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Ballston is long-known as home to the most scientists and technologists per capita - but the neighborhood’s exponential growth has made it a hotspot for a new demographic: dogs! At every park and street corner at any hour in Ballston, you’ll find a furry friend and their owner perusing the streets of our neighborhood. With more dogs and dog-friendl…
 
Ballston has always served as a hub of technology and innovation for the Washington metropolitan region. As technology becomes even more intertwined in our lives (we know Alexa is probably listening as we speak), unique opportunities and creative integrations constantly present new experiences in the world we live in. Dalia Goldgor is the General M…
 
Even with fun, food, and entertainment options abound - the heart and health of the Ballston neighborhood relies on vital services provided by our healthcare professionals. Our guest today is an expert on resilience, health, and what it means to grow a business in Ballston. Dr. Sara Varghai is a Doctor of Optometry and the owner of NOVA Optique + E…
 
As a true urban center, Ballston has everything: food, drinks, retail, exercise, events, experiences… all within a few square blocks. But businesses of all industries and sizes face significant challenges - both daily and under special circumstances. Tara Palacios is the Director of BizLaunch, Arlington’s Small Business and Entrepreneurial Assistan…
 
We live here, we work here, we play here - so it’s easy for us to see why Ballston, and Arlington as a whole, is such an attractive place to be. But what about those who aren’t as acutely aware of the treasure that is our home? Emily Cassell is the Director of the Arlington Convention and Visitor Service - better known as StayArlington. For over 15…
 
Christine Searle is the owner of Searle Business Solutions, and has spent more than three decades helping people and organizations navigate finances, taxes, and obstacles to achieving their business objectives. After 24 years at the Red Cross, Christine served as an Audit Director responsible for internal audits of finance, supply chain, and disast…
 
It’s the season of giving, and from our philanthropic businesses and community nonprofits, to our charitable partnerships and volunteer programs: Ballston is proudly one of the most engaged and caring neighborhoods in our region. Joining us for the holidays on BallstonConnect, we have two of our community’s most impactful organizations - and Ballst…
 
We've been sharing our appreciation for our most impactful businesses and highlighting our community leaders throughout November - and now we're in that time of year where you might be using your Mastercard a little more than usual. Mastercard’s mission is to connect and power an inclusive digital economy that benefits everyone by making transactio…
 
November is the month of giving thanks, and we are shining the light on the people, businesses, and parts of our community that make it so special. Every day and especially Veteran's Day, we’re thankful for the opportunity to celebrate our servicemen and women - and in this case, a veteran-owned business. Charles Kachadoorian is a US ARMY veteran a…
 
From Quincy Park to Welburn Square, Ballston is a surprisingly green urban environment. But how about taking some of that plant life inside? Joe Ressler is co-owner of REWILD, a plant boutique that has opened their second location just days ago at Ballston Quarter. How does a former poker player open a plant boutique? What’s the difference between …
 
Emma Violand-Sánchez has used her life experiences and acquired knowledge to change the lives of children in Virginia. She was Arlington’s first Latina teacher, Arlington County School Board’s first Latina member, and a staunch advocate for support and resources for the latino community in Arlington and beyond. In 2011, she founded the Dream Projec…
 
September 15th marks the beginning of National Hispanic Heritage Month, and the perfect opportunity to speak with Susana Marino, Chief Executive Officer of the Northern Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and one of our region’s most influential businesswomen. As CEO of the Northern Virginia Hispanic Chamber, Susana has educated and empowered hun…
 
Ballston is home to some of the most innovative, influential, and impactful organizations - not just in our region, but across the country. Each year we see more Ballston businesses recognized for their incredible growth and influence. Today, we’re thrilled to share one of Inc Magazine’s Top 500, recognizing the top-growing companies in the United …
 
Ballston is home to over 80 bars, restaurants, and eateries: which means a ton of great food options and varieties… and ALSO a ton of talent in the kitchen. On today’s podcast, we’re speaking with someone who can help us all get better in the kitchen. Maria Kopsidas is the creator and owner of Cookology, a recreational culinary school located in Ba…
 
Shane Pomajambo, owner of WHINO in Ballston Quarter, is a Former New Yorker and has been an active and transformative member of the Washington region’s art scene for the past 15 years. Now, with WHINO in Ballston, he’s combining his passion for art with his appreciation for entertainment around exceptional food and drink. How did his New York City …
 
