Hometown Journey

Dumspter Diving is a Part of Life in Venezuela

To show how serious the food shortage in Venezuela is, it has been reported that people who were formerly members of the middle class are now “dumpster diving” for food. In other words, they are going through the trash looking for something edible to eat. The reason they are seeking out scraps of food from the trash because this is the only way they can keep from starving.
Dateas news reports noted a terrible tragic irony. A man who formerly owned a bakery – a store that produces and sells food – is now dumpster diving for scraps. Food shortages also mean ingredients necessary to make food such as milk, sugar, and eggs are in short supply as well.

“A sad truth has to be accepted here” says Norka Luque. Food can run out even in a country that once had a viable middle and working class. Venezuela did have a number of people in poverty before the beginning of the economic downturn started, but that number has risen massively after only a few short years.

The food that does exist in supply in the country costs so much, few can afford it.

Strong economies are not just about acquiring luxuries for the populace. A good economy exists to provide a reasonable standard of living. When currency declines in value, fuel and electricity are both depleted, and inflation runs rampant, everything becomes scarce. A massive decline in imports further complicates the situation.


How Whistleblowers Can Be Protected And Compensated

Are you a whistleblower? Is the company you are working for committing securities violations? Have you spotted fraudulent activity at a company that you work for, have worked for or have done business with? Do you suspect criminal activity or insider trading at a financial company? If you have answered yes to any of the questions above, then you could be a whistleblower. Read on to find out how you can be protected without facing retribution from a firm and even compensated for bringing fraudulent activities to light to the securities and exchange commission.

After the economic crisis of 2007-2008 Congress passed the Dodd Frank Act as part of its financial regulation reform aimed at better regulating Wall Street. This new piece of legislation prevents a company from retaliating back at a whistleblower for reporting misconduct at a company. Companies cannot fire an employee who becomes a whistleblower. They cannot also retaliate in ways such as severing benefits, retirement packages or shares earned in a company just because a person reports fraud occurring at a company to the SEC.

In addition to employment protection and retaliation protection the Dodd Frank Act also established compensation for whistleblowers. If a company gets fined or has to reach a settlement in excess of $1 million dollars or more, the whistleblower will receive 10-30% of the fine or settlement amount the accused company has paid out to the SEC. This serves to encourage whistleblowers to speak out against companies and not be afraid of being retaliated back or fired from a firm. Additionally if other law enforcement agencies fine the said company, the whistle blower can receive additional compensation.

As a result of the new whistleblower program established by the securities and exchange commission, the law firm of Labaton Sucharow created a special litigation division to fight on the behalf of whistle blowers in the financial sector and represent them in court. Labaton Sucharow employs financial analysts, forensic accountants and people who have worked in the SEC and successfully prosecuted fraud and regulation violation cases.

The person in charge of the Labaton Sucharow Law Firm division of whistle blower litigation is Jordan A. Thomas. He has served in the division of enforcement of the SEC as an assistant director and legal counsel. An important thing potential whistleblowers should keep in mind is that a whisthleblower can remain completely anonymous if they have a lawyer represent them in court.

Learn about the SEC Whistleblower lawyers

Search Cleanup: Keep Your Reputation Sparkling

Mudslinging. the very word evokes in your mind an image of some poor soul being pelted with globs of sticky brown mud that will be impossible to wash out. Most consider this practice to be something done only in times of old however it, like society, has evolved to a more efficient means of humiliation that is often viewed by thousands rather than just the occupants of the schoolyard. This new form of mudslinging is usually vented using a keyboard and left on the brightly lit screen so to ruminate on a website as it gains views and sways the opinions of potential future customers.

What was just described is the nightmare of any business owner who operates a website or has a customer who is experienced with apps such as Yelp. Statistics say that one negative review of a company or product cuts profits by 20%, while two negative reviews can effect revenue by almost half. So in this day and age where to recover from a severe case of mudslinging requires more than bleach and a stiff upper lip, how do modern business owners face these venomous comments? Quite simply Online Reputation Management.

Online businesses such as www.searchcleanup.com dedicate their time and resources to clean up search results on the internet. But why is Online Reputation Management so important?

