Atascadero, Calif. – March 13, 2023 – The inaugural Jr. CEO program, coordinated by the Atascadero Chamber of Commerce, will culminate with Jr. CEO Business Day on Saturday, April 1. The event, showcasing Jr. CEO participants selling their products, will occur next to La Plaza in downtown Atascadero from 11 A.M. to 2 P.M. The community is invited to attend and support the small businesses.

The program provides a unique educational opportunity for elementary and junior high students by offering five virtual workshops focused on entrepreneurial skills. Sessions include fundamentals for setting up your business, cost models, safety and food preparation, marketing and customer service, and savings and money management.

One Jr. CEO is 10-year-old Madeline Gonzales. “The favorite thing I have learned is the potential to actually turn a hobby into a business and make money. My business is making balloon animals and my business name is Pop805.”

“When I asked my daughter if she wanted to do this class, she said “absolutely” and was extremely excited,” said Valerie Gonzales, Madeline’s Mother and Cross Country Mortgage, Loan Advisor. “I was inspired to have my daughter take this class because having the model to start a business opens up endless opportunities now and in the future for her life.”

Josh Cross, Chamber President/CEO, led each virtual workshop. Participants received an interactive workbook for each session. “I can’t wait to see how these young entrepreneurs contribute their talents to our community. The Chamber is thrilled to invest in tomorrow’s leaders today.”

Gonzales believes that the Atascadero Chamber is offering a great opportunity for area youth. “I am proud of our community and the support it pours into the younger generation. I wish I had this class when I was a kid. I am even learning myself.”

The Junior CEO Program is sponsored by Better Business Bureau, Coast Hills Credit Union, Central Coast Moving Company, Eckerd Connects, and the San Luis Obispo County Office of Education.

About Us
The Atascadero Chamber of Commerce exists to be the Catalyst for business growth, the Convener for leaders and influencers, and the Champion for a stronger Atascadero community. Together, we #MoveAtascaderoForward.

CONTACT: Dawn Smith, Director of Communications
Atascadero Chamber of Commerce
303.968.7049 cell