of Grants and Outreach for the School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Engineering
• Community involvement: Vice chair of the Housing and Opportunity Foundation of Kern, treasurer for the California Maternal Mental Health Collaborative, wrote legislation passed into law
Andrea L. Medina is not one to back away from a challenge. On any given day, she can be juggling up to 15 grants that will benefit STEM teachers and students at Cal State Bakersfield if approved.
As much as she enjoys writing grant proposals for special projects, she said the outreach portion of her job is her favorite. Medina organizes STEM-related events designed to inspire kids to pursue careers in math and science.
“It always warms my heart when a past participant comes by to tell me they decided to follow math or science as a career because of a particular program they were a part of,” Medina said.
When she’s not at CSUB, Medina keeps busy serving as a board member on local committees like the Housing and Opportunity Foundation of Kern or the Junior League of Bakersfield.
“I care very deeply about the people around me and the community we live in,” she said. “I’ve been a habitual volunteer for as long as I can remember and I honestly feel that we can make a difference when we stick together.”
• 33, Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce CEO
• Community involvement: Board member of the Bakersfield Homeless Center and past board member of the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
When Nick Ortiz got the call in March that he had been selected as the new president and CEO of the Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce, he was honored and humbled.
“I really owe a great deal of my success to this organization,” Ortiz said. “As a chamber staff member from 2007 to 2010, I was able to raise my profile and as a volunteer; I’ve had amazing opportunities.”
His focus on improving the business climate and quality of life in Bakersfield has led him to connect with statewide leaders like Gov. Jerry Brown, attorney General Kamala Harris, among others.
Through the chamber’s different social events, local business owners have an opportunity to network and share ideas that will ultimately benefit Bakersfield.
“I truly believe that when you harness the power of the business community, you can accomplish great things,” he said.
He thanks the chamber volunteers and talented staff that make everything possible.
“I have the privilege of leading this incredible group of professionals in promoting our community, providing tools for business owners, and advocating for a healthy economy and business environment,” Ortiz said.
Timothy M. Osborn
• 35, Law Office of Timothy M. Osborn — Owner/Personal Injury Attorney
• Community involvement: JJ’s Legacy board of directors, CSUB Foundation, St. Baldrick’s Pediatric Cancer Foundation, Active 20-30 Club of Bakersfield, The Kern County Bar Association
Timothy M. Osborn is a fourth-generation local whose ancestors’ names are etched in Bakersfield history.
He is the great, great nephew of Marion Osborn Cunningham, whose family established the first Bakersfield Museum of Art – known as the Cunningham Memorial Art Gallery in her honor.
But he has made a name for himself in the legal community as a solo practitioner.
At the age of 28, he opened his own practice, just shy of completing his third year as a lawyer.
He had one client and no staff.
“I remember having an endless number of concerns but the main one was whether I would be able to generate enough business to survive,” Osborn said.
To date, Osborn is the only attorney in the office and clients deal with him directly. There isn’t a single document that goes through without Osborn looking at it and making a decision on every case.
This past year, Osborn was named a Rising Star by the Southern California Super Lawyers – a prestigious rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.
“Of course, I probably would not be allowed back in the office if I didn’t mention my secretaries, Tiffany Gomez and Perla Lizarraga,” he said.
For those thinking about taking a leap of faith, Osborn says charge forward.
“Don’t be afraid to take some calculated risks once in a while. If it doesn’t work out, at least you had the courage to give it a try, which is more than a lot of people can say,” he said.
• 27, Outreach and Public Relations Coordinator for Community Action Partnership of Kern, WIC
• Community involvement: Founder of Bakersfield Young Democrats, director on the board of Children First, vice chair of the Kern County Democratic Central Committee
It’s a known fact that promoting healthy eating among families is the best way to combat obesity.
Mitchall Patel is doing just that.
As an overseer of the WIC programs through the Community Action Partnership of Kern, Patel has direct contact with communities that need nutrition resources to fight childhood obesity.
