The Daily Transcript pays tribute to San Diego's newest entrepreneurs. Learn more about the Young Influentials program here.


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  • Both grand and humble receiverships handled

    Nicholas Wilson has been a director at his father’s Douglas Wilson Cos. receivership, development and brokerage firm for only about two years, but he has already worked on a large portfolio of properties. After graduating from the University of Colorado in Boulder, Wilson worked for the U.S., Canadian and Mideast accounts of Red Bull Energy Drink, and as a senior project manager for Mountain Sports International.

  • Neuroscientist starts own biotech company before 30th birthday

    Ashley Van Zeeland said it was a “perfect confluence of events” that led her, at age 29, to co-found La Jolla-based Cypher Genomics in 2011. The genome interpretation company was spun off from the Scripps Translational Science Institute, where Van Zeeland was conducting postdoctoral research into the genomics of psychological disorders under bioinformatics expert Nicholas Schork.

  • CEO of Dharma Express helps clients find a purpose in life

    Shivani Singh went to India to find her life’s purpose, and now brings that answer closer to home for others in search of “dharma.” Dharma is a Sanskrit word and Singh said it redefines life purpose, combining a career with family, relationships, health, creative and intellectual pursuits. Everything Singh does with in her life, 100 years from now will add up to her life purpose, she said.

  • Career focuses on marketing of buildings

    Tim J. Olson, a Jones Lang LaSalle (NYSE: JLL) vice president who specializes in suburban office properties, is upbeat about where the markets are headed. “We’re definitely in a better place,” Olson said. “Tech is leading the way with Qualcomm’s (Nasdaq: QCOM) continuing investment in wireless.”

  • Entrepreneur prefers building companies, thrives under pressure

    Lee Mills is a self-proclaimed startup junkie. “I’m attracted to startups because you build something and you wear many hats and you do many things. And they’re fast-paced,” Mills said. “There are a lot of moving parts, a lot of personalities and lots of pressure. I kind of thrive under pressure. It’s more fun to build something than to take over an existing business and farm what somebody else has already built.”

  • Businessman has a passion for politics

    Growing up in a two-party political household, Ruben “RJ” Hernandez learned the importance of considering different perspectives to solve problems. The first in his family to graduate from college (he has a bachelor of arts in sociology with an emphasis on business management from the University of California Riverside), Hernandez was deeply influenced by his grandfathers. A Korean War veteran, Grandfather Hernandez instilled in him a sense of honor, duty, respect and a strong work ethic. Grandfather Ortiz, an Ecuadorian immigrant, saw potential that Hernandez didn’t see in himself.

  • Construction exec left music to follow passion for contracting

    It was thought that Hollis Gentry IV, director of medical services for Pacific Building Group, would follow in the footsteps of his father who was a famous jazz musician in San Diego. He attended the San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts, but in high school he realized he didn’t have the love for music.

  • Civil litigation lawyer feels blessed doing good for others

    A flip of the coin led Renee Galente to her law career -- heads law school, tails MBA -- but she hasn’t left anything to chance since.

Archived Reports

Young Influentials - 2014

The Daily Transcript pays tribute to San Diego's newest entrepreneurs.

Young Influentials - 2012

The Daily Transcript pays tribute to San Diego's newest entrepreneurs.