San Antonio Creatives: A Diaz & Diaz special photo project for The Rivard Report
This project highlights people in San Antonio who are creatively following their passion, and making the city better in the process. Big thanks to The Rivard Report for asking us to do a photo project, and to each of the participants below. They’ve inspired us to push ourselves further for ourselves and our community. Read more about each of them below.
Lorenzo Gomez, Executive Director, 80/20 Foundation and founder of eSamaritan
As Executive Director of the 80/20 Foundation, which he established with serial-entrepreneur Graham Weston, Lorenzo aims to make San Antonio the Cloud Computing Capital of the World by creating an environment in which techies and entrepreneurs thrive. Various civic and philanthropic partnerships are focused on three main areas to achieve this goal: revitalizing downtown, equipping young people for the emerging technology-driven jobs of tomorrow, and establishing San Antonio as an entrepreneurial destination that is attracting new talent from around the world. eSamaritan is Lorenzo’s technology blog that bridges the gap between nonprofits and technology solutions. Drawing on his Rackspace and Geekdom network, eSamaritan regularly has guest bloggers that help the philanthropic world take advantage of cost saving online tools.
In 2008, Magaly left her producer position at Bromley Communications to start her own company, Sweb Development, a web/mobile/social app development firm. They built a name for themselves in the news for creating SwebApps, an easy-to-use smart phone app builder that has revolutionized app development, putting it in reach of any one who can click a mouse. SA Food Truck Finder was created by Magaly and her team one Saturday, and is used by foodies across the city to track down their favorite mobile restaurants. Her SA2020.org app links volunteers with the organizations that need them. Volunteers choose their interests, and then select from opportunities that match those interests. Magaly and her team are leaders in the area of smart phone app development, and they’re using those skills to enrich life in San Antonio.
Peter French, “New Urbanism” Developer, Photographer, Social Entrepreneur
Peter is Director of Operations for Plum Creek Development, a 2,200 acre urban master-planned community just south of Austin. Through LoomisBurton, his real estate development and consulting company, he is looking for opportunites to do the same in San Antonio, in smaller parcels that would fit into existing neighborhoods. Peter’s social entrepreneurship project is actively looking at ways to bring more young creatives to San Antonio, via a cloud computing incubator that would provide multi-nationals a place to get their start-up off the ground in SA. He is also making a name for himself in the photography world, with his first exhibition opening at this month’s Fotoseptiembre. We look forward to reading more about Peter’s future urban developments in San Antonio.
Action San Antonio: Founded by Molly Cox, Colleen McGinley Pence, and Fran Kenneley Stephenson
The action-packed ladies of Action San Antonio help non-profits learn how to utilize social media tools for social good. Through their camps and workshops, non-profits from around the area learn from leading names in the social media community. Action SA is comprised of Fran Kenneley Stephenson, Colleen McGinley Pence, and Molly Cox. The former Director of Corporate Communications at Rackspace and Sea World, Fran left to start her own communications company Step In Communications. In 2008, Colleen started her company, Social Media Mentoring, after years in marketing and public relations for the San Antonio Symphony, Marmon Mok, and ASNA. She also runs San Antonio Mom Blogs. Molly helps non-profits through her company The Molly Cox Non-Profit Fancy Pants, and her personal blog Alligators & Things. All three power houses joined together to help non-profits learn how to expand their reach via social media.
Tim McDiarmid, aka Tim The Girl
Tim McDiarmid grew up near Vancouver Canada watching her mom create amazing meals out of their own garden, continued this education of all things delicious in NYC for 17 years, and is now gracing San Antonio with her culinary genius. Her creative talents are spread over several areas of expertise, including custom healthy catering for private parties, event & interior design, and the Special Projects Social, a pop-up social event that she curates with Peter Zubiate. Her skill for creating an experience, whether edible or visual, is undeniable.
Rick Fisher, Fisher Creative
Using his experience at advertising agencies and magazines, Rick Fisher started his own creative agency, Fisher Creative. They do work for Culinaria, SA Magazine, Local Community News, among others. A transplant from Philly, he is also in the process of creating a specialty design publication featuring the best creative talent right here in his adopted home town of San Antonio.
Mary Elizabeth Cantu, Spare Parts
Mary Elizabeth Cantu saw a lack of art supplies, a pile of recylcing, and turned those negatives into a genius group. Spare Parts was created in reaction to state budget cuts on arts education, by using “trash” to create art. They inspire & support K-12 schools through creative re-use of recycling materials to create new works of art, solving resource problems for many under-funded art teachers who often spend their own salary on their classroom needs. Mary and her team help to collect, re-package and distribute art project kits using the recycling. How creative is that?
Blanquita Sullivan, Bonjour Biqui
When local fashion designer Blanquita Sullivan isn’t working as the creative director at the local Anthropologie, she’s creating her own masterpieces for her line Bonjour Biqui. The handmade, reversible dresses have a vintage yet modern feel, with attention to detail. Blanquita worked for Betsey Johnson in New York, before returning to her roots in San Antonio and striking out on her own. She’s making a name for fashion in San Antonio, and creating local jobs (the dresses are handmade locally). With the buzz surrounding her line, there’s no doubt this SA native will be very busy keeping up with orders.
David Garcia, Statue of Design
David is not your mama’s florist. With a talent for creative use of objects and color, his designs have made Statue of Design a favorite of high-end weddings and events. After working in Chicago and Florida for other floral designers, David decided to return to San Antonio to do his own thing and has been in high demand ever since. He is also active in local fundraisers and events such as Fiesta Ccornyation.
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