1950s

Richard Steltzner

Richard Steltzner '59, MA '62 (Art)

Before he mastered the art of winemaking, Steltzner Vineyards proprietor Richard Steltzner was an artist of a different sort, studying under renowned ceramicist and professor Ruth Rippon while earning his master’s degree at Sac State. After several years plying his trade in San Francisco he was ready for a change. Read more»

1960s

Tom Weborg

Tom Weborg '64 (Business Administration)

Tom Weborg always knew he’d end up in the coffee business. But it’s safe to say he didn’t expect to lead a java juggernaut. The Java City co-founder got into the bean-roasting sector of the coffee market in the early days of the coffee craze and helped build a $45 million empire that ships beans all over the country, has hundreds of licensees and operates retail outlets and cafes in locations all over California. Read more»

Bill Campbell

Bill Campbell '67, MBA '70 (Business Administration-Accountancy)

Bill Campbell was in college when he discovered the sport that would shape the rest of his life. Tennis became the catalyst for his professional career as an athletic club owner and for his work as Sac State’s Director of Tennis. It also introduced him to his wife and business partner, Margie. Read more»

1970s

Marc Mondavi

Marc Mondavi (Business Administration-Marketing)

When your last name is Mondavi, wine runs in your veins. And it’s, Marc Mondavi’s job to get the rest of the country to feel the same way—particularly about the wines from his family’s Charles Krug Winery. Napa born and raised, Mondavi returned to the area to help run Krug—the oldest winery in the Napa Valley—after taking marketing classes at Sac State. Krug has been in the Peter Mondavi family for three generations. Read more»

Randy Paragary

Randy Paragary (Government)

Wrong food. Wrong location. Wrong clientele. Randy Paragary and Kurt Spataro have seen countless restaurants come and go in the Capital region. And, admittedly, many have been wayward eateries of their own. In a market that can statistically see up to seven out of 10 restaurants fail within the first year, Paragary has a knack for recognizing, and transforming, flailing concepts. Read more»

Trong Nguyen

Trong Nguyen '72 (Biological Sciences)

Training as a geneticist doesn’t teach you how to whip up a cappuccino or bake a croissant. So when Trong Nguyen decided to open his first La Bou café 25 years ago, he bought himself an espresso machine and spent his evenings practicing. Then he took a weekend job at a French bakery to pick up the boulanger’s art. Read more»

Joe D'Alessandro

Joe D'Alessandro '78 (Italian)

Tempting travelers to leave their hearts in San Francisco wasn’t always on Joe D’Alessandro’s job itinerary. No disrespect to Tony Bennett . . . D’Alessandro’s role as president and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association is his latest stop as tour guide to some of the top travel towns in the world. But it wasn’t a planned trek. Read more»

1980s

Karen Cucurullo

Karen Cucurullo '80 (Recreation & Park Administration)

Karen Cucurullo endured a week last summer that her classes at Sac State probably never prepared her for. It involved an earthquake, a hurricane, the opening of new national monument and the unexpected closing of an old one. Read more»

Janet Baker

Janet Baker, MBA '85 (Business Administration)

As director of the county’s regional parks department, Janet Baker has a long-standing history with one of Sac State’s closest neighbors. The American River Parkway, which runs parallel to the campus, is one of the parks in the system she oversees. Read more»

Faith Alchorn & Terry Selk

Faith Alchorn '87 (Home Economics) & Terry '86 (Communcation Studies), MS '88 (Recreation & Leisure) Selk

Of course Terry Selk proposed to his Sacramento State sweetheart Faith Alchorn-Selk in an airport. Since that proposal more than 23 years ago in Las Vegas, the pair has traveled to more than 30 destinations around the world as a function of Terry’s long career promoting travel to Sacramento and California. Read more»

Kurt Spataro

Kurt Spataro '88 (Music)

Wrong food. Wrong location. Wrong clientele. Randy Paragary and Kurt Spataro have seen countless restaurants come and go in the Capital region. And, admittedly, many have been wayward eateries of their own. In a market that can statistically see up to seven out of 10 restaurants fail within the first year, Paragary has a knack for recognizing, and transforming, flailing concepts. Read more»

2000s

Alan Wong

Alan Wong '00 (Philosophy)

With four restaurants in Beijing so popular they’re turning away customers, Sac State alumnus Alan Wong says his philosophy major has been a big part of his success. Wong also has three restaurants in Shanghai, and he’s poised to open two more upscale eateries in Beijing. Read more»

Janet Zeller

Janet Zeller '08 (Communication Studies)

Sac State alumna Janet Zeller is steadily growing a crop of city-based fresh food advocates by putting them in direct contact with the land where the food is grown. But she’s taking it one step further, making sure that healthy produce is also accessible to those in need. Read more»