Every day successful businesses suffer losses because of one negative review. Online Reputation Management helps keep the bad press to a minimum, allowing your company to grow in the way you dreamed. Remember when you were a kid and the Dentist told you to brush your teeth every day because if you didn’t your teeth would decay and fall out? Consider Online Reputation Management to be your company’s toothbrush. It isn’t difficult, and very often worth any expense. They take care of negative articles, harmful PDF’s and even bad business reviews. If you’re interested in this service www.searchcleanup.com is always accepting orders. Online Reputation Management isn’t just necessary it allows your company the freedom it needs to succeed in ways you’ve only dared dream.

Twitter: @search_cleanup

Encourage Positive Classroom Behavior With ClassDojo

What Is ClassDojo?

ClassDojo is a classroom empowerment platform that helps support positive behaviour. It is a way to help teachers connect with their students and their students’ parents like no other way before. Teachers, parents and, students can now track teamwork, hard work, persistence, creativity, and curiosity. With ClassDojo, it’s like a more personal and in-depth parent-teacher conference at your fingertips.

How Does It Benefit The Classroom?

Teachers can chart their students’ positive behavior by a point system. If the child is negative in the classroom he or she get points taken away. It can be updated in real-time and instantly connects teachers with their classroom and parents get updates as well. It’s accessible from any mobile device or by the website. Teachers can even project the chart of their classroom behavior on a big screen so that students can focus on being more positive. Teachers who’ve been using ClassDojo are seeing great results. They’re seeing more positive behaviour and less bullying.
Students can access their account and change avatars and track their behavior. They can also read their teacher’s comments on their account as well. It is a great way for them to encourage them to not only be more positive but for them to reach their full potential academically as well.
Parents can get a lot of benefits from ClassDojo as well. With real-time updates on how their children are doing and feeling, they can stay in touch with their kids’ teachers; they can truly be connected to their child’s progress in school.

Recently, an article was written about ClassDojo on EdSurge.com. It is about ClassDojo’s recent addition to their platform videos on growth mindset. The article talks about Mojo and Katie. They are the two animated stars of the ClassDojo produced videos. The shorts are produced to help teachers, students, and parents learn about the “growth mindset”.
The San Fransico-based startup has released 5 videos about the growth mindset. The growth mindset is the idea that our intelligence and abilities aren’t fixed at first, but they can be developed and strengthened over time. You can see all the videos on YouTube and on ClassDojo’s website.
ClassDojo teamed up with Stanford University’s Project for Education Research That Scales (PERTS). PERTS studies students’ motivation and resilience.
ClassDojo’s co-founder and Cheif Product Officer believes that ClassDojo believes they have the right channel to “spread great ideas in education that don’t get the traction they deserve”.
PERTS’s outreach efforts have only focused on teachers and parents. This is the first time they have reached out to students. There is an online toolkit that includes lesson plans and exercises on how teachers and parents can introduce the growth mindset process to students that PERTS offers. Some of ClassDojo’s animated videos will cover some of the strategies, which PERTS has advised and reviewed.
No money was exchanged between the ClassDojo and PERT partnership.


Read more about Class Dojo:





Venezuelan Patients Needlessly Die Because of Government Breakdown

The lack of antibiotics, basic IV solutions, food and water for patients has become a widespread problem. A widespread blackout swept over Barcelona, Venezuela and with no backup generators to rely on, the respirators in the maternity ward could not function. Doctors like Manuel Gonzalez tried for hours to manually pump air into the lungs of infants. By morning, three newborns had needlessly died. By the time the sun set, four more newborns died needlessly.
The crisis that a started as an economic crisis has turned into a national health emergency, and doctors see no end to the loss of life at this time. At this point, health care professionals cannot even estimate how many people have died due to this situation. Many people fear that this is the beginning of a complete collapse of the Venezuelan government.

The health care situation has become so desperate that doctors are instructing family members to purchase medications on the black market and bring them back to the hospital. The University of the Andes Hospital is suffering from a severe lack of water. They do not have enough to wash the blood off of the operating table between patients and doctors are forced to prep their hands with seltzer water before surgery. Every lifesaving surgery they perform puts the patient at risk for developing a deadly infection.

International Help Is Desperately Needed
Even though the Venezuelan government has blocked out the entire world, Aserne still reports on the citizens of this crumbling country are begging for aid from international governments. Medical supplies, medication, and basic necessities are need soon if the citizens are going to survive.

