MEET OUR PACK LEADERS
Experts Share Invaluable Strategies for Unleashing
Your Best Business, Brain and Body!
Experts Share Invaluable Strategies for Unleashing
Your Best Business, Brain and Body!
KELLY BAGLA, ESQ. - Founder
Meet the woman who started it all. Kelly Bagla, Esq., is the original PITBULL ‘N PEARLS. She’s strong, smart, elegant, and fun! As an attorney, Kelly protects her clients with the loyalty and intensity of a PITBULL.
She’s the founder of Pitbulls ‘n Pearls, and an international award-winning corporate attorney who practices in San Diego, California.
Kelly established Bagla Law Firm, APC, currently celebrating its 11th anniversary. She is also the founder and CEO of GoLegalYourself.com, an online company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their business with the right legal documents.
Kelly Bagla is a bestselling Author and has written five books to support and promote entrepreneurship: Go Legal Yourself, First Edition; Go Own Yourself; Doing Business In the United States; Go Legal Yourself, Second Edition; and her latest release, Legal Pearls! Kelly’s passion is to help entrepreneurs achieve their dreams and she lives by her own motto: “Grab the world by the pearls, it’s yours for the taking!”®
Kelly was awarded Top Lawyer by Marquis Who’s Who, recognized as the Attorney of the Month by San Diego Attorney Journal, and named the winner of both the 2020 and 2021 Lawyers of Distinction. As the “Legal Eagle,” she is a monthly contributor to Homeland Magazine and San Diego Veterans Magazine. Kelly is a TV personality, Speaker and an Inventor. LA Dreams Magazine selected her as Top Woman Entrepreneur, and San Diego Business Journal nominated her Business Women of the Year.
Kelly Bagla won Best of 2020 Oceanside Business Services award, winner of 2020 Legal Awards for Best International M&A Law Firm USA and Corporate Attorney of the Year, California, by Acquisition International, selected Top 20 Businesswomen to watch in 2020 by Insights Success Magazine, selected Top Transformational Woman Leader by Industry Wired Magazine, 2021 award winner of Business Legal Professional of the Year USA by Corporate Live Wire, selected cover story for Most Recommended Law Firms to watch in 2021 by The Business Fame Magazine, selected cover story for Top Law Firms to watch in 2021 by Tycoon Success Magazine, selected cover story for Top Law Firms to watch in 2022 by Mirror Review Magazine, selected cover story for the 10 Best International Law Firms to watch in 2022 by The Inc Magazine, Podcast host of Go Legal Yourself – top 20 business law podcasts (get the App – it’s free), Judge on Everyday Edisons Emmy award winning TV show.
Laurie Barron, president of Pursu, Inc., is a creative entrepreneur encompassing an energetic personality as big as her dreams. Her optimistic demeanor, drive towards perfection, and innovative thinking led her to leave her corporate job and move to Southern California in 2006. Lauries aspires to help others move forward in a positive, less intimidating environment and manage people’s frustrations with technology and early-stage businesses. Ultimately, Laurie reduces her clients’ stress and anxiety about the evolving tech world through patience, education, and the use of effective designs and tools.
Laurie’s credentials span to include over 12 years of web development experience and a degree in Accounting and Computer Information Systems from Indiana University. She also has credibility from the IUPUI Masters Program Informatics in Human Computer Interaction, focusing on Usability and User Experience. Early in her career, she founded and custom built an e-commerce platform called 3 B Street, a website for selling handmade goods, which was dubbed “the Nordstrom of Etsy.”
Gina D’Amore is the Founder of Love’s Accounting, located in the Hillcrest community of San Diego. She specializes in bookkeeping, accounting, tax planning, human resources and payroll services, as well as QuickBooks training. With over 15 years of experience, Gina specializes in working with smaller companies in every area of accounting, including economics and human resources. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Manhattanville College and a Bookkeeping Certificate from Mira Coasta College.
Gina is the author of Bookkeeper School. “So many of my clients cannot read the financial statements. They just know the vocabulary to ask for it. This tells me they don’t understand the beginning, because in accounting…the list you make in the beginning, in the end has numbers next to it. The Profit and Loss starts with the word, “income”, then has a number next to it. Understanding the words below income should be just as easy. This book is meant to be a fundamental guide to what every business owner and 1099 contractor should know.”