“Through my job I’m able to fight childhood obesity and provide families with the basics for them and our communities to grow healthy,” Patel said.
Besides his involvement with CAPK, Patel has a passion for politics.
In 2011 he founded the Bakersfield Young Democrats after the 2010 election.
“I wanted to develop an organization to add to the dialogue in local politics and provide a resource to other young Democrats to get involved and help them add their voice to the conversation,” he said.
There are currently about 216 members.
• 40, Owner of Code 3 Uniforms, B&B Graphics and Gotta Go Bail Bonds
• Community involvement: Kern County Sheriff’s Activities League, Bakersfield Police Activities League, homeless fundraiser events, donates uniforms to schools
Sometimes you don’t have to move away from your hometown to open successful businesses.
For Glen Pierce, staying local was the only option he saw 11 years ago. He is the owner of Gotta Go Bail Bonds, Code 3 Uniforms and B&B Graphics.
“It’s all about giving my kids as well as others a great inspiration, seeing that you don’t have to leave the place you grew up in,” Pierce said. “It’s all about determination and hard work and I couldn’t think of doing this any other way.”
The local businessman grew up in Bakersfield and said he witnessed many families who had their lives torn apart by drug abuse or gang involvement.
“I believe it is my duty to do what I can to help our community, and I have focused my efforts on prevention programs for children at risk of getting involved with drugs or gangs,” Pierce said.
Pierce has donated more than $100,000 to local charities, including countless donations of uniforms to help dress kids.
“I am proud to be able to improve the quality of life for children in Bakersfield and Kern County, and I intend to keep doing so my entire life,” he said.
• 35, Dean of Students at the Regional Occupational Center and Bakersfield Adult School for the Kern High School District
• Community involvement: Jim Burke Education Foundation – Ford Dimensions and Dream Builders
Education is important but the most important aspect of education comes in participating in educational activities outside of the regular classroom.
That is Katie Salcido’s motto and why she splits her time between the Jim Burke Foundation and the Regional Occupational Center.
“There are so many programs that develop children in multiple ways and it’s important to realize that it takes more than just class work to develop a more successful young adult,” Salcido said.
During their year in Ford Dimension and Dream Builders, students are charged with the task of creating, developing and implementing a significant community service project. They also get to experience real life scenarios – something they wouldn’t get in a classroom.
“Watching how they develop throughout their senior year and begin to truly understand the importance of service over self reminds me how important it is to continue to positively impact your community,” she said.
With ROC, Salcido said she has learned more from her students than she would have ever imagined.
Salcido now has welding, automotive and animal care skills.
“I have been able to see roughly 600 seniors each year graduate from high school more well-rounded and ready for life than the rest of their peers by experiencing the junior college atmosphere at ROC,” Salcido said.
• 23, Founder and CEO of The Nanny Network
• Community Involvement: Relay for Life, American Kids Sports Center’s Safer Kids
Rainee Seibert became a CEO at the age of 22.
Although it’s still surreal that she owns her own business, The Nanny Network, Seibert couldn’t imagine doing anything else in life.
“I’ve been working with children for more than 10 years and as a nanny, I constantly had people asking me if I was taking on new clients,” she said.
When she realized she had people on a waiting list, she knew it was time to bring in more nannies.
She brought in a few of her friends to fill in spots that she couldn’t take care of and it was then that she knew she had to open her own nanny service.
Seibert is currently a nanny for three families.
As a part-time “parent,” she has to deal with decisions, attitudes and stress on bad days. But she also deals with the good days.
“The kisses, the first steps and first words at the end of the day make it all worth it,” she said.
Although Seibert doesn’t know what the future holds, she knows the key is to keep moving forward.
“We’re moving forward and sometimes we need to readjust, re-strategize and recoup but our goals and our dreams are BIG,” Seibert said.
• 34, Kaiser Permanente Project Manager III
• Community involvement: Sports coach for youth, Special Olympics World Games, Comprehensive Wellness Program
For Kevin Truelson, sports are the ultimate equalizer.
