Karen Kefauver on Facebook Karen Kefauver on Linkedin Karen Kefauver on Twitter Karen Kefauver on YouTube Karen Kefauver on Pinterest

Magazine Pages

Testimonials

The success of our grand opening was, in part, thanks to Karen's quick action in getting us a write-up in the Santa Cruz Sentinel. Her work and support made a difference.
— Rebecca Clinger, owner, The Crafter's Studio

"Thank you! You were awesome. Your recent Facebook seminar helped me formulate a vision for how to position my business within the social media space. And you left the crowd feeling good, which is a great skill to have."
Frank Horath
Registered Investment Advisor Representative, Clientfirst Financial

"Thank you, Karen, for the great telephone class on LinkedIn. I have joined at least five new groups, have expanded my connections, and re-established the LinkedIn toolbar in my Outlook, all thanks to your audio session. Good stuff I was able to put into practice immediately!"
Kennerly Clay
Executive Recruiter/Trainer and Business Development Director

"You have given me the basics and the confidence to charge forward and embrace Twitter and LinkedIn."
Sue Brooks, Santa Cruz, CA

"You are so informed and vibrant. Great energy! Thanks again for the Twitter lesson. Your handouts are a good way to get started, so no excuses for me."
Sloane Devoto
Realtor, Coldwell Banker

“Thank you again. Your social media talk was a real hit! Well done and much appreciated.”
Bill Tysseling
Executive Director, Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce

"There was a considerable amount of goodwill surrounding your presentation...You have a lot of positive energy and great ideas."
Bonnie Lipscomb
Director of Economic Development and Redevelopment for the City of Santa Cruz, CA

"Good presentation this morning at the Santa Cruz Chamber’s Caffeinated! It deserves at least a half-day workshop. I learned at least 20 new things this morning alone!"
Carol Skolnick
Clear Life Solutions

"It was a great talk, thanks! It was helpful to watch you manage your account on the big screen."
Traci Tompkins
ABC Sedans & Limousines

"Your talk was great. You had a tough job, especially because the people there ranged from newbies to experts."
Tom Honig
Armanasco Public Relations

"Congratulations! You brought us back up to a 5-star rating again for our marketing meet-up. And there were zero no-shows. I would like to get you on the schedule again."
Maggie Barr
Maggie Barr & Associates

“Fabulous class! I never know how much I don't know until I start to learn what I don't know. Thanks again for the great class!”
Carmen Richardson Rutlen
Author

“You have a clear, easy-going style of teaching that I found very effective. What a great talent you have!”
Carol Siegel
Employment Manager, Santa Cruz Seaside Company

“I attended Karen’s workshop on social media and would attend again whatever she presents. It was well worthwhile. She knows her subject and communicated it well.”
Donna Rankin Love
Author

“Thanks for the great class. I really got a lot out of it, and feel others did too. In fact, I went onto LinkedIn and began to set up my account!”
Paula Mahoney
Writer and Producer

“Your class last Saturday was amazingly helpful! In addition to having a lovely persona, you have so much useful information to impart. I am full of ideas as to how to proceed regarding how the get the word out about my present novel when the time comes.
Janice Wittenberg
Author

“Being a complete novice about the business of social media, I was anxious to take her class recently at Capitola Book Cafe. Passion to share what she knows would describe her; I highly recommend her classes!”
Jane Parks-McKay
Writer and Voice-Over Actor

“Just wanted to say thanks again for a very informative presentation this morning. It was very helpful, and I thought you did a great job of giving us a general overview of Twitter in a short period of time.”
Sonia Potts
Bookkeeper

“With so much to cover I appreciated how organized you were and how you stayed on track. Taking the approach of showing how the mechanical features of Twitter could be used for positioning and building our business was particularly helpful.”
Charlie Zimmerman
Publisher, The Wedding Companion


Connect With Karen

Karen Kefauver on Facebook Karen Kefauver on Linkedin Karen Kefauver on Twitter Karen Kefauver on YouTube Karen Kefauver on Pinterest

Feature Articles

Getting Serious

Velo News Cycling Journal Cover

The all-women's Velo Bella team tackles 2005 cross season with trademark style

October 2005

Velo News Cycling Journal

By Karen Kefauver

Velo Bella riders don't just want to win - they want to have fun and look good doing it. A huge all-women's cycling club headquartered in Santa Cruz, California, Velo Bella is ramping up for its biggest cyclo-cross season yet by expanding its elite racing squad and hosting round five of this year's Crank Brothers U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross.

