Sunday, March 31, 2019

Lightspeed Systems gets a new investor, The New York Times examine the La Paloma power plant in McKittrick and remembering the old Redlick's store downtown

Monday, April 1, 2019

 Welcome to Bakersfield Observed. Our mission is to celebrate life in Kern County by focusing on newsmakers and events and the local characters who make this such a special to live. Send your tips to

 * ... LIGHTSPEED SYSTEMS: Big news for Rob and Judi McCarthy, founders of Lightspeed Systems, perhaps Bakersfield's most successful local technology company that moved to Austin a few years ago because of California's hostile business climate. The company has received a strategic  
growth investment from Madison Dearborn Partners LLC, a leading private equity firm based in Chicago. Rob McCarthy will remain on the board but will now become a minority investor, ending an incredible run as head of a company that specializes in educational software. Madison Dearborn said the existing management team will remain in place, and terms of the deal were not disclosed. Before leaving for Texas, Judi McCarthy was a philanthropist and one of the founders of the Women's and Girl's Fund of the Kern Community Foundation, which she once ran. (Facebook photo of Rob and Judi McCarthy) 

 * ... SPOTTED ON TWITTER: "Sometimes you might feel there is no one there for you. But that's not true. Laundry will always be there for you."

 * ... LA PALOMA: The La Paloma power plant near McKittrick was the subject of a lengthy Sunday  Business story in the New York Times, focusing on the ties between the owner, wealthy Texas investor Daniel Andrew Beal, and President Trump. Beal purchased the power plant out of bankruptcy and has filed a complaint with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission arguing that California's current rules and use of renewable power are killing existing plants. This is a politically charged effort that the state and environmentalists vehemently oppose, but the regulatory commission has shown recent sympathy to the fossil fuel industry. Keep an eye on this one.

 * ... PAINTED LADIES: Now that we are seeing the Painted Ladies butterflies around town in their annual migration up from Mexico, I thought I would share an old wive's tale from by friend Gene Bonas. Said Gene: "I understand that, when a butterfly lands on you, it is a sign of good luck coming your way. It's an old wives' tale told to me by a girl I once dated. Nothing came of our association, so I guess that was my luck!"

 * ... MAP PERSPECTIVE: Feast your eyes on this map and let it all sink in.

 * ... MEMORIES: Old Bakersfield back in the day, then and now. Thanks to the Facebook page Kern County of Old.

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