Kathy and her husband, Robert moved to the Divide in 2016 after spending the past 25 years visiting family and friends here in the Sierra foothills. It has been their dream to finally settle here and get involved with the local community.
Their six children and 10 grandchildren are frequent visitors from the Bay Area and love to spend time here as a family. She and her husband own First Choice Signs & Graphics. They have been in business for the past 15 years and want to share their experience, knowledge, and passion with the community.
During her business career, she has served as a Global Operations Director for a global technology company and took ultimate responsibility for marketing, pricing, contracting, implementation and ongoing support of the global services and technology offered by the company. She also worked as Vice President of new business development for an international publishing company. Prior to that she led a team of international business consultants for a large global franchise organization where she served as President of the International Franchise organization and owned her own franchise for several years.
Kathy has served on the Divide Chamber of Commerce for the past 6 years. She also serves on the board of directors for the Georgetown Divide Rotary Club and is a member of the El Dorado Chamber of Commerce as a Chamber Diplomat. She is also on the board of the Coloma-Lotus Business Council.
She has a Bachelor of Liberal Arts and a minor in Business. She believes in the power of networking and would like to be a contributing member of the Divide community to help businesses thrive and grow. She is proud to serve along with this talented group of volunteers!
Deb moved to The Divide in 2013 after spending numerous years in Southern California and the Bay Area.
During her business career she served in Manufacturing beginning in Engineering, then Operations and then finally went over to the “dark side” as Senior Sales Manager. After retiring from Manufacturing, being an entrepreneur appealed to her. She opened a retail shop in Roseville that featured a tasting room for premium Olive Oils and Balsamic Vinegars.
In this capacity, Deb became a member of three Chambers of Commerce and was an Ambassador for the Rocklin Chamber of Commerce. She was also a member of the Small Business Advisory Board for California Assemblyman Kevin Kiley.
Deb is most excited about giving back to the community where she lives and plays and is excited to network with her fellow neighbors and business owners.
Sol has lived on the Divide since 2001. She graduated from U.C. Davis with a degree in Sociology and founded Sol Nisbet Home Loans in 2020. She has a solid reputation in the home loan business and loves to help people achieve the “American Dream” of homeownership. Currently, she lives in Georgetown and is proud to have raised four kids with her husband Josh.
She has been recognized multiple times as a volunteer who has made significant contributions to the Divide community. In 2018, El Dorado County Board of Supervisor Michael Ranalli selected her to receive the first annual El Dorado County District Four Volunteer of the Year Award. Additionally, in 2019 she received the prestigious El Dorado County School Boards Association – Outstanding Community Member Award.
Her roots in the Chamber date back to 2007 when she and a group of four people revitalized the Divide Chamber of Commerce. Sol served as Chamber President from 2016 to 2017. During her tenure, she started the popular Christmas in Cool event and the Golden Sierra High School Internship program. Her passion for community and business is evident thru her participation in the current following organizations: El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce; Divide Chamber of Commerce; Divide Ready By 21; Mental Health on the Hill; Marshall Foundation for Community Health; Divide for the Kids; and founder of Christmas in Cool.
In her spare time, she loves to spend time with family, friends, read, camp, cook, play soccer, run/hike and dance. She is honored to call the Divide her home.
Thomas, a Divide native, studied Public Relations and Organizational Communications at CSU, Chico. Once graduated, McGrady went into the outdoor industry and this took him around the world. McGrady spent several years living in New Zealand and managing various different outdoor companies.
In October of 2016 he started his own business, California Expeditions. This company operates mountain biking tours, rafting tours, and beer and wine tasting tours. The company has a strong emphasis on philanthropy and getting children outside. McGrady is happy to be back home, and honored to be involved in such a caring and supportive community.
Paula has been a part of the Divide for over 30 years raising 5 kids and has 7 grandchildren. During the school years 3 were actively in sports almost year-round along with her then husband. She helped coached little league for over 8 years and assisted in all aspect’s both in baseball and basketball as well as thru the high school years. She worked with groups of parents on many fundraisers in the years. Because she was at the high school so much, she was often asked if she worked there, she truly loved every minute of it. Being part of something bigger than herself in the community sense was always something she loved. Paula worked full time in the manufacturing industry for 20 years before starting her own company when her place of business was heading in the wrong direction and closing their doors.
