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Biz News: Irvine trash driver gets a national award

Jesus Santos, an Irvine driver for Waste Management of Orange County, was named Large Residential Driver of the Year by the National Waste and Recycling Association.
(Courtesy Waste Management)

Jesus Santos, a longtime driver in Irvine for Waste Management of Orange County, has been named this year’s Large Residential Driver of the Year by the National Waste and Recycling Association. “Large” refers to the size of the company he works for.

Santos, a 27-year veteran of the company, was recognized for his ability to maintain positive relationships with families on his route while remaining accident-free since 2002, Waste Management said.

“We could not be more proud of Jesus and the superior customer-service skills he brings to work with him daily,” Tom Koutroulis, district manager for Waste Management of Orange County, said in a statement. “He is an extremely hard-working man who loves what he does, and this award reveals just how much the community appreciates his efforts.”

Santos was chosen from among more than 1,000 nominations for Driver of the Year from across the nation, including 297 from Waste Management. He was one of 10 winners of Driver of the Year awards at the WasteExpo held June 1 to 4 in Las Vegas.


Anna’s Linens reportedly to file for bankruptcy

Costa Mesa based home-decor retailer Anna’s Linens is preparing to file for bankruptcy protection and has hired restructuring advisors, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

The company will select a lead bidder to buy its stores in an auction that would be supervised by a bankruptcy court, the newspaper said.

Company representatives declined to comment Thursday.


In 1993, Anna’s Linens filed for bankruptcy protection amid declining retail sales and closed more than half of the 52 stores it had at the time.

The company, founded in 1987, now has more than 300 stores nationwide, according to its website. It employs about 3,200 workers.

Newport wellness center scheduled to open in spring

A new wellness center planned for Newport Beach would combine a fitness facility, classes and a medical clinic at 600 Newport Center Drive, across from Fashion Island.

The 17,000-square-foot center, planned to open next spring, is slated to have a public fitness center, another for customers of the Irvine Co.'s Newport Center offices and a public clinic offering same-day primary care visits, vaccinations, prescriptions and weight-loss, nutrition and skin-care programs.

The wellness center will be managed by St. Joseph Hoag Health as an extension of a similar center that opened last year at The Village at Irvine Spectrum Center, an apartment community owned by the Irvine Co.

La Cave restaurant to start monthly Sunday service

La Cave, a longtime steak and seafood establishment at 1695 Irvine Ave. in Costa Mesa, is currently closed on Sundays but plans to offer monthly Sunday service starting June 28.


Customers will be able to visit from 5:30 to 9 p.m. the last Sunday of every month for dinner and live music by singer-songwriter Matt Commerce, whose style the restaurant describes as “acoustic folk rock with the laid-back, surfy vibe of Southern California.”

Local home decor firm opens store in Costa Mesa

Haskell, a Costa Mesa-based home decor design firm with an emphasis on outdoor products, has opened a retail space in Costa Mesa in a rear-lot section of 445 E. 17th St., near the corner of Irvine Avenue.

The company, launched five years ago as an online retailer, targets residential, hospitality, architectural and ecologically sensitive clients.

“We wanted our line to be more accessible to local consumers,” Andrew Stoneman, Haskell vice president of business development, said in a statement.

“Orange County’s, and in particular Costa Mesa’s, tastes are maturing through a dynamic period of design development in all things retail, residential, restaurant and entertainment. The inherent eclectic character of this city has been the fuel pushing it to become a destination in its own right. We want our first foray into open-door retail to contribute to that end.”

Guild Mortgage opens office in Irvine

Guild Mortgage has opened a branch at 16259 Laguna Canyon Road in Irvine.


Clark Aliano, who has more than 27 years’ experience in the mortgage industry, will manage the new branch. Before joining Guild, he worked for Wells Fargo as a private mortgage banker in Irvine.

The branch is Guild Mortgage’s fourth in Orange County.

Costa Mesa law firm partner to lead statewide group

Robert Marticello, a partner at Smiley Wang-Ekvall, a Costa Mesa-based law firm that specializes in insolvency, real estate transactions and business litigation, has been installed as president of the California Bankruptcy Forum for 2015-16. The forum is an organization of professionals in insolvency law.

Irvine firm buys Maryland medical building

Irvine-based American Health Care Investors has bought a medical building in Glen Burnie, Md., for $18.6 million.

The sale was announced Monday by Baltimore-based Colliers International, which brokered the sale on behalf of the building’s former owner, Arundel Ventures.

The six-story, 75,718-square-foot building is near the University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center.

—From staff reports