Brad Reifler: The Future of Financial Professionals

When it comes to achieving success as an investor and entrepreneur, nobody has done more than Brad Reifler. For 30 years, Brad has used his unique combination of business knowledge and cutting-edge ideas to create one successful company after another. Whether it was his highly successful Reifler Trading Company or Pali Capital in the 1990’s, Brad has always led the way when it came to financial success.

Knowing early on it would take hard work to reach the top, Brad began learning all the investment tips he could about the business world. Always realizing he wanted to be his own boss, Brad set out to conquer new worlds with his usual flair and confidence. With a keen interest in financial research, Brad began examining the traits of those who have achieved great success in business and finance. Eventually, Brad knew it was time to make his mark in the financial world. Thus, he started Reifler Trading Company and began to establish himself as a leader in futures trading. In fact, by the time Brad decided to sell RTC years later, it had become one of the world’s largest futures trading companies.

Never one to stand pat on his success, Brad immediately set out on a new financial adventure. Shortly after selling RTC, Brad began Pali Capital and immediately started to see success with this venture as well. While RTC was a huge success, Pali took Brad’s success to new heights. During his 13-year run as the company’s CEO, the company accumulated more than $1 billion in commission income, a figure that made industry experts sit up and take notice.

As he continues to look for new financial worlds to conquer, Brad continually looks for ways to implement new ideas and strategies. In the years ahead, he undoubtedly will continue to outpace the competition.  Yahoo Finance covered Forefront’s new project, and Brad remains optimistic on Twitter that the sky is the limit.

Coriant Shines as Kheradpir Takes the Helm

Coriant is a company that many people are already familiar with. This is true for the casual consumer. But it’s even more readily apparent when one speaks to speculators within the tech industry. Some companies have a way of making all the right decisions, and this is something that will always catch people’s eyes. In the case of Coriant, this has culminated in the appointment of Shaygan Kheradpir as their new CEO. To understand the significance of this decision one must first look at Coriant itself.

Coriant is a high tech company which places a heavy focus on networking solutions. While the company is always expanding, it currently works with network operators in more than 100 countries. One of the most important points is the focus on networking solutions rather than a singular product. This, along with wide distribution, ensures that the company keeps a wide scope of development. This model of support and development is vital to any company which seeks to be on the cutting edge of network adoption. As smartphones become closer to powerful computers, they rely on intensive use of data connections. All of these connections use networking technologies in new ways to provide a wide range of user facing applications. Two points are vital to staying on top within the market. A company needs to bring a solid understanding of the technology to the table, and it needs to be able to quickly adapt to new demands.

What makes Shaygan Kheradpir’s appointment as CEO of Coriant so exciting is the fact that he’s proven himself within both categories. His full time within the industry shows a wide range of success within almost three decades of experience. One of the most notable aspects of this is the fact that he’s had experience within some of the most demanding parts of the industry. This includes securing and data within banking and security systems. This experience shows that he’s able to create and manage teams which can create solutions for both the personal and professional sector.

But the most exciting aspect of Kheradpir’s appointment is the fact that it’s also a continuation of his past success with Coriant. During his time working as Operating Partner at Marlin Equity Partners he was able to form a close and impressive relationship with Coriant’s senior management team. This rapport culminated in a boost to Coriant’s overall business strategy. Even if one were to only focus on Kheradpir’s wealth of experience within the industry it would make for an exciting combination. But when one also factors in his previous work with Coriant it’s certain that the combination will create some exciting opportunities for the company.

Read more: http://www.lightwaveonline.com/articles/2015/09/shaygan-kheradpir-new-coriant-chairman-and-ceo.html

Michael Zomber’s Work And Passion Of Preserving History

Michael Zomber is well-respected antique arms collector and seller. He is also an author, philanthropist, and film maker. His work of collecting, caring, and selling antique arms is aimed at preserving as well as protecting history. Zomber’s mission is to collaborate with other individuals that have the same zeal as him of preserving the past.

He is an internationally acclaimed authority in regard to Japanese Samurai Swords. Zomber has been collecting armor along with antique arms for over forty years. Additionally, he has shared his knowledge with Americans through the Tales of the Gun series on the History Channel as a guest historian. These series comprise of: Guns of the Famous, Dueling Pistols, Automatic Pistols, Million Dollar Guns, and Guns of the Orient. He has also been featured as an expert on History of the Gun on A&E.

