H-ORCUTT

Sep 19, 2013 7:36 PM by April Hansen, KSBY

Majority of businesses in Old Orcutt run by women

New businesses seem to be popping up all around the community of Old Orcutt and many of those shop owners have something in common. The Old Orcutt Merchants Association says a majority of the businesses in town have opened in the past two years and more than 60% of them are run and owned by women. "It's unbelievable to have so many businesses that are successfully owned by women," said Wendy Stellar, owner of Déjà vu Antiques. Stellar has lived in Orcutt for more than 20 years. She showed us around and introduced us to other women business owners that have set up shop. Deasee's Designs will be celebrating three years soon and owner Meghan Rimrodt says this community is the only place it made sense to open her boutique. "We knew this little area was growing and that it's a great community. We have a lot of friends and family that live here and knew this was turning into something special and we wanted to be a part of it," said Rimrodt. She says when her kids got older she needed a project. "People are finding other ways to make a living that aren't the 9 to 5," said Rimrodt. Restaurants, salons, lawyers and dentists are all here in this small community. Salon owner Sheila Gibilisco says she didn't know there were so many women business owners in town. "I love it. I think it's great. It makes me happy and makes me feel empowered," said Gibilisco. Stellar says the support the businesses get from this town and other shop owners is why so many stay. Numbers from the National Women's Business Council show there are 7.8 million women-owned businesses in the United States. Between 2002 and 2007 there was a 20% percent increase in women-run businesses. Women-owned businesses generate about $1.2 trillion a year.

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