Carlos E. Figari became the Director on July 1st 2016 of the newly created Veterans Business Outreach Center serving eight Southern California Counties and hosted by MiraCosta Community College District in Carlsbad CA.
Prior to his new appointment, Carlos was the director at the Imperial Valley Small Business Development Center in El Centro CA. Upon his arrival In November 2011, Carlos created a team that in a short time, established working relationships with stakeholders, business partners, local financial institutions, and other resource partners to ensure that clients receive the best support available in starting and growing their small business enterprises
Carlos has more than 30 years of experience as a business owner and professor of entrepreneurship. His experiences in the business world and involvement in teaching enabled him to develop the curriculum for an entrepreneurship program that has produced tremendous results in helping business owners take their business to the next level.
Carlos was recognized as the recipient of the 2013 US Small Business Administration’s San Diego District Office Anthony Vigil Advocacy Award for excellence in small business advocacy and extraordinary assistance in the creation, growth, and success of small businesses in Imperial County.
In 2014, as the recipient of the America’s Small Business Development Centers State Star Award in recognition of his exemplary performance and significant contributions to the regional SBDC program and commitment to the small business community.
In 2014, as the recipient of the US Small Business Administration’s San Diego District Office Special Achievement Award for outstanding work in supporting the small business community.
In 2015, as the recipient of the US Small Business Administration’s San Diego District Office Director’s Award for SBA Mission Support for his leadership abilities and efforts that have improved the performance of the Imperial Valley Small Business Development Center in providing support to entrepreneurs and small business owners.
Carlos is a strong supporter of community service and has donated thousands of hours through his involvement with Rotary International and other service organizations. He and his wife Kathryn believe in the power of life-long learning and have celebrated the success of their children Barbara, an employment law attorney and Michael, a graduate of the University of Southern California Film School.
As a native Argentinian, Carlos is passionate about futbol (soccer) and his beloved Argentinian team, Boca Juniors. He is a big fan of NASCAR and the Green Bay Packers. Carlos enjoys spending quality time with his family, traveling and hiking the great outdoors.
With more than 15 years of experience in retail banking branch management, and as a small business owner himself, Amit has personal experience with all aspects of private sector business start-ups. His professional career has prepared him for many of the challenges which face all business owners and his diverse background makes him a valuable asset to the Veteran’s Business Outreach Center. As a graduate from Torrey Pines High School in Del Mar, CA he partnered with Bank of America where he learned the fundamentals of the banking process including the rules and regulations associated with personal finance. While pursuing his Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University he was selected by Wells Fargo of Carlsbad where he was successfully mentored in the ways of executive level client relations and was quickly promoted to the teller-manager level. Later recruited by Citibank in Solana Beach, he assisted in establishing a new bank branch as a take-over location and perfected his skills in creating and maintaining relationships with high net wealth individuals.
His area of study at San Diego State University taught him the inner-dynamics of local, state, and federal government relations and during his tenure there, he maintained an internship with the Social Sciences Research Laboratory. After graduating from SDSU with a major in Public Administration and a minor in Information Systems, he acquired experience as a residential real estate loan originator and processor. Amit was then hired by US Bank in the affluent area of Carmel Valley, CA as an assistant bank branch manager. His client portfolio was largely comprised of multi-millionaires and billionaires whom entrusted him with monitoring their personal financial affairs on a daily basis. Recognized for his ability to create and develop high net wealth relationships, he was promoted to US Bank’s San Diego Main Office in downtown San Diego, CA. In addition to managing a diverse team of loan officers, operations supervisors, bankers, and tellers, he also provided hands on assistance to clients with escalated issues and service needs. Additionally, he coordinated regular on-going discussions between borrowers, underwriters, and city officials to fulfill his client’s financial goals while simultaneously protecting the bank’s growing assets. As the Sales and Service manager for the US Bank San Diego Main Office, his team achieved the coveted Pinnacle achievement award during each fiscal year quarter under his leadership, however, his most valuable aspect of working with each unique company was the personal relationships and conflict resolutions which were created.
Amit left the banking industry to pursue his dream of becoming a small business owner in 2011 and has now spent more than five years as a small business owner/franchisee with Subway restaurants of El Cajon, CA. Although an entirely different industry from his previous background, he quickly adapted the skills acquired from his years in banking and applied them to develop his team inside the quick serve restaurant field where he successfully led four of his team members to become certified store managers. During a heavily promoted, customer appreciation day event in 013, his team set record sales per unit volume during every hour of the day and earned him the distinguished honor of achieving a greater single day sales increase than any location in the entire city!
As an East Indian-American, he was born in London, England and has spent significant time in his life travelling the world inclusive of places such as Kenya, Hong-Kong, Australia, Egypt, Europe, Canada, and Brazil. He is a passionate student of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for the past seventeen years and even journeyed to Rio De Janeiro in 2005 for the development of his understanding of this martial art. His adventures in travel span across the diverse country of India including specific places such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Calcutta, Goa, Bangalore, Kashmir, Vashnu-Devi, Pune, Jaipoor, Faridabad, and Gurgaon. Amit Shaunak joined Veterans Business Outreach Center upon its opening July1 st , 2016. Together with the director of the department, Carlos E. Figari, they are committed to ensuring that veterans achieve their goals and receive the best support available in starting and growing their small business enterprises.
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