Memphis Gold’s journey has lasted over half a century - spanning four full-length albums, nine international tours, and the covers of almost every leading blues magazine. You can find him at our first Cars & Coffee, 7/26/21. How did he first get his start - and how did he parlay it into such an impactful international career? What’s it like to shar…
 
VIDA Fitness is one of our region’s premiere health and fitness clubs, and has emerged as a staunch advocate of equality and a dedicated supporter of people in need. Their Ballston location opened in March of 2020, and was a local leader for innovative health, safety, and sanitization processes throughout the pandemic. Aaron Moore - the Director of…
 
May is National Inventor's Month, and we're celebrating the innovation and ingenuity of our neighborhood. Ballston is home of the internet, the barcode, and countless other everyday technologies. Today, we touch on one of our community's most exciting upcoming projects: the renovation of George Mason University's Arlington Campus. Dr. Liza Wilson D…
 
Ballston is in Bloom, and we're focused on how our community interacts with nature. It's not just our outdoor green spaces and our Farmer's Market - our neighborhood is home to one of our world's most impactful global environmental nonprofits: The Nature Conservancy. The Nature Conservancy has been in Ballston for over 20 years, and we spoke with s…
 
Ballston is in bloom, and we're shining a light on the amazing ways our urban neighborhood becomes one with nature. April means the return of the Ballston FRESHFARM Farmer's Market, and we've got Caitlin Tuttle of FRESHFARM with us to talk about all the incredible offerings we have this year. We're talking about Caitlin's journey to FRESHFARM conte…
 
To honor Women's History Month, we’re speaking with Dr. Karyn Ewart, Founder and Head of School at The Sycamore School, located right here in Ballston. Dr. Ewart is a licensed clinical psychologist who has worked in public and private schools for over 20 years. She believes in engaging students to be active members of the community to grow, develop…
 
In honor of International Women’s Day, we’re speaking with Jessica Miller - a Managing Director of the Tenant Advisory Group at Cushman & Wakefield, and the co-author of A Woman’s Guide to Successful Negotiating. We’re talking about her journey, challenges women still face in the workplace - specifically in the commercial real estate industry - and…
 
Romance may steal the limelight during Valentine's Day, but there are many kinds of love - and we LOVE our guest, Sarah Fraser. She's the host of The Sarah Fraser Show, a longtime friend and steward of Ballston, and one of our region’s most beloved radio and television personalities. What was it like to publicly share her weight-loss journey? How d…
 
Love is in the air this February in Ballston, but maybe you’ve found love in a different place: your local animal shelter or pet rescue organization. We speak with Sue Bell, Executive Director of Homeward Trails and Sam Wolbert, President and CEO of the Animal Welfare League of Arlington. What’s the inside scoop on their animal adoptions right now?…
 
Last year, we began 2020 speaking to a local leader with her finger on the pulse of Arlington's business community. At the time, we had no idea how much would change over the next 12 months. Having navigated so many obstacles as a community, we catch up with Kate Bates, President and CEO of the Arlington Chamber of Commerce on how Arlington united,…
 
With 2021 in full swing, we open the year with the founder of one of Ballston's largest and fastest-growing businesses. Don't believe us? Ask Forbes! We're kicking off Season 4 of BallstonConnect Podcast with Jere Simpson, President and CEO of KITEWIRE, who tells his story and how he created a company that's redefining mobile security. Jere joins u…
 
2020 has been unlike anything we'd imagined - but we're not leaving without holiday cheer and reliving some of our favorite moments. In our final podcast of the year, we speak with the man himself - Santa Claus - and revisit some of our best segments of 2020. How has COVID impacted the teams at the North Pole? What does Santa think of The Giving Tr…
 
Marymount University has been one of Ballston's most impactful and longest/standing institution. In this episode of Ballston Connect Tina Leone talks to Dr. Irma Becerra, President of Marymount University. We will learn the history of Marymount University in Ballston, how they pivoted to continue teaching students during the pandemic, and what an e…
 
The onset of COVID-19 has made outdoor dining the most popular way to eat at restaurants. This is great during the spring and summer, but what will happen as the temperature begins to drop? Many European nations have long enjoyed year-round dining, but now it is our turn to learn the secrets to making outdoor spaces comfortable, even as the snow st…
 
We know that each neighborhood in Arlington has a certain feel. There may be a particular look or brand tied to an area, and that is no accident. Items like banners, benches, and even trashcans can help create a feeling in a public space. This process is known as placemaking, and it is a multifaceted process of creating an identity for a location. …
 
In this episode, we are talking about hair. Most of us have it, but it became clear in the last year that few of us have any idea how to cut or care for it. We chat with Ajia Minnis, owner of Ballston's newest salon, Thrive Hair Bar. We learn what makes Thrive unique as a business specializing in natural styles and hair care, why education about ha…
 
The unemployment rates are up, there's a looming presidential election, and COVID conditions are still in full force. How does all this impact our own local real estate market? Tina Leone checks the state of the regional market with Jonathan Fox, Principal of The Fox Group with Compass in Arlington. We'll learn if the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted…
 
We're covering one of the most daunting aspects of adult life: financial planning. Tina Leone chats with Clark Miller, Financial Planner and President of Ascent Wealth Strategies Group. Clark helps us demystify the process of planning for your financial future with easy to follow advice on how to get started, and how to grow your investments. We al…
 
How does Arlington County attract businesses to the area? Tina Leone chats with Telly Tucker, the Director of Arlington Economic Development, to learn how they bring business and keep them in Arlington. We also find out how AED has pivoted to support the local economy during COVID-19, and what Telly sees for Arlington's future.…
 
We know how hard the pandemic has been on local businesses, but there are still a few brave souls actually opening their doors in the midst of COVID-19. Tina Leone chats with the heads of two brand new businesses to Ballston: Cullen Gilchrist and Richie Poe. Cullen is the CEO of Union Kitchen, and Richie is the General Manager of VIDA Fitness. They…
 
How have performers fared during the COVID-19 pandemic? What have they done while venues and performance centers have been closed? Tina Leone chats with Lucy Bowen McCauley and Helen Chamberlin of Bowen McCauley Dance Company to learn how performers and their organizations have adapted to the new circumstances, and what toll this year has had on th…
 
There is no doubt that COVID-19 has impacted nearly every industry, but none have been as greatly affected as local retail and salons. Tina Leone discusses re-opening retail in Ballston with Jane Abraham, co-owner of Scout & Molly's Boutique, and Eric Renfro, co-owner and operator of The Bearded Goat. Learn how local businesses had to pivot to keep…
 
Since COVID-19, the home office has become the main workplace for many employees. However, under Governor Northam's Forward Virginia plan, offices may begin to re-open. Tina Leone chats with Christine Miller-Langmack, Partner with space planning and design firm, Washington Workplace. Christine discusses how the office has changed in the last decade…
 
The Ballston BID knows the moths between April and November as market season, but 2020 has been unlike any other market season. Tina Leone, the CEO of the Ballston BID. chats with Nony Dutton, the Deputy Director of FreshFarm Markets, and Bill Mickley, the owner and operator of Mickley's Orchard and Farm Market. They discuss the impact COVID-19 has…
 
Spring is the perfect time to enjoy nature, but what do we do if it's better for us to stay close to home? Tina Leone of the Ballston BID is joined by Emily Landsman, the Communications Director of Arlington Friends of Urban Agriculture. We find out how we can bring a piece of nature close to home through balcony, community, or victory gardens, and…
 
While Ballston and the rest of Arlington begin to settle into a new normal under the stay-at-home order, there are some in the community who face greater hardship due to uncertain housing situations. Nationally there has been a scramble to serve those facing domestic violence or homelessness during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this episode of Ballston…
 
Though the world is currently facing a "new normal," local businesses have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. Tina Leone is joined by Kate Bates, the CEO of the Arlington Chamber of Commerce to learn the state of business in Ballston and Arlington, what resources are currently available to small businesses, and how the community can…
 
It's 2020. This means we're not only in a new decade, but we've also launched into a census year. We have all seen ads or reminders of this year's count, but why do we do it? Tina Leone talks with Elisa Ortiz, co-chair with Wanda Pierce of the Arlington Complete Count Committee. Elisa explains why the census is important to local communities, which…
 
Arlington is known generally as an affluent area, but our community is also very civic-minded. In this episode of BallstonConnect, Tina Leone chats with Lisa Fikes, the Executive Director of Volunteer Arlington. Find out what drives people to volunteer, the personal and professional benefits of volunteering your time and talents, and what opportuni…
 
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