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Cover Story
Cover Story
Avalara calculates the tax in real-time and integrates with client’s transaction system

Cover Story 2311 - Avalara realtime tax accounting systemsBainbridge Island’s Avalara was recently one of 16 companies in Washington state to be named as America’s fastest-growing by Inc. magazine. Avalara, which provides an online-based financial application for sales and use taxes, was No. 275 on the Inc. 500 list released this fall.

With $10.9 million in 2009 revenues, the company saw more than 1,100 percent growth in three years, according to Inc., which ranked Avalara No. 17 in the financial services industry on the list.

Earlier this summer, Avalara received another significant recognition. Microsoft named the company its Partner of the Year in the “software-plus services” category. Avalara was one of about five dozen companies recognized in different categories out of almost 3,000 entries from 110 countries. read more »

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Vote iQ helps voters make decisions based on political data

KPBJ.COM Cover Story 2010: Jim Tisch, President Vote iQJim Tisch says he is not a political junkie, but he felt the need for more reliable information when it came to voting decisions — something that went beyond signs, campaign information and the voters’ pamphlet. He wanted to know how candidates felt on certain issues, their voting record, how the community felt about them, and he wanted all that information at his fingertips, without having to scour dozens of sites.

So Tisch, a Gig Harbor resident of seven years who has nearly 20 years of leadership and management in the technology sector, had an idea: to create a platform that not only had that information handy, but also gives a chance to voters to engage with each other, and with the politicians. read more »

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Longtime HBA Exec VP Art Castle says it’s time for a change, as new challenges await

Cover Story 2309 - Longtime HBA Exec VP Art CastleTo say Art Castle enjoys conversation, would be an understatement. Anyone who knows him, knows he’s enthusiastic about any subject you might engage him in conversation about.

Castle stunned the local construction industry, as well as the political establishment earlier this year with the announcement that he would step down from his position as executive vice president of the Homebuilders Association of Kitsap County (HBA) — a post he has held since May of 1994 — at the end of this year.

While Castle is one of those people who has become an icon in construction circles both locally and statewide, perhaps his proudest achievement is the cooperative relationships he has forged between the builders and construction interests he represents, and the local environmental community. read more »

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Seen as exclusive, McCormick Woods may offer the least expensive option

Left to Right: Shawn Cucciardi, Jeff Mehlert, co-owners McCormick WoodsPlaying golf and getting married may not have much in common, but one Kitsap County business is perfect for both. McCormick Woods, in addition to being one of state’s premier public golf courses, offers a full-service restaurant called the Clubhouse at McCormick Woods (www.clubhousemw.com) that is also a busy event venue hosting everything from children’s birthdays and weddings to corporate retreats and business meetings.

With a dedicated event planning staff on hand, the Clubhouse not only provides space but also complete planning services — at no extra charge. The only thing that staff members don’t do is mail out invitations, so the inviting is left mostly to the clients, but even with this aspect the venue employees are to help by posting flyers around the facility and sending out email invites. read more »

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Harrison’s Heart & Vascular Center offers advanced technology, progressive services

Cover Story: Scott Bosch, CEO, President and David Tinker, MD, chief of cardiologyA new high-tech heart and vascular center will open in July at Harrison Medical Center, the culmination of a $14.6 million investment to expand and enhance existing services.

The 10,500-square-foot center, located on the Bremerton campus, will include a cardiac catheterization lab, an electrophysiology lab and 12 care beds, among other features.

The goal of the Heart & Vascular Center is to build the leading cardiovascular program in the state “with advanced technology, progressive new services and highly skilled caregivers,” according to Harrison officials. read more »

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Longtime agent takes the reins at area’s leading commercial real estate agency

Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal Cover June 2010 - Vic Ulsh, Designated Broker, VPVic Ulsh, a longtime Bradley Scott Inc. commercial real estate agent, became the agency’s designated broker in April. Tim Arnold, who founded the business with his wife, Becky, will continue to serve as president but has turned over day-to-day operations to Ulsh. The company is named for their children.

The commercial real estate agency, based in Bremerton, turned 30 years old last year. Ulsh started as an agent 29 years ago, launching his career after studying finance in college and looking for a job related to investments. Born and raised in Gig Harbor, Ulsh moved to Kitsap in May 1983. He has had his associate broker license since 1986.

Asked what he likes best about working at Bradley Scott, he said it’s the family feel of the small business. “Tim runs the business more like a family,” he said. “He gets people to work together on a team.” read more »

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Longtime Kitsap banker trades his suit for jeans as he starts new career in timber export.

Dave Westerlund, president & CEO; Roger Nance, Jr, vice president, managing director, Westerlund Log HandlersRoger Nance, Jr. had moved up the ranks in the banking industry for nearly two decades, working at various banks on the Olympic and Kitsap Peninsulas. When he realized his career in the corporate world was no longer satisfying, Nance decided to make a leap: He became a full-time entrepreneur instead.

“I thought, after 18 years, I was ready for life after banking. I ceased to enjoy it anymore,” Nance says. “I’ve done everything I could do in banking and I didn’t want to climb the corporate ladder.”

At his previous job, Nance met a fourth-generation logger by the name of Dave Westerlund, whose great-grandparents immigrated from Finland and homesteaded on Bainbridge Island. read more »

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National event attracts thousands of spectators, providing a boost to Kitsap’s economy

Roller Derby attracts thousands of fans to KitsapIf the unique and quirky sport of roller derby had any skeptics in Kitsap County, a recent national-caliber event has proved that this growing sport not only has a serious following — it’s serious business! The recent roller derby invitational, which attracted 19 teams from all over the country to the Kitsap County Fairgrounds and Pavilion, gave an estimated $725,000 boost to the local economy and brought an early start to the tourism season.

The three-day “Wild West Showdown,” hosted by Kitsap’s own Slaughter County Roller Vixens, brought so many raves from the participating teams and businesses, spectators and organizers that plans are in the works to roll it into an annual show. read more »

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The first microbrewery in Washington to can its own beer

Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal 2303: 7 Seas Brewing ExpandsMike Runion and Travis Guterson take their beer seriously. So seriously, that the two 20-somethings decided to partner up about three years ago to bring a microbrewery to Gig Harbor. 7 Seas Brewing (www.7seasbrewing.com), not yet a year old, has been doing so well, it’s already expanded its brewing capacity. And in another month, the two entrepreneurs will charter new territory: 7 Seas will become the first microbrewery in Washington state to can its beer.

It hasn’t been a completely smooth road. Last year, the brewery was devastated by a fire. Located in downtown Gig Harbor at the time, 7 Seas lost as much as 80 percent of its equipment to the blaze. They were a day away from their building inspection and about six weeks away from starting production. read more »

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