August 5, 2020
The Summer that Almost Wasn’t. 
Yet it was. I have decided that is how I will fondly remember Summer 2020. Someday.
Perhaps we did not get away on those big family vacations, nor did taking time off work hold the same value. Doing 1000-piece puzzles or having family theme night parties lost their allure after the first few months of SIP. But there was the outdoor dining, and the appreciation for our beautiful town in which we are lucky to live. There were the beginnings of conversations that needed to happen. There were new faces who stepped into the spotlight and are running for Town Council. There were so many small businesses that accepted the COVID challenge and pivoted their business models, and the Chamber was happy to be a part of it. It has been so fun to watch our Town evolve and grow. But underneath it all there was the fear of the unknown. This kind of fear brings out the best and worst in people. It illuminates that we are all on our own journey, dealing with our own “stuff”. We have to continue to give each other space and respect, and appreciate that there is a common thread that binds us. Let's not tear each other down, but find that common thread. 

Last week, I attended a Roundtable discussion on how we can create a more inclusive and diverse community. I was honored to be there and hear first hand the viewpoints of the Mayor, the Town Manager, our Police Captain, a representative from Netflix, Superintendents from our two school districts, and many young adults. One young man recently organized the anti-racist coalition in Los Gatos, which remarkably started as a group of 10 people and has now grown to more than 250. I remember when I was that young and thought I could change the world - let's harness that energy and move forward. During this Summer that Almost Wasn’t, we have learned that life is a paradox. Life is a mystery – there is really no explaining it. We cannot waste time trying to figure it out. But we can take time asking ourselves a few questions that can shape our future. “What is your Truth?”. That question in and of itself might be the best one of all – and shoot, summertime is the time to contemplate such a question.

I was walking this morning with a respected mentor. Though she is younger, she has had enough experience to understand life and its complexities, and she is thoughtful. When I described to her what I wanted to do in Town and the business community, and how I want to be a part of creating a welcoming community, she listened and then summed it up almost perfectly with these words:

Evolution has been a long time coming for this town. We aren’t perfect and we are very aware we could be better. With that, Los Gatos is focused on collective, long-term change. We know this is not possible overnight. We also know this cannot be as simple as one thing. We are not one thing. We are a diverse community of unique individuals who all believe and stand in different truths. We want to honor these truths, encourage each human/business to come to their own truth of how they believe they can grow and evolve to make this town and this world, a better place. Find their lane. This is how real change happens - when every single one of us decides to take action in our own way, in a way that is true for us. We believe this will bring about a vulnerable collective awareness wherein we can build relationships that start conversations, that ultimately will lead to community change.

So I ask you:
  • What is your truth?
  • What do you want to learn?
  • What do you care about?
  • Who do you want to be?
  • Who are we Los Gatos?

So here’s to the summer of 2020. It sure has been different. It sure has been eye-opening, but it may also be the start of something good. What are you going do?

Catherine Somers

Please wear your mask & wash your hands!

P.S. Look forward to more Chamber events, Candidate forums, candidate interviews, Carriage Rides (COVID regulations permitting), Digital Media workshops and as always updated business resources.
SASCC Talk with Assemblyman Evan Low
August 6, 2pm
Join SASSC (Saratoga Area Senior Coordinating Council) in their first virtual edition of SASCC Talks, featuring an exclusive conversation with Assemblymember Evan Low!

SASCC Talks connects local leaders with intrigued, inter-generational listeners to promote a more informed society. Each SASCC Talk is a chance for community members of all ages to hear inspiring, educational dialogue, and walk away with more knowledge about what's going on in your area.
Zoom link:

To make the discussion engaging and run smoothly, we're asking that you submit your questions for Assemblymember Low in advance.
Welcome New Score Consultant
Naval Mullan
Did you know that SCORE offers FREE business mentoring, low-cost or no-cost business training, and numerous templates and tools to help you start or grow a business?

Our newest mentor, Naval Mullan is excited to join the SCORE team. He can help you with the key financial aspects of your business - set up, monitor, and projected cash flows. He can also help you set up financial statements and select financial tools and models that will help you track the finances of your business over time. Naval's background is in upper management finance positions, primarily leading financial planning and analysis for large and small companies. 

Many thanks to Mike O'Connor, our hero and our friend, who has been our SCORE consultant for years. Enjoy retirement!

Click here to learn more about SCORE or make an appointment.
The ABC's of Medicare
August 25 at 11:30am
Join us for a webinar on the basics of Medicare. Whether you’re looking for a change or are new to Medicare, this presentation will provide you with the basics of Medicare and a helpful checklist of tips and information.

Presentation given by Jeff Carneghi of Anthem Blue Cross.

  • This event is free to attend but we invite you to make a donation upon registration. Your contribution will help us continue to provide these resources to you and the community.
Digital Marketing Workshops
While you are sheltering in place, now is a great time to learn about digital marketing. Sofya Elperin-Smirvov is an expert in small business marketing. Sofya offers digital marketing training, consulting and full marketing management. She is an expert in paid search ads, email marketing, social media, content creation, website optimization and all digital and traditional marketing channels.

