BUSINESS | By Keila dos Santos
Ojai Mother-Daughter Duo Honored at California Small Business Day 2018 by Legislator Monica Limon
(Sacramento, CA – June 19th, 2018) On Tuesday, June 19th Azu Restaurant was honored by Assemblywoman Monique Limon at California Small Business Day as Small Business of the Year in District 37. Mother-Daughter duo, Laurel Moore and Elizabeth Haffner, co-owners of Azu Restaurant were celebrated for their hard work and dedication to the community.
Azu Restaurant is located near the heart of downtown Ojai and has served California tapas, craft cocktails, local wine, and beer for over 18 years. The team was recognized for opening their doors, as a community meeting place during the Thomas Fire. They were instrumental in organizing and meeting the demands of the community using cell phones and social media, while the valley of Ojai was surrounded by flames.
The team were recognized by the legislator who said that, “During the most devastating natural disasters in our District’s history, Laurel and Elizabeth opened their doors to aid in community relief, which alleviated the distress and needs of community members.”
As part of their commitment to the community, they knew that rebuilding the local economy would take formidable economic might. So, even as the Thomas Fire continued to burn, they rallied an association of business owners. The Ojai Business Association is an on-going, non-governmental attempt at collaboration between Ojai’s job creators and economic influencers, working together for Ojai’s economic wellness.
“California’s small businesses are the economic engine of our state, said Betty Jo Toccoli, President of California Small Business Association. “Azu was celebrated for their successful small business and contributions to the small business community.”
California Small Business Day honors 75 small businesses annually for their contribution to the state’s economy. From pixie farmers to boutique design firms, small businesses are ingrained in California’s communities and economy. Small businesses contribute approximately 75% of California’s gross state product and over half of the state’s private sector jobs.
About their experience in Sacramento, the honorees said, “It has been a great experience and our representatives couldn’t have been more gracious.” (Pictured with Senate Pro Tempore Toni Atkins, and assemblywoman Monique Limon
In addition to serving Spanish Tapas with a local twist, Azu Restaurant continues to host business association meetings and community activist groups in efforts to improve life for everyone in the local area.
If you are interested in getting involved, and knowing more about how to participate in Ojai Valley community organization efforts, click here (MC form) to sign-up for weekly updates or clicking here (link to firstname.lastname@example.org) to send forth your inquiries.