Representatives from International-focused Business Associations Convene for OC World Trade Week Reception

Monday, April 10, 2017

Main News Photo

Several representatives from international-focused associations that are sponsors or partners for the 2017 Orange County World Trade Week Breakfast & Forum (OCWTW), convened for a special reception on March 14 at Andrei’s Conscious Cuisine in Irvine.

The purpose of the reception was for these individuals to connect and discuss pertinent details leading up to OCWTW, Orange County’s premiere international trade event, to be held Thursday, May 18, at the Irvine Marriott, 18000 Von Karman Ave.

In attendance were representatives from organizations including the City of Garden Grove, District Export Council of Southern California, Hong Kong Association of Southern California, OC Iranian American Chamber of Commerce, OC Small Business Development Center, Orange County Center for International Trade Development, U.S. Commercial Service - Export Assistance Center, Port of Los Angeles, SCORE Orange County, Vietnamese American Chamber of Commerce, and members of the Greater Irvine Chamber OCWTW Task Force.

In its third year, this preeminent event has continued to grow in response to Irvine and Orange County’s vital role in the California, U.S., and global economies, and is expected to draw more than 400 attendees from through the region and the world.

The OCWTW brings together experienced speakers with key leaders in state and federal trade organizations and an extraordinary coalition of International-American Chambers and business associations, like the Greater Irvine Chamber, all who are working to help their businesses expand their markets and grow their businesses by exporting.

“It’s a great event to network, get to know each other, and get educated and hear the export success stories which is what Irvine is all about, all these successful companies connecting with one another and being involved,” said WTW Task Force Leader, Rima Nashashibi, of Nashashibi International Consultants, LLC.

This year’s keynote speaker for OCWTW will be Barry Draskovich, group vice president, program and contract management for Parker Aerospace since 2010.  An expert in the challenges of doing business globally, Draskovich will share his perspective on todays’ trade environment and what it takes to successfully export in today’s world economy as well as his practical experiences opening new markets and sustaining contracts and relationships.

Joining Draskovich for the program is Jim Mayfield, director of the Orange County U. S. Commercial Service, Department of Commerce, who will present an informative and timely OC trade overview and forecast. One of the most popular program segments, “Export Success Stories,” will feature Robb Dorf, founder & CEO of PureFit and Sharla Marocchi, export manager for Grandma Lucy’s pet food. Marv Sepe, COO of CTC Global and vice chair District Export Council, and Rima Nashashibi, of Nashashibi International Consultants will serve as program moderators.

An Exporter of the Year award will be presented to an area company that has grown its business by successfully exporting. Nominations for this award are generated by trade organizations and partner chambers. Two John Colvin Memorial Scholarships are also presented to students who submitted applications from local high schools and colleges. Funds for the John Colvin Memorial Scholarships are generated from net proceeds of this event.

The event begins at 7 a.m. encouraging attendees to meet with trade organizations and International Chambers at the Trade EXPO, held concurrently with the OCWTW program in the Irvine Marriott ballroom. The program commences at 8 a.m.

Tickets are $65.00 for non-members, and $60.00 for members of any partner organization.

Tables and tickets are available at

Photo Caption: Diana Le and Pepper Russell, Greater Irvine Chamber; Catherine Nguyen, Vietnamese American Chamber of Commerce; Dave Wilde, Orange County SCORE; Dennis Lee, Hong Kong Association of Southern California; Linda DiMario, vice president of Economic Development & Tourism, Greater Irvine Chamber, who heads OCWTW; Norman Arikawa, Port of Los Angeles; Co-Chairs of Greater Irvine Chamber International Development Committee Rima Nashashibi, WTW Task Force Leader, and Marv Sepe, District Export Council; Leila Mozaffari, OC Small Business Development Center; Monica Covarrubias, City of Garden Grove; Alejandra Landa, Orange County Center of International Trade Development.

Champion Sponsor: UPS, Advocate Sponsors Edwards Lifesciences, HSBC.
Supporter Sponsors: City of Garden Grove, Customs Now, District Export Council, India Global Advisors, IRA Capital.
Port Sponsor: Port of Los Angeles, Trade Connect.
Partner Organizations: British American Business Council of OC; California Center for International Trade; California Manufacturing Technology Consulting; ExIm Bank; Hong Kong Association of Southern California; MAPLE Business Council – Canada; Mercatura Global; Nashashibi International Consultants, LLC ; OC Iranian American Chamber of Commerce; Orange County Association of Realtors; Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Orange County Small Business Development Center; Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce; SCORE Orange County; Small Business Administration; Small Business Development Center; So Cal Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals; U.S. Commercial Service, Export Assistance; United Nations Association of Orange County; Vietnamese American Chamber of Commerce; WATCH – U.S. Western American Turkish Chamber of Commerce; Wells Fargo; Women in Trade OC; World Affairs Council of OC.

Category: Chamber News