Zomber is also an author and an exceptional storyteller. He has written several screenplays and historical novels. The novels include Shogun Iemitsu, Sweet Betsy That’s Me: A Child of the Civil War, as well as a non-fiction work titled Jesus and the Samurai. All the novels are presently in print. He is the producer of the highly praised documentary film, Soul of the Samurai. He produced the documentary film through his firm Renascent Films in collaboration with his wife Andrea.

Zomber was born in Washington DC. He spent his early years in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Presently, Zomber and his family live near Philadelphia. When it comes to his education, Zomber attended Friends Central School in Overbrook. He graduated cum laude. After his high school education, he enrolled at Oberlin College, Villanova University, as well as the University of Illinois, Chicago. He graduated with two degrees, a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature. Zomber is also a U.C.L.A. graduate with a Masters Degree in English Literature.

Stephen Murray’s Legacy Lives on at CCMP Capital

Stephen  Murray, who died on March 12, 2015 at 52, was a private equity investor and a great philanthropist. He was one of the co-founders and the president of CCMP Capital; a private equity firm focusing on growth equity and buyout transactions. Stephen joined CCMP in 1989 and stayed with it through its ownership changes until 2006 when it became a standalone company. Learn more about Stephen Murray CCMP Capital: https://www.pehub.com/2007/10/5-questions-with-stephen-murray/

Murray graduated with a degree in economics in 1984 from Boston College and from Columbia Business School with a master’s degree in Business Administration where he sharpened his knowledge in business and entrepreneurship. His career started immediately after graduating from college in 1984 at Manufacturers Hanover Corporation in the credit analyst training program.

In 1989, Murray began working with MH Equity Corporation, which was a combination of Manufactures Hanover’s private equity group and its leveraged finance unit. In 2005, he became head of the buyout business at JP Morgan Partners. A spin out of JP Morgan Partners led to the foundation of CCMP Capital in 2006. Murray was named the CEO of CCMP Capital in 2007.

Stephen Murray has been significantly associated with the success of CCMP Capital over the last three decades. There were reports that his death threatened to rob the firm the entire United States business community. Murray was a towering figure and greatly contributed to shaping the United States private investment finance.

Murray stepped down from his duties at CCMP a month before his death due to health related reasons. His position was taken over by Greg Brenneman, who was the chairman. You can click the links below to read more:

This Old Thing? Private Equity Honcho Drops Little Place Uptown for $11M
Ex-CCMP Capital CEO Steve Murray passes away

Murrays contributions were felt by many major companies for which he served on their boards like Aramark, AMC Entertainment, Generac Power Systems, Warner Chilcott, Cabelas Pinnacle Foods, Legacy Hospital Partners and The Vitamin Shoppe. Murray was also involved in philanthropic works and supported the Metro New York’s Make- a-Wish Foundation where he was also a member of the chairman’s council. Learn more about Stephen Murray CCMP Capital: http://patch.com/connecticut/stamford/stephen-p-murray-52-financial-executive-stamford-resident-vice-chair-boston-college-board-trustees

Murray also helped the Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County and was the vice chairman of Boston College board of trustees. Due to his contributions, Murray has been described by many as a selfless being and a believer in education. He will be fondly remembered by his colleagues and business associates as a financial guru.

Murrays support for the less fortunate will also not be forgotten quickly. Murray left behind his wife, Tami. A. Murray and four sons. The couple lived in Stamford, Connecticut.

FreedomPop Continues to Expand

FreedomPop is a mobile carrier based out of Los Angeles. The company offers a 100% free plan with 200MB of data. Originally only available in the United States and the United Kingdom, FreedomPop now looks to the future. FreedomPop, freshly reinforced by 50 million dollars they’ve recently raised, intends to expand into more international markets. Targeting Asia and South America, as well as strengthening their grip on Europe, FreedomPop intends to offer their service to many more countries.

While 200MB data may be such a small amount that many readers are smirking right now, it is free. If 200MB isn’t enough for you, you can purchase an additional 500MB for 10 dollars, which when compared to other plans in the United States, is still quite the deal. FreedomPop platform does not seem to target the everyday user of smartphones and tablets, but the occasional user.

Steven Sesar, COO and co-founder spoke about the new financing. He says that the new money they’ve raised cements their spot in the field of mobile internet and is the groundwork for them to become a top 10 global service provider. Sesar goes on to say that they aim to give free access across the world and eliminate roaming charges, no matter where the consumer may live.

Learn more from these FreedomPop reviews: