Marsha Bailey (center) founder and CEO of Women’s Economic Ventures poses with staff members.
Paul Wellman

Since 1991, Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV) has served women and men in both Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Through the economic empowerment of women, WEV seeks to create a society where women and men can succeed in the business world. Aside from providing business training and consulting, WEV has loaned more than $4 million in support of more than 4,000 businesses in town. Next Thursday, April 28, some of those businesses will join WEV at the Cabrillo Pavilion Arts Center for the Santa Barbara County Client Business Expo, which is honoring WEV’s quarter-century of work.

“We hope the community will join us not only to celebrate WEV’s 25th anniversary but also to acknowledge and celebrate the contributions that small businesses make to our local culture and economy,” said WEV founder and CEO Marsha Bailey, who will speak at the free and open-to-the-public event. Below are a handful of businesses who have received a helping hand from WEV over the years:

Chocolats du CaliBressan: Jill-Marie & Jean-Michel Carré spend their days making delicious artisan chocolates that appeal to even the most esteemed chocolatiers, from champagne truffles to Earl Grey bonbons to blood orange soft caramels.

Santa Barbara Centre for Aerial Dance: Since Ninette Paloma founded the center in 2006, this studio space, which allows individuals to fly through the air while suspended by ribbons, now comprises 3,000 square feet.

Artemis Animal Clinic: After graduating from Tufts University’s Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine in 1991, Peggy Larned moved to sunny Santa Barbara and in 1995 founded this unique veterinary clinic, which offers holistic treatments for your pet, including nutritional supplements, Western herbals, and homeopathy.

Hampstead Village: Shoppers are transported to Britain upon entering Angela Torin’s quaint store, which carries fine British goods such as perfumes from Penhaligon’s of London and English lily-of-the-valley soaps. (A former highlight of La Arcada, Hampstead Village is now closed due to the owner’s retirement.)

Better Days Yoga: Founder Natalie Sampila has practiced all things yoga for 17 years and now shares her teachings with the Santa Barbara community. Better Days’ students learn that through breath and vinyasa flow, they can conquer all that life offers.


The S.B. County Client Business Expo takes place 5-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 28, at the Cabrillo Pavilion Arts Center (1118 E. Cabrillo Blvd.). Call (805) 965-6073 or visit


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