Movers and Shakers

Movers and Shakers on the Peninsula

Illustrations by Olivia Wise

High achievers on our radar this month, from Bay Area heavyweights to the next generation of power players

Yoshihiro and Mitsuo Sakaguchi

The father-son restaurateurs bring their long-standing ramen reign to San Mateo, opening the first Taishoken restaurant outside of multiple legendary locations across Japan. It’s a new country, but the Taishoken traditions won’t change at 47 East Fourth Avenue. In true Japanese style, the family business will keep fierce attention on detail and flavor, sticking with the toothsome homemade noodles and tsukemen recipes that have proved successful since Taishoken opened in Tokyo nearly 60 years ago. But in true California style, their ingredients will come from a hodgepodge of places: Staples like soy sauce will be sourced from Japan, naturally, and surprise ingredients like chili peppers will come from Mexico. Opening a restaurant in the Bay Area has been a longtime dream for Yoshihiro and Mitsuo, who both found kinship with the region after traveling abroad as students.

Kalyn Josephson

Maybe we’re biased, but anyone who can sit down and write literally anything should get a pat on the back. But an entire book? That deserves a parade of some kind. Bay Area-based author Josephson’s debut novel, The Storm Crow, to be released July 9 through Sourcebooks Fire, is the stuff of YA fantasy dreams. The Storm Crow pulls readers into the imagined world of Rhodaire for an enchanting story of betrayal and vengeance as told through the eyes of its heroine, Thia. Escapists and genre enthusiasts alike will surely revel in its action-packed plot line. The first-time author and Santa Clara University graduate celebrates with a launch event at Kepler’s Books in Menlo Park on July 13, where she’ll discuss her new book with Timekeeper author Tara Sim.

Nicole Lacob

Last month, footage went viral of Beyoncé serving major side-eye to a chic woman who leaned over her to speak to Jay-Zat a Warriors championship game. The first thing we thought was how lucky the said mystery woman, aka the Warriors owner’s wife, Nicole Lacob (whom we identified immediately, unlike Twitter troublemakers outside the Bay), was to have (literally) brushed shoulders with Beyoncé. Suddenly, we had a long list of questions for Nicole: What did Bey smell like? What color was her aura? Did you suddenly feel safe and warm in her presence? For days, Lacob’s name was blasted everywhere from TMZ to Harper’s Bazaar after the angry Beyhive swarm mobbed the poor woman, reportedly reducing her to tears. (For the record, we don’t think cyberbullying is ever OK, and word on the street is neither does Queen Bey.) Nicole, despite what might have been unwelcome attention, take comfort in the fact that many a person’s dream is to either be memed or to meet Beyoncé — you managed to do both in one sitting, courtside at that.

Frank Bien

Looker Data Sciences Inc., like the rest of human consciousness, is being uploaded to the cloud. It’s been announced that Google has entered into an agreement to acquire the innovative, analytics-focused data platform, spearheaded by Bien, its CEO. The deal is groundbreaking, and not only because of the impact it will have on the tech industry. (As Bien says, “In tech, most progress is incremental. But occasionally an existing market is upended and an entirely new approach causes a complete transformation of how humans can solve a problem.”) It also happens to be one of the largest acquisitions in Google’s history, at $2.6 billion. According to Thomas Kurian, who runs Google Cloud, “The addition of Looker to Google Cloud will help us offer customers a more complete analytics solution, from ingesting data to visualizing results and integrating data and insights into their daily workflows.” Super! Or sinister?

Tierna Davidson

The Menlo Park native wanted to be an astronaut when she grew up. At just 20 years old, Davidson doesn’t own a spacesuit (yet), but she is the youngest person on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team participating in the FIFA Women’s World Cup. So, it seems that her shot for the stars is still being realized. She is one of three Stanford-connected players on the U.S.team, including local legends like Kelley O’Hara and Christen Press, whom Davidson admired as a young fan. Growing up only a 10-minute walk from the university, the phenom attended women’s soccer games religiously. Ironically, though, Davidson didn’t think she would make the cut when her time came around. She was wrong, winning the national championship with Stanford in 2017. The dynamo defender has been described as having a playmaker’s mentality, thanks to her innate ability to glide across the pitch.

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