Google Search Ads - Friday, August 7, 1-3pm
  • Do you want to be found on Google Search? Google Search Ads is part of SEM = Search Engine Marketing. You pay for keywords in order to be found in a Google Search Query.
  • Learn to set up a Google Ads account and do a basic overview of creating a campaign and ads.
  • Keyword strategy and phrase type.
  • Beginner level webinar for those who have never touched Google Ads or have limited knowledge.

Possible Public Safety Power Shutoff
The COVID-19 pandemic reminds us of the importance of being prepared for the unexpected. As we are in peak wildfire season, it's important to also be aware that a PG&E Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) may occur at any time.

Did you know that you may be at risk of a power shutoff even if you do not live in a wildfire high risk area? High temperatures, extreme dryness and record-high winds have created conditions in our state where any spark at the wrong time and place can lead to a major wildfire.

To better prepare for an PSPS event, PG&E will notify its customers and non-customers who have signed up to receive alerts two days before power is turned off. Make sure to have enough supplies that will last a whole week when you receive this alert. Click Here to learn more about the PSPS event and start preparing today.
State of the State with Cal Matters
Thursday, August 13 at noon
Are you interested in learning more about California state politics and the issues that face us as Californians? CalMatters is a nonprofit, nonpartisan newsroom committed to explaining California policy and politics.
Join Dave Lesher, founder and editor-in-chief of CalMatters, for his overview of the state's top issues and his report card on the administration's response to COVID-19. Dan Walters, the iconic journalist and opinion writer, will share his perspective and provide context to many of the issues we're facing today. You'll hear from Ricardo Cano, CalMatters K-12 education
reporter, who has been writing about the state's plans to educate California kids come fall, the digital divide and educational equity issues, new distance learning standards, and the many obstacles families and educators face. He will
share his reporting and analysis and what you can expect to see in the months ahead. 

What: State of the State with CalMatters
When: Thursday, August 13th, Noon
Where: Zoom [The link will be sent directly to guests as they RSVP]

Please RSVP to Andrea Santana at
Protect Los Gatos
Maybe you've noticed these green signs around town? The Chamber and the Town are embarking on a Protect Los Gatos campaign, reminding people to social distance and wear a mask. We've placed signs around town: on A-frames, in store windows and on pop-up patios. Please keep us all safe!

If you'd like a sign, stop by the Chamber office and pick one up.
Los Gatos Together 2020 Mask
Stop by our office for a fun Los Gatos Together 2020 mask. Thanks to Kristina Taroni of Number One Broadway for having them made! $14
Support the Chamber
With your support we will be able to keep our doors open and continue to advocate for our businesses and Los Gatos community.
With every donation of $50 or more, you will receive a Friends of the Chamber decal, pictured above. Cats come in orange, blue or green.
The Chamber of Commerce, just like every business, is experiencing financial impacts due to COVID-19. Our ability to generate revenue has been greatly diminished due to the protocols necessary to control this pandemic. Despite all of these challenges, we have made our resources, webinars, and public policy advocacy available to the general public during this challenging time. 

If you are interested in supporting our efforts to be a catalyst, convener and a champion for a stronger community, we would be grateful for your financial contribution of any size. We look forward to continuing to serve you all.
Member Events
Campo di Bocce
Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition/ Santa Clara Valley Water District
Jazz OFF the Plazz
Concerts Live Streamed from the from 6:00- 7:00 PM every Wednesday throughout the summer.

Live Stream links:

Wednesday, August 12 - SARA NIEMIETZ & SNUFFY WALDEN
Wednesday, August 26 - TIFFANY AUSTIN - LIVE FROM L.A.
Wednesday, September 2 - JOHN PROULX
Wednesday, September 9 - TONY LINDSAY W/ JANICE MAXIE REED & DESZON CLAIBORNE - Summer Streaming Series Finale!

Sponsored by:
El Camino Health, Lexus of Stevens Creek, John & Timi Sobrato Charitable Fund
2020 Census
Shape Your Future

Respond before the door knock! Beginning in August, census workers will start knocking on doors of all homes that have not responded yet. Complete your census now!
Be counted! Make sure Santa Clara County and California receives our fair share of federal funds.
Town of Los Gatos website
The Town of Los Gatos has compiled a very comprehensive page of Covid-19 messages and resources. It outlines how all the Town departments are functioning throughout this crisis. In addition, it has resources for businesses and individuals, as well as ways you can volunteer.
Coronavirus Update
For the latest updates, please visit Santa Clara County Public Health.
Resources For Individuals
For Business Resources go to the Chamber website
  1. The Order and Appendices, effective July 13
  2. The Health Officer Indicators
  3. Press Statement
Facebook Live Public Health Briefings The Public Health Department continues to provide Santa Clara County residents with informational updates each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 10:00 a.m. on its Facebook Page
Silicon Valley Bicycle Exchange - bikes for essential workers in need of transportation during shelter in place. The program accepts bikes that are ready-to-ride or need minor repairs and gives them to essential workers who need a bike but can’t afford one. Interested residents can sign up as a recipient, donor, or volunteer here. 
FAQs about the Local Health Officer Shelter in Place Order
  1. Shelter in Place FAQ-English
  2. Shelter in Place FAQ-Chinese
  3. Shelter in Place FAQ-Spanish
  4. Shelter in Place FAQ-Vietnamese
  5. Shelter in Place FAQ-Tagalog 
Any business, faith, nonprofit, labor or community leader with questions should contact