He is the man behind the group of athletes who will be competing in the upcoming Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, July 25 to Aug. 2.
“Sports is a great teacher of many things but most importantly it helps build discipline, determination and work ethic,” Truelson said.
With support from Kaiser Permanente physicians, the local team has raised $10,000 to help support the trip.
Bakersfield was also selected as a World Games Host Town. Special Olympic athletes and coaches from Jordan and Kenya will spend time in Bakersfield in July prior to the event.
“The Special Olympics, in general, strives to create a better world by fostering the acceptance and inclusion of all people, and through sports, people with intellectual disabilities discover new strengths and abilities, skills and success,” he said.
As an athlete himself, Truelson knows the importance of having coaches who ultimately become mentors.
Truelson went to the University of New Hampshire on a full athletic scholarship. He thanks his parents, coaches and sports for the man he is today.
“Hockey taught me discipline, determination, persistence and confidence,” he said. “But most importantly, it taught me to become a leader, sacrifice for an ultimate goal and be a team player – all skills that are transferable to the working world.”
Truelson played three seasons with the Bakersfield Condors and is the team’s all-time leading scorer among defensemen, recording 148 points in 204 games. He notes that the Bakersfield community is one that gives generously and appreciates those who work through adversity.
“Our Special Olympic athletes strive to be their best, defying the odds again and again, showcasing the triumphs of people with intellectual disabilities,” Truelson said.
Julia K. Vlahos
• 30, Attorney at Klein DeNatale Goldner Cooper Rosenlieb & Kimball LLP
• Community involvement: Pro bono work for local nonprofit organizations
Born in East Berlin, Germany, prior to the wall falling, Julia K. Vlahos now calls Bakersfield home.
The Highland High School graduate attended Cal State Bakersfield and then journeyed out of town for three years to McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento.
“The transition was tough because my husband remained in Bakersfield for three years working while I stayed in Sacramento,” Vlahos said.
Although leaving to law school was tough, she managed to excel academically. Vlahos was a staff writer for the McGeorge Law Review – an honor given only to the top students. She was also a member of the honors mock trial team and graduated with honors in the top of her class.
Her husband, Athanasios, applauds her dedication and courage, especially when he became very ill and had to undergo two brain surgeries shortly after his wife graduated from law school.
“Even with all that was going on in her personal life, my wife immediately passed the toughest bar exam in the country,” Athanasios said.
Today, Julia practices personal injury law and has taken on pro bono work for local nonprofit organizations.
“It is such a wonderful learning experience, and I relish the opportunity to work with some of the greatest legal minds in our community,” she said. “I get to do work that I love for organizations I am passionate about with people who are incredible at their jobs and successful in their careers.”
• 35, Owner of Precision Pharmacy
• Community involvement: Founder of Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government, Bakersfield City Planning Commission, co-owner of The Gentleman, past tutor for the GED program at the Bakersfield Homeless Center, board of directors for the Roadrunner Scholarship Fund, Advisory Board member of Grimm Academy, Bakersfield College Helmet Club board member
At the early age of 26, Patrick Wade had one goal in mind: find an opportunity to become an entrepreneur.
“Starting my own company was a calculated risk and I was determined to do whatever it took to make a success out of it,” Wade said.
Precision Pharmacy has now grown into the largest compounder of large animal pharmaceuticals in the nation.
Wade currently employs about 60 people in wide ranging industries, such as making complicated sterile pharmaceuticals for multi-million dollar race horses, running a hotel he recently purchased in Ireland, co-producing a movie currently being filmed by Warner Bros. and several others.
As the co-owner of The Gentleman – a social club downtown – Wade has raised nearly $20,000 annually since 2012 to give away to local nonprofits.
“I’m fifth-generation Bakersfield and I truly feel like a product of the unique culture here,” Wade said. “Not only is giving back to the community a good thing from a human perspective, but I also feel that I owe a debt to the community that helped shape who I am today.”