“I believe once I empower a client they will want to learn more for themselves to better understand their financial assets and they will want to continue to educate themselves. I believe in working with integrity, providing value and being proactive to help my client. Most of all, I value their time and trust. With that trust, and the confidence I am a dedicated member of their team, I can be utilized as an outsourced CFO.”
Sophia Felix is the founder and CEO of HBM Talent & Management, a boutique model and talent management agency that represents an international client roster in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York, Canada and London. Since 2013, she has managed versatile talent in divisions such as print, commercials, movies, music videos, campaigns, and live events.
Felix is a passionate advocate for the use of medical cannabis, particularly to help people with PTSD and mental health issues. She is a co-founder and the president of the International Cannabis Consulting Business Women’s Association (ICBWA), a Los Angeles based nonprofit dedicated to the education and growth of female entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry.
In addition, Felix proudly serves on the Board of Advisors for Longevity Health Corp and CannaLok where she contributes her knowledge and advocacy of social responsibility to both medication security and child safety both in the Pharmaceutical and the Cannabis world which both have similar characteristics in terms of the dangers drugs present to children.
Sophia Felix, CEO of HBM Talent & Management
A devout philanthropist, Felix serves as the president of the Southern California Chapter for America’s Children of Fallen Heroes and has been involved with Passion 4 K.I.D.S for ten years, working directly with Izaiah Wallis, a child victim of drunk driving. She donates 10% of her revenue to charity and requests every HBM client to volunteer for two charitable events per year. Before becoming a multidimensional entrepreneur, Felix worked as a subcontractor for the U.S. Department of Defense for 14 years. She became a business owner after participating in the Emerging Latina Entrepreneur Fellowship Program by the National Latina Business Women’s Association – San Diego, where she received training on international trade and business development. Felix has received numerous awards, including the 2021 Telly Award in the commercial category “Social Impact”, 2021 San Diego Hometown Hero Award, 2020 ABC 10 News Leadership Award, 2018 San Diego Leader Award, 2017 California Hero Award, and 2015 Telly Award for the not-for-profit America’s Children of Fallen Heroes commercial. She has been featured in 2022 Exceleon Magazine Women of Excellence, 30 Best CEO’s of the Year 2022 from The Silicon Review, 2021 Top 100 U.S. Business Leaders Magazine, 2021 Transformational Business Leader of the Year from Exeleon Magazine, and Latina Style Magazine in 2018
Jeremiah’s main focus is to deliver comprehensive marketplace products & services to aspiring business owners and individuals such as Coaching, Investing Strategies, Tax Advisory, Revenue Planning, Administrative Protocols, Banking & Credit Economics,Time Management Tactics, Consumerism Foresight, System Implementation, Brand Development, Franchising Advisory and PR Readiness. His bottom line is to help you Regulate Money, Shelter Money & pay little to NO TAXES!®
Betsy Holt, president of Pursu, Inc., is a creative mastermind – [kree-ay-tiv mas-ter-meynd] n. an imaginative evil genius who uses her creative notions for good, possesses graphic design prowess and is an expert at all things branding. She types, clicks and scrolls away her days solving creative problems, creating bespoke brands, and supporting business owners with intensive, creative coaching.
She is an award-winning designer and has started three successful businesses of her own. She is committed to supporting other entrepreneurs and business owners who want to build the business of their dreams. Her 13 years of experience, creative prowess and variety of industry experience give her a unique perspective on business and brand development.
When she’s not off saving the world from a barrage of bad design, she loves creating and building things using her hands (and power tools, of course) with her husband by her side and her German Shepherds there to supervise.
Christen Kaplan, Certified Holistic Nutritionist, Weight Counselor, and Supplementation Specialist, is the Co-Owner and CEO of Integrative Wholistic Diagnostics Inc. and of Love a Wholistic Life Inc., IWD’s sister company.
Christen’s corporate experience includes 12 years in the fashion industry where she committed her life to a rigorous executive corporate structure with two of the top fashion houses in the world. It was an amazing experience, but the unbalanced lifestyle came at great personal cost to her and her family. She knew it was time to make some changes and left Corporate America to follow her calling.
Christen and her sister, Beth co-founded Love a Wholistic Life with a passion to educate and help people achieve true, lasting heath. Like many Americans, Christen’s family has suffered loss due to preventable lifestyle diseases. Through this experience, it become a lifelong mission to help clients restore and maintain their health.