In 2004 this self-taught business owner with no college degree started her own distributing business in the high-tech diamond tool industry from home by reading a book “Small Time Operator” cover to cover following each step over the course of a few years. During that time 2 of her children Nicole (who is a successful service manager at Wells Fargo in Cool for 11 years) and Mark after college then got his real estate license selling in San Diego County for the last several years (with Big Block Realty). Paula is also very proud of her additional 3 children Brad in Texas a college professor, Krysten a clothing shop manager in southern California and Shane in law enforcement. Growth in her business forced her to seek commercial rental space on the divide where she lived.
A few years into starting her business she was asked to speak at a workshop in Auburn that taught night school classes to help other people who were thinking about starting their own business. Paula had supported her husband in his contractor business by teaching herself how to do payroll long hand, 1099, W2 and contractor license checking starting her own business came much easier and was done initially without a computer but not for long. She ran a successful business on the divide always employing 1-2 people over the course of 16-1/2 years before selling in November 2019 to one of her competitors who then hired her.
After the last child graduated from Goldens Sierra and went on to college, she knew at some point she’d find a way to give back to the community and get involved again. She had helped on several small projects with friends which meant the world to her. Life doesn’t slow down after kids grow up or in her case as she needs to be learning and feeling like she’s part of the special community like our divide. Paula had heard there might be a seat opening with the Divide Chamber of Commerce and immediately let them know she was very interested, and it really didn’t matter the task as long as she could be part of the success and love the volunteer board members of the Divide Chamber has created. She was elated when she got the news she was chosen to be the Secretary of the Divide Chamber board and looks forward to working with the amazing group
My husband and I moved to the Divide, along with our three small children, in 1989. We kept pretty busy in those early years devoting ourselves to our children and their education and activities, our extended families, and volunteering for various committees and organizations.
Some of the present and past organizations I have volunteered for, or have been a member of include; The Divide Chamber of Commerce, El Dorado Wine Grape Growers Association (EDWGGA), California Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG), Craft Wine Association, Coloma-Lotus Business Council, Northside PTC, Northside Music Boosters, and the Cool-Pilot Hill Advisory Committee, (CPHAC). It was also an honor and pleasure to serve as a Girl Scout co-leader on the divide for twelve years.
I currently own and operate a small wine tasting room in the downtown Cool business area where I sell estate wines made from our locally grown and farmed fruit. My late husband and I established our vineyard and wine brand in 2010 and sold our wines wholesale and online beginning in late 2014, until the opening of the tasting room in 2021.
I’m happy to be of service to the Divide Chamber alongside this amazing group of community volunteers!
Leah Ann has been living on the Divide since 1999 and has always been a big supporter of our community. She has enjoyed the last 19 years as co-owner of Sierra Benefit Solutions, a Health Insurance Agency, located in Pilot Hill, CA. Their agency prides themselves on the personalized customer service they offer their clients. She works on benefit programs that meet the needs of both the employer and employee for companies of all sizes and industries in various states. She also works with individuals to help them find the best medical, dental, vision, life, Medicare or Covered California plans to meet their needs. They differentiate themselves from other agencies by the personalized, tailored services they provide – at no cost to you.
When she’s not helping people through the insurance maze, she loves spending time with her family and friends. Her weekends consist of local and destination runs, hiking, wine tasting and culinary events. She loves to cook and eat which is why she runs – lol.
She has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management and is also a member of the El Dorado Chamber of Commerce. Her goal with the Divide Chamber of Commerce is to help local businesses grow and prosper and to support the community in any positive way that she can.
Darlene has 30 years of experience as a health insurance broker and has enjoyed the last 19 years as co-owner of Sierra Benefit Solutions, a Health Insurance Agency, located in Pilot Hill, CA. The agency prides themselves on designing and implementing ACA compliant benefit programs that meet the needs of both the employer and employee for companies of all sizes and industries in various states. The agency also works with individuals to help them find the best medical, dental, vision, life, Medicare or Covered California plans to meet their needs. The agency provides customized services all at no cost to you. She has a degree in Business Management and she continues to do educational training for her health insurance license. Darlene is also a member of the El Dorado Chamber of Commerce.
When she’s not helping people through the insurance maze or attending Chamber meetings and events, she loves spending time with her husband of over 25 years, Ed, and their two children Max and Zoe. Her time is spent between soccer, tennis, hiking, traveling and gathering with friends and family. She also enjoys the occasional 5k or 10k race (the "enjoy" part comes when the race is over!).