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Maura Hallam Sweley

When Erika and Scott Colson founded Autonomix as a home-based business in 1999, the company’s focus was on custom software and database development. The couple, each with an MBA and technology-related backgrounds — hers in database analysis and his in computer science — specifically looked to cultivate relationships with local businesses.

“The first four years we lived in the area, Scott was in the Navy,” said Erika Colson. “I commuted to Issaquah. We didn’t have a chance to get to know Kitsap County. We liked the idea of working with small businesses.” read more »


Market track data for Kitsap County in 2005 shows that 6,887 new mortgages were obtained, along with 16,058 re-financing mortgages, and that the real estate lending industry did a brisk business — to the tune of around $4.5 billion.

That was then. Now that interest rates are once again on the rise, can the county expect to see such volume in 2006?

“The volume has stayed pretty steady,” said Roger Nance of Countrywide Home Loans.

But changes in interest rates, which Val Hawryluk of Eagle Home Mortgage describes as “volatile,” are having an effect. read more »


Establishing a relationship with your banker is a good business practice. But how much information, really, do they need to know?

“As bankers we like to know everything,” said Mary Hoover, vice president and Silverdale branch manager for American Marine Bank. “If they’re looking for money we need full disclosure.”

“I think it’s important to share quite a bit,” said David Johnson, president and CEO of Westsound Bank. “Knowledge is the key to banking.” read more »


Barnes & Noble will be packing up and moving across the street to Kitsap Mall, hopefully to open in November Although Kitsap Mall officials won’t confirm any plans, it appears to be official that Barnes & Noble Booksellers will relocate its Silverdale store into the space soon to be left vacant by Gottschalks when the department store closes its doors this month. read more »


Creekside Center Buiding on 7th Avenue. More than 10 percent of city residents have signed a petition saying they believe the former U.S. read more »


In spring 2005 West Sound Academy freshman Peter Crabtree took a culinary arts class with some of his friends. One of the things that they learned to make was truffles. Crabtree and his friends enjoyed truffle making so much that they formed their own limited liability company, CBC Chocolates, to market what they made. They spent much of the summer selling their confections to friends and at local farmers markets.

“It was a real money-making opportunity,” said Crabtree. read more »


The empty site where the Oxford Suites Hotel is slated to be built in Silverdale amounts to little more than a hole in the ground at this point in time. In 2003 Bend, Oregon-based Baney Corporation, which owns and operates the Oxford Inn and Oxford Suites hotels, purchased land along Bayshore Drive, adjacent to the Dyes Inlet waterfront, with plans to build a new 104-bed hotel. A flurry of construction activity began on the lot in mid-2005, and then stalled out. read more »


Increasing interest in all things organic and natural and dissatisfaction with the state of medical care in this country have some people seeking alternatives to standard “western” medicine. Naturopathic medicine offers one such alternative. As defined by the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, naturopathic medicine “blends centuries-old natural, non-toxic therapies with current advances in the study of health and human systems.”

But what does that really mean? read more »


Supporters of Poulsbo’s Marine Science Center — which was forced to shut its doors in March 2005 — finally got some good news last month with the announcement that the state legislature included $250,000 in its 2006 budget to help with startup costs for a new center.

“Needless to say, we’re thrilled,” said Poulsbo Mayor Kathryn Quade. The funding came about through a combined effort of citizens and politicians alike. The city expects to receive the money in July. read more »

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