Co-founded by team manager Sabine Dukes in 2001, Velo Bella includes female recreational riders and "racer chicks" who compete at all levels of road, mountain-bike and cyclo-cross events. Starting with a handful of riders in Monterey, California, the club has grown to nearly 200 women across the country and a handful of women internationally thanks to word of mouth, a stylish kit and a lively Web site.

During last year's cyclo-cross season, the six-woman elite squad of Christine Vardaros, Sarah Kerlin, Barbara Howe, Melodie Metzger, Erin Kassoy and Sami Fournier made a splash at UCI races as well as the national and world championships. The team demonstrated that pink-and-blue jerseys, silver face glitter and bright lipstick can go hand-in-hand with sloppy mud pits and serious competition. In addition to the team's impressive domestic presence last season, Kerlin and Howe finished 19th and 26th respectively at the world cyclo-cross championships in Germany last January.

"The Velo Bellas are going to be bigger and better than last year," predicted Vardaros, a 36-year-old veteran 'cross racer who was thwarted by health issues last season. "We will have eight powerhouse women working together."

New teammates Ann Fitzsimmons and Brenna Lopez-Otero are joining the six women who raced together last year. Fitzsimmons, 32, of Morgan Hill , California , raced expert downhill until she tired of repeated injuries. She started racing 'cross in 2002 and stepped up to the elite level in 2003, although a sprained ankle hampered her racing. She took last year off entirely to recover from health issues and injuries.

"This year my focus is "cross," said Fitzsimmons, who in March hired former U.S. cyclo-cross champion Clark Natwick to coach her "In preparation, Clark is having me do cross-country mountain-bike racing and road racing."

For Lopez-Otero of Palo Alto, a former expert class mountain biker turned criterium specialist, the spirit of Velo Bella was the big draw. "Sometimes I was taking it all too seriously," she admitted of her racing past. "The Bellas keep me smiling, even when we are working hard."

"We dye our hair pink and blue, we wear tassel bracelets, we have fuzzy dice hanging from our helmets and have pink flamingos dangling from the seatposts. We make it fun," said Vardaros.

But there is more to the team than wanting to cultivate a colorful look and have a great time. The team wants to take its game to the next level. "Team tactics are at the center of the Bellas' 'cross strategy this year It will make a big difference," said Vardaros. "We will work together for the common goal of getting a win for a Bella at each race. Our goal is to be at the level of team tactics similar to the Belgian men."

The 2005-06 U.S. women's field is relatively wide open with the recent departures of Gina Hall and Alison Dunlap following the exodus of other top women after the 2003-04 'cross season. However, Ann Knapp and Lyne Bessette remain threats. The Bellas will battle Knapp, Bessette and the rest of the women's elite field at various UCI events, the Crank Brothers Series and the nationals.

"We expect to pull out all the stops," said Vardaros, explaining that the Bellas will be riding Paul Sadoff's custom Rock Lobster bikes sporting blue and pink frames with fi'zi:k's pink and blue saddles and pink headsets from Chris King. "We will be spreading flair everywhere we go. We are a traveling party It's a hoot."

The party will be in Velo Bella territory when the Crank Brothers race takes place on November 19 in Watsonville, a 30-minute drive from downtown Santa Cruz. "The e-mails have been flying about that race," said Lopez-Otero. "We are collecting a ton of great prizes and it's going to be fabulous."

Velo Bella's goal for the season is having a bigger, better team with women willing to work hard for each other with a winning attitude, no matter the results.

Share this