CEO Love A Wholistic Life, Inc.
Christen dedicated nearly twenty years to researching holistic nutrition, understanding lifestyle diseases and discovering eﬀective preventative healthcare measures in nutrition that ensure a high quality of life.
Her primary focus has been on those who need her help most; people with extreme weight issues and medical pathologies associated with being overweight. Partnering with a wide array of medical professionals, she has combined her extensive training and research to design her proven nutritional program, You Deserve 2 Be Healthy! She has worked one-on-one with hundreds of clients and their physicians with this program, supporting patients diagnosed with obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other medical conditions that improve with proper nutrition and lifestyle choices.
Christen lives in Orange County, CA with her two teenagers and two Labrador retrievers Cody and Adelina. She also serves as the Program Director for the Associazione Familia De Mon Rubro Monte in Monterosso Calabro, Italy where she owns a home and spends three months a year. Christen and her fellow members in the Associazione initiate programs and raise funding to ensure the townspeople live in clean, beautiful, thriving communities.
When she isn’t teaching, working with clients or blogging, Christen is perfecting her Italian, snuggling with her dogs, enjoying quiet meditation, or a day painting in her studio. She also loves yoga and video chatting with her sister.
Alexandra Renée Poelstra
Alexandra Renée Poelstra is the founder of HINS & CO. She currently serves as the CEO of ALL MAVEN Enterprise and Principal at FindTheMaven.com, while also holding the positions of Director of Startup Grind Colorado Springs, Co-Director of Startup Grind Carlsbad, and Vice Chair of the Executive Board for the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce. Here’s how she describes who she is and what she does:
“I build, brand, and better things. I also find, fix, and figure things out. I do a lot of ‘things,’ but mostly, I’m a master problem solver, speaker, consultant, and monsterprenuer. I help organizations and people conquer whatever is keeping them from maximum potential, efficiency, impact and profit. Whether you’re looking to start, grow, or enhance your current venture, no one gives a better 360 view.
“I launched HINS & Co. to provide unmatched strategic insights that were broken down so comprehensively for businesses, startups, and entrepreneurs they’d have to be crazy to lose.”
I’m a driven and ambitious wife and mother. Some of my favorite things include eating, sleeping, relaxing and creating. I grew up in sunny Southern California where I started my business. My husband Joseph and I split our time between SoCal and our current residence in Colorado.
Labels you can align me with include: Christ Warrior. Mother. Intellectual Creative. Tech Junkie. CEO. Director & Executive of Things. I’ve got quite a few more, and adding new ones all the time. I’m a monsterprenuer as my current endeavors involve raising $70 million, for 17 different businesses over the next 7 years. I represent a diverse group of clients and focus on those who like to shake up an industry.
George Ritachka, DACM, L.Ac.
George Ritachka, L.Ac., CEO of Happy Bodyz, APC, is affectionately known to his patients as Dr. George. He is a Licensed Acupuncturist certified by the California Acupuncture Board. Dr. George received his Master of Traditional Oriental Medicine (MTOM) and a Doctor of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine (DACM) degrees from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in San Diego, holds a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from San Diego State University, and earned the title of Diplomate in the American Academy of Physical Oriental Medicine (AAPOM) for advanced studies in the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions, injury recovery and pain relief. Dr. George’s practices serve Coastal North County where he provides both therapeutic and relaxing spa-like services.
With over 30 years’ experience as a Clinical Muscle Therapist, he specializes in pain relief, anxiety and stress reduction, neuromuscular disorders and sports injury recovery utilizing a wide range of tools and techniques that have both needle and non-needle options. Besides acupuncture, microcurrent, electro-acupuncture, low level laser therapies and other non-needle techniques, muscle and soft tissue manual therapies, acupressure & tuina, cupping and gua sha are all available to bring relief and recovery for your particular condition, tailored to your specific needs.
With his broad background & experience, Dr. George has been able to help where other methods have been less successful or had to be abandoned due to uncomfortable side-effects. Passionate about his work and his drive to find natural solutions for people suffering in pain, anxiety & stress, he is known for his effective therapies and caring manner.
On a personal note, George loves volleyball, was on the SDSU fencing team (what is it with this obsession with sharp objects?), used to dance, choreograph and teach kids Ukrainian folk dancing (he’s still tempted to “kick it” at parties when the beat is just right)! Always fascinated with the power of the mind-body connection, a photo of George and his wife was captured in LIFE MAGAZINE doing Tony Robbins’ “Fire Walk” on a bed of hot, glowing embers – Yes, they survived & thrived without burning!! J 😉
John D. Sanders
John D. Sanders
Investment Banking/ Strategic Business Consultant
Dr. Sanders was founder and served as Chairman of the National Technology Fast 500 Program and its companion regional Technology Fast 50 programs that annually list and promote the fastest growing technology companies in the United States. He has served as Chairman of the Washington DC Technology Council after a short period as Interim President. The Council provides forums and interactions among technology companies, organizations and the federal and local governments to foster a stronger regional business environment and community involvement.
For more than twenty years, Dr. Sanders was an investment banker, specializing in the equity financing of emerging technology corporations. He has been the principal in the initial public offerings of a dozen companies and has served as advisor to numerous other public corporations. More than forty private placements of equity capital have been organized through his efforts, including start-up entrepreneurial situations as well as established public entities.
Prior to entering the investment banking industry, Dr. Sanders served as a research scientist for the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, as a Member of the Technical Staff of RCA Research Laboratories, and as a Development Engineer for General Electric Company.
He is a Registered Professional Engineer in Virginia and Kentucky, a Life Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), Society of Investment Analysts, Association for Corporate Growth, and Founder of the Association of Technology Business Councils. In 1992, Dr. Sanders was recognized as the “Titan of Technology” at the Greater Washington Region High Tech Awards Gala.
Dr. Sanders received his Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from the University of Louisville in 1961, and the M.S. (1962) and Ph.D. (1965) in Electrical Engineering from Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh PA
A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Dr. Sanders maintains residence in Carlsbad, California with his wife Carole.
Jack Thrift has approximately 30 years of experience serving as a senior officer at a variety of companies. He currently serves as an outsourced-CFO to companies in biotech, tech, agtech and fintech industries. Jack previously served as CEO of LOYAL3 Securities, an investment banking firm. He also served as COO/CFO at two other investment banks and three hedge fund businesses. Three of the companies that Jack served were publicly traded on the NYSE and NASDAQ. He began his career at Deloitte and is a CPA licensed in the state of California.
William Squire is a stylist, model, speaker, agent, make-up artist and co-author of THE MODELS WORKBOOK – A HOLLYWOOD AGENT’S TWENTY STEP GUIDE TO LAUNCHING YOUR MODELING CAREER. He has worked in the fashion and entertainment industries for over thirty years.
A gifted dancer and actor, William began his career performing with professional dance companies and theatrical productions. His talent soon became apparent as he started his career in print and runway modeling. William walked the runway for designers Yves Saint Laurent, Versace, Armani and Calvin Klein and has appeared in numerous fashion publications including Glamour, Gentleman’s Quarterly and Men’s Vogue.
William also became interested in make-up artistry and, after extensive training, went behind the camera to become a professional make-up artist for runway, print, stage and television. His client list includes Tipper Gore, Linda Evangelista, Demi Moore, Susan Sarandon, Faye Dunaway, Andrea McArdle and Raquel Welch. He has been the Premier artist for Chanel, Armani and Yves Saint Laurent cosmetics.
William’s passion for the entertainment industry led him to the administrative side of the business. He has been an agency director, talent booker, and fashion coordinator for four of the hottest agencies in Los Angeles. While working as an agent, William began to share his vast knowledge of the fashion and entertainment industry as an instructor, speaker, coach and consultant (to many top fashion magazines, newspapers and television shows). His dynamic speaking and coaching have inspired people all over the world and helped mold many successful careers.
William has created YOUR SIGNATURE STYLE, an exciting event that teaches his clients how to dress, how to apply make-up, how to pose for the perfect picture, how to walk like a supermodel, how to gain confidence and much more.
William currently divides his time between L.A., Palm Springs and Hawaii where he is in constant demand as a beauty expert, fashion speaker and style consultant. He is seen constantly in magazines and on television and is considered a fashion icon where his style advice and opinions are enthusiastically anticipated He creates looks for the Oscars, Emmys, AMA’s, Golden Globes and Grammys. He recently launched his own line of luxury cosmetics BILLY’S BLUES and is busy traveling the world helping men and women to define their personal